Ghana, like many African countries, is undergoing urbanisation and the formal address system is unable to keep up. Some African cities are growing so fast that maps are out-dated the moment they are published. And many roads and houses are built so rapidly, that street names and numbers are simply forgotten.
For many Ghanaians, the best way to find a location is to use landmarks or simply ask a hawker. Ghanaians can now abandon the landmark system thanks to SnooCode, an app developed by Sesinam Dagadu.
The mobile app uses a computer algorithm to generate a unique six-digit code for any location that then serves as an address. This code never changes and is in effect tied to the land.
To give others your address, send the location code as if it was any formal address and the app will provide navigation options to the location.
“No Internet is needed. It does not matter whether there is credit on the phone or not. It does not matter whether you are getting good reception or not,” says Dagadu. “The basic thing is to download the application and generate a code through it on the phone.”
Dagadu has also developed CodeRed, a development of SnooCode, which aims to enable the National Ambulance Service to easily and accurately locate victims during emergencies.
Dagadu has been invited to implement SnooCode in countries like Nigeria, Sierra Leone and Malawi where the system is also needed.