Fellows class

TEDGlobal 2011

About Sonaar

Bio

Creator of Water Canary, a water-testing device that collects real-time water quality data from the field.

Education

  • NYU - ITP; Interactive Telecommunications / Interaction Design, 2008 - 2010
  • NYU; Media Theory, 2007 - 2008
  • Oxford University; English & Theology, 2002 - 2003
  • Bowdoin College; Double Major: English & Religion, 2000 - 2004

About Sonaar Luthra’s work

Water Canary is working to eliminate the organizational and financial barriers that keep real-time water quality information out of reach. Until now, water testing technologies have only provided an incomplete picture of water quality conditions. The time and resources required to collect samples, administer tests, report results and verify their accuracy, have ensured that very few tests are performed, and that available information only offers perspective in hindsight. In spite of developments that have boosted the precision of testing solutions in recent decades, we still live in a world where very little water quality information exists. This means that most unsafe water is only discovered after it’s too late – when we’ve passed the point at which actions could have been taken to prevent isolated hazards from growing into much larger problems that can take years to recover from. Water Canary hardware and data services are being positioned to offer to world a better way to see extreme situations soon enough to prevent them from getting worse.

Uploaded photos

Projects

Water Canary

Aug. 01, 2010 - Present

Water Canary is working to eliminate the organizational and financial barriers that keep real-time water quality information out of reach. Until now, water testing technologies have only provided an incomplete picture of water quality conditions. The time and resources required to collect samples, administer tests, report results and verify their accuracy, have ensured that very few tests are performed, and that available information only offers perspective in hindsight. In spite of developments that have boosted the precision of testing solutions in recent decades, we still live in a world where very little water quality information exists. This means that most unsafe water is only discovered after it’s too late – when we’ve passed the point at which actions could have been taken to prevent isolated hazards from growing into much larger problems that can take years to recover from. Water Canary hardware and data services are being positioned to offer to world a better way to see extreme situations soon enough to prevent them from getting worse.

Project website

Sonaar Luthra on the TED blog

Q&A

Waterwise: Fellows Friday with Sonaar Luthra

January 13, 2012

Sonaar Luthra (watch his TED Talk) is packing water-safety analysis and mobile networking into the Water Canary — a handheld, open-source, and easy-to-use gadget accessible to all — hoping to save lives and gather information that will improve global water health. You have a background as a writer, educator and journalist. How did you end […]

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