Our True Goal
To share our solution with as many people as possible. Why? Because this is an issue that's going to take more than money, more than a few backers, and more than gimmicks to solve. This campaign is our first step towards solving distracted driving.
- An app that silences text notifications while you drive
- Auto-responds for you with customized messages
- Uses a Bluetooth device for super accuracy and automation
Now, you’ve heard the compelling stories, studies, and statistics, and you’re probably aware of the dangers of driving distracted, but did you know there’s actually a solution to this growing trend? Meet TextNinja!
THE (REAL) PROBLEM
Texting-while-driving, although illegal in almost every state, continues to grow as a social problem. It’s the number one cause of deaths among teenagers, and has recently surpassed drunk driving as the leading cause of collisions.
Everyone knows it is dangerous, so why is it still such a prevalent problem? The fear of missing out (or FOMO) is a “social anxiety that an exciting or interesting event may be currently happening elsewhere,” and it is at the very center of the problem. Today’s society relies so much on connectivity that, even when illegal and life-threatening, it is impossible to ignore. It's often not a conscious decision to drive distracted, but more of a psychological habit.
A REAL SOLUTION
We believe that an effective solution must include three main characteristics; it must be smart and easy to use, actually break the habit of driving distracted, and encourage a long-term behavioral change. TextNinja combines existing knowledge and technology, our own research and design, and a passion for making a difference, to create a highly viable, working solution.
Smart and Easy
Did you know that our cars have had computers in them for well over 20 years? Only recently, however, have we made enough advances that we can connect with these computers wirelessly and in real-time to access data and utilize it in useful ways.
The “connected car” revolution is here, and TextNinja is leading the way in safety applications. With the “set it and forget it” approach, a one-time bluetooth pairing then allows the app and car to connect automatically and silence distractions before they strike.
Break the Habit
It will take more than a warning, more than a pledge, and more than a mandatory, ‘big brother’ approach to cure the masses of this social disease.
Texting while driving can be identified as a psychological habit which is characterized by: a cue (the notification sound), a routine behavior (reaching for your phone), and a reward (staying connected), which in this case is only rewarding if you happen to not die or cause a collision.
The cue is removed, the behavior is changed, and the “reward” is delivered when it’s safe. With fun and effortless repetition, safe driving becomes the norm and a new long-term (not to mention legal and non-life-threatening) habit is formed.
A habitual behavior does not change overnight, it requires an incentive to remain committed to change. Structured to engage and promote continued interest, the app challenges users to rise through the belt rankings to reach BlackBelt.
Leveling up requires social AND driving achievements, complimenting personal improvement with public advocacy (the TextNinja Balance). The ability to socially connect, challenge or compete with friends, and personally strive to reach the next belt ranking helps turn safe driving into a constructive social trend.
We know that it’s possible to make significant changes when we work together. The TextNinja solution is the catalyst for change, and with your support and momentum, we can take action against distracted driving.
“Never doubt that a small group of thoughtful, committed citizens can change the world; indeed, it is the only thing that ever has." - Margaret Mead
There are already hundreds of groups promoting awareness, offering pledges, and honoring distracted-driving victims. By putting a working solution in their hands, we enhance their efforts of advocacy with an additional call to action. Within the app, each user contributes their points to a Campaign and drives text-free in the name of a cause. Organizations of all shapes and sizes can create a TextNinja Campaign for Awareness and join the movement!
Are you ready to take action?
- Spread the word! The more people who accept the challenge, the more fun it is to use, and the more lives we can save.
- Start a Campaign! If you are involved in or know of an organization that is interested in saving lives, we want to join forces! (link to campaigns page)
- TAKE THE TEXTNINJA CHALLENGE!
BEHIND THE NINJA
The hardworking team behind TextNinja is a unique blend of passionate designers, developers, and community outreach advocates (our team). When such a widespread problem is presented that hits close to home and falls within a relevant industry and skillset, it’s impossible to ignore the opportunity to make a real difference.
TextNinja began as a problem solving exercise in early 2014 between Ted Goodwin, a high school teacher from Denver, and Jim Ramirez, who had recently started bringing new ideas to market as founder of HYHAT (“Have You Heard About This?”). A conversation about the problems facing today’s teens quickly turned to a synergy of ideas and a passion for taking action. Over the next 2 years of technology research, team building, design refinement, piloting, testing, and many development iterations, TextNinja grew into a real solution.
Working out of 1871 in Chicago has given TextNinja extra impact and exposure, but our bootstrapping stage has peaked and it is time to scale.
Goals & Rewards
The primary goal of our Kickstarter campaign is to start the movement (did we mention this?)! The more backers, the more impact. Being part of something great that saves lives is the real reward.
The secondary goal is to raise funds to help support the development of the iPhone version and continued development of the solution as a whole to maximize effectiveness and save more lives!
In-App Achievement Sponsor
Risks and challenges
Let's face it, there are always some unknowns when delivering a project, especially one that involves integrated technology. Luckily, we're not starting from scratch, and are coming to you at a very mature stage in the project.
A few important things to note:
1. Our Android solution has been in beta since July and is ready to ship.
2. We don’t have to start from scratch for the iOS version, because we’ve built our solution using a state of the art cross-platform framework called Xamarin.
3. Upgrading our device to BT 4.0 (BTLE) requires very little additional R&D, it's essentially upgrading the Bluetooth component to be even smarter and more efficient.
With that being said, there may still be unforeseen hiccups in the development and delivery. But rest assured, we are passionate about solving this issue and will work through any issues that arise.Learn about accountability on Kickstarter
- (32 days)