DARPA’s CLIQR Quest Challenge

“The Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency (DARPA) is conducting the DARPA CLIQR Quest (Cash for Locating and Identifying QuickResponse codes (CLIQR) Quest), a prize-based challenge that seeks to advance the understanding of social media and the Internet, and explore the role the Internet and social networking plays in the timely communication, wide area team-building and urgent mobilization required to solve broad scope, time-critical problems.

In time of crises, we must ensure that the right resources make it to the right area in the right time. Delays in finding those resources cost more than time and money, delays cost lives. Finding the most efficient method of resource identification and delivery is paramount. It is a capability with clear relevance and importance to the military when it is called upon for assistance and existing data sources and social network analysis are not sufficient for accomplishing this task.

The CLIQR Quest has been crafted to simulate public mobilization for the identification of essential assets to assist in mobilizing and delivering aid efficiently. The event, like an actual crisis or disaster, is unannounced prior to the start date. The humanitarian crisis relief assets (e.g. water, food, gas, etc.) needed to quickly respond to a disaster are represented by appropriately named – Quick Response (QR) codes. QR codes have been distributed throughout the continental United States to represent the dispersion of resource concentrations throughout the country. CLIQR Quest participants will be challenged to locate other participants who have key assets that are represented by the QR codes. The event will only last for two weeks – the notional assets must be identified and coordinated quickly to ensure they make it to those in need.

The CLIQR Quest begins at 11:00 AM (EST) on Thursday, February 23, 2012 and ends at 12:00 PM (EST) on Thursday, March 8, 2012. Entries are accepted until noon, 12:00 PM (EST) on Thursday, March 8, 2012.

A cash prize of up to US $40,000 cash prize will be awarded to the first contest entrant to find and submit all of the available QR codes.

The winner will be announced and some results will be posted on the CLIQR Quest website during the week of March 12, 2012.”


The blog Taking Aim responded to DARPA’s challenge, putting forward the suggestion that a charity-driven element be introduced to the contest – her post is available here.

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