bback.me goes live

bback.me logo image

Some ob­jects are pre­cious to us. Not that they cost a lot, but they may car­ry a good mem­o­ry, have some sen­ti­men­tal val­ue or more sim­ply, be es­sen­tial to our day to day life —  key­chain, cred­it card, phone, hand­bag, but al­so, baby’s ­com­forter, lug­gage or coat.

We have all ex­pe­ri­enced the trou­bles of hav­ing lost one of our be­long­ing and their im­pact on our day to day life, ei­ther be­cause of the costs in­curred or the ad­di­tion­al ad­min­is­tra­tive bur­den.

Some­time, we al­so find a for­got­ten gar­men­t, a key or even a lap­top on pub­lic trans­porta­tion. We would like to help, but have no way to get in­ ­touch with their own­er.

Hav­ing ex­pe­ri­enced those sit­u­a­tion­s, and be­ing con­vinced that the hu­man be­ing is good by na­ture and is will­ing to help, we set up a sys­tem which would al­low peo­ple find­ing lost items to eas­i­ly get in touch with their own­er.

bback.me logo

The main idea — which is not new in it­self — is to mark the ob­jects with an ID which al­lows peo­ple find­ing them to get in touch with the own­er. The nov­el­ty is to use an ID which is an in­ter­net ad­dress (URL), and which is eas­i­ly rec­og­niz­able as such.

http://bback.me

We have thus de­signed the web site http://b­back­.me. You may browse and read the main page and the FAQ to know more.

Out­lined, the speci­fici­ties of the ser­vice are:

  • Cheap, with an an­nu­al reg­is­­tra­­tion fee of €5. The idea is to be able to pay ­­for host­ing and de­vel­op­­men­t, but not more.

  • Ev­ery­­body can choose the URL they think will be eas­i­­ly reck­­oned or un­der­s­tood by the per­­son who will find the lost item.

    Thus in En­g­lish spo­ken coun­try, one would prob­a­bly use bback­­.org, bback­­.me or lost.re. In France, cqi.fr or ren­­dre.fr would be ­­more ap­pro­pri­ate where­as kwi­jt.nu would be used in Nether­­land­s. The do­­main hooz.it is al­­so avail­able.

  • We do not pro­­vide la­­bels to put on your be­­long­ings. It is in­­deed dif­­fi­cult ­­to de­sign la­­bel suit­­able for all pos­si­ble use. You can use what­ev­er mean to ­­mark your ob­­jec­t­s.

    We fre­quen­t­­ly use la­­bels print­­ed with an ad­e­quate print­­er (bought €20 on­­line), or tex­tile la­­bels.

On the tech­ni­cal side, the web­site is writ­ten in Python with the help of the We­b2py frame­work. It is host­ed on Google Ap­p Engine.

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