So after a small amount of fiddling I have put together a simple system to allow people to report problems like water/gas/electricity outages and maybe car crashes and road blockages in Cork (other suggestions welcome).
This is by the residents and for the residents of the region.
Updates are always visible to everyone at The Cork Problems Page.
If you want to send reports then the setup will take you maybe two minutes. From then on you can report problems using a web-page, SMS or Instant Message.
You need to sign up to a U.S. based service called Twitter here. It’s very easy to do. Once you have signed-up, go to the CorkProbs Twitter Page here and add CorkProbs as a friend (simple link on the right hand side of page). Wait until you get an email saying that CorkProbs has also added you as a friend.
From then on, if you want to report a problem or a resolution/update then you can do the following: Go to twitter.com and type the problem into the wee box at the top of the screen. Make sure that the message starts with @CorkProbs followed by a space followed by what you want to say. Click Update.
Within a couple of minutes your message will appear on the Cork Problems Web Page here. You can check this page whenever you want to see what other updates people are posting. Techies can subscribe to the RSS feed.
If you like that, but want more flexibility, then you can set up your Twitter account so you send the problem reports via SMS. Just go to this settings page and tell them about your phone. From then on, you just send SMS messages to +447624801423 in the same style as before i.e. first bit is @CorkProbs
Note that number is a UK one (Twitter does not have an Irish one) so it’s a wee bit more expensive than sending it to an Irish number.
People on Google GTalk can also use that to send messages.
Let me know what you think or if you need any help getting set up. I hope we can create a useful resource for everyone in Cork in the absence of any notification system from Cork CoCo.
Of course there is nothing stopping their employees from signing up and sending updates to it!