Can mobile phone apps be designed to help make a better world? Life Apps challenges young software developers from around the world to visit remote communities, to experience their everyday hardships and create app solutions to improve their lives - a life app.

Pedro, a Brazilian digital design student, is part of a collective of young people in Rio de Janeiro working on new mobile phone technology.

He goes to Rio to meet Cadu and Dinho who work on community projects in the Mare and Alemao favelas. The massive and uncontrolled growth of favelas is a major environmental issue in the booming city. In Alemao and Mare alone there are more than 200,000 people, with few proper facilities.

Cadu and Dinho are taking Pedro to meet young people from Rio's North Zone to learn about their lives, but also to discuss the possibilities for new mobile apps that can help those who are excluded from mainstream opportunities and that can help with green business initiatives in the favela community.

It gets Pedro thinking about the prospects for the favelas' community gardens. So can he build a life app to help the secret world of urban farms and gardens in Rio's shanty towns?

 
This episode of Life Apps can be seen from Saturday, July 19 at the following times GMT: Saturday: 0830 and 1930; Sunday: 1430; Monday: 0430.

Source: Al Jazeera