By Brett Graham
“Have you ever wondered…?” was a beginning line for Andy Rooney’s monolog on the “60 Minutes” show. But, have you ever wondered what the UV index was while out in the sun? I have often asked myself that exact question during my weekend tennis activities. I can be a bit lazy when it comes to sun protection but when I know the UV index is high (6 or above), I just do it.
How can you find the UV index while you’re stretching at the tennis courts? EPA’s mobile website! Yes, I said MOBILE. The website has actually been around for a while and can be accessed at http://m.epa.gov from your mobile device. If you think that’s great… and I’m sure you do… . I’m here to tell you that EPA is completing its modernization of the mobile website and will soon be available at the above URL. For now, check out our prototype at http://www.epa.gov/webmast1/m . Feedback is always welcome.
You can get the latest environmental news releases, videos of Administrator Jackson on YouTube, and even photos posted on Flickr with your mobile device through our website. The website Apps menu includes links to “My Right to Know” and “Learn about your environment.” The latter includes information on UV Index, AirData, Energy Star Rebates, and My Environment.
Another useful item that I’d like to share is the Contact link at the bottom of the menu. It provides clickable phone numbers for an environmental emergency or any other threats to public health. For those of us who haven’t included the phone number of everyone we know working at the EPA, there’s an Employee Directory under the Contact link as well. I find that very useful.
I almost forgot to mention two of the most popular websites among mobile users: Facebook and Twitter. The new mobile website’s “Connect” page has links to EPA on Facebook and Twitter in the mobile format. Users can follow Administrator Lisa Jackson on Twitter or stay connected with environmental issues and events on EPA Facebook. Visitors to the “Connect” page can also join the Greenversations on EPA’s blog, where guest writers blog about current environmental issues. Or, they can just browse the “Environmental Tips” page to get information on how to conserve energy and other action-oriented tips.
As you can tell, I’m really excited about the new website and all the mobile content that’s available to you. Our team has worked hard to redesign EPA’s mobile website and we welcome your feedback. So, if you haven’t turned on your mobile device and browsed to the new prototype while reading this blog, now’s the time. And, don’t forget the sunblock!
About the author: Brett Graham is an IT Specialist and has been working at EPA since 2000. He’s located at the Office of Environmental Information’s National Computer Center in RTP, NC and is currently on detail to OEI’s Information Access Division.
Editor’s Note: The opinions expressed in Greenversations are those of the author. They do not reflect EPA policy, endorsement, or action, and EPA does not verify the accuracy or science of the contents of the blog.