New Frontiers for Government Waste: The $200K. Mobile App

The infamous $640 toilet seat which the Pentagon purchased back in the 1980s has now become a crappy, excuse the pun, government made mobile app with a price tag of $200,000.

Rich Jones of, a job board for hackers, downloaded and installed the Heat Safety app from OSHA. It’s a straightforward service that finds your current location, measures the heat and humidity and serves up a warning with notes if the temperature is dangerous.

You might say this is the kind of app that could have been created for less money by simply telling people to stick their head out the window before work. But this kind of precaution is OSHA’s mandate and it’s good, in theory, to see government trying to leverage new technology.

Mr. Jones, and Android developer himself, took a much darker view. “Pardon my French, but I really cannot stress how bad this application is. Firstly, it isn’t actually capable of the function it is supposed to do. When I first tried the application, it told me that it was currently 140F in Boston. It is also extremely slow, it looks like butt, and it crashes all the time. It is completely horrible in every way. If I had to reproduce it, I’d say that it would take be about 6 hours at the maximum. At my hourly rate of $100, that’s $600.” Read More New Frontiers for Government Waste: The $200K. Mobile App