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Like to solve puzzles?

Try this challenge from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. The CDC is looking for someone to develop an innovative mobile or web app, tool or game using CDC flu data.

The prize: $35,000.

Now, that’s better than just completing the weekly crossword puzzle in the local Sunday newspaper.

The CDC challenge is the latest in a number of challenges posted by the government on Challenge.gov, which allows for solutions for future problems.

There are 34 health challenges including one from the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services to create a web app that can increase awareness of health problems and inspire action at the community level.

Another interesting challenge is the Apps for Communities Challenge from the Federal Communications Commission in partnership with the John S. and James L. Knight Foundation, to create an app that makes local public information more usable and personalized for communities.

During SXSW, I attended the Apps for Healthy Kids: Government Challenge FTW session where I learned about one of the unique challenges that focused on the issue of childhood obesity. Part of First Lady Michelle Obama’s  Let’s Move! Initiative, Apps for Health Kids encouraged software developers, game designers, students, and other creative thinkers to develop fun and engaging games that foster healthy habits.

Kids and their families would learn about real, whole foods by picking digital apples or preparing pretend meals online. There would also be apps that would encourage children to get out and do physical activities.

There are a variety of challenges asking for various types of solutions from software solutions to public service announcement videos.

Have an idea to a challenge? Submit it and let me know.

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