application / software

An application program (app or application for short) is a computer program designed to perform a group of coordinated functions, tasks, or activities for the benefit of the user.


Residents from Buitenveldert tested the MUV app during a walk through the neighbourhood. Can it be further developed?


White men are over-represented in the world of programming. That is a pity, programming is for everyone - says Erwin Rooijakkers.


Waag together with the Drenthe Archive built the interactive installation Sigismund in 2006, now in use as an educational escape room.


In Buitenveldert (Amsterdam) neighbours went out on the street and walked around their neighbourhood with the assistance of an app.




SUSHI is an interactive app for educational support of the theater programme Revolutions of Het Nationale Theater.


The Science Journal app taps into all the various sensors in a mobile device or connected Arduino tools to record data and test hypotheses about the physical environment.


User-friendly technology is helping drivers of electric cars to efficiently share charging points around the country. Social Charging is a free app, offering a new solution to the problem that there are not enough charging points available, while some may be unnecessarily kept occupied.


In 2013, the app Bru-taal was one of the winners of the Meester App-award, a contest we organized in collaboration with the Dutch Ministry of Education for the best apps in primary education. It's two years later when a new and revised version of the app will be available.


Over the past few years, Apps for Europe has acted as a support network for turning data-based apps into viable businesses. While the project may have come to an end recently, the apps live on.



What the Hack?

Hackathons, as in ‘condensed timeframes were programmers come together to collectively or individually achieve something out of the ordinary’ (a more comprehensive definition can be found on Wikipedia) have existed for decades, but became wildly popular after the 2008 Apps for Democracy contest in Washington.



Code for NL

After the example of Code for America, Waag recently introduced Code for NL. Code for NL arranges fellowships for technically savvy people within governments and related organisations in The Netherlands, to work on practical solutions for societal problems.


Following a successful International Business Lounge at FutureEverything, the winners of Apps for Europe 2015 were announced.


On January 23rd, 2015 six winning teams in the Mobiles for Good challenge pitched their applications in front of a large audience.


The latest research adventure of the Foundation Tijdgeest,, has won the Water innovation prize 2014. The project has been developed for Hoogheemraadschap Hollands Noorderkwartier and Waag earlier built the web application for the project.


Smart rules for developing ICT, the government sure can use them. Frank Kresin wrote these for smart cities, but they apply to governments too and can save a lot of trouble. Start with involving citizens, working agile, building small systems with small parties and sharing knowledge.And hire Code for NL fellows.


After some successful open data contests, it was time to develop our own app with open data, following our own ‘users as designers’ methodology.


Following a successful event at FutureEverything, we can now announce the winners of the International Business Lounge 2014: BikeCityGuide and Nostalgeo.


Apps for Europe at FutureEverything in Manchester. As part of our aims, we have been on the lookout for the very best open data applications in Europe: apps, algorithms, platforms or services.


The ten finalists of the European app contest Apps for Europe have been announced. This selection of open data business cases will showcase at the International Business Lounge during FutureEverything in Manchester 31st March - 1st April 2014.


Waag and the City of Amsterdam cooperated with the University of Applied Sciences Amsterdam for Students in Motion.


A new study shows that the app economy, including apps running on smartphones and tablets, has contributed nearly 800,000 jobs to the EU economy in just five years.


During the Mobiles for Good Challenge, Vodafone Foundation and Waag searched for mHealth applications that use mobile technology for smart solutions in healthcare. At the Emerce eHealth congress, from over 200 entries the following winners emerged: PebbleMED, CareRate and Mobiles for Mothers. These initiatives will each be supported with 40.000 euro to realize their applications.


In the last weeks of July, our developers Laurens Schuurkamp and Bert Spaan were in Curaçao. They gave workshops and masterclasses on open design and coding.


For our project Apps for Europe, Marleen Stikker spoke with Eurocommissionar Neelie Kroes about open data, the new European legislation regarding this topic and opportunities that releasing information creates.


On June 26th the Meester App award ceremony took place on a primary school in Den Haag.


On 26 June 2013, the winners of the 'Meester App' contest were announced. The first contest for ideas and apps for primary education in The Netherlands. The educational language game Bru-taal has won the first prize of € 5.000,-.


The app competition Meester App received more than 200 applications. 20 of these were nominated for the main prizes.


Europeana, the European digital portal to culture, has made 350.000 images available coming from six renowned institutions in a first edition of their own (iPad) app. The app allows search in selected image collections of Europeana, Europe’s cultural and scientific heritage portal. The images included are available for free re-use and cover five themes: Maps and Plans, Art, Photography, Treasures of the Past, and Treasures of Nature. The code of the app, written by Glimworm IT, is also open source.


A nice article in the Dutch newspaper Het Parool about our Meester App event, that we organized.


The Radboud University will start with the CHASING project, that develops speech training for neurological patients by interactive gaming.


Every month we’re hosting a tech item in Zapplive. This time we showed the audience how to do prototying on paper with the app POP.


Programming is no longer restricted to programmers! On March 6, 2013 we held a workshop programming with Scratch in our series Fabschool Kids. Scratch is an application which learns children programming in a playful way.


On Monday March 18th we kicked off Mister App: a competition which allows everyone to send in their ideas for an educational app.


Meester App was a contest of the Ministry of Education, Culture and Science in The Netherlands to find the best apps for primary education. One could join this contest in two categories: ideas for an app or apps that already have been developed for primary education.


In the week of 3-5 March 2013, our developers Bert Spaan and Laurens Schuurkamp visited Curaçao to assist in the follow-up of a local apps contest called Apps4Curaçao. It proofed to be a successful venture, with four prototype app being developed for the island


The iPad may not seem like social tool, but the new games that Waag developed show us the opposite. You can play the games together on an iPad, and they are designed to encourage sharing personal stories. Away with those traditional board-games: from now on we gather around the iPad with our family for a nice evening!


Apps for Europe - turning data into business will create a thematic network to organise competitions for using open data.


If teachers want to use tablets in their classroom they are confronted with a universe of available apps. Eduapp, a Dutch portal for educational apps, makes it easy to find apps for school or at home.


The 'Reisradar App', developed by a team of Waag is nominated for further development within the 'Ontwijk de File'.


Thursday December 13th, the winners of the Apps On competition were announced. In the contest participants competed for the prize for the best app for higher education or research. SURFnet and Waag organized this competition for the first time this year to stimulate the development of mobile apps




Collage was a research project in which an application was developed that supports learning processes, acquiring new ideas and inspiration at work.


BlindSquare, an augmented reality app that uses audio technology and crowd-sourced open data to help visually-impaired people move around and get the most out of their cities, won the first prize of the Open Cities App Challenge.



MyOV app

In 2010, Waag worked at the application MyOV. A smart app that would give travellers with public transport in The Netherlands the opportunity to ask for a refund at delays.



Apps On

The importance of good apps in higher education and research practice is growing. With the competition Apps On, SURFnet and Waag stimulate the development of these apps.


On Saturday 16 June 2012 the second edition Apps for Amsterdam was launched, in which contest developers not only have a chance to win great prizes with their newly developed applications, but also the opportunity to develop them further to get them on the market. The newspaper Het Parool covered Apps for Amsterdam in an article written by Saskia Naafs on the opening day of the contest.


On Monday 4 June 2012, within the framework of Apps for Amsterdam, an Waag Open Space was held at the Waag in Amsterdam. About 60 developers and entrepreneurs came together to discuss 'Apps and Business'.


In the Express to Connect project, the concept design and the technical implementation of the game prototypes is run by Waag. Taco van Dijk works at Waag as a back-end developer on the technology behind the E2C game. His team consists of concept developers, graphical designers, software developers and a sound designer.


The second edition of ‘Apps for Amsterdam’ is coming and Waag organized a brainstorm session with Open Data 'evangelists' from Amsterdam on 30 March 2012 at the Waag. A report (in Dutch).




Six years ago Waag started research into the role of new media in the emancipation of the mentally disabled. A process of trial and error, in cooperation with the inhabitants and staff of care institutions led to the development of the Pilotus software.




Every local heritage institution accommodates a world of exiting stories from their own region. With the LOGIN:locally project all those stories came to live digitally for young people.




Nieuwsflits! (News flash) was an online editing tool for primary schools, that could be used in the Persmuseum in Amsterdam.


The idea behind MuseumApp is to offer visitors of the museum a new experience that enables them to enjoy the collection both inside the museum and on location in the city.


At the beginning of 2011, Waag organized the first 'Apps contest' in The Netherlands, called 'Apps for Amsterdam'. We published a report on the contest titled 'Apps for Amsterdam, a city opening up' (pdf), giving the results, stats and lessons learned.



Demi Dubbel

Demi Dubbel is a visual internet environment in which pupils of two schools at a time go for a hunt through art history.


Nine (9) was a project of Graham Harwood.


Drawing of Today was a cooperation between Waag and the artists Ram Katzir and Yariv Alter Fin.


The international StrangerFestival was the centrepiece of the Stranger project of the European Cultural Foundation (ECF) that included video screenings, debates, masterclasses and workshops for young people.




Annotrax combined the concept of channeled annotating with a video search engine and an highly interactive video player.




iYou was a concept for a personal, mobile data guide, which reflects directly on the media use of a mobile phone user.


The winners of the Apps for Amsterdam contest in 2011 were: Energielabel App, OCO Scholenzoeker and 178 x Amsterdam.


On 8 September 2011, MuseumApp NL was launched at the Amsterdam Museum during the opening of the new permanent collection.


Jij en je Wijk (You and Your Neighboorhood) is an innovative project in the field of environmental education.




KeyWorx was an extensible application framework that has been under development at Waag for a number of years.


The winners of the national Dutch contest to develop applications with open data of the government, Apps voor Nederland (Apps for The Netherlands) are: Vistory (Gold), 10.000 Schools (Silver), Sola (Bronze) and Hoge Nood (Public Award).




Pilotus software enabled people with a mental challenge to communicate with their relatives, friends and carers.