CrowdViz -- Vision Through Technology
I'm currently on a small team working to build an app that will connect individuals that have some degree of vision loss to those with vision to assist with tasks that require eye-sight. One component of the design calls for a pool of volunteers (or something of that nature) to be on the other end of this connection. Would love to hear some feedback if anyone has run into a similar obstacle. Additionally, if visually impaired, would you find this app useful in your day to day?
Your project sounds similar to some that exist, the most popular is probably the app TapTapSee. It allows the user to take a photo and receive feedback. I imagine you can come up with ideas on how to make off-shoots of that, such as a video feed instead of one picture, etc. As to your question, I have not been involved in the development of one of these apps. However, my suspicion is that on the back-end these apps are tapping into a labor source such as Amazon's Mechanical Turks when they need a human, which is a platform for web workers to do repetitive tasks. It is not free but most work is outsourced to cheaper countries than the U.S. TapTapSee for example, charges for the use of the app because they pay someone or something on the back-end to reply with answers.
Not sure if this is what you're looking for but hope it points you in the right direction.
There is also viswos, if it is still around. You record a question and someone will help you. I had hep actually reading a bisiness cared from a local rep here in my state, and the same apple store I was at once. It was way too cool!