Iceland is a country with a population of just about 320,000. And there has been little immigration over the years. This means there is not as much genetic diversity as on larger land masses. Go back a few generations and most Icelanders will find they are related to each other – almost everyone is distantly related. This makes the risk of inadvertently kissing cousins a very real risk.

To avoid the risk of dating a relative, an app was created by three University of Iceland software engineering students. The Islendiga-App — “App of Icelanders” — is an idea that may only be possible in Iceland, where most of the population shares descent from a group of 9th-century Viking settlers. The idea is quite simple – an online database holds genealogical details of almost the entire population. This is accessed by the app and it allows any two Icelanders to see how closely related they are, simply by touching phones. A small but much talked about feature is the loosely translated ‘Incest Prevention Alarm’ which notifies the user if the person he/she’s bumping with is too closely related.

This app also caters to Icelanders love of genealogy.

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