Perspectives on constraints of ICT in Africa

08-05-2009 – Filed under ICT4Dconnectivitymobilerural-development

Despite the exciting potentials about new technologies for development and, particularly, the latest hype on mobile phones, it is necessary not to loose out sight of the incredible challenges towards Internet access or extended mobile usage. I have collected over the past months some interesting facts and figures from a…

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What does local content have to do with low-bandwidth applications?

14-04-2009 – Filed under ICT4Dlinksafricabandwidthbloggingconnectivitymobilerural-developmentweb2fordev

High bandwidth access expands worldwide, finally in Africa too, but in many places the connectivity does not allow for an easy Internet usability, let alone the use of many tools for publishing own content and interacting easily with other users. Aside from many other challenges, one important to remark is…

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Mobile phones for development = grassroots innovations

20-07-2008 – Filed under ICT4Dcollaborationconnectivitygrassrootskm4devmobileopen-sourcetwitter

Recently, there seems to be a hype around mobile phones in developing countries. It is great to see the investments being made in mobile technology and communication. At the KM4DEV unconference Pete Cranston, Luca Servo  and I organized a little session around the potential of mobile phones for knowledge sharing….

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Digital divide: Connectivity and the different dimensions of literacy

02-06-2008 – Filed under ICT4Dknowledge-managementconnectivitylearningmediasocial-mediatechnology

During last days I have been going trough different ICT4D papers, and then again I have been astonished to see that their focus was mainly limited to the issue of access although access to a computer or Internet is just a first step and does not mean you can fully…

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Web2.0 - potentials or obstacles for connectivity?

25-03-2008 – Filed under ICT4Dbandwidthconnectivityweb2fordev

The discussion about web2.0 and development is divided roughly into two groups. One argues for the potential of the social web and that finally the users shape the web and applications to their benefit. And the other side wonders what does web2.0 make for a difference in the field of…

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Notes from the web4dev conference

03-12-2007 – Filed under ICT4Dafricaconferenceconnectivitydevelopmentweb2fordev

Continuing with the web4dev conference in Nairobi, I wanted to add some more personal perspectives. During the conference, on the second day, twenty different workshops were offered. We, Nynke and I, gave a presentation that same day, and as with most other sessions, not many people showed up. We highlighted…

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Start of the web4dev conference: Major issue connectivity

28-11-2007 – Filed under ICT4Dafricaconnectivitymobiletechnology

I am at the Web4Dev conference in Nairobi, Kenya. The conference brings together people from all over the world to discuss how the web can contribute to development. One overarching topic are the Millennium Development Goals and how information and communication technologies (ICT) can help to achieve them. I will…

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10 lessons learnt from ICT4D

05-08-2007 – Filed under ICT4Dconnectivityculturelearningopen-sourcesharing

Information and Communications Technologies for Development (ICT4D) is still a fairly new theme in the development arena. Throughout the years ICT4D has diversified in many different sub-themes such as e-governance, e-agriculture, e-health, education, etc. Although there have been successful stories, the high hopes had often not been realized in many…

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Social webs in Africa

14-07-2007 – Filed under activismcommunicationICT4Dafricabloggingconnectivitymobilesocial-network

Today I was interviewed by the German radio station “Deutschland Radio Kultur.” The interview is now available as a podcast at blogspiel.de. The interview’s main topic was Social Webs in Africa, stressing general issues about connectivity in Africa and social web such as the blogosphere. Thanks to Sokari Ekine I…

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Challenges of web2.0 in Africa

18-06-2007 – Filed under ICT4Dafricabloggingcivil-societyconnectivitymobilewebnpk4devweb2fordev

Recently I met Toni Eliasz from Ungana-Afrika in Pretoria. We discussed over web2.0 in the context of development. His thoughts were interesting on that of the potential and challenges of the collaborative web, given his experiences in South Africa and the region. Ungana is a NGO which devotes its work…

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Do new web applications benefit the poor?

04-06-2007 – Filed under ICT4Dafricabloggingcomputerconnectivityopen-sourcesharingsocial-networkweb2fordevwiki

I was curious when an article titled Web 2.0 can benefit the world’s poor appeared on Scidev.net. The authors Waleed al-Shobakky and Jack Imsdahl see in new web applications, such as Google docs, a great potential for developing countries. They write, “Web 2.0 can help these students create documents, track…

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