Tag Archives: ict4d

The Mobile as a Post Industrial Platform for Social and Economic Development: Top 3 Trends in Africa

Just over a decade ago, in San Jose, California, I was invited to speak as the Closing Plenary for the CHI 2007 25th Anniversary Conference. The theme was “Reach Beyond”, as this was the 25th Anniversary conference of the Computer Human Interaction society, and as the closing plenary, I was tasked with articulating the vision […]

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Why am I so excited about an African hair style app released on smartphones?

Darling, the pan African hair extension brand owned by Godrej of India, has just released an app in Nigeria aimed at helping customers choose their latest hair style on their smartphone. The implications are enormous, imho. Mobiles are ubiquitious. E-commerce in Nigeria is becoming commonplace. Smartphones are default. The African consumer market is sophisticated in […]

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The Truth About Disruptive Development in the Digital Village

After a quick Twitter interaction, I find myself having agreed to write this caveat to Ken Banks’ recently published article The Truth About Disruptive Development published in the Stanford Social Innovation Review. So I’ll start by taking a step back to ask myself what aspects of his proposed points make me hesitate with a second […]

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Human centered systems design: Navigating complexity through flexibility

Drawing credit: JAM visualdenken Systems designed for use by communities tend to operate differently from back end or operational processes. Its only natural given the unpredictable nature of crowds. I’m sure there are a lot of people looking into this field, with greater experience and knowledge than I. However, I bring this up due to […]

Posted in Africa, ASEAN, Assumption filter, Base of the Pyramid, Consumer Behaviour, Culture, Ecosystem, Flexibility, Frameworks, Indigenous & Traditional, Informal & Flexible, Innovation Planning, Mobile platform, Perspective, Platforms, Prepaid Economy & Informal Sector, Rural Economy, Strategy, Systems, Technology, UCSD, User research | Also tagged | Leave a comment

Lowering barriers: Its about access, not the device

When Vanderbeeken sent me a link yesterday about Nokia working closely with Facebook to get the next billion online, it reminded me of this crude diagram I’d constructed back when I was watching this space far more closely than I do now. Twitter and Facebook are the two big names that weren’t even on our […]

Posted in African Consumer Market, Airtime, Base of the Pyramid, Business, Culture, Ecosystem, Frameworks, Mobile platform, Perspective, Prepaid Economy & Informal Sector, Systems, Technology, UCSD | Also tagged , | Leave a comment

Priorities for an internet on the mobile platform for Africa’s prepaid economy

Something that Gustav Praekelt said in the news about access to no-cost information being a basic human right at the Mobile Web Africa caught my attention. There is still a gaping void in services accessible to and customized for the needs of the mass majority of mobile phone owners in the world. The next billion […]

Posted in Africa, Airtime, Analysis, Base of the Pyramid, Business Models, Design, Mobile platform, Perspective, Prepaid Economy & Informal Sector, Rural Economy, Sub Saharan Africa, Systems, Technology, UCSD | Also tagged , | Leave a comment

Sampling uncertainty

This drawing was made by Jeroen Meijer of JAM visual design, Amsterdam, earlier this week during the workshop we held on Monday, November 26th, 2012. Its a visualization of the chart I use to show how participants were sampled for the prepaid economy project. The axes represent the individual’s ability to accurately predict either timing […]

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User driven innovation planning and strategy in development

It was with feeling of satisfaction that I read Eric Smallberg’s recent post titled “Thankfully, ICT4D is Now About Strategy and Implementations, Not Technovelty” where brings up the lessons from failure and the shift in emphasis of technology based development projects and social enterprises. He says: Richard Heeks wrote about the early history of these […]

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The hidden digital divide: Energy consumption and infrastructure

Photocredit: Niti Bhan, Maua, Kenya Feb 2012 This is an ironbox. It is heated by placing glowing embers of charcoal inside and securing the lid. When hot, it is used to iron clothes. Variations of this design can be seen in use across India’s urban centers where the isteriwallah plies his trade, ironing clothes for […]

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