A think piece about the possible role of technology in stages of human psychological development.
2005 – 15% of world population connected to internet
2015 – 42%.
When users are connected to the internet, FireChat works like any other messaging app. But when the signal is weak or absent, it comes into its own, using Bluetooth or Wi-fi to bounce messages between phones until it can find an internet connection and be whisked off to its intended recipient.
Mecca as Smart City.
There’s also old school companies surfing the neurowaves.
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Municipal wi-fi networks seem to have run into a snag as many were based on public-private partnerships that would have made them essentially low or no cost to the taxpayers. Many of the business plans aren’t working out. But there is still work going on in bottom up, organic networks with individuals contributing their bandwidth.
“The citizens of Kuuskaista have formed a co-operative to develop and own an open public local access network to serve the community and I believe this shared ownership model could be adopted more widely. – Tuija Riukulehto : CEO of Network Co-Operative, Kuuskaista, Finland”
And bigger scale public-private partnerships. Hmm.
“BT has teamed up with Spanish technology company Fon, backed by Google, to try to persuade its more than 3 million British internet users to open up part of their home wireless broadband networks so that other people can use them.”
Although this is also interesting juxtaposed with the previous item, powering without wires is something I think about every business trip when I travel with power cords for PC, phone and iPod, and more if I bring the portable speakers…
“Researchers at MIT have shown that it’s possible to wirelessly power a 60-watt lightbulb sitting about two meters away from a power source.”
Here’s news from wi-fi infrastructure developers that are expanding spectrum available for such broad coverage of connectivity.
“Using Tropos’ recently-announced SABRE technology, operators can use policy-based routing to dynamically route traffic through unlicensed Wi-Fi, 4.9 GHz, licensed WiMAX or other links based on application, service, priority or other configurable rules.”
Just got a fundraising appeal from this outfit. Looks good.
FINCA’s mission is to provide financial services to the world’s lowest-income entrepreneurs so they can create jobs, build assets and improve their standard of living.
I have highlighted the Grameen Bank before for providing a practical way to extend telecommunications infrastructure in developing nations. More than 50,000 villages worldwide have been reached by Grameen.
“Muhammad Yunus of Bangladesh and the Grameen Bank have been jointly awarded the 2006 Nobel Peace Prize. Mr Yunus, an economist, founded the bank, which is one of the pioneers of micro-credit lending schemes for the poor, especially women, in Bangladesh.”
Here’s the telecom-specific venture of Grameen.
“Grameen Telecom (GTC) is a company dedicated towards extending the benefits of the information revolution amongst the rural people of Bangladesh. Currently GTC provides the GSM 900 cellular mobile phones to the villagers. Our corporate vision is to provide telecommunication services to the 100 million rural inhabitants in the 68,000 villages in Bangladesh.”