November 2009

Mobile Phone Penetration: Google Motion Chart Data Visualisation

Richard Heeks has entered the ITU data on mobile phone penetration for all countries from 1998-2008 into a Google Docs spreadsheet, and then added the Motion Chart visualiser. Makes for very interesting viewing. Read the article


It's 7:05pm in Dar es Salaam

Amanda and I have just returned from Dar es Salaam. We were on the road with Freedom Fone.

Last Tuesday, Nov 17 it was 9 degrees at 9am in orderly Johannesburg and 28 degrees with sweat inducing humidity at 7pm in chaotic Dar. After negotiating the jam-packed arrivals hall we smiled in relief when we discovered John holding up a torn piece of cardboard with Freedom Fone scribbled on it. We couldn't speak Swahili and he couldn't speak English but we made our greetings and jumped into his car for the ride of our life to a lodge off the Old Bagamoyo Road in Michokeni B.


A fast track to SMS success

A guide to getting SMS campaigns up-and-running in the shortest possible time and with the minimum of fuss. Read the article


Why it Matters that Pierre Omidyar is Launching a News Startup

Peer News -- a project aimed at creating the kind of local journalism that brings accountability and value to a community. Read the article


From compassion to action, from action to knowledge

So get pissed off and start a Facebook group. Launch a Twitter hashtag. Translate compassion into action. But realize that the most effective action probably involves aggregating and disseminating information, building knowledge and awareness that’s an asset even if it doesn’t lead directly to political change. Read the article by Ethan Zuckerman


CellStories - Short Stories on Your Mobile

Instead of cracking open a book, try sitting back with a short story on your phone. CellStories, which launched in September, offers a new short (1500-2500 words) story every weekday to readers on mobile phones. Read the article