Closing the Global Digital Divide: Technology for Developing Countries
Photo via Symmetry Magazine
The above map shows the densities of Internet connectivity around the world. It’s easy to see which countries are most connected, and which are left in the dark. And with this we can fairly easily figure out what areas of the world lack the technologies that give us the luxuries we experience in daily life.
There are many groups and organizations hard at work at closing the global digital divide and providing developing countries with the gadgets and gear we take for granted, from Internet connectivity to clean water. Collected here are some of the excellent groups and cool projects going on across the globe to evenly spread out access to computer technology.
Green Wi-Fi, a non-profit that seeks to provide "last mile internet access with nothing more than a single broadband internet connection, rooftops and the sun." Their wi-fi access nodes, which consist of a small solar panel, a heavy-duty battery, and a router, can be linked together to extend one internet connection into a larger network.
Geekcorps is a non-profit organization that sends people with technical skills to developing countries to assist in computer infrastructure development. It is a division of the International Executive Service Corps which "promotes economic growth in the developing world by sending highly skilled technology volunteers to teach communities how to use innovative and affordable information and communication technologies to solve development problems."Photo via Inveneo
Inveneo is a 501(c)(3) non-profit organization based in San Francisco with focus on Information and Communication Technologies for organizations supporting underserved communities in the developing world, mostly in Africa. The organization has developed ultra low-power computers, called Inveneo Computing Station, as well as a VoIP-enabled unit called the Inveneo Communication Station, and a hub server, all of which are designed to run on a 12-volt power supply.
Seattle’s InterConnection program will take what you think of as your junky old electronics and see it to it that they’re recycled properly. As the saying goes, one man's trash is another man's treasure, and the adage is never more apparent than when it comes to first- versus third-world electronics availability. That's why InterConnection distributes computers and other electronics to developing nations around the world, or, if necessary, sees to it that they get recycled. The organization enhances the vision of non-profits around the globe by providing high-quality Internet services, such as Web site development, to all economic sectors.More on Blog Action Day 2008:Closing the Digital Divide: 5 Ways to Get Free Internet AccessFour Big Thinkers' Ideas on Going Green, Ending PovertyClosing the Digital Divide: Getting Cheap and Free ComputersFuel Poverty in UK, Government Faces Court Action VIDEOFour Argentinean Design Projects Helping those in NeedBritish PM Putting Unemployed To Work Insulating AtticsFive Poverty-Fighting Clean Water Projects and DesignsApple Day at Roots and Shoots