Big Change on a Tiny Screen

Big Change on a Tiny Screen is the title the editors of Indian Express chose for my column on the mobile phone I did for them today.

The greatest technological advancement of the modern world, after the personal computer, has to be the cell phone. The power that it gives its approximately three billion users around the world arises from its participatory nature. Consider the recent protests against the Chinese repression of Tibetans. The use of mobile phones to send pictures of the protests in Lhasa and elsewhere and regular updates of rapidly unfolding stories is power that is hard to contain.

Nothing new for the regulars of this blog. So don’t even bother.

Global Poverty and the Cell Phone

A magazine article in the New York Times of April 13th has the rather mistaken and misleading title “Can the Cell Phone End Global Poverty?” (Hat tip: Abhishek Sarda). The article title is misleading because it doesn’t even remotely attempt to answer that question. It is instead about what is called a “human-behavior researcher” or “user anthropologist,” in this case someone who works for Nokia and essentially tries to figure out how people actually use their phones and thus how phone companies should design phones for greater usability.
Continue reading “Global Poverty and the Cell Phone”

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