Drew Cogbill | Thesis Blog

works in progress.

Archive for the ‘ken banks’ tag

Ken Banks, PCWorld Article

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Cometh the hour, Cometh the technology

The interesting thing about these three projects is that they all proved that they worked — in other words, proved there was a need and developed a track record — before receiving significant funding…. If there is a lesson to learn here then it would have to be this: Don’t let a lack of funding stop you from getting your ICT4D solution off the ground, even if it does involve “failing fast.”

Written by drewcogbill

September 22nd, 2008 at 1:35 pm

W3C Mobile for Social Development Group

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Ken Banks is co-chairing a W3C group for mobile web for social development.  A recent Economist article, “The Meek Shall Inherit the Web“, quite articulately discusses this new group and Internet delivery via mobile phones generally.  It makes a case for the growing demand for mobile web content, covers past successes, and cautions that web access will continue to be mediated through the simple mobile phone interface for quite some time.  It also advocates the use of business to ensure effective development and sustainability.

In China, for example, over 73m people, or 29% of all internet users in the country, use mobile phones to get online.

One conclusion from the workshop was that promoting social development through the mobile web will mean engaging with businesses.

Written by drewcogbill

September 15th, 2008 at 11:56 am

“Anthropology’s Technology-driven Renaissance”

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Anthropology’s Technology-driven Renaissance, a article for PC World by Ken Banks of kiwanja.net, emphasizes the importance of observation and understanding of human behavior within a particular context (anthropology) in development design.  This importance certainly extends to design in general.

This is the method I’m trying to employ in my process at the moment.  In talking to Colleen, she recommended that I think of mapping and observation, esentially anthropological research and analysis, as prototypes and to not be so concerned with my end product.  I’m going to try and actively pursue such activities in my remaining time in Belize.

“In order for the mobile phone to reach its full potential, we’re going to need to understand what people in developing countries need from their mobile devices and how they can be applied in a way that positively impacts their lives. Sounds like the perfect job for an anthropologist to me.”

Written by drewcogbill

July 17th, 2008 at 4:43 pm