I’ve been in Amsterdam since Wednesday (15 September) to attend the 1%Event being hosted by the One Percent Club. The 1%CLUB is the marketplace that connects smart development projects with people, money and knowledge around the world at onepercentclub.com. Although the main event was being held in Amsterdam it was also an online co-creation between Amsterdam (Netherlands), Nairobi (Kenya) and Douala (Cameroon) where various innovators, young professionals, entrepreneurs and change-makers could invest one day of their time and expertise, experience, talent, network and energy towards International Co-operation and making a difference in real projects on the ground.
The event had a mix of amazing talks (Check out Tiina Urm from Let’s Do It!! who cleaned Estonia in 1 day), open collaboration spaces where like-minded people could work together to make things work. It was my first experience of such an event that was beyond just amazing but it was life changing. I had the opportunity to share more about the Reconstructed Living Lab (RLabs) and JamiiX. The talk was all about “What’s in Your Box” that could make a difference in the lives of others. There was such a buzz in the room and the people were all there to make things work. We saw so much fruitful things happening at the event with many projects receiving advice, websites and logos were created in a few hours and innovative solutions transpired in a few hours that will have an impact on society.
This was truly a life changing event that not only made an impact on those who were there but also proved that with International Co-Operation and partnerships we are able to see change and transformation in our Societies locally and globally. Thank you to the team at One Percent Club for making this event possible and for the lives you’ve changed and we are looking forward to making it work. You can read all about the event with well documented posts, videos and pictures on the One Percent Blog.
Many opportunities exist to get involved with emerging social projects and one that RLabs have found to be extremely effective is the Innovative One Percent Club. 1% Club is the marketplace that connects smart development projects with people, money and knowledge around the world (Something similar to the Kiva initiative – See video above). With projects from over 36 countries supported by close to 5000 members it is one of those Social Entrepreneurship success stories.
I will also have the privilege to attend and speak about our Community Experiences at the One Percent Club Event in Amsterdam, 17 September 2010, that brings together people from all over the world to engage in the use of Web 2.0 and Innovation for Social Good. For more information about the event visit the event website and you can join 1% Club on Facebook or follow them on Twitter
The Presentation below by Andrea Resmini gives some valuable insights into design of solutions for the future and how the web is becoming part of the fabric of people’s spaces. Some of my favorite points in the presentation are:
- Cyberspace is not a place you go to but rather a layer tightly integrated into the world around us
- Products are becoming services, parts of ubiquitous ecologies.
- We have to move from the design of artifacts to the design of processes.
- We have to move from the design of products to the design of experiences.
One of our papers titled “Improving the knowledge exchange landscape in the Cape Flats, a developing community in South Africa” published in the South African Journal of Information Management (SAJIM) explores the use of Web 2.0 services to ease the access to information by people living in a socially and economically deprived area. Even more barriers exist, namely that the community is affected by gangsterism and drugs. The article reports on an investigation into the use of Web 2.0 technologies to enhance the information flow within the community to assist preventing the growth and spread of gangsterism and the use of drugs among South African communities, especially those in the Cape Flats. The findings showed that, through the use of Web 2.0 technologies, interviewees (ex-gang members and ex-drug addicts) learnt to use, exchange and disseminate information that could be used to uplift their communities. This paper was based on the work at the Reconstructed Living Lab (RLabs)and it is amazing to see how the team have developed since the time the paper was written.
As 2009 is drawing to a close and with so many exciting stories to share and to be thankful for, we embarking on a number of exciting projects in the new year that will change the landscape of Technology in the Social and Business arena. Although more will be revealed closer to launch dates I would like to share 3 areas that we will be exploring during 2010:
- Transportation Industry: A partnership with world renowned Sports Car manufacturers and major European University will start our new year with a BANG as we explore the use of innovative solar powered vehicles to support mobility in developing communities.
- Media Industry: A collaboration with a large Media partner, Universities in Sweden and schools in the Western Cape to pilot the project, the face of digital media and its impact on communities will be changed forever.
- Mobile Innovation: With more opportunities for people to be reached via mobile phones exploring a new innovative approach to using these devices can make such a major impact on the lives of many that this area will be one of our major revelations for 2010.
For now we are not revealing too much but will share more closer to the time.
Interesting following some of the tweets at the San Francisco Web 2.0 Summit and CEO of Twitter Evan Williams making a statement that Twitter is a Information Network and NOT a Social Network. This definitely got the room buzzing and ofcourse twitter streams being flooded with this statement. Another interesting comment made by Ev was the fact the first order of priority for Twitter was scalability then followed by reliability and user experience. Clearly this could be valid in this case where the social experience is secondary to the large volumes of resources you can access on the Twitter Information Network. Well and for those of use who wondered if Ev and the Twitter team have sleepless nights for not selling to FaceBook the answer is simply NO.
ays Ev Wms on stage:reliability is 2nd order of priority.1st order of priority is scalability;2nd is reliability & 2nd user experience
At the recent Web 2.0 Summit in San Francisco it was further revealed the expected number for Mobile Data users to reach a staggering 1 Billion by 2013. These results supports the work done by many other industry leaders and the trends we’ve seen in a South African context with mobile internet users exceeding PC users.
Mary Meeker from Morgan Stanley also indentified 8 key Mobile Internet themes that should be considered including: Mobile Internet usage increasing rapidly and faster than most anticipated, Social Networking and mobile driving change in communication and business, and 3G adoption that varies by location. The full presentation is available here and well worth going through as beging seeing this Mobile Internet Evolution.
As I am getting ready to attend the World Wide Web Conference in Port Elizabeth this week I was reminded of a paper we presented at the same conference in Cape Town last year titled “Blogging as a change agent to empower citizens in communities with tension“. Below is a short abstract from the paper:
“The power of the Internet as a facility is that it has allowed many people worldwide to use it without feeling the real bite of the term ‘cost’. It comprises of numerous technologies that create an interesting question: How far has the information technology world come in terms of development? The introduction of a Web 2.0 technology known as weblogs or blogging has fast become a popular choice of application used on the Internet. Blogging prove to have both major advantages and disadvantages when used in the business environment. Not much research has been conducted on the personal impact blogging has on individuals. An issue that this paper addresses is in determining how helpful blogging can be when used by a group of individuals that are in the phase of drug rehabilitation. Ex-drug addicts and gang members from the Cape Flats in Cape Town were used as a case to investigate how much of an impact blogging had on them on a personal level, in their everyday lives and others that surround them. Blogging could be an alternative assisting or possibly empowering individuals in communities with tension allowing them to express themselves and see the world from a new perspective.”