Posts Tagged ‘Kenya ’

Kenya Delivers Open Government

Thursday, February 2nd, 2012

Leader of the pack

Last July, Kenya became the first sub-Saharan country to launch an open data government site, enabling its citizens to gain access to vital information. After only six months, the Kenya Open Data Initiative (KODI) is still a work in progress, but it’s already reshaped Kenya’s culture of government.

When KODI was launched, Kenya was only the 22nd country with an open government portal. Today, 30 countries have live, open government sites, though dozens of other countries are in some stage of developing their own. Kenya’s early adoption is due in large part to the efforts of open data advocates both within Kenya’s government and among its influential technology community.


Ingenuity Born of Necessity in Kenya

Sunday, July 17th, 2011

Nairobi Skyline

“This is the future of African technology, and if you blink, you’ll miss it.”  ~Erik Hersman

On the ‘Silicon Savanna’

Last month in Nairobi, Kenya, a conference called Pivot25 connected 25 promising mobile app developers from East Africa with investors and venture capitalists. Events like this one, based on the Y Combinator model, give aspiring developers a rare chance to pitch their ideas for possible seed capital.

What’s intriguing about Pivot25 is the attention that it drew from outside the region. TIME Magazine ran a piece about the conference from the standpoint of Nairobi’s contribution to global technology. CNN’s Global Public Square covered the event, too. Why so much attention?


Out of Africa, Help for Haiti

Wednesday, January 20th, 2010

News from Port-au-Prince

It’s been a week since the Port-au-Prince earthquake and images streaming in are helping us to grasp the region’s boundless misery and desperation. Hundreds of thousands have perished, and despite our best efforts, more will die and suffer for myriad reasons including the inability to deliver relief where it’s needed.

Despite the gut-wrenching news, it’s heartening to learn that determined, inventive people are finding ways to alleviate the suffering and, in some cases, save lives.

One of the more interesting stories is about an open-source project called Ushahidi which takes its name from the Swahili word for “testimony”.  The software, developed during the post-election violence in Kenya in 2008, enables text messages to be mapped by time and location.  Anyone with an internet connection, regardless of the device they use to access it, can send a text message, an image or an email. Ushahidi can also store data offline for later synchronization.