Mobile Content Receivers & TEDxSeattle
TEDxSeattle was amazing and my favorite presentation was delivered by Fiona Lee and David Edelstein from Grameen Foundation’s Application Laboratory. In large part because a car battery, a cell phone and a motivated group of people can bring health care information to Uganda and this is just the beginning. Can you imagine how amazing it would be to ask a question and get a reply via a mobile phone…when you don’t have a computer at home or even in the nearest town. What would you ask? What would you want to know? How long would it be before you would want to start sending information back? What will we discover when the information starts flowing both ways?
One of the trademarks of our digital age, and really of humanity, is that we want to go beyond the transmission of information — we want to be collectors of information. Examples of this are books, wikis, blogs, websites, etc. Fiona and David didn’t cover this particular aspect in their presentation, but I’m sure that their team has learned a lot about the culture of Uganda and perhaps even some of their local remedies because of their interaction in developing a resource. Or at least I would hope that they are also capturing the local remedies. After all the pills our doctors prescribe were initially based on plant life and other chemical reactions that occurred in nature. It then took years and a lot of research to develop the pills we can now take orally, on the go and as needed. There is no longer a need for the doctor to see you, or for you to go to the doctor in order to get medicine. Now that I think about it, isn’t that like technology. We started with binary code and computers that took up entire floors. After many years of research and development we now have hand held devices that can do more than those first computers. We no longer go to the computer to access information; instead we access it on the go and as needed. How odd, this isn’t where I thought my blog post would go. At the same time, I do hope that by sharing information and technology with people outside of the digitized western world, that we will make new discoveries and further our developing collection of knowledge.