Tag Archives: development

What happens in an Internet Minute – Courtesy of @Intel

What Happens in an Internet Minute

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Reblog of WAPA predicts the IT landscape in 2014

As a representative of wapa.org.za I would like to take the opportunity of reposting this blog, which was contributed to by the exec committee, as a prediction of the IT landscape for South Africa in 2014.

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One of the key objectives of the Wireless Access Providers’ Association (WAPA) is to add value to WAPA membership by providing additional services in line with both the growth of the industry and its members’ needs. The WAPA executive committee, comprising volunteer industry professionals, is therefore constantly monitoring the South African and global landscape, in order to understand the market context and drivers.

There are several technologies and trends in telecommunications and IT which WAPA expects to become even more prominent in 2014, including:

Penetration of and sophistication of smartphone and mobile applications
Converged connectivity services
Wi-Fi in various forms
Delivery of value-added services
WAPA predicts an ever-increasing penetration of smartphones as, on the supply side, mobile carriers will encourage uptake and consumption of mobile data by subsidising or leasing smartphones with contracts, and very affordable low-end smartphones will be introduced by handset manufacturers. Consumers will predominantly use smartphones for social media, mapping, web browsing and communications, but will however start taking advantage of the new ‘mobile-first’ functionality delivered by the private and public sectors.

Businesses such as banks, retailers, and even the government will begin to deliver services designed for a mobile platform, such as payments, coupon and loyalty applications and even the payments of council bills and traffic fines via mobile. For certain types of businesses, having a mobile strategy will therefore move to the forefront in 2014.

Telkom has long led the convergence charge, offering consumers and businesses bundled services comprising fixed and mobile connectivity. In 2013, they were joined by Afrihost and MWEB, both of which complemented their home ADSL services with mobile “MiFi” offers. MWEB has made public its intention to build a nationwide Wi-Fi network and offer bundled home and public-access connectivity.

WAPA expects this trend to continue in 2014, specifically in the consumer marketplace, as these industry leaders are joined by others, and alliances formed between both incumbent players and upstarts or smaller, specialist companies.

Many analysts have already predicted that 2014 will be a breakout year for Wi-Fi in South Africa, and WAPA has seen this already taking shape internally. Wi-Fi can form the third leg of a mobile/home/Wi-Fi converged service if and when service providers are able to build open access carrier-grade Wi-Fi networks in high foot traffic locations. The recently announced collaboration between WAPA and the Wireless Broadband Alliance (WBA) is geared towards providing industry education to enable the building of such networks according to established best practices.

According to Effective Measure’s November 2013 demographics report, the percentage of South Africans accessing the internet over ADSL dropped sharply from 51% to 42%, while the percentage accessing the internet over Wi-Fi grew from 28% to 34%.

The smartphone proliferation will also fuel the installation of Wi-Fi networks designed to do more than just provide basic connectivity. In the past, consumers would have to search for relevant local content or check in on the likes of FourSquare to see what offers were available. New software solutions coming onto the market in 2014 will turn this equation on its head, allowing consumers to access local content and offers easily through the use of smartphone location in an intelligent Wi-Fi network.

This is just one example of value-added services delivered over smartphones connected to the internet. From WhatsApp and the big marketing push from Tencent’s WeChat this year, software companies will continue to introduce smartphone applications that deliver additional content over a data connection. In the residential space, expect to see content in the form of video-on-demand as Telkom is rumoured to be in talks with Netflix, and MWEB will begin pushing content from the Naspers engine to home-internet users.

South Africa can also expect to see ever-dropping broadband prices and faster speeds. While WAPA applauds Telkom for continuing to lower IP Connect rates, overall costs will remain quite high until ADSL line-rental costs are lowered, which is unlikely to happen in the short term. Since fibre to the home will remain an expensive proposition, high quality and high speed connections delivered by wireless ISPs (WISPs) will remain competitive and may even become more competitive relative to ADSL, as WISPs introduce better, faster, and cheaper connectivity products. This will lead to an increase in the rate of substitution away from ADSL.

The common theme in these trends is better, faster and easier connectivity which provides more value to consumers. Much of this will happen naturally over wireless, as wireless point-to-point links over licence-exempt spectrum offer a reliable and cost-effective way to provide connectivity to consumer devices either through Wi-Fi or SIM card. From WAPA’s vantage point, 2014 promises to be a good and exciting year for the wireless industry!

 

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SA National budget is not adequate to fund children’s constitutional rights

ImageThe latest Children’s Institute of South Africa costing report reveals in 2005, SA government was funding only 25% of the cost of implementing the old Child Care Act. Social welfare services for children are grossly under-funded in SA.

In the context on an on-going economic crisis and on-going high levels of unemployment, families are under material and psychological stress to make ends meet. Under these conditions children are at even greater risk of vulnerability, under-development, abandonment, neglect and abuse.

Growing the budget allocations for programmes and services that strengthen and support vulnerable families will lessen this risk and keep children safe.

The Children’s Act of South Africa is the primary law for realising children’s constitutional rights to care, protection and social services. It obliges government to provide and fund a comprehensive range of social welfare services for children and their families.

These include programme’s to strengthen families so as to prevent abuse, abandonment and neglect of children; protection and therapy for children who have been harmed; and alternative care for children who cannot live with their families.The seventh annual analysis of whether the national budget is adequate to fund these services is now available – You be the judge….See more at: http://www.ci.org.za/#sthash.kHHFmQXY.dpuf or view the full report on http://goo.gl/E30FKI

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Happy Woman’s Month for the over 40’s Woman in South Africa

I thought I would re-blog this, appropriate when South Africa’s month of August is dedicated to  Woman’s month, starting with Woman’s Day on 9 August 2013.

Historically, Woman’s day in South Africa is a tribute to the thousands of women who marched to the Union Buildings on 9 August 1956 in protest against the extension of Pass Laws to women, but now also extended as an appreciation of what our female gender is doing in our homes, government, sports and institutions. 

WOMEN OVER FOURTY – A REBLOG – THIS IS PRICELESS!

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Although this was a hoax that Andy Rooney presented his wit on the CBS News Show, 60 Minutes, concerning what he thinks about women over 40. The true version was an embellished version of piece created by Frank Kaiser, a columnist who’s Suddenly Senior articles are published on his website. The original article on http://suddenly.senior.com/in-praise-of-older-women/, where Andy Rooney received more praise than he did.

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60 Minutes Correspondent Andy Rooney (CBS)

As I grow in age, I value women over 40 most of all. Here are just a few reasons why:

 

 

A woman over 40 will never wake you in the middle of the night and ask, ‘What are you thinking?’ She doesn’t care what you think. If a woman over 40 doesn’t want to watch the game, she doesn’t sit around whining about it. She does something she wants to do, and it’s usually more interesting. Women over 40 are dignified. They seldom have a screaming match with you at the opera or in the middle of an expensive restaurant. Of course, if you deserve it, they won’t hesitate to shoot you if they think they can get away with it. Older women are generous with praise, often undeserved. They know what it’s like to be unappreciated. Women get psychic as they age. You never have to confess your sins to a woman over 40. Once you get past a wrinkle or two, a woman over 40 is far sexier than her younger counterpart. Older women are forthright and honest. They’ll tell you right off if you are a jerk if you are acting like one. ;You don’t ever have to wonder where you stand with her. Yes, we praise women over 40 for a multitude of reasons, unfortunately, it’s not reciprocal. For every stunning, smart, well-coiffed, hot woman over 40, there is a bald, paunchy relic in yellow pants making a fool of himself with some 22-year old waitress. Ladies, I apologize.

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For all those men who say, ‘Why buy the cow when you can get the milk for free?’, here’s an update for you. Nowadays 80% of women are against marriage Why? Because women realize it’s not worth buying an entire pig just to get a little sausage!

Andy Rooney…at least  Frank Kaiser, is a really smart guy!

Forward to five fine, fun, fabulous, fancy-free female friends over 40 or who have female friends over 40 and send to the guys too!

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A great Blog for aspiring entrepreneurs. The only South African blog written for entrepreneurs by entrepreneurs.

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http://www.ideate.co.za

Just wanted to enlighten my blog readers about this site. This blog is about entrepreneurs thinking BIG. They try to keep the tone light and fresh, current and sometimes controversial. They like to give things and plenty of resourceful information to their readers. With about 2000 or so readers per day, I do recommend our young aspiring entrepreneurs in Africa to follow this blog.

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God and Science

ImageTake time to read this, it’s really worth it…

Professor : You are a Christian, aren’t you, son ?
Student : Yes, sir.

Professor: So, you believe in GOD ?

Student : Absolutely, sir. Professor : Is GOD good ?

Student : Sure.

Professor: Is GOD all powerful ?

Student : Yes.

Professor: My brother died of cancer even though he prayed to GOD to heal him. Most of us would attempt to help others who are ill. But GOD didn’t. How is this GOD good then? Hmm?

(Student was silent.)

Professor: You can’t answer, can you ? Let’s start again, young fella. Is GOD good?

Student : Yes.

Professor: Is satan good ?

Student : No.

Professor: Where does satan come from ?

Student : From … GOD …

Professor: That’s right. Tell me son, is there evil in this world?

Student : Yes.

Professor: Evil is everywhere, isn’t it ? And GOD did make everything. Correct?

Student : Yes.

Professor: So who created evil ?

(Student did not answer.)

Professor: Is there sickness? Immorality? Hatred? Ugliness? All these terrible things exist in the world, don’t they?

Student : Yes, sir.

Professor: So, who created them ?

(Student had no answer.)

Professor: Science says you have 5 Senses you use to identify and observe the world around you. Tell me, son, have you ever seen GOD?

Student : No, sir.

Professor: Tell us if you have ever heard your GOD?

Student : No , sir.

Professor: Have you ever felt your GOD, tasted your GOD, smelt your GOD? Have you ever had any sensory perception of GOD for that matter?

Student : No, sir. I’m afraid I haven’t.

Professor: Yet you still believe in Him?

Student : Yes.

Professor : According to Empirical, Testable, Demonstrable Protocol, Science says your GOD doesn’t exist. What do you say to that, son?

Student : Nothing. I only have my faith.

Professor: Yes, faith. And that is the problem Science has.

Student : Professor, is there such a thing as heat?

Professor: Yes.

Student : And is there such a thing as cold?

Professor: Yes.

Student : No, sir. There isn’t.

(The lecture theater became very quiet with this turn of events.)

Student : Sir, you can have lots of heat, even more heat, superheat, mega heat, white heat, a little heat or no heat. But we don’t have anything called cold. We can hit 458 degrees below zero which is no heat, but we can’t go any further after that. There is no such thing as cold. Cold is only a word we use to describe the absence of heat. We cannot measure cold. Heat is energy. Cold is not the opposite of heat, sir, just the absence of it.

(There was pin-drop silence in the lecture theater.)

Student : What about darkness, Professor? Is there such a thing as darkness?

Professor: Yes. What is night if there isn’t darkness?

Student : You’re wrong again, sir. Darkness is the absence of something. You can have low light, normal light, bright light, flashing light. But if you have no light constantly, you have nothing and its called darkness, isn’t it? In reality, darkness isn’t. If it is, well you would be able to make darkness darker, wouldn’t you?

Professor: So what is the point you are making, young man ?

Student : Sir, my point is your philosophical premise is flawed.

Professor: Flawed ? Can you explain how?

Student : Sir, you are working on the premise of duality. You argue there is life and then there is death, a good GOD and a bad GOD. You are viewing the concept of GOD as something finite, something we can measure. Sir, Science can’t even explain a thought. It uses electricity and magnetism, but has never seen, much less fully understood either one. To view death as the opposite of life is to be ignorant of the fact that death cannot exist as a substantive thing.

Death is not the opposite of life: just the absence of it. Now tell me, Professor, do you teach your students that they evolved from a monkey?

Professor: If you are referring to the natural evolutionary process, yes, of course, I do.

Student : Have you ever observed evolution with your own eyes, sir?

(The Professor shook his head with a smile, beginning to realize where the argument was going.)

Student : Since no one has ever observed the process of evolution at work and cannot even prove that this process is an on-going endeavor. Are you not teaching your opinion, sir? Are you not a scientist but a preacher?

(The class was in uproar.)

Student : Is there anyone in the class who has ever seen the Professor’s brain?

(The class broke out into laughter. )

Student : Is there anyone here who has ever heard the Professor’s brain, felt it, touched or smelt it? No one appears to have done so. So, according to the established Rules of Empirical, Stable, Demonstrable Protocol, Science says that you have no brain, sir. With all due respect, sir, how do we then trust your lectures, sir?

(The room was silent. The Professor stared at the student, his face unfathomable.)

Professor: I guess you’ll have to take them on faith, son.

Student : That is it sir … Exactly ! The link between man & GOD is FAITH. That is all that keeps things alive and moving.

P.S.

I believe you have enjoyed the conversation. And if so, you’ll probably want your friends / colleagues to enjoy the same, won’t you?

Forward this to increase their knowledge … or FAITH.

By the way, that student was EINSTEIN.

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Happy New Year – Swimming against the current makes the difference

To my friends, family and acquintancess… which you are all special friends  to me, may your road which takes you in life towards hope and peace, be made with realising it is “you” that creates the difference in our world, and please try not forget that  “you” and God is “the difference”. Happy New Year and take special Swim against the currentcare…

To be hopeful in bad times is not just foolishly romantic. It is based on the fact that human history is a history not only of cruelty, but also of compassion, sacrifice, courage, kindness.

What we choose to emphasize in this complex history will determine our lives. If we see only the worst, it destroys our capacity to do something. If we remember those times and places — and there are so many — where people have behaved magnificently, this gives us the energy to act, and at least the possibility of sending this spinning top of a world in a different direction.

And if we do act, in however small a way, we don’t have to wait for some grand utopian future. The future is an infinite succession of presents, and to live now as we think human beings should live, in defiance of all that is bad around us, is itself a marvelous victory.- Howard Zinn

Finally, from Apostle Paul:
Isn’t it obvious that God deliberately chose men and women that the culture overlooks and exploits and abuses, chose these “nobodies” to expose the hollow pretensions of the “somebodies”? That makes it quite clear that none of you can get by with blowing your own horn before God. Everything that we have—right thinking and right living, a clean slate and a fresh start—comes from God by way of Jesus Christ. That’s why we have the saying, “If you’re going to blow a horn, blow a trumpet for God. (The Message, 1 Corinthians 1:27-31)

No room for posturing here. Blow a trumpet for God.

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Spotlight on Social Media engaging and helping stamp out Crime and Corruption in SA.

Image  In the spirit of what I am trying to achieve on the CyberAfrica blog, I am definately and humbled not to be in a vacuum, and must admiraly comment on how the local web in SA has gone viral in mass, on trying to counteract Crime and Corruption in South Africa.

There are many groups tirelessly and persistant in trying to stamp out the huge exponential rise in crime and corruption in our vulnerable country. From Facebook, Twitter, Websites, RSS Feeds, You Tube and many blogs, there has been a counteractive, counter resistance group, rise up from the people against all odds, who do want to make a real difference. A local blogger I can comment on is Jeremy Farrell.

It’s very encouraging to say the least, that we have reached a stage where crime and corruption are being reported and broadcasted live, where all have a say, and it’s comes with a warm heart to know, that most South African citizens are voicing their dismay and discontent about the unruly, including certain members and people holding onto power in our government.

  Although the Clem Sunters and First Rand Founder Paul Harris’s (see Don’t Stress about SA) , paint a relatively positive future for our Economy, what is the point of having an economy when charlatan’s are eating away the very base and foundation of our community fiscal strongholds? Not being sinical but, how does it help comment on positive change in our country, when the moral fiber of our supposed leadership is being devoured and eaten away by greed, nepotism, undue enrichment,self entitlement and huge moral decay.

I truly believe that a “litmus test” to show how one’s government is taking a moral stand and accountability for it’s people, is measured by how it’s own people. less empowered ,community leaders and people are having to tackle more community responsibilities, and provision them by themselves,and need to be more aware and engaged. For every action, there is an equal and opposite reaction. If the government is losing it’s grip on providing a safe haven for it’s people, the people will create one by themselves. This has been seen time and time again in 3rd World countries, but here comes the advent of easily, fast and available technology, individuals are now empowered to make a difference, good or bad…”The Good Digital Divide” is happening and let’s pray “the good” prevails and grows from strength to strength.

  A had a few exciting developments started in 2007, with the warfare and sabotage on corruption and these forces becoming more apparent on our radar screens, the Net tools (weapons and ammunition) have exponentionally evolved in SA. One of the catalysts, I need to mention is from Graham Power‘s planting a seed by sharing  his personal and spiritual vindication, with http://www.unashamedlyethical.com.  This organisation creating a business leaders  pledge and awareness campaign, promoting a Christian ethos against unethical business practice asking owners and customers to join the rise up against this Samson called corruption.

The SARS has been on the ball a web link for anybody to report any suspicious business or fraudulent activity on www.sars.gov.za/home.asp?pid=218. Then followed by a direct live community based interactive reporting portal which was originally (and ironically)  for traffic fine camera warnings, to prevent the public from being speed trapped or held up at a police road block. It  has now evolved into a full blown community driven crime and corruption broadcast,  live from all walks (literally from mobile phones) of life in SA including police and paramedics on the scene of each tragedy. “A community driven policing force”, if one would call it. See  www.PublicServant.co.za and http://www.facebook.com/TrafficWC. It’s interesting, good always seems to rise above bad in the collective community sense.

  Missing Children SA, started the good fight against human trafficking, to provide a structure of re-active support to the family, authorities and other NGO’s when a person goes missing; To provide pro-active national awareness to children and their families, media, authorities, communities and schools.  – Missing Children SA is fulfilling a huge void, and has a highly important and powerful role in our society .

It’s scary when one Googles human trafficking in Africa, a common problem around the world, but rampant in this continent due to corrupt migration systems, officials and lack of policing.  Good sites to take up the cause are http://stoptraffickingofpeople.wordpress.com/, concerning South Africa Human trafficking go to http://redlightweb.co.za/ The statistics are frightening to say the least, see: Just Saskia, Stop Trafficking People, or UNESCO‘s Report on Child Trafficking.

Not to mention for the love of our furry friends ther is also https://www.facebook.com/MissingPetsZA/info

  There are many to mention and too many to thank and applaud for this boom of social entrepeneurship, I have not even included The New Era Economic Rights Alliance which is fighting the good battle for everyone , seeking transparency in the banking and corporate sector in SA. Protecting you & I against unscrupulous financial corporates and conglomerates, who have, and are colluding and taking advantage of the ordinary man in the street, billing them unecessary, taking away their homes and life savings, in the name of greed and profit, all this by mere small written contract clauses,which surpass our basic constitutional rights. Have you known about a bank who will reach out a hand to us, during financial lows?…No, not I, just even to protect our family and provide a sheltered home, that is not written in the contract, sorry Sir, pay up or you and your family is on the street!

Then comes, Corruption Watch (CW)  which was invited to make a presentation at the Institute for Security Studies’ international conference on crime and criminal justice on Friday, 26/10/2012

Within three days of Corruption Watch’s launch on 26 January 2012, more than 70 reports relating to metro cop bribery, allegations of nepotism and driving-licence corruption had been received from across South Africa, the presentation reads.

A total of 945 reports of corruption have been lodged with the organisation between 1 January* and 30 September this year, according to the presentation titled Citizens reporting corruption in South Africa: reports received by Corruption Watch.

http://twitter.com/Corruption_SA  is one of the many interactive social media platforms, which gives the public a very powerful voice, it empowers our communities, gives us all a vote of confidence,a huge leap into the Digital Age, but most of all, proving that most out there have an inclination towards contributing towards social good, showing a geniune care towards our fellow beings, our neighbours, our watchers, our service providers, and of course protecting our family. The arrival of the neighbourhood watch are on Uber Digital scale has arrived! Even as I write this blog, Google has launched a Hurrican Map and reporting site for Hurrican Sandy.

http://www.jp-sa.org/

A similar watchdog is Justice Project South Africa (JPSA) on  http://www.jp-sa.org/, JPSA has established a prominent foothold and reputation in protecting and fighting for the rights of motorists and is widely recognised as the only “motorists’ rights” organisation that has both, the guts and capacity to represent the motoring public in addressing these issues. Their Facebook link is http://www.facebook.com/pages/Justice-Project-South-Africa-JPSA/107912058847?ref=ts&fref=ts

The founder in South Africa of taking the community policing to the Internet is eBlockwatch, which is on URL: http://www.eblockwatch.co.za/. eBlockwatch has been very innovative in combatting crime and protecting our vulnerable citizens in a crime ridden society. From protecting tourists visiting South Africa, to tracking down stolen goods, and of course people, using cloud and mobile software tools, eblockwatch is a network of more than 83 000 South Africans looking out for each other and our tourists. There Facebook link is: http://www.facebook.com/groups/102575386217/

For the hard workers, who want to know that that their sweat & blood went into paying taxes for the right reasons, for the parents who are looking for their lost loved ones,for the community builders, for the police, for the security watchmen, for the paramedics, for the teachers, for our churches, and lastly for our government, society is becoming engaged in mass, engaged to protect and nurture one another . It’s simple, poor governance=corruption=disparity 7 disorder= break down of law and order= rise up of the masses=factions=unrest=protecting ones civil rights=creates solidarity = fighting for cause= protecting your neighbours=public engagement=collaborating=creating awareness = the peoples voice (media) =using the best tools and groups to go viral=using online social networking. And hopefully a democratic driven mediation for better governance.

So, whatever your cause is, online groups, social media can at least empower you or your social cause, to actively partake and polic your local neighbourhood, your community and in the case of South Africa at present, our government!

We hope and pray that the voice of the people, and technology brings a better future and equality for all in SA.

I will end this blog with the quotations on the Justice Project South Africa’s website: “injustice anywhere is a threat to justice everywhere, all that is required for the triumph of evil is that good men and woman to do nothing, what lies in our power to do, it lies in our power not to do.”

Some good reference websites on reporting and fighting the “good” fight:
http://www.missingchildren.org.za/
http://stoptraffickingofpeople.wordpress.com/
http://redlightweb.co.za/
www.sars.gov.za/home.asp?pid=218
http://www.newera.org.za
http://www.unashamedlyethical.com
http://www.PublicServant.co.za
http://www.corruptionwatch.org.za
http://www.jp-sa.org/
http://www.eblockwatch.co.za/
http://www.politicalanalysis.co.za/2012/09/18/why-corruption-in-south-africas-public-sector-is-at-an-all-time-high/
http://ozziesaffa.blogspot.com/2010/06/tenderitis-at-root-of-ancs-corruption.html
http://bharchive.blogspot.com/2011/08/all-about-corruption.html
http://www.icgg.org/
http://cpi.transparency.org/cpi2011/

My next detailed Blog post, will be about the big global move towards Social Entrepreneurship.

Happy Blogging!

This is CyberAfrica reporting on “Social media for Social Good. ”

Social entrepreneurship is the recognition of a social problem and the uses of entrepreneurial principles to organise, create and manage a social venture to achieve a desired social change.

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This is for social good! This Open Letter was written by the Principal of Bergvliet High School to President Zuma

Definately worth a read if you are a parent with young school leavers.  Please click on the hyperlink below.   http://africanpilgrim.wordpress.com/2012/10/21/principle-of-bergvliet-high-writes-open-letter-to-zuma/?like=1&_wpnonce=bcba9f2a25

 

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Small Ideas can make a huge impact

Small ideas can make a huge impact. IT activist Ory Okollah shares her experience with CNN about her Ushahidi software which was initially developed to report humanitarian crime in Africa, but saved thousands of lives in Haiti.

See http://afrinnovator.com/2010/08/24/ory-okolloh-co-founder-of-ushahidi-talks-to-cnns-africanvoices/

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