You are not logged in. LOG IN NOW >

First POST: Scotched

BY Micah L. Sifry | Friday, September 19 2014

Why conservatives should back net neutrality; how big data may damage civil rights; the ways Silicon Valley start-ups are exploiting freelance workers; and much, much more. Read More

The First Fruits of Significance Labs Show Civic Tech at its Best

BY Micah L. Sifry | Thursday, August 14 2014

Signficance Labs co-founder Hannah Wright (photo by Micah L. Sifry)

A few months ago, Significance Labs was little more than an idea with a beautifully designed home page, a home at Blue Ridge Foundation's hub in Brooklyn, and the seed funding to back up a daring pitch: Why not build technology aimed directly at addressing the needs of low-income Americans? Now, after picking six fellows from a pool of 150 applicants, the Labs is showcasing some inspiring results: five promising examples of working civic tech tools that can demonstrably help the poorest among us. Read More

WeGov

Amnesty International Releases Panic Button, An App For Human Rights Activists

BY Jessica McKenzie | Monday, June 23 2014

Panic Button (Wikipedia)

On June 23 Amnesty International released their secret alert system for activists, an Android app called Panic Button. Panic Button (Beta), which techPresident covered at an earlier stage last year, is now available for download in the Google Play Store.

Read More

WeGov

MOOCs Gain Popularity in China in Spite of Barriers to Access and Anxiety About Western Influence

BY Jessica McKenzie | Tuesday, May 6 2014

Screenshot of Coursera Zone

Coursera's founder Andrew Ng has announced that China is the education platform's fastest growing market after the United States. More Chinese users download the Android app than in any other country, and China ranks second in number of iOS downloads.

Read More

WeGov

How Open Is China's Homegrown "Open-Source" Initiative?

BY David Eaves | Friday, March 29 2013

China is not the first emerging power to see open source as a way to enhance its autonomy and diminish the leverage of foreign stakeholders. Brazil has which began to aggressively invest in and implement open source solutions around 2003, also saw it as a strategic choice. Yes, reducing software costs of government played a role, but it too wanted to boost the develop its IT sector - which it sees as being strategically important - as well as reduce its dependency on American software companies. The question of course, is how effective will these strategies be? Read More

Priced at $20, the High Functioning Aakash 2 Tablet Could Change the World

BY Lisa Goldman | Tuesday, November 13 2012

Two weeks after we published a brief noting the Indian government's rollout of a project to distribute very cheap Android tablets to millions of students, Quartz Magazine has published a fascinating feature article about the background and significance of this new addition to tech hardware. Read More

WeGov

In Zambia, a Phone App Allows Citizens to Participate in Drafting Their Constitution

BY Lisa Goldman | Friday, November 2 2012

Screenshot from phone app page.

Zambia is in the process of writing a constitution that will reflect the aspiration of the people. In order to make the process inclusive, the government has created a phone app that allows people to read the draft, sharing and commenting on pages. The Zambian draft constitution app is available free for download on Google Play — but not on iTunes, which shows the extent to which low-cost Androids are kicking dust in the face of the prohibitively priced iPhone in developing nations. Read More

WeGov

Inexpensive Smart Phones Vulnerable to Cyber Attacks

BY Lisa Goldman | Wednesday, October 31 2012

Image from the Mozilla blog

While the release of low cost smartphones is a welcome development, their rapid proliferation could come at the cost of presenting an opportunity for malicious hackers. Read More

Google's Launch of Navigation and Traffic Maps in India Coincides with Domestic Launch of Affordable Android Phone

BY Lisa Goldman | Thursday, September 6 2012

On Tuesday Google announced the launch of voice guided navigation and live traffic reports for India's major cities. While the announcement was generally met with enthusiasm, some pointed out that the apps might not be of much use to most Indians, since they are only usable via Androids, which are not widely used in India. But of course Google already thought of that. Read More

Wikipedia VP Watchers: Now There's an App for That

BY Micah L. Sifry | Friday, August 10 2012

There's nothing like the ingenuity of mobile app developers, apparently. This just in: In response to my story Monday suggesting that edits on the Wikipedia pages of potential Republican vice presidential candidates could be a tip-off to Mitt Romney's pending announcement, a Silicon Valley engineer and author named Martin Ford has built "Romney VP Predictor," an Android app that automatically checks the Wikipedia pages for Mitt Romney's leading vice presidential candidates and then tabulates the number of recent edits to the pages. Read More