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New Mobile App Tags Racist Graffiti For Removal

BY Jessica McKenzie | Tuesday, May 28 2013

Innocuous French graffiti via Wikipedia

Racism is reportedly on the rise in France, but an anti-racism organization has developed a mobile app that allows users to upload photos of racist graffiti and geo-locate them, making it easier for authorities to find and remove the offending tags from public buildings. LICRA, the International League Against Racism and Anti-semitism, says the app will be available June 11, and that they will work with local authorities to get the graffiti removed.

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Crowdsourcing Waste Management Solutions in Montenegro

BY Jessica McKenzie | Tuesday, May 21 2013

Perast, Montenegro via Wikipedia

For once we aren't talking about the worldwide scarcity of toilets, just good old-fashioned household waste. Montenegro has a garbage problem so bad even the tourists are complaining about it. A new mobile app sponsored by the Agency for Environmental Protection, NGO Ozon and United Nations Development Programme in Montenegro will hopefully get citizens involved in reporting illegal garbage dumps. Read More


Hi-Tech Pooper Scoopers: Sanitation Hackathon Winners Announced

BY Jessica McKenzie | Monday, April 29 2013

Not enough pit latrines to go around (Wikipedia)

The World Bank has announced the three winners of the Sanitation Hackathon and App Challenge, which techPresident covered last December when the Hackathon took place in cities across the globe. The sanitation crisis affects approximately 2.5 billion people who live without access to toilets. That statistic is all the more staggering when compared to the number of people who do not have access to a cell phone – only one billion. That statistic in part inspired the decision to leverage mobile technology towards helping alleviate the global sanitation crisis.

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New App Detects Polluted Water

BY Jessica McKenzie | Thursday, April 25 2013

Image of Mobosens technology from its website.

A new dongle for smartphones can be used to crowdsource a clean water project out to concerned citizens worldwide. The Mobosens dongle senses water quality and sends the information to the cloud where it is stored, aggregated and mapped. Users can also post and share data on social media, which adds to both the collective knowledge and the all-important awareness of an area’s water quality.

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Chinese Social Media App Poses a Threat to Activists and Authorities Alike

BY Julia Wetherell | Thursday, December 13 2012

The most popular new social media app in China is raising suspicions over its geolocational abilities. WeChat, a phone app that combines the functions of Skype, Twitter, and Facebook with the power to locate nearby users, has ousted traditional texting as a contact method for many young people in China. But as the Guardian reported last week, a technology that tracks its users’ movements can be dangerous: Read More


For Afghan Women, Bright Screens and Uncertain Futures in Mobile Learning Effort

BY Naheed Mustafa | Wednesday, December 12 2012

Literacy program for Afghan women (credit: Aga Khan Foundation/ Sandra Calligaro)

Mobile phones are in the hands of about 15 million Afghans and some 85 percent of the population lives in a part of the country with network coverage. Given high mobile penetration and low literacy levels for women, the Paiwastoon Networking Services recently developed the Ustad Mobil literacy program using $80, 000 in U.S. aid money. But while the project's initiators are no doubt well intentioned, they have not taken into account obstacles resulting from local culture and custom. Read More