While I am bit early with the annual round-up I promised in my last post that I would write about what I thought we’re the most promising technologies that are out there today or currently in development. Here they are:
1) Ubuntu – Which I believe will become the default operating system for most PC users. Why not? It is free and does 90% of what you need Windows for. Microsoft’s horrible missteps with Vista have just served to hasten their own demise.
2) Nokia Data Gathering – Clearly a positive innovation when it comes to the developing world. If they really push development of this application and open it up to developers this application may prove a game changer.
3) Thuraya Locate – This should have been done a long time ago by a third party. Thuraya finally came through albeit in a somewhat restrictive manner. This small development could have huge implications for aid agencies and all those using the Thuraya system.
4) Swinfen Charitable Trust – This is telemedecine that just works. By relying on tried and true systems and not trying to massively over innovate Swinfen may prove more cost effective than any other aid system out there.
5) Open Street Map – I just can’t get away from the fact that OSM will prove a game changer. It already has and even with Google encroaching on it’s territory it is still humming along gathering more and more data from a devoted community all of which is given back to the community free of charge. OSM just needs a huge infusion of cash to give it that final push.
UPDATE: I just noticed that the Swinfen Charitable Trust website has been updated. Under ‘Method’ they have a small write-up and the following image. It is a thing of PURE BEAUTY. This is the level of simplicity ALL humanitarian systems should strive to achieve: