Africa

Senegal: Behind the guise of competitive prices

CALGARY 10 September 2009 (LC for APCNews)

Cybercafés are in decline in Senegal. Too much offer compared to demand because of prices that are still out of reach for the average Senegalese, have resulted in the closure of many of these access points to knowledge and communication, once found around the clock on every street corner in Dakar. The arrival of a much-anticipated new operator, Expresso only led to disappointment – the operator jumped into the mobile telephone market rather than focus on the much-needed fixed telephony and internet sector. As a result, the state-owned operator continues to control basic infrastructure, creating a mere façade of competition among operators.

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Milking a cow you don’t feed: Is Uganda starving telecoms growth through high taxes?

JOHANNESBURG 10 September 2009 (Wairagala Wakabi and Alan Finlay for APCNews)

Analysts argue that governments in cash-strapped developing countries often tread a tightrope between a need to shore up the state coffers for public spending, and a responsibility to address critical telecommunications access for the poor. Telecommunications make money – lots of it – and many governments know that this money can be used to fund basic services, such as water, housing and electricity. But in the process universal access promises go adrift, as is the case with Uganda’s high taxes on telecoms services, write Wairagala Wakabi and Alan Finlay.

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Seacom project to increase affordable Internet access in Africa

Deutche Welle, Germany
Seacom project to increase affordable Internet access in Africa
31 August 2009

[...] But price decreases will depend on how much of the network's capacity is used, according to a 2008 study by the Association for Progressive Communications in South Africa. It found that the full potential of an existing cable connecting western and South Africa to Europe was not used, resulting in smaller price decreases than anticipated.[...]

Call for applications: Localising software into ANY African language

Africa
  • Deadline: 27 August 2009
  • Call for applications: Language Teams
  • Organisation: African Network for Localisation (ANLoc)
  • Project: Localise Software

Digital inclusion discussions in Botswana, Mozambique, Tanzania, Zambia, Zimbabwe

SOUTH AFRICA 30 July 2009 (SANGONeT)

Thetha – a Nguni word for debate – bring together a wide range of national, regional and international stakeholders on the expected ICT challenges and opportunities that the Southern African region will face in the next ten years are being organised by APC member SANGONeT. Pre-Thetha reports on Zimbabwe and Mozambique make useful contextual reading. Find out more about Thetha.

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High performance: New report on low-cost, low-power computers

UNITED KINGDOM 30 July 2009 (Computer Aid International)

According to the UN, access to electricity is extremely low in some areas of African countries like Kenya, where only 3 people out of 20 have power. Schools in rural areas generally have no access to a reliable power source, and other alternatives such as diesel or solar panels are an expensive alternative, and therefore not ideal for IT. In an attempt to provide pragmatic and adapted computing solutions in areas where electricity remains a challenge, Computer Aid International set out to identify what computer solutions were available and appropriate to rural African settings. Read the Computer Aid report on the five top-scoring low-cost, low-power computers or read more about it in an “online review by ZDNet”:http://reviews.zdnet.co.uk/hardware/0,1000000323,39363065,00.htm.

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Regional FOSS workshops in five African countries

30 July 2009 (Arnold Pietersen for CECS)

The Community Education Computer Society (CECS), an ICT training NGO established in 1985 in South Africa, is conducting two-day workshops on free and open source software (FOSS) in five Southern African countries. Workshops will build awareness of FOSS and build capacities to conduct OpenOffice Writer courses in Lesotho, Malawi, and Namibia; and build partnerships with organisations and individuals in Angola and the Democractic Republic of Congo, to translate the FOSS portal to Portuguese and French.

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Africa lags behind in use of free software

afrol News, Africa
Africa lags behind in use of free software
22 July 2009

[...]According to the Association for Progressive Communications (APC), African institutions now slowly are discovering the advantages of free software. In West Africa, APC reports, "the low level of free software production goes hand in hand with marginal usage. Nonetheless, free software is present in certain businesses, in education, etc."[...]

First Planning Workshop - EroTICs: Exploratory Research on Sexuality and the Internet

Location: 
Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia Pacific Regency, Menara Pan Global, Jln Punchak, Off Jln P Ramlee 50250 Kuala Lumpur
Date and time: 
Aug 7 2009 (All day) - Aug 10 2009 (All day)

EroTICs is a cross-country exploratory research project. This a two-and-a-half year research project taking place from 2008 to 2010 will respond to the question:

Woman! Thou Are Loosed From Poverty

This Day, Lagos, Nigeria
Woman! Thou Are Loosed From Poverty
22 July 2009

This major independent daily covers APC member Fantsuam Foundation "a rural-based non-governmental organisation [which] works with local communities to fight poverty and empowers disadvantage people. It is committed to making Southern Kaduna a successful and replicable model of integrated rural development in Nigeria. It was founded in 1996 by a group of Nigerian professionals from the area who recognised the need for empowering their rural neighbours and community members, particularly women, to find means of employment and income and meet their own development needs." And mentions that among its many 'firsts', Fantsuam Foundation was the winner of the First APC Africa Hafkin prize (2001).

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