Date: Friday, 29 Nov 2013 06:00
Coinbase reports on a new bitcoin startup:
BitPesa a new global remittance company servicing Kenya’s ever-expanding population, is planning to use bitcoin.More here
The company is targeting Kenya’s $1.17bn annual remittance market by offering a 3% cut-rate fee on all transfers, Bloomberg Businessweek reported.
Bitpesa’s CEO Elizabeth Rossiello said the new service is aiming to gain 1% of Kenya’s remittance market within a year of launching in March 2014: a figure that will equate to roughly 6,500 transactions per month.
Date: Wednesday, 27 Nov 2013 06:00
In the medical device arena:
MakerNurses are the problem solvers and patient advocates who live and work in the heart of our healthcare system. MakerNurses recognize the opportunity for better patient care through improved technology or new design. Sometimes these improvements are within their reach to create. Other times, these innovative ideas remain a sketch on the back of a napkin, waiting for the right support to bring them into realization.
Image courtesy of Maker Faire
“In the last few years, our academic research at MIT and LDTC+Labs, led us thousands of miles away to find examples of DIY medical technologies being used in hospitals and clinics around the world. There was overwhelming evidence that many of the best medical makers were nurses. They are fearless. They are creative. However, they are also very quiet about it.”
–Jose Gomez-Marquez, Director, The Little Devices Lab @ MIT
Date: Tuesday, 26 Nov 2013 11:21
Bob Koigi writing in Farmbizafrica:
|Image courtesy of Oliver Migliore|
Vegetables and herbs that were traditionally farmed by native communities around the Mau forest as an important ingredient in Kenyan cooking are making a comeback in local markets, thanks in part to a group of women now supplying nettles to hotels in Rift Valley that specialises in indigenous cuisine like Mukimo, a Kikuyu favourite.More here
The women have been transplanting wild nettle seedlings into seedbeds on land where they once grazed livestock. The plant does well in highlands at altitudes of 2000 to 3000 meters, taking around two months to produce leaves that are harvested manually from March to June and during September and October. The nettle plant can be harvested whole if young. But when plants are older, only tender leaves are picked.
The farmers then immerse the nettles in water after harvesting to soften the sting and sell them fresh in the market, or they dry the leaves on sisal sacks in the shade for 8 to 12 hours and then grind them. The shade matters, as drying the leaves in direct sun interferes with the attractive bright green colour where the nutrients are. But it is the dried nettle leaves that are delivering the best returns.
Date: Monday, 25 Nov 2013 06:00
Arstechnica highlights a number of startups at the Transform Africa Summit in Rwanda, they include:
image courtesy of New Times Rwanda
HeHe, which is based out of The Office startup hub in Kigali, is already an established software development company in its own right, building mobile solutions for the government and Rwanda's main mobile network,More here
Date: Sunday, 24 Nov 2013 17:45
Date: Thursday, 21 Nov 2013 01:20
From Southern Guild:
Wanga Ngwane is a co-founding member of Ubuntu Bethu, a design initiative for social advancement, and is involved with the 20 Schools: 1 City project. Apart from his dedication to studies and social commitments, he takes time off and designs functional pieces for U B Creative Studios, dedicated to carving what he terms “a so-called ‘African identity’” within industrial design. His main focus is on exploring and researching African traditions and culture, implementing these aspects in balance with other cultures in design.
Date: Sunday, 17 Nov 2013 06:17
(Africa Technology) "Jimmy" the robot drives across the floor and as soon as it sees an obstacles - it turns and moves around it...More here
... It is in many way an analogy between the work at one of the biggest technology hubs in Africa and how they aim to get round some of the biggest problems on the continent - it's called Co-Creation and it's in Yaba, Lagos, Nigeria.
"This is cutting edge innovation," says Tunji Eleso as he shows us round the hub. "We are providing a place they can work out of, where they can create their interesting innovations and partner with each other to make things happen."
A model helicopter flies around the room, a 3D printer is being tweaked on the side and all about are young Nigerian men and women at laptops working on a variety of the best Africa technology and software.
Date: Saturday, 16 Nov 2013 07:26
A HacKIDemia initiative on Indiegogo:
Afrimakers is an initiative that wants to enable African makers to use digital fabrication for solving local challenges like access to clean water, energy, information.More here
The idea is to plant the seed of local change through social entrepreneurship, digital fabrication and regional collaboration.
We want to kickstart maker workshops focused on local challenges in 7 hubs around Africa (Kenya, Tanzania, South Africa, Zambia, Ghana, Nigeria, Egypt).
Date: Saturday, 16 Nov 2013 06:00
A Businesss Insider profile of the Ngorongoro Crater Lodge:
architecture was like nothing I'd ever seen before; adobe-colored huts and buildings inspired by the mud-and-stick manyatta homes of the Maasai, with opulent interiors and huge arrangements of roses on almost every surface. It's "Maasai meets Versailles," as I heard one person describe it.More here
And the views are unbeatable. The Lodge, an and Beyond property, is one of just a handful of hotels within the confines of the Ngorongoro Conservation Area, and is literally perched on the edge of the crater. I awoke to a panorama of the 100-square-mile abyss, still shrouded in the morning fog.
Date: Friday, 15 Nov 2013 06:00
Over at FarmBiz Africa:
The idea was conceptualized by Elizabeth Nyaberi, a self-confessed queen of urban farming in 2007. Due to poor garbage disposal in the informal settlement, locals have now turned her small garden into a dumping site, more so: plastic materials hence hindering crop production. To mitigate this, the self proclaimed queen of urban farming has resorted to 'plastic farming' where she collect and plant onions, coriander and even flowers an aspect that she says offers a double solution to food security and environmental degradation...[continue reading]
Date: Thursday, 14 Nov 2013 06:00
From the annals of underutilized resources, Discover Somalia highlights an opportunity for processors, its Frankincense production:
...A female labourer, breaking down and purifying the resin; this process involves separating the resin from the bark, and collecting the vital elements of the resin.
Image courtesy of Discover Somalia
Date: Wednesday, 13 Nov 2013 06:00
Emmnauel Abiodun is the founder of Cloud Hashing whose goal:
...is to make the process of mining for bitcoins simple, scalable and cost effective for our clients. We aim to achieve this by building a formidable cloud supercomputing network of mining machines, utilizing the latest in ASIC (Application Specific Integrated Circuit) technology. Our mission is to ensure the mining profitability of our clients for years to come while the smaller players become less competitive and less profitable.
With Cloud Hashing, you will be joining one of the fastest growing cloud mining companies around.
Date: Tuesday, 12 Nov 2013 06:00
Sossah's Ravings highlights a Liberian power-supply entrepreneur and candidate for seed funding:
Images courtesy of Sossah's Raving's
electricity. I believe this is the KEY to regenerating the Liberian Economy. In my accommodation at Paynesvillle, there are no electric poles. Indeed, the few I have seen were to carry main transmission cables and even those do not have the cables on them. If you live along the main roads, you MIGHT be lucky to have electricity. According to Al Jazzera, only 0.58% of residents of Monrovia have electricity. One can imagine the rest of the country if this is the statistic for the CAPITAL. Half the country runs on barges and the other have on candles, lanterns and generators. My concern is the later – Powering Liberia on generators! Enter Darrell W. Garway:More here
Darrell Garway is a young man in his late 20′s that is working in 4 locations (including the University of Liberia) supplying electricity to more than 45 households and over 20 businesses. Darrell works with a couple of 5KV generators and 2 other helpers – his friend (on volunteer basis) and his girl-friend. He explains how he begun, what he does and what support he needs: listen to the audio here. In one year, he is supporting more than 45 households and another 20 or so businesses. His work contributes to children and whole communities in Urban Monrovia to have entertainment in the evenings; for students – to study without the hazard of inhaling Co2 from lanterns and candles. Other young people can print, scan, email, and do a host of other things in the University Community where he supplies electricity by day
Images courtesy of Sossah's Raving's
Date: Monday, 11 Nov 2013 06:00
Jason Patinkin writing in Think Africa:
...Nairobi held its first major, international commercial auction of East African art. The auction, organised by the Circle Art Agency, featured 47 works from 43 artists from six countries spanning the last four decades. In terms of sales, it was a huge success, with 90% of the works going for a combined Ksh18.5 million ($216,000).
The World’s Craziest Bar by Joseph Bertiers Image by Circle Art Agency.
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