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Level Up Your MMORPG Character Using Developing Economies

Next time you are scoring that amazing Amethyst Helm of Schadenfreude for your Level 38 Warlock Raider (I just made that up, but I hope something like that exists), you may be helping people in developing countries to make some cash. According to the BBC and a report released by the World Bank -- which is apparently now studying the effects of 'World of Warcraft' (PDF) on the economy -- when...

Researchers Use Cell Phone Videos to Educate in Developing World

Most aid-based initiatives in the developing world have traditionally involved substantial amounts of money and manpower. But a team of researchers from the University of Illinois have come up with a more efficient and cost-effective way to deliver instructional materials to poor countries: animated cell-phone videos. As part of a new project called Scientific Animations Without Borders, the...

Vodaphone's Webbox Is a Mediocre Web TV Device for the Third World

Internet TV means plenty of things in the U.S., and usually bears a strange sounding name, like Boxee, Roku or FyreTV. But in developing countries, where the Web hasn't made much headway but households are equipped with televisions, Web-enabled television could be an entirely new browser experience. Vodaphone in South Africa has just announced its Webbox (a name which reminds us of "flummox" or...

Cell Phone Banking Takes Off in Developing Countries

Most of us rely on our cell phones to stay in touch with our friends, check our e-mail or play Angry Birds. But, in less economically developed parts of the world, mobile technology hasn't just created a new avenue for instant communication, but an entirely new banking sector, as well. Mobile banking first took off in 2001, when phone operators Globe and Smart both began offering mobile payment...

200,000 Text Messages Are Sent Every Second, U.N. Agency Says

Today, as you're well aware, is World Statistics Day, and to commemorate the occasion, the United Nations International Telecommunications Union (ITU) has released a statistical report (PDF) that shows just how hyper-connected the world is today. Perhaps the most intriguing statistics, however, are those pertaining to global mobile subscriptions and text-messaging trends. According to ITU, the...

U.N. Says Mobile Phones Can Help Alleviate Poverty

The plight of poor countries is an issue that has always puzzled economists and policymakers, and one that has spurred a centuries-old debate. Some argue that the road to economic development begins with a solid public health system, others believe it begins at public education, and a handful of high-profile theoreticians claim that throwing enough money at a country will always be enough to...

Indian Engineers Produce $35 Tablet, No Word on Flash Capability

In today's new world economic order, China's supposed to be the one providing us with cheap products, and India's supposed to be the guy we call when said cheap products break down. Now, though, the mighty subcontinent has decided to throw its hat into the low-cost manufacturing ring with the release of a new $35 tablet. According to Human Resource Development Minister Kapil Sibal, the...

Prof Embeds PCs in Walls to Educate Delhi Street Kids

In 1999, Professor Sugata Mitra was working for a software company in Delhi, at an office building surrounded by one of India's infamous slums. The children populating the slum, needless to say, were mired in poverty, and hardly spent any time in school, much less in front of a computer. That didn't stop Mitra, though, from embedding computers on the walls of his office building, and exposing...