Slow connection: Myanmar test for IT crowd

Here’s a piece I did for Reuters on the state of IT in Myanmar. The Economist pipped us to the post slightly, but always nice to know other people are thinking along the same lines. Myanmar has fewer phones per capita than any other country and probably the fewest Internet connections, and that has regional …

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The Missed Call: The Decade’s Zeitgeist?

By Jeremy Wagstaff (this is a longer version of an upcoming syndicated column.) When people look back at the last decade for a technology zeitgeist they may choose SMS, or the iPod, or maybe even Facebook. Me? I’d choose the cellphone call that rings, briefly, and then is silent. It’s one of those social phenomena …

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Afghanistan’s TV Phone Users Offer a Lesson

By Jeremy Wagstaff There’s something I notice amid all the dust, drudgery and danger of Kabul life: the cellphone TVs. No guard booth—and there are lots of them—is complete without a little cellphone sitting on its side, pumping out some surprisingly clear picture of a TV show. This evening at one hostelry the guard, AK-47 …

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Broadbangladesh

  Illustration IHT, by Felipe Galindo I wrote a piece for the IHT on a company of expats bringing wireless broadband to their native Bangladesh. Would love to have gone there to have a look, but budgets aren’t what they were (love the illustration): In Bangladesh, where less than 1 percent of the population has …

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Computers: Right Back Where We Started

A lot of my time is spent writing for and talking to people for whom the computer remains a scary beast that is best kept at arm’s length, or, better, in a closet. I feel for these people because I’m not naturally a techie myself. I failed science and math in school and almost certainly …

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How Technology Shrinks and Amplifies Distance

Two pieces in the NYT/IHT that weren’t about technology, but kind of are, illustrate how technology can shrink distance but also grow it. First off a piece by Geoff D. Porter,  an analyst in the Middle East and Africa division of the Eurasia Group, explores how African would-be immigrants to Europe are now making their …

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