My pick of the top articles and web pages I've come across in the past week:
1) Are you tapping in? The 5 Key Networks and Why They Matter in Every Rural Community Across Africa
"Orality" is one of the key issues facing missions today with the majority of unreached peoples either being illiterate or “functionally illiterate”, where their preferred learning style is something other than print/reading/writing. The following two entries look at the issue with the first considering the intersection of mobile uptake and illiteracy while the second addresses the place orality needs to play in our outreach strategies:
2) What if You Have a Mobile Phone But You Can’t Read?
3) Lip Service Vs. Orality Strategy
4) With news that smartphone sales for 2010 were up 74% over the previous year and forecasts stating that smartphones will be selling for $80 in 2015 isn’t it obvious that we should be forgetting "dumb" feature phones and aiming our outreaches for smartphones? Not so fast! Read What I Didn't Know Yesterday #35 or Why MobileActive is Wrong About Smartphones and be reminded that the majority of the unreached will not be using smartphones for many years to come (if you need further confirmation check out this article on mobiles in Malawi)!
5) For an in-depth view of how internet users in the Middle East and North Africa use mobiles on the web check out Mobile data usage & habits of MENA Internet users (thanks for the pointer Dave)
6) Mobile Learning in the 21st Century (excellent paper but requires registration to download and read)
7) You'll find lots of goodies on how to use the mobile in getting the word out, interest generated and relationships started in Mobile Marketers’ Classic Guide to Creative
8) Holistic Christian outreach is a wonderful way to present God's love in word and deed and those of you who are already doing health work or are interested in implementing a health component to your outreach should check out the different projects in mHealth Projects: Examples from Low and Middle Income Countries to find ways the mobile could enable your project and widen its impact
The protests in Egypt these last couple of weeks have brought to light the power of new media as well as the potential threat it creates for those who use it at cross purposes to their government's wishes- particularly for those living in repressive states. Additionally, news of a new means of tracking people via "silent SMS" was released last week which adds to the list of potential risks involved with possessing a mobile phone. As a lot is getting written on security issues in internet and mobile use in the midest of these circumstances I thought I'd include a couple better references here:
9) Mobile Privacy and the Loss of Wireless Security
11) For those of you wanting a real, practical, down and dirty project you can accomplish by the end of the day, How Can I Create Images for Mobile Devices?