All posts tagged: internet

This picture is from the Ushadidi website

BRCK – A Device For Uninterrupted Internet Connectivity

Imagine losing power and with that your internet access for a few hours, sounds bad? While most of us could live with no power for a few hours, losing internet access would just make it that much more painful. Spotty internet access and power is a big problem in most of the developing nations and surprisingly in a lot of the developed world too. Ushahidi, a nonprofit tech company that operates in rugged environments believes that reliable internet connectivity is very important no matter where you live and to solve this problem they’ve developed the BRCK. BRCK is a wifi router, plus a battery backup all wrapped up into one portable box that charges itself and provides internet when power is available and maintains your internet connection when you lose power or when your primary internet connection goes down. The BRCK itself gets its internet access using a GSM modem like the ones in your mobile phone. Ushahidi claims the battery would last around 8 hours which should be enough time for power to return and the BRCK …


Groupon’s G-Team Offers a Great Deal to Nonprofits

Groupon has revolutionized the way people consume goods and services through its innovative daily deals / collective buying model. In just 3 years since its inception Groupon has expanded to over 500 cities in 35 countries and has a subscriber base of over 51 million which it hopes to grow to 150 million by end of 2011. With millions of people getting hooked to their daily deals, Groupon is committed to provide its userbase a great way to discover their own cities and fun and meaningful ways to get involved in bettering their communities. In July 2010, Groupon launched G-Team, their philanthropic initiative which aims to harness the power of their growing subscriber base and their killer business model of ‘collective buying’ for community good. About G-Team G-Team are social action campaigns around fundraising and civic engagement based on the similar collective action model as of Groupon. While Groupon makes it easier for people to get great deals only if certain number of people buy the deal, G-Team campaigns makes it easier to create real …


Abe’s Market : Selling All Things Organic & Eco Friendly

Abe’s Market is an online marketplace that sells only natural and organic consumer products, connecting buyers directly with the people who make them. The uniqueness of this online marketplace is that it facilitates a deeper interaction between buyers and producers. Buyers can directly connect with producers, ask questions, learn more and get to know them and their products before buying. Further, unlike other e-commerce sites, Abe’s Market is also committed to building the capacities of its sellers who are largely small businesses. To better understand, Abe’s Market is the web version of the traditional farmers market. Abe’s Market is currently selling products in the category of bath, beauty, home care, health, baby and kids and non perishable food items. The one stop shop for everything natural grew from the two founders, Richard Demb and Jon Polin’s passion for products that are safe and natural for self, family and environment. Seeing the opportunity for an increasing demand for organic and natural products and people’s desire to know the story behind the product they buy – who …


Twitter : Call for Volunteers to Help with Translation

Twitter needs you – to help more people all over the world use Twitter and to take advantage of it’s awesome power. Twitter is calling on passionate users to help translate Twitter into more languages. To manage crowd-sourced translation, Twitter has launched a translation center which allows Twitter users to sign up, choose a language and begin translating immediately. Translators can now help localize,, Twitter for iPhone and iPad, Twitter for Android, Twitter Help and the Twitter Business Center. Twitter is currently seeking for volunteers to help translate in French, Indonesian, Italian, German, Japanese, Korean, Russian, Spanish, and Turkish. If you speak any of the above languages and would like to help spread the goodness of Twitter, head over to and follow @translator for the latest updates. As recognition of your volunteer work, you’ll receive a special badge on your public Twitter profile displaying your status as an official Twitter Translator.


DealGooder : Discover Cool Deals and Help Local Charities.

How do you like the idea of getting discounts on products and services you like, while supporting causes at the same time? DealGooder, an innovative company based out of California, lets you to do exactly that. The DealGooder model is simple. The company negotiates great deals from socially conscious businesses and promotes them online. Deals include such things as meal discounts at restaurants, deals on wine tours, or discounts at a local spa. Deals are purchased via the DealGooder website. A generous 50% of all profits are donated by DealGooder to a local charity. Each day, DealGooder promotes a new deal on their website. Also, each week, a new non-profit is chosen as a beneficiary. DealGooder pairs deals with local non-profits. This means that dollars spent on buying goodies go towards helping the local community. Win. Win. Win! Ethan Austin, co-founder of DealGooder was looking for “an easier way to help non-profits raise funds” as corporate giving dramatically reduced during the global financial crisis. He hit upon the idea of combining discounts with charity. With …


Khan Academy : Learn for Free at Bill Gates Favorite School

Khan Academy, a one man US based nonprofit has transformed the way knowledge is imparted and has brought education outside the realm of schools and colleges, making it free and easy for everyone to learn as long as you have an Internet connection. With an exhaustive collection of over 2000 video tutorials on youtube and with over 35 million lessons delivered, Khan Academy has become the world’s leading and most popular educational website with Bill Gates as one of its most ardent followers. Bill Gates uses Khan Academy videos to teach his children Math and Science. Khan Academy offers tutorials on wide range of topics from Mathematics, Economics, Chemistry, History, Biology and even prep material for GMAT, SAT, IIT JEE, introducing wide variety of concepts under each topic in an extremely easy to understand manner. Salman Khan the founder produces short videos, 10-20mins long and uses a black screen on the computer and a pad pen to explain complex concepts step by step through use of doodles and graphics. Khan Academy’s teaching methodology and the …


33needs : A Brand New Way to Raise Funds to Fix the World’s Biggest Problems

33needs is an online platform that allows social enterprises (for-profit companies in the business of doing good) to raise funds from people anywhere in the world. The funders are the everyday common people who put in small amounts of money to help social businesses to kick start or scale. This new fundraising model called crowd-financing already exist in other sectors ( for creative projects – music, flim, art) but for the first time 33needs brings this new way of raising funds to the social space, giving social enterprises a powerful platform to raise capital and for the investors a simple, direct way to do good by investing in social businesses. The 33needs model is simple: social enterprises list their projects along with a short video to pitch their idea, set a fundraising goal and an offer of sharing financial rewards for a limited period with the investors. They get a 30 or 60 days window on the platform to raise funds. If the goal is reached by the deadline, then everyone’s charged. If the goal’s …


Wikipedia and the Massive Power of Common People

Wikipedia has become indispensable in todays world. Almost everyone with internet access relies on Wikepedia for information. It has become part of our very life and a critical source of knowledge to billions of people worldwide. Nearly 400 million people use Wikipedia and its sister sites every month which make 4.8 billion people every year – almost a third of the Internet-connected world uses it every month. Though we all know Wikipedia as a powerful single source for almost all of human knowledge, this column is to highlight the model and the people behind Wikipedia. 100% Powered by Volunteers and Donations Wikipedia is the work of thousands of volunteers around the world who collaborate over the internet to write and edit articles. All the articles that we read are 100% written by volunteers, mostly anonymous who work for free. The rapid, unstoppable growth that Wikipedia has achieved in just under a decade may not have been possible if not for the founders adopting the openly editable model. The openly editable model allows people from any …


How Outsourcing is Helping People Overcome Poverty

Outsourcing has been in the news for good and bad reasons – more often developing countries such as India have been portrayed in the negative for being large hubs of outsourced work. Outsourcing can have a positive side where its proving to be a powerful tool for helping people come out of poverty worldwide including in the United States.