Tag Archive for 'software'

OLPC + FM radio = lessons beamed to computers

OLPCMarko Ala-Fossi of the University of Tampere in Finland sent me interesting link to an article about a project of some students in New Zealand using FM radio to beam lessons to the XO computers used by the One Laptop Per Child (OLPC) initiative. The article is from Peter Griffen’s blog. Griffen is a member of the selection committee for a “Microsoft Imagine Cup” which, in his words, “pits teams of university students against each other in a bid to find the top four most innovative and potentially world-changing projects”.

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Radio and Mobiles in-a-box

mobiles in-a-boxTactical Tech is a group of people working to help NGOs and human rights advocates to make better use of technology in their work. One of the ways they do this is with their excellent NGO in-a-box project, a series of toolkits complete with software, information about on-line tools, tutorials, case studies and lots of ideas for how to make innovative use of practical technology within the technical and financial grasp of NGOs. The latest addition to the series, Mobiles in-a-box, is a candidate for inclusion in our ICT / local and community radio essential toolkit.
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Frontline SMS

I wrote about about FrontlineSMS a few months ago. It’s a piece of software that turns a laptop and a mobile phone into a powerful system for sending and receiving SMS messages and that I think should be part of the essential digital toolkit for local and community radio. FrontlineSMS creator has just come out with a new version of the program, as well as a new website.

I haven’t tried the software (although I have requested it and we want to test it at a community radio station somewhere in Latin America) but Sanjana Hattotuwa gave it a pretty good grade in a blog post on mobileactive.org, although she questions whether it might be too complicated for some grassroots organisations and complained about compatibility problems with her Nokia 3110 (one that FrontlineSMS does NOT claim to support fully).

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News Factory – Fabrika Novostei

“News Factory” software was first developed by Internews Russia in 1999 to help radio and TV stations manage many aspects of their operations, including programme production and advertising schedules. It has evolved since then and Internews estimates that it is in use by some 350 stations around Russia. Another software package, News Exchange, facilitates the online exchange of news and information among stations.

The two packages have apparently been used together to establish low-cost virtual news agencies in Kazakhstan and Ukraine.

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Internet Radio on your telephone

More and more telephones come with built-in FM receivers but a new twist (at least for me) is Nokia’s Internet Radio Beta. It is software that you can install on certain Nokia phones in order to listen to streaming internet radio stations on your phone using whatever connection you have available. If you have a wifi connection at home or at a public access point, you can listen for free. If you don’t, you can also listen via GPRS or 3G.

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