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about time to catch up on some nonprofit technology trends and news!
time I’ll review some new developments in digital inclusion, smart watches,
accessibility technology, apps in Africa, crowdfunding resources, and digital trends to
expect in the next five years. All
that and Ginny Mies's pick for the mobile app of the month.
invite you to have a look at my list
of 2013 forecasts on nonprofit technology trends with its handy infographic
so you can see how right (or wrong) I am about this year's tech trends. Now,
here's the latest:
new Internet.org initiative is perhaps the biggest NPTech news item. The new program
was announced by Facebook founder and CEO, Mark Zuckerberg in late August. It
aims to develop very low-cost Internet on mobile phones to bring the 4 billion
souls on earth who don't yet have Internet in to the information age. The
project is controversial in that it definitely has digital inclusion aims, but
also is in the critical path of Facebook’s business objectives to grow its user
base. Find my piece, “Will
Facebook’s Internet.org Bridge the Global Digital Divide?” that explains
what Internet.org aims to do and how it aims to do it.
good. Another post-PC device to buy and pay attention to. With the recent announcements
of the Samsung Galaxy Gear Smart Watch, Qualcomm Toq, and even one for cars, the Nissan Nismo, smart
watches are all in the news now. Of course the
trend in all offices, nonprofit and otherwise, is ‘consumerization
of IT’ in which we’re all augmenting our work PCs with our personal smartphones,
tablets… and now apparently smart watches. These are computerized wristwatches
with features typically found on a smartphone or tablet. You could also think of them as wearable computing as well.
very much like Jason Hiner’s
critique of the current state of smart
“(smart watches) shouldn't try to foist a dumbed-down
smartphone experience into the watch. It doesn't need a camera. And it doesn't
have to be another phone interface (a Bluetooth headset does that much better).
You don't need to send messages from it.
The ideal smartwatch will focus on three things it can do
uniquely do well:
more on this in ZDnet’s “The
smartwatch worth waiting for.” Their history of smartwatches is also good. Apparently it all started in 2001 with the IBM Watchpad. The best place I found on entire the topic
is Smart Watch News, which is a
dedicated website that provides daily news, reviews, insight, and discussion
about smart watches, smartwatch apps, and emerging smartwatch technology. I
like their review of the top five smart
UK NPTech website, Charity
Digital News reports that the Royal
London Society for the Blind and IBM are creating a new voice
controlled screen reading application called the Chatty Web. This technology will
make it easier for blind and sight-impaired people to browse the web. This new
application will replace expensive screen reader software that has trouble with
Lloyd Gedye’s great “10
innovative apps which are reshaping Africa” report is definitely worth
looking at. Here are his picks for the top three apps that are bringing the
continent in to the information age.
At TechSoup we’ve just had a spate of good new information coming in
on the brave new world of crowdfunding and crowdsourcing. I think the best
recent piece I’ve seen on the topic is the Guardian’s “How
crowdsourcing and open innovation could change the world.”
Also have a look at our webinar recording and other
Wisdom of the Crowd(funding). This was a really informative session with presenters: Rob Wu of CauseVox, Carter
Gibson of the Little
Big Fund, and Bill Cesare of Teespring.
Find the Teespring
discount offer on TechSoup.org. It’s one of the fastest growing crowdfunding
sites on the web. Also check out Cause Vox’s General tips for crowdfunding here.
I think one of the more interesting international crowdfunding projects is Watsi,
a Global Crowdfunding Platform for Healthcare. This service enables anyone
to donate as little as $5 to directly fund medical care for people in need. Move
over Gates Foundation.
Swiss futurist Gerd
has published his guesses on the Digital Trends
to Expect in the Next 5 Years. And here they are:
in time for Social Media September, I’m excited about these new additions to HootSuite’s App Directory.
HootSuite is an all-encompassing social media dashboard and it’s a tool I rely
on at TechSoup. Gmail for HootSuite lets you view your Gmail messages within
your dashboard. VirtalTag for Pinterest lets you schedule, share, and analyze
your Pinterest pins on your HootSuite dashboard. And finally, VidCaster for
HootSuite allows you to view, share, and measure analytics on your videos so
you can better tell your nonprofit’s story.
tell us your nonprofit technology news and trends in the comments below.
This work is published under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivs 4.0 International License.
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