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Innovative ideas in India
October 11, 2004 11:45 AM   Subscribe

India Emerges as Innovation Hub. Some other recent innovations I've read about include wireless internet rickshaws and public internet kiosks, trading services for farmers, and an education satellite. Perhaps of most interest to Americans now should be India's e-voting machines.
posted by homunculus (7 comments total)

 
Unfortunately, there seems to be rising tension between India and the US over nuclear proliferation. Between Pakistan and the US, not so much.
posted by homunculus at 11:53 AM on October 11, 2004


Everybody seems to be really really worked up about innovation.

I had to endure a .ppt last week in which the guy had the words innovation, dynamic, change or creativity multiple times on every scene. I got exhausted on innovation. But according to him, we need lots of it in the future.

Some of the blessings of modern technology might make a difference in the devoloping countries. For example, it is much more expensive to build a ground telephone network than it is to establish a mobile one.

But so far, with all the advances in science we still have:

GROWING DISPARITIES:

LUXURY

* In 2002, 1.12 billion households—about three quarters of the world's people—owned at least one television set.
* Some 41 million passenger vehicles rolled of the world's assembly lines in 2002, five times as many as in 1950. The global passenger car fleet now exceeds 531 million, growing by about 11 million vehicles annually.
* Consumers across the globe now spend an estimated $35 billion a year on bottled water.

NECESSITY

* In 1999, some 2.8 billion people—two in every five humans on the planet—lived on less than $2 a day.
* In 2000, one in five people in the developing world—1.1 billion total—did not have “reasonable access“ to safe drinking water.
* 2.4 billion people worldwide—two out of every five—live without basic sanitation.
* Providing adequate food, clean water, and basic education for the world's poorest could all be achieved for less than people spend annually on makeup, ice cream, and pet food.


(World watch)

Information rickshaws are a nice idea, but if you don't have at least some sort of education (reading might be a must if you want to enjoy the blessings of the internet), sanitation or drinking water, then information technology and innovation really don't mean much to you.

We (the west) have hyped ourselves so much on the "information era" that we have really forgotten that these goddamn expensive machines don't really change much. And even if you have money to buy these things, you should be able to use them in some productive way.

On the other hand, maybe I am overly pessimistic. At least a couple of years ago it was said that most of the content of the Internet was very graphic. Maybe the developing countries will also enjoy the blessings of western adult entertainment.
posted by hoskala at 2:55 PM on October 11, 2004


Also, India's robots are stealing jobs from American robots!
posted by tapeguy at 5:41 PM on October 11, 2004


Innovation isn't just hi-tech stuff. This Nigerian scientist created probably the most important invention of the last decade: a refrigerator that doesn't require electricity.
posted by Tlogmer at 7:03 PM on October 11, 2004


America has become a nation of heavily armed cargo cultists.

The World should try to ignore us and move on.
posted by troutfishing at 9:28 PM on October 11, 2004


Providing adequate food, clean water, and basic education for the world's poorest could all be achieved for less than people spend annually on makeup, ice cream, and pet food.

You can have my ice cream when you pry it out of my cold, sticky fingers.
posted by delmoi at 12:43 AM on October 12, 2004


I had to endure a .ppt last week in which the guy had the words innovation, dynamic, change or creativity multiple times on every scene. I got exhausted on innovation.

I promise never to say it again.

But these are really cool ideas.
posted by homunculus at 11:40 AM on October 12, 2004


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