At Davos I managed to catch Juliana Rotich, Co-Founder of Ushahidi, the incredible crowd sourcing platform which came out of Kenya. Starting with just a handful of countries in 2009, it’s main product, Crowdmap, is now used in hundreds of countries for crisis mapping and even crowd sourcing information about nuclear weapons in Iran.
I got an update from her about their latest moves. These include news that the Omidyar Network, which put $1.4m towards Ushahidi, and which late last year put in another $1.9m.
It’s worth noting also that Ushahidi has come out against a new partnership between the World Bank with Google that is supposed to empower citizen cartographers in 150 countries, but which threatens the open source map making community. Google’s licensing agreement for Google Map Maker says users can only access Google Map Maker data unless it is via platform designated by Google.
In addition, her opinions about the move by Twitter to introduce a censorship platform. This of course is of huge significance to activists in Africa, and she doesn’t hold back.
Lastly, iHub Nairobi – a tech startup community – needs a 3D printer, so it would be great to see someone make that happen for them.
(Apologies for the break at the beginning due to a technical problem on the camera).