Before I moved to Switzerland I read an article discussing the idea or rather the vision of Switzerland being one metropolitan area with ultra-fast trains zipping to and fro between the commercial centres.
Recently this topic has filtered through to me again. I’m assuming that in a specialized context it has been discussed all along.
As I mentioned in one of my Flickr comments, the urban area around Basel will probably continue to grow and it would better if cities and towns cooperated on important regional issues such as traffic, public transport, waste disposal, city planning and education.
In October I took part in an interesting architecture tour called Birsstadt, which discussed and highlighted the importance of regional vs town assembly planning and management.
But I’m just a private person noticing a trend and commenting…
As announced on Twitter, I presented a talk on mobile technology in Malawi at today’s BlogCamp in Zurich to share what I’m learning from the African blogs and tweets that I follow on a regular basis.
I started my talk with a short intro on Chiperoni (I am a bridge blogger somewhere between Basel and Blantyre) and why I blog. How much I appreciated Alex Antener’s news stream published on a Polytechnic server during the last Malawi general election. Then pointing to White African’s blog post discussing Twitter’s decision to discontinue its SMS service to the rest of the world. I tried to point out the potential a “Twitter to SMS” service could have for Malawi, where most of the population does not have access to the internet or even a plain old fixed telephone line.
I described the current situation. And how this is changing with mobile technology. I pointed to Mike McKay’s blog post about a rural area in northern Malawi where villagers climb an ant hill to get a better signal.
In Switzerland we take a lot of things such as the excellent infrastructure we have for granted.
I shared some of my observations from my recent holiday in Blantyre, some data on the pricing models and how public wifi is being introduced in urban areas.
I was a little shaky on the stats side of things, telecommunication regulations, as well as who owns the major cell phone service companies, TNM and Zain. I’ll need to do more research here. I might have got some of my facts mixed up.
I did refer to the new airtime tax that is being introduced.
Martin told me that he will be moving into a new workspace very soon, but before he moves out he’ll organize an exhibition. I forget the exact date but this should be some time in early September. And Martin says he’s planning to take part in this year’s Portes Ouvertes on 18th and 19th October.
Martin displays much of his work on Flickr. His work is for sale. Contact him directly if you’re interested in getting an original or a print.