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Mobile Technology Hackathon: Apps for Empowerment

International Network on Appropriate Technology

Friday, November 23, 2012 at 9:00 AM - Saturday, November 24, 2012 at 7:00 PM (CAT)

Mobile Technology Hackathon: Apps for Empowerment

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Ticket Type Sales End Quantity
Developer/designer Ended Free  
Subject matter expert Ended Free  
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Event Details

On Tuesday, 20 November we held a workshop on uses of mobile computing and telephony devices in appropriate technology work. We heard multiple examples of how this tech is being used to empower people in areas of community planning, aggricultural economics, public transportation, natural disaster response, and more. We followed up with a brief brainstorming period where we thought of some ideas for new projects and applications that could be developed in this area.

To follow up, we will be holding a hackathon in conjunction with the conference.  A hackathon is an event where software developers, designers, and subject-matter experts come together for a short amount of time, develop an idea for a project, and make strides toward a first implementation of the project idea.

During the hackathon, we will build on the information presented and the ideas developed at the workshop. Technologists from the Pretoria area and from all over the world will collaborate with scholars and practitioners from the appropriate technology conference to start to build projects inspired by the ideas of appropriate technology.

How you can help

ICAT brings together some of the world’s foremost thinkers on Appropriate Technology, including YOU.  If you have an idea for an application that can help empower people, share it with us, and participate in the hackathon.  If you don't have an idea yet, come brainstorm with us, or lend your expertiese.

During the hackathon you'll contribute to an empowering project (or projects) related to 

  • urban and community planning,
  • political awareness and participation,
  • economics and markets,
  • personal and environmental health,
  • ...


We will be kicking off the hackathon during the ICAT tech fair on Friday, November 23, and continuing through the day on Saturday, November 24.  Additionally, we encourage participants to continue work on their projects, as there will be a second round of judging on December 17th.

  • Friday, November 23 -
    • Welcome & Introductions
    • Project pitches
    • Brainstorming & Project definition
    • Project design & development
  • Saturday, November 24 -
    • Project design & development
    • Presentations/demonstrations
    • First-round judging and awards
  • Monday, December 17 -
    • Second-round judging and awards

For more information, see

Have questions about Mobile Technology Hackathon: Apps for Empowerment? Contact International Network on Appropriate Technology
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When & Where

BlackBerry Lab, University of Pretoria (Information Technology Department)

Friday, November 23, 2012 at 9:00 AM - Saturday, November 24, 2012 at 7:00 PM (CAT)

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International Network on Appropriate Technology

The term appropriate technology came into some prominence during the 1973 energy crisis and the environmental movement of the 1970s. The term is typically used in two arenas: utilizing the most effective technology to address the needs of developing areas, and using socially and environmentally acceptable technologies in industrialized nations.

THE FOCUS OF APPROPRIATE TECHNOLOGY IS TECHNOLOGY TO EMPOWER PEOPLE. The more people are empowered the more their creativity, intellect and overall resourcefulness will be used to develop society. The more people are empowered the more society is capable of implementing democracy and overcoming oppression.

Appropriate Technology is technology that is designed with special consideration to the environmental, ethical, cultural, social and economical aspects of the community it is intended for. With these goals in mind, Appropriate technology typically relies more on local resources, is easier to maintain, has a lower overall cost and less of an impact on the environment compared to the practices promoted by the highly developed countries.

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