Some say our world is now connected. Connected maybe, but we’re far from global access that’s for sure.
Today I came across a singular project: TXTBKS, simple, low tech but certainly transformational.
It seems that Philippine’s school aged kids might carry as much as 22 books on a daily basis (not a far fetch reality back in old Europe too, but I believe today’s reality is much better since my “long forgotten” school time). Technology might be the only solution when school reforms are far or too slow, so Smart, the Philippines’ largest telecom, took their mission to “make text light and easy” further than ever. So they turned to the only widely available technology: feature analog mobile phones.
Over six months, textbook authors and publishers refined official school texts into 160-character text messages, which were then programmed into the inboxes of thousands of inactive surplus sim cards – giving birth to the TXTBKS – full books stored into a SIM card, capable of turning even the oldest phones into a new kind of e-reader.
SIMPLE. LOW-TECH. TRANSFORMATIONAL INDEED!
Sometimes it’s just a matter of looking towards what we already have a devise new uses.