Friday, December 26, 2008

Technology for Social Justice

a Biblical thought...
When Jesus spoke again to the people, he said, "I am the light of the world. Whoever follows me will never walk in darkness, but will have the light of life."

a Book thought...
Second chair leaders intentionally seek to shape the organisation's direction and mesh their individual dreams with the broader vision. (p5)
a Dave thought... from The Age
Collingwood is the second high-rise estate to be wired up by the non-profit company Infoxchange, with its motto "Technology for social justice". Tenants have been offered a free refurbished PC, a free three-day computer course, and access to email and broadband for $5 to $15 a month, depending on downloads.
Infoxchange was founded by former social worker Andrew Mahar. In 2001, the Melbourne-based non-profit company connected Fitzroy's high-rise Atherton Gardens estate to broadband and distributed 621 refurbished computers to tenants, the first project of its kind in Australia.
Mr Mahar says that when he proposed wiring the Fitzroy flats, sceptics told him that computers would add to residents' isolation. But a study of the scheme, done by Swinburne University's Institute for Social Research, found the opposite was true: computers allowed tenants to participate more fully in the world around them. Young people used them to do homework, the unemployed searched for jobs and training, while an intranet site told residents what was going on around the estate.
Neighbours even began emailing each other to suggest meetings. Mr Mahar's favourite story is about a Serb and a Croat who lived next door to each other but had never spoken: after going online they began chatting about Solitaire on their PCs.

Just a thought.

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