Friday, March 31, 2006

More positive stuff

The DTI-sponsored event on IT in Abuja and here in Lagos was a success. It was a vital space to discuss new technologies and that ever-present issue of leapfrogging with new tech. I was particular impressed with the work various companies are doing on targetting rural communities, creating a viable business model using softswitches (localised bandwidth control) and so on. With Nigeria being pretty much the fastest growing mobile market in the world, it remains one of the places to be on the planet. The only negative note is that we need more of these fora, with the Nigerian govt stumping up cash to support.

However, as I said in my pres (on e-Govt and some of the work I've been doing for the Fed Govt), what continues to hold the country back is the lack of value placed on research. The telcos, for instance, are raking in humungous profits in Nigeria, and yet are prone to collective organisational stupidity. We are still stuck in a prepaid, 2g, no-data paradigm. GPRS is available on V-mobile and Glo, but there has been an utter failure to develop data services the market wants, let alone to communicate the features & benefits in a consumer-centric way. If the telco's re-invested just 10% of their profits on R&D, we might see radical changes. The money that could be made from a straightforward picture-messaging service would increase returns still further - Nigerians love being 'snapped' perhaps more than any other group on the planet. Beyond images, the use of mobile phones for data-services and digital-wallet capabilities that meet the needs of ordinary joe's at the bottom of the pyramid - mechanics, drivers, traders etc are simply not being met.

After the conference, I took a walk in VI. It was good to walk amongst those that work on the street, and feel the searing heat as they do everyday. All those in leadership positions, whether here in Nigeria or elsewhere, should spend at least one day a year doing what ordinary working people do. Otherwise, they are in danger of losing their ability to feel compassion.

Meanwhile, had a lovely conversation with a delegate at the hotel this morning. His company is offering high-altitude bandwidth (beamed down on large areas via circling planes). He connects his professional focus on wireless tech with the Hindhu monkey god Hanuman. Hanuman is also the god of the wind and of communication, as well I think of compassion. As Mr Patel was saying, without compassion, communication (and the redistribution of value) is useless. As it was in the Bhagavad Gita, so it shall be with 4th or 5th gen networking.


j 4:29 pm  

Jeremy, with regard to your more positive stuff" above, the Bhagavad-gita is universally renowned as the jewel of India's spiritual wisdom.

Are you into all forms of religeon? Here you were talking about Eshu. Now you profer suggestions relating to Lord Krishna, the Supreme Personality of Godhead. Or is St Antonym his intimate disciple Arjuna?

Jeremy 5:01 pm  

Meine doppleganger: as the eloquent and amiable Indian chap was saying to me this morning - all religions are just names the mind gives to its representations of nature. Nature, as the principle of Reality, carries on regardless. I'm drawn to Eshu and several other Yoruba orishas, and I'm drawn to Buddhism. Hindhuism is too sophisticated and complex for my limited and immature mind, but I get the sense that as one of the oldest (THE oldest?) religion, every other faith (both the Abrahmic monotheisms and the polytheisms) is contained within it. Although we might know we are stuck in Plato's cave staring at the fire's shadows, very very few of us have the discipline or curiousity to climb far towards the light. Those that do tend to be blinded.

j 6:45 pm  

Tis good you are drawn to Eshu. We share something in common.

About This Blog

  © Blogger templates Psi by 2008

Back to TOP