APPDOCK FOR AFRICA |
This project complements a digital user interface with a physical place. It proposes a community technology education center with classroom space, developer feedback stations, and built-in infrastructure to act as public charging and wireless hub. The building also "docks" custom window and door units that double as bike-driven, remote outreach units. The AppDock creates a trustworthy, physical environment where sampling of health/agriculture/employment apps increases public awareness and interaction with developers facilitates engagement and education.
Although the number of mobile phone users in Africa now exceeds 650 million, the use of thousands of locally developed apps remains low. This is unfortunate since this technology can disseminate critical health and agriculture information. Reasons for low app use include  lack of mobile device literacy / awareness,  lack of developer/end user dialogue, and  inadequate support infrastructure. The project addresses these issues to promote mobile app adoption.
While virtual outreach is common amongst leading phone manufacturers, it assumes technical proficiency, participation, and access. Studies show that face-to-face field work is still necessary in rural areas for meaningful impact.
In collaboration with Christelle Scharff.
2015 ISRC grant received for design development
STATUS: design development and custom detail prototyping ongoing
STATUS: seeking funds and in-kind donations
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Special thanks to the many NYIT students that have helped us with this research.