The Jhai Foundation is working with a group of villages in rural Laos and has responded to the request of the villagers for a communication capability. The system under construction is Linux-based, 802.11b-interconnected and intended to be operated by village youth. With one station per village it will provide IP telephony to both the local network and the Internet, and will also run the KDE suite localized for Laos.
The story of the development of this system may provide some insights into user-centric design in a completely different culture, and in turn may inform further efforts to bring digital Internet-based communications technology to other developing societies.
About the speaker:
Lee Felsenstein is the designer of the Jhai system and sits on the Jhai Foundation's Board of Advisors. He is an historical figure in personal computer history and has been the subject of many articles and some books.
Lee holds a BSEE from UC Berkeley and 12 patents. He resides in Palo Alto.
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