Happy New Year everyone. The Tech Podcast is back, with bagpipes. The track is Bagpipes From Baghdad, by none other than rapper Eminem. The centerpiece for WTP 272 is a lengthy interview with Tavneet Suri from MIT’s Sloan School of Management. She and William Jack of Georgetown University have authored an interesting paper on M-PESA, a mobile money transfer platform that is catching on in parts of East Africa and beyond. Suri and Jack look specifically at M-PESA’s uptake in Kenya. Get the official scoop on M-PESA here. They’re not the only academics, by the way, who are interested in this topic. Also in this episode, we listen in to two reports that look at the intersection of technology and politics in Iran. Both of them are by Cyrus Farivar, who has been blogging about events in Iran for some time now. By the way, here is Shafaf, the tool that Cyrus mentions which employs a platform you’ve heard about here on the Tech Podcast before, Ushahidi.
We’ve also got an interesting little story about how some 30 million German credit and debit cards are suffering from a glitch in their embedded chips. Folks are calling it a Y2K10 bug! Read more about it here and here.
And we end with an item on one of the most popular video games going right now: Call of Duty: Modern Warfare II. Seems that some Russians aren’t too happy about the way they’re portrayed in the game. Not that it stops them from playing it, of course…Here’s some background on the kerfluffle.
Props to The World’s Patrick Cox for the audio nod to the low tech wonder that is “grit.” I hope you Brits appreciate it.