What Do You See?

I have a talk that I give when people ask me to speak on AfriGadget at conferences that is called, “What do you see?”. It’s a visual and interactive quiz where I take the audience through different images of AfriGadget and ask them what they’re looking at. It’s a lot of fun, and it proves to everyone why it’s so hard for people in the West to come up with contextually relevant life hacks in Africa.

Below are some images from an old family friend who has spent his life working in rural Southern Sudan and Kenya. Under each image you’ll see why it’s interesting. By the way, I too missed the relevance of the flip flops at first glance…

Old flip flops made into door hinges

Making use of available resources for a hinge. I really like the way that Ben has used these old slippers and shoe for the hinge of his small kiosk/shop at Butere.

Home made African chair

This old chair at Mahanga in Western Province shows the ingenuity of the local carpenters in making use of available resources, with the carton and stuffing from sisal and wood shavings.

Bottles and plants in Kenya

Using available containers in a nursery for medicinal plants in Asembo area of Western Kenya.

Fanta bottle pipe

Making use of a Fanta bottle to channel water from the rainwater downpipe to a storage container in Nairobi.

A special thanks to Roger Sharland of REAP East Africa for sending in the pictures.

Author: Erik Hersman

Erik is the owner of White African, a blog about technology and Africa. He is the co-founder of Zangu, a new web and mobile phone application that he hopes will change communication in Africa. AfriGadget is another web project of his, not that he doesn't have enough of those already...

3 thoughts on “What Do You See?”

  1. I always worry about using old plastic. Obviously reusing is better than letting it in the ground but I wouldn’t trust it.

  2. I have seen loads of useful things on your web site about pc’s. However, I’ve the opinion that laptops are still not quite powerful enough to be a wise decision if you frequently do things that require lots of power, for example video enhancing. But for internet surfing, statement processing, and most other typical computer functions they are just fine, provided you don’t mind the small screen size. Thanks for sharing your ideas.

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