Elephant Pumps

Here’s an interesting simple, low-maintenance technology: “Elephant Pumps” that were introduced to rural areas in Zimbabwe and Malawi during the last few years. These rather simple, enhanced rope pumps (based on an ancient Chinese technology) where designed for use in rural areas, where the supply of readymade spare parts isn’t that easy. Now, what makes … Continue reading “Elephant Pumps”

Hardware Hacking: Handmade Tools in Africa

I’ve written about handmade tools in Africa before, but it didn’t generate a ton of interest, so I’ve not followed-up on it very much in my travels. I was really happy to see that another person was intrigued by this though, Kevin Kelly has a post where Tom Ritchey, master bike frame builder, sent him … Continue reading “Hardware Hacking: Handmade Tools in Africa”

Re-use in the (unofficial) Kenyan Ironworks Industry

Gikomba is a part of Nairobi that is well known for metal working. I had been meaning to come this way for a while, and today afforded me the perfect opportunity to drop down into Gikomba and see what kind of enterprising activities Kenyans were up to. I ran into a George Odhiambo, a bulk … Continue reading “Re-use in the (unofficial) Kenyan Ironworks Industry”

AfriGadget makes Time Magazine’s “50 best sites for 2008” list.

We just received some great news. AfriGadget was included in Time Magazine’s list of 50 best sites for 2008. This is quite an honor especially in light of the fact that AfriGadget is run entirely by volunteers. Good news though, our posting frequency should go up shortly as we have a team in the field … Continue reading “AfriGadget makes Time Magazine’s “50 best sites for 2008” list.”

The Bamboo Bike project

The Bamboo Bike, an endeavour that aims at building bicycles in a sustainable fashion using bamboo as the primary construction material, is a joint project run by Craig Calfree of Calfree Design, a high tech bicycle design firm based in California and The Earth Institute at Columbia University. The bicycle is the primary mode of … Continue reading “The Bamboo Bike project”