Ina Fried

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Have Internet, Will Travel: Ugandan Woman Brings Computing to the Rural Masses (Video)

From the moment she got her first taste of computing, Uganda’s Asia Kamukama knew that she wanted more of her people to get their hands on this.

Fast-forward a few years, and she helps run Maendeleo Foundation, an organization that does just that — bringing a solar-powered mobile computing lab to rural villages. The effort brings together about 15 Intel Classmate PCs, along with the solar panels needed to power the machines.

Now her project is also working to leave some of the computers behind in schools and libraries to give more permanent computing access to those she visits.

Kamukama has had to overcome some obstacles in her life.

She was one of few girls in her school, and didn’t really get to use a computer until she was 22 and nearly finished at university. But it wasn’t until she flew to New York this week that she had to deal with a hurricane.

But even after traveling more than 23 hours to D: Dive Into Mobile — and seeing the event washed out — Kamukama kept a smile on her face. After relocating to higher ground, she sat down with AllThingsD’s Ina Fried to tell the story she would have told onstage, as one of several participants in a conference segment called Global Voices.

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