Is Rwanda in line to become one of Africa's major tech hubs?

Recent years have seen countries across the African continent investing deep into the tech industry. Rwanda is angling to get ahead of the pack.

Thierry Falise/LightRocket via Getty Images
  • The recent announcement of the Mara phone, a smartphone manufactured entirely in Africa, has highlighted African countries' recent forays into the high-tech industry.
  • The continent boasts more than 450 tech hubs, and while some countries have a larger market, Rwanda — where Mara phones are manufactured — is angling to become a major tech hotspot in East Africa.
  • There's a lot of competition; what is Rwanda doing to try to beat it?
Keep reading Show less

You can crowdsource innovation. Here’s how Lumina does it.

What are the best ideas out there to innovate our rapidly changing education system? The Lumina Foundation has partnered with Big Think to find them.

  • The conventional model of innovation involves piloting a product, scaling it, and then mainstreaming it.
  • However, the Lumina Foundation believes that this model won't work quite so well for education: Instead, rapidly prototyping and iterating different ideas is the likely the best way to create a more equitable education system for our rapidly changing society.
  • That's why the Lumina Foundation is partnering with entrepreneurs with innovative ideas to improve our education system through Lumina Impact Ventures, and why Big Think is helping them find the best ideas about the future of learning and work.
  • You can see the winners of the Lumina Prize here - congratulations to PeerForward and Greater Commons!
Keep reading Show less

Silicon Valley: How Stanford, science, and war made tech history

The history of Silicon Valley: The rise of a technological unicorn.

  • In the first part of the 20th century, Silicon Valley wasn't known as the "Silicon Valley." It was the "Santa Clara Valley." It was a agricultural region, best known for being the "Prune Capital of America.
  • In terms of getting its start, Sherman Fairchild created Fairchild Semiconductor in the area because he had inherited a lot of money from IBM stock. In this way, IBM is sort of granddaddy of all computer companies because of this.
  • Remaking another Silicon Valley in the world would be tough — but not impossible. The region has become what it is today because it succeeded in a certain kind of time.
Keep reading Show less

NASA's idea for making food from thin air just became a reality — it could feed billions

Here's why you might eat greenhouse gases in the future.

Jordane Mathieu on Unsplash
  • The company's protein powder, "Solein," is similar in form and taste to wheat flour.
  • Based on a concept developed by NASA, the product has wide potential as a carbon-neutral source of protein.
  • The man-made "meat" industry just got even more interesting.
Keep reading Show less

5 new female-led companies achieve billion-dollar status

That's five more unicorns than the previous three years combined.

Photo credit: Vivien Killilea/Getty Images for Fast Company
  • Five female-led tech startups have achieved unicorn status — $1B valuation — this year.
  • Ellevest CEO and cofounder Sallie Krawcheck says that women need to begin negotiating on day one in their career.
  • Krawcheck also notes that the upcoming "retirement savings crisis" is really a women's crisis.
Keep reading Show less