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Longreads: Mobile Internet Traffic Gaining Fast, Polar Ice Melt Quantified, Africa’s Lions Declining, Best Small Ideas of 2012

Donna Barne's picture

Find a good longread on development? Tweet it to @worldbank with the hashtag #longreads.

Internet + trends + mobile, along with an image depicting the rapid rise of mobile Internet access in India, gained on Twitter and the Web after venture capitalist Mary Meeker shared the findings of her new Internet Trends report with Stanford University students December 3.  A key finding of the Kleiner Perkins Caufield & Byers report—an update to one released in March—is that, “Mobile traffic is growing so fast globally that in some places it has already surpassed desktop traffic,” says CNET. Meeker also notes several ways we are re-imagining our lives because of rapid technological development and Internet access. Polar ice melt is the topic of a new research paper in Science, A Reconciled Estimate of Ice-Sheet Mass Balance, containing the “most definitive” estimate so far of polar ice melt over the last 20 years (11mm), says the BBC, noting that “sea-level rise is now among the most pressing questions of our time.”  Africa’s lion population has declined to as low as 32,000, down from nearly 100,000 in 1960, says a study led by Duke University researchers and funded by National Geographic’s Big Cats Initiative. In a short overview, Duke’s Nicholas School of the Environment also highlights the continent’s rapid loss of savannah ecosystems where lions live. Small innovations are “quietly changing the world in big ways,” says author Tina Rosenberg in Foreign Policy. Such ideas include “pay for performance” to get kids in school or keep young men out of jail, or helping people with cash or vouchers rather than food aid or refugee camps.

CNET: Mobile Internet Traffic Gaining Fast on Desktop Internet Traffic

"VC Mary Meeker's year-end Internet trends report shows explosion in all things mobile, especially smartphones and apps."


(Source: CNET)

BBC: Sea-level Rise from Polar Ice Melt Finally Quantified

“Melting of polar ice sheets has added 11mm to global sea levels over the past two decades, according to the most definitive assessment so far.”

Duke University: Africa's Savannahs - and Their Lions - Declining at Alarming Rates

"About 75 percent of Africa’s savannahs and more than two-thirds of the lion population once estimated to live there have disappeared in the last 50 years."

Foreign Policy:  The Best Small Ideas of 2012

"In our search for dramatic solutions to poverty, we sometimes miss the small innovations that could make a big difference in reducing inequality."

Comments

Interesting post! I never realized that mobile traffic in India has actually exceeded desktop Internet traffic. That is pretty amazing!

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