They are out, the new TIG grants and it is a great list. In this post, I briefly summarize one significant area, mobile, and how we might take the innovations even further.
This is clearly the year of mobile. Grants include:
- To create mobile versions of LawHelp and websites (Southeast Louisiana and Western New York [Spanish], Lone Star [DisaterLegal]),
- Provide mobile-optimized pro bono tools (Northeastern Minnesota and Colorado), remote services at partner locations (Montana),
- Farm worker time records and attorney communication (Georgia),
- Integrating websites with text messaging (Georgia for multiple organizations),
- Develop “responsive mobile Drupal theme” (Idaho),
- Build appointment reminder (Northern Virginia).
Taken together, this significantly moves the community towards better use of mobile access. As I have blogged before, with suggested examples, the key is not just to convert existing content, but to think about how the constant availability of mobile tools can empower people in the immediate moment.
One trick is to always keep in mind the sensors in the mobile units — location (allowing full information about the location and people, events, situation there), movement and acceleration (allowing inferences about what the person is doing or having done to them), orientation (to optimize display, and to use the unit as a motion tool), code reading (allowing ANY data from the Internet to be pulled), camera (allowing picture to be analyzed digitally, and almost anything to be inferred, including who you are talking to, what they are saying [digital lip reading anyone? etc., etc.]).
Remember, too, that the information from these sensors can be integrated with each other, and with any information on the unit (i.e about the user) and on the Internet.
If you include the sensors in the picture, you see that the mobile revolution is as transformative as the universal access revolution (as well as being part of it.
While the LSC Technology Summit Process provides some opportunity for this kind of analysis, let me suggest that we need a separate brainstorming process to really push the envelope on this one. Could it be funded as an add-on to one of the mobile grants?