ThimphuTech was the first technology blog in Bhutan. We started writing it in 2009, just as broadband and mobile internet started to take off. (Although internet in Bhutan was launched in 1999, it was either super-slow or super-expensive, and was only used by a selected few).

In the blog, we wrote about technology and food, but also about plenty of other stuff. The blog became popular and influential in Bhutan. A companion bi-weekly column -- Ask Boaz -- was published for many years in the Kuensel, Bhutan's national newspaper. (The complete Kuensel columns are available as an ebook, Blogging with Dragons).

We stopped updating the blog when we left Bhutan in 2014, but the information within the posts can still prove useful, and thus we decided to keep it online.

We thank all our readers.
Tashi Delek,
Boaz & Galit.

Monday, April 8, 2013

Digital educational resources for the rest of us

Wikipedia and Khan Academy are two of the most popular and useful online educational resources. While accessing these websites seems trivial for those of us lucky enough to enjoy a fast Internet connection, most students and teachers in Bhutan do not have access to broadband Internet. And for those who do, the connection is typically unstable or too slow. In addition, the price of broadband in Bhutan (about Nu 160 per gigabyte) means that a single student streaming a 10-minute educational video translates into Nu 10. Now multiply that by the number of videos and the number of students...

Luckily, technology exists to avail many of these resources in an offline fashion. Several groups around the world are working on projects such as Khan Academy on a (USB) Stick, KA-Lite (Offline Khan Academy), and Kiwix (Offline Wikipedia).

This Saturday, we will introduce and demonstrate the Rigsum Sherig Collection, a carefully-selected set of open-source, educational digital resources that do not require Internet access.

The Collection is available for free to all educational organization in Bhutan. Installing the collection on school, college, or library PCs will avail cutting-edge, safe and effective resources to teachers, students, and anyone interested in expanding their knowledge.

In the session, Prof. Galit Shmueli and Mr. Boaz Shmueli will demonstrate the Rigsum Sherig Collection, explain how it can be used and obtained, and share information about the next phase of this project.

Click here for more information.

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