Thursday, June 21, 2007

Via Timmy, why is it that Africa is, in the main, ruled by greedy, ignorant despots rather than hard-working, inventive people like William Kamkwamba?
I built my first windmill when I was 15. Over the next few years I kept refining the design. I made many modifications to the plans i found in the book. For example, I increased the blades from three to four to provide more power output.

The windmill now powers lights for 3 rooms and a light over our porch outside. I also use it to power my family's two radios. I also can charge mobile phones that the neighbors have.

Go and read the whole thing: it's fascinating.

4 comments:

Dr Ray said...

This looks genuine doesn't it. At first I thought it was some new variant of the Nigerian scam. We will have to see how long it is before he asks for money to supply electricity for the whole village or to set up a national medical IT system.

JuliaM said...

"We will have to see how long it is before he asks for money to supply electricity for the whole village or to set up a national medical IT system."

Hopefully not! It was a great story if true.

Dr Ray said...

I hope it true. It reminds me of my uncle who was 10 or 11 during WW2 in Malta. He recruited other children in the village to help dig a well using explosives and used bits of a crashed Spitfire to make a hoist to bring water up in a bucket. The well and hoist are still being used regularly now.

The Remittance Man said...

Despite my usual scepticism about Africa, stories like this restore my faith in the people of this continent.

To us a couple of light bulbs and a radio may not seem like a lot, but for a guy with not much formal education to build his own small power supply from scrap using a primary school text book... Consider the old solar topee well and truly doffed in respect.

Now if only we could find a few more Williams* and get rid of a lot of the Roberts this continent will really start showing the rest of the world what it can do.

*And they are out there, believe me.