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Couchsurfing, aka free and awesome places to stay while traveling

Clay Shirky’s recent tweet about Couchsurfing reminded me that I’ve been meaning to write about it for a while. Couchsurfing is both a verb (to surf someone’s couch) and a thriving community of travelers and hosts. We’ve hosted several couchsurfers over the last year and met many more through meet-ups. It’s been an amazing experience. In their own words, CouchSurfing is a worldwide network for making connections between travelers and...

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What’s the difference between social entrepreneurship and plain old entrepreneurship?

Hmmm. The difference between “social entrepreneurship” and “entrepreneurship” can break down quickly. When we’re talking about African students building new web applications to make it easier to send money to families back home, what should we designate that? Entrepreneurship or Social Entrepreneurship? Or does it not matter? Should it perhaps make us wonder if we should instead be holding up that type of work to argue that real entrepreneurship is...

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Solving the bandwidth problem when updating WordPress sites

We use WordPress for many of our client sites because it’s dead simple to use and has a fantastic plugin system. The only problem? WordPress is stinkin’ huge. And basic functionality depends on JavaScript. No big deal on fast American and European connections, but it’s a huge impediment here in Benin, where connections are unreliable at best, and more typically, just unusable.

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Wedding pictures! Finally!

After five weeks of slow connections and frustration, wedding pictures are finally up! You can pursue them on Flickr, although I have yet to tag and order them. My favorites are after the fold.

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Uh, where is Benin getting all of this money from?

Benin’s going from 12 departments to 29 and is redoing the whole administrative map, from arrondissements to chef lieux. The government doesn’t even have enough money to pay its contractors! We are broke-asses over here! Where on earth do they think they’re going to come up with the cash to build the new infrastructure required to build city halls, prefectures, courts, and all of the other trappings that come with...