The first LIFT Asia 08 are online. My favourites:

Mobiles and the urban poor – Bruce Sterling

Bruce Sterling’s talk at LIFT Asia, about how the poor are moving to cities, using mobile technologies to access services like payment, was impressive.

But what made it simply brilliant was his discussion on how the future collapse of North Korea will present South Korea with a challenge of enormous proportions, and how mobile technology and mobile payment can be part of the solution:

“When you are working on cell phones, when you are working on the web, when you are working on electronic money and payment systems, you need to think: What if my user is a North-Korean? How would I do this differently if I knew my user was from Pyongyang, that his regime had collapsed, that his economy had collapsed, he was completely bewildered, and he had never seen a cell phone or a computer in his life, and I intended to make him a productive and happy fellow citizen in ten years, what kind of technology would I give that person, what kind of trading system, economic system?”

According to LIFT organiser Laurent Haug he moved a large part of the audience, leaving a strange silence in the room as they came out for the break.

The Long Here, the Big Now, and other tales of the networked city – Adam Greenfield

Adam Greenfield, head of design director at Nokia, talks about the emotional aspects of living in a networked city. What happens when the choices of action in the city are not only physical, but also influenced by an invisible overlay of networked information?