Tools for better living

New devices and ideas are remaking our world. Here are seven brilliant, practical inventions.


(Fortune Magazine) -- The winner of this year's Nobel Peace Prize is Muhammad Yunus, founder of Bangladesh's Grameen Bank and a pioneer of microfinance. Grameen lends small sums to farmers and entrepreneurs. The idea is to help the poor not by giving them a handout but by giving them financial tools they can use to create wealth.

Tech and other entrepreneurs all over the world--some of them with big companies, others starting out from scratch--have brought something of the same spirit to the innovations on these pages. And however complex the underlying technology, these are all inexpensive devices that help the poorest help themselves.  Top of page