LIVING IN 'EXPONENTIAL TIMES'
ATIF HASSAN (firstname.lastname@example.org)
Jan 11 - 17, 2010
We are living in the 'exponential times' and we have no choice but to keep abreast with the changing world. The rapid development of modern technology has provided almost unlimited variety of resources and multimedia platforms that are able to supply diverse needs including knowledge, edutainment, and consumer facilities.
This exponential thrust of innovation facilitates the utilization and growth of our collective global knowledge at a rate not enjoyed previously by the industrial revolution.
The internet is acknowledged as a rich source of knowledge easily knocked by any person who has the skills necessary to login to the World Wide Web. It facilitates potent possibilities of retrieving information about any topic of interest.
Now users of internet are realizing that it is just not a local or regional or even a national resource but a truly global resource. Understanding these facts bring the latest and great information available today.
As stated by Karl Fisch, Scott McLeod, and Jeff Bronman in a fantastic video on the progress of information technology, we are living in the exponential times. A rush of modern technologies and social media advancement is altering the media landscape. These changes are affecting the way people interact and behave.
According to a recent research study, an average American has access to 1,000,000,000,000 web pages, 65,000 iPhone applications, 10,500 radio stations, 5,500 magazines and 200+ cable TV networks. Newspaper circulation is seven million down over the last twenty five years, but in the last five years readers of online newspapers went thirty million up.
This year, traditional advertising (news papers, magazines, television, radio) is in steep decline, meanwhile digital (www) advertising is growing rapidly. It is amazing to note that more videos were uploaded to "You Tube" in the last two months than if NBC, BBC and CNN had been airing new contents twenty four hours a day, three sixty five days of year, since 1948.
Wikipedia was launched in 2001. It now features over 13 million articles in more than 200 languages. Nokia manufactures thirteen cell phones in one second. Right now 93% of US adults own a cell phone. It is expected by the experts that the mobile device will be the world's primary connection tool to the internet in 2020.
The computer in cell phone today is a million times cheaper, a thousand times more powerful and about a hundred thousand times smaller than the one computer at MIT in 1965. So what used to fit in a building now fits in your pocket, what fits in your pocket now will fit inside a blood cell in coming twenty five years.
Information technology (IT) is a general term that describes any technology that helps to produce, manipulate, store, communicate and/or disseminate information. IT merges computers with high-speed communications links. Two important parts of information technology comprise computers and communications. Computer is a programmable, multiuse machine that processes data into information.
Communications technology consists of electromagnetic devices and systems for communicating over distances. Online means are using a computer or other device to access information and services via a network.
Information technology has given the brain some now commonplace technologies: Email refers to messages transmitted over a computer network, a communications system connecting computers. There are guidelines governing the use of emails, which internet users should be aware of, to avoid viruses and other hazards. Major components of cyberspace - the wired and wireless world of communications-are the internet, a network of hundreds of thousands of smaller networks, and its graphical subsection, the World Wide Web, which stores information in multimedia form-text, graphics, sound, video.
Phones entering the market can plug into computer chip based sensing devices, and translate data for transmission.
Devices include health monitors and automotive diagnostic devices.
Computer developments have focused miniaturization, speed, and affordability. Three developments in communications may be noted: connectivity, the ability to connect with computers via communications lines; interactivity enabling a user to have a two-way dialogue; and multimedia.
The melding of computers and communications has produced three developments: convergence, the combining of several industries through the language of computers; portability; and personalization.
One result of these developments is information overload. Three ethical concerns raised by information technology are associated with speed and scale, unpredictability, and complexity.
(Writer of this article is lecturer Defence Authority College of Business-Karachi)