Computer and telecommunication technologies are on the rise as many people seek to bridge the gap between their knowledge and that of their predecessors. This form of advancement is vital in sustaining the worlds’ economy as used in business enterprises, learning institutions and families among other fields in comparison to usage over the past 20 years.
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Since the high competence emerged, some people and countries feel superior and richly supplied with technology advancement than others. Why is this gap widening every single second? Why is there an impression that some countries are closer to the digital world than others are?
It is true that a majority of people lack access to computer and telephone resources, thus they cannot access internet at home, school or work. This makes the societies lack the essential basic skills to boost the economy. According to Ba (1), telecommunication is greatly required for financial stability and success.
There are many factors leading to the widening of the digital divide. They include quality and affordability of the products and services. Many illiterate people prefer to buy cheap products and services in order to save, but in the end end up complaining. These products are inevitable in our day-to-day lifestyles since people are out to make quick money from other’s ignorance. The products cause severe damages even before their due season. This has really diminished the technology sector hindering success to advancement of technology. In addition, the products needed for a people or country to bridge the digital divide may be scarce, limited or unaffordable. Inability to access cheaper rates for quality products depends on financial status of a country or suppler levels of performance (Ba, 1).
How do we then bridge this divide? In order to bring the telecommunication world to the attention of others, some measures needs to be taken. The two main requirements involve:
- Government Policy-The government need to ensure that its citizens enjoy the benefits of the technological advancement in bringing them closer to the digital life by structuring a policy that will enable every student to access a computer which is internet enabled. The US government facilitates a program that sees every student has access to a computer in school. The initiative program entitled one laptop per child has encouraged economical growth in schools, as students do not waste time doing research through physical books but prefer the easier and mobile access to virtual libraries available on internet enabled computers. The government also need to come up with policy of assisting students obtain personal computers (notebooks or laptops), through students loans which ought to be repayable upon completion of studies, when one secures a job or I able to earn income. When student are digitally connected, the whole community as well as country gains economically since chances of computer illiteracy are fully eliminated.
- The Community policy –The community should initiate program, which will make villagers and other people out of school to access internet as a way of advancing their knowledge. This is possible by forming a community alliance that contributes a certain amount monthly. The contributed amount required to be banked for a couple of months or years and used to purchase digital products including the community-based computers. In line with Burgstahler (1), this initiative would also enable many communities to get assistance from banking organizations, by taking loans for purchase of products. The government ought to work collaboratively with private centers and non-governmental organizations to set-up community based resource/digital centers where people can access the required information.
According to Ba (1), organizations that develop Computer and telecommunication products should design alternative cost-effective products, which favour the economically unstable sectors and provides the community with digital services. Financial support encourages people and motivates them to participate in the required or anticipated change.
The most important benefit of bridging the digital divide is to unite illiterate, different political parties, cultures, gender and people of different ages.
Apart from offering economical growth, Computing and telecommunication services educate and entertain users. The computing world also helps in raising strong leaders and experienced staff. Telecommunication organizations should therefore target the youth and citizens who are willing but lack the facilities or are constrained by accessibility.
In order for nations to bridge the digital divide, there are major obstacles that need to be summoned, which include:
- Illiteracy among people in the community
- High poverty levels
- Inadequate technology infrastructure
- Political Instability
- Language barrier
In conclusion, the community needs to advance the digital life and bridge the gap by ensuring that majority have access to computing, communication and internet technology. This will see disadvantaged communities rise to higher technology levels against all odds.
Government officials, Community leaders and policy makers should adhere to the importance of bridging the digital divide and make computing and telecommunication services accessible to many marginal groups. If the government would agree to strengthen its links with the private sectors, reducing the digital gap would be easily achievable.
Ba, Harouna. What is the Digital Divide? The digital divide. Spring 1 (2). 2001. Web.
Burgstahler, Sheryl. Equal Access: Universal Design of Computer Labs. Washington, WA: University of Washington Post 2010. Web.