[kictanet] Tell me the future

alice alice at apc.org
Wed Dec 5 14:58:26 EAT 2007

Dear all

Very interesting reads below re; the internet.

And yes yes again fiber/infrastructure is critical to increase 
penetration, access etc


> http://www.guardian.co.uk/media/2007/dec/03/mondaymediasection.internet
>   Tell me the future
> We asked the godfather of the net to tell us where the technology will 
> take us. He emailed his address book
>     * The Guardian <http://www.guardian.co.uk/theguardian>
>     * Monday December 3 2007
> When we asked Vint Cerf, chief evangelist at Google, to guest edit 
> MediaGuardian, we expected him to bring us some luminaries of the web 
> who we don't often get to hear from. His choices transform an 
> often-asked question ("what's the future?"), into an insight into the 
> thinking of innovators and pioneers. It's no coincidence that three of 
> them are founders of some of the biggest web names.
> Their specialist fields (from search, to advertising, video streaming 
> to social networking) represent what Cerf believes to be the most 
> exciting areas of development on the web and in the world; notably 
> Steven Huter and Adiel Akplogan, who have pioneered the internet 
> infrastructure in Africa.
> Finally, each one has had, and will continue to have, a profound 
> impact on the future of media.
> *Developing world*
> *Steven Huter and Adiel Akplogan*
> *Research associate, University of Oregon Network Startup Resource 
> Center; CEO, Regional Registry for Internet Number Resources for Africa*
> The first full internet connection to the African continent was 
> established in Tunisia in October 1991. Over the next 15 years, the 
> transition from store-and-forward email networks to full internet 
> connectivity in capital cities all over Africa progressed steadily, 
> with Eritrea being the last to join the global internet in November 2000.
> While most of the continent's internet connections are via satellite 
> today, the transition to fibre over the next five years will take off 
> as one or more of the undersea cables currently competing to service 
> eastern and southern Africa become operational. However, penetration 
> to rural communities will continue to be limited due to the lack of 
> infrastructure, and the cost of a personal computer is typically more 
> than what the average person in a village can afford.
> Consumer broadband services via DSL are becoming available in an 
> increasing number of countries; however, service costs depend greatly 
> on the pervasiveness and reliability of local infrastructure. Wireless 
> solutions will continue to evolve as the dominant service for "last 
> kilometre" access due to the lack of local infrastructure. Given that 
> national scale fibre build-outs are not a major focus of the five-year 
> budget plans for most governments, most service providers will 
> continue to deploy a combination of wireless and leased line 
> infrastructure from telecommunications companies for providing 
> internet access. Overall progress will occur, but realistically, the 
> limited or unavailable national infrastructure (power and fibre) will 
> make it difficult to attain economies of scale, which will limit 
> pan-African internet development between now and 2012.
> The explosion in mobile telephony that has turned Africa into the 
> fastest-growing market in the world, at more than twice the 
> international average growth in subscriber numbers, will continue to 
> drive locally-fuelled innovations. A number of SMS and voice-enabled 
> applications are already in use in numerous African markets, providing 
> financial, agricultural, health, and other information services. 
> Network services via mobile devices will accelerate as mobile 
> operators upgrade infrastructure, and cheaper and more sophisticated 
> handsets lower the bar for innovation.
> The rise of a youthful, entrepreneurial and well-educated vanguard of 
> Africans will lead this overhaul of the continent's communications 
> services. Countries that are embracing information technology today 
> and harnessing the power of wireless networks, mobile telephony and 
> low-cost technology for the end-user, along with establishing 
> regulatory environments to foster entrepreneurship, will evolve 
> rapidly over the next five years. Countries that establish and promote 
> internet exchange points will help to cultivate the localisation of 
> African internet traffic, and stimulate the creation and distribution 
> of more local content.
> To take full advantage of the power of the internet, African leaders 
> must give rise to regulatory and political environments that remove 
> cumbersome barriers, encourage competition by opening up markets to 
> engage more access providers, and capitalise on these positive forces 
> that ultimately will be the dynamic impetus to propel Africa forward.
> *Social networking*
> *Chris De Wolfe*
> *CEO, co-founder MySpace*
> In only a few years, social networks have become a staple in the 
> internet landscape as the social networking phenomenon allowed people 
> to "put their lives online". A person's profile became a 
> representation of who they really were in the offline world, and 
> allowed them to transfer their offline world online.
> More than ever, social networks are blurring online and offline 
> worlds, evolving into social destinations that are driving the 
> direction of the larger web and affecting industries like advertising, 
> music and politics.
> Predicting the future of social networks exclusively misses the larger 
> point - these evolving online social destinations are laying the 
> groundwork for the new social web which we believe is becoming 
> infinitely more personal, more portable, and more collaborative.
> First, as we expand these social destinations to all corners of the 
> world, we must always think in terms of the individual. With millions 
> of people using social websites, there's an increasing demand to make 
> everyone's web experience personal. In the same way a home or office 
> is your physical address, we expect your personal, online social 
> profile to become your internet address. When I give out 
> www.myspace.com/chrisdewolfe <http://www.myspace.com/chrisdewolfe> to 
> friends and colleagues, everyone knows where to find me online.
> We expect aspects of all socially-based sites to become increasingly 
> portable. In terms of mobile, we expect to have relationships with 
> every carrier and device-maker in the world and we expect that half of 
> our future traffic will come from non-PC users.
> Social activity is happening everywhere and we expect applications and 
> features to be more fluid, based on the online population that want 
> content where they want it, when they want it, and how they want it. 
> Social activity should be portable and we expect the industry will 
> continue to move in that direction.
> Lastly, online social destinations work best when creativity and 
> development are collaborative concepts. From personal profiles, to the 
> widget economy, to the OpenSocial standard - the future of the social 
> web will harness the savvy of the masses to produce more relevant and 
> meaningful social experiences, ultimately pushing the larger industry 
> to be more innovative and progressive.
> Lowering the barrier to entry for a new generation of developers will 
> lead to a more collaborative and dynamic web and directly affect the 
> tools and feature sets available on socially-based sites. Supporting a 
> more collaborative web creates a more global and participatory 
> internet experience for everyone.
> The evolution of social networks is kick-starting a broad global shift 
> for how people, content and culture collide on the web. Right now 
> we're looking at the tip of the iceberg for what the social web will 
> look like in the future. Fundamentally, all social destinations must 
> expand while staying personal, they must engage users while empowering 
> portability, and they must work with up and coming innovators and 
> major web leaders to both collaborate and contribute to the larger web 
> community.
> *Video*
> *Chad Hurley*
> *CEO, co-founder YouTube*
> In five years, video broadcasting will be the most ubiquitous and 
> accessible form of communication. The tools for video recording will 
> continue to become smaller and more affordable. Personal media devices 
> will be universal and interconnected. People will have the opportunity 
> to record and share video with a small group of friends or everyone 
> around the world.
> Today, eight hours of new video are uploaded to YouTube every minute. 
> This will grow exponentially over the next five years. Our goal is to 
> allow every person on the planet to participate by making the upload 
> process as simple as placing a phone call. This new video content will 
> be available on any screen - in your living room or in your pocket - 
> and will bring together all the diverse media which matters to you, 
> from videos of family and friends to news, music, sports, cooking and 
> more.
> In the next five years, users will be at the centre of their video 
> experience, you will have more access to more information, and the 
> world will be a smaller place.
> *Advertising*
> *Maurice Lévy*
> *Chairman and CEO, Publicis Groupe*
> Five years is an eternity in technology, but from our vantage point a 
> few things are clear about what the internet and internet advertising 
> will look like in 2012. One, virtually all media will be digital, and 
> digital will enable almost all kinds of advertising. Two, online 
> advertising will depend more than ever on the one element which has 
> always been at the heart of impactful advertising, both analogue and 
> digital: creativity. The explosion of media channels means this is a 
> glorious time to think and act creatively. In art history terms, we 
> are at the dawn of the Renaissance after the Dark Ages.
> Just as the Renaissance broke down the distinctions between sacred and 
> profane art forms and between individual and community, so we are 
> seeing a similar exciting blurring today - and this will only 
> intensify. Linear media is fast giving way to liquid media, where you 
> can move seamlessly in and out of different settings. Prescribed time 
> - the 7 o'clock news, the Friday night out at the cinema, etc - is now 
> becoming multitasking time. People are no longer willing to put up 
> with interruptions for a commercial break during their entertainment 
> experience, and so we have to find incredibly creative solutions to 
> interact with them and engage them in genuine and honest ways. This 
> implies a brave new world of engagement and involvement between 
> marketers and consumers and will also mean co-production between 
> marketers and media owners. Scale will be critical: in five years' 
> time, around 2 billion people will be constant internet users and 
> mobile internet computing will be ubiquitous. What a great time to be 
> in the business!
> *Mobile*
> *Biz Stone*
> *Co-founder, Twitter*
> As we increasingly realise the web as a vital social utility and 
> important marketplace we cannot ignore an even bigger potential. The 
> power of the internet is not limited to the PC. Twitter has emerged to 
> create a seamless layer of social connectivity across SMS, IM, and the 
> web. Operating on the simple concept of status, Twitter asks one 
> question: "What are you doing?" Friends, family and colleagues stay 
> connected through short responses.
> The potential for this simple form of hybrid communication technology 
> is strong. For example, a person in India may text "Follow Biz" and 
> get online via Twitter over SMS in a matter of seconds. Biz might be 
> updating from the US on a PC. Nevertheless, the updates are exchanged 
> instantly.
> Our future holds in store the promise of increased connectivity to a 
> powerful social internet which truly extends to every little spot on 
> our Planet Earth. We're all affected by and defined by each other's 
> actions. What are you doing?
> *Search*
> *Peter Norvig*
> *Director of research, Google *
> Yale librarian Rutherford Rogers said "We're drowning in information 
> and starving for knowledge." The internet is an ocean of information 
> and in the near future we'll speed through it effortlessly and 
> intuitively, like a tuna. No, I don't mean you'll have fins.
> If you haven't been searching for [tuna tail vortices] recently, you 
> may not know that a tuna's body creates small vortices in the water 
> that are then channelled by the tuna's tail to create additional power.
> This symbiosis of tuna and watery environment forms a more efficient 
> propulsion system than anything designed by human engineers.
> In the future, a similar symbiosis of searcher and computational 
> environment will allow us to move faster through the internet than we 
> would have thought possible. We will not just be typing in keywords 
> and getting back a list of 10 web pages.
> Instead, our interaction will be more fluid, our computers will accept 
> our requests in many forms, and will scan our environment proactively, 
> looking for ways to provide us with additional power. We will get back 
> web pages, yes, along with existing books and videos, but also custom 
> tables, charts, animations, databases, and summarisations created 
> on-the-fly in response to our specific needs.
> Today, nobody says "I need to connect to a megawatt power station" - 
> instead we assume that electricity will be available on demand in 
> almost every room of every building we visit. Edison could see that 
> this would be useful, but could not foresee the range of appliances, 
> from food processors to mp3 players, that this availability would 
> enable. So too will information flow freely to us in the future, and 
> be transformed by as-yet-unforeseen information appliances.
> *Archive*
> *Bruce Cole*
> *Chairman, National Endowment for the Humanities (US)*
> At the National Endowment for the Humanities, we believe the internet 
> and other information-age tools, such as digital archiving, will help 
> us understand the world more deeply, broadly, and creatively. For 
> humanists just as much for scientists, the ability to mine, analyse, 
> and understand data, simulate complex environments, and combine 
> information from a wide variety of sources, is critical to 
> 21st-century discovery and innovation.
> The exciting new tools of the digital age also present unique 
> challenges. With digital technologies, we can comb through information 
> in seconds versus years, and assimilate knowledge from a much broader 
> array of sources for new insights. But the wellbeing of the 
> infrastructure itself demands new time-frames. Information in books 
> can be preserved for centuries before transfer to new "media" is 
> needed. Information on disks, thumb drives, and other digital media 
> has a lifespan measured in years or even months rather than centuries 
> before transfer to the next generation of media is required.
> Just as physical infrastructure is a foundation for modern life, 
> digital infrastructure (data storage, computers, networks, etc.) is 
> foundational infrastructure for the information age. Attention to the 
> health and support of this infrastructure is critical to ensuring that 
> born-digital knowledge is preserved and passed on for the benefit of 
> future generations.
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Eric M.K Osiakwan
ICT Integrator
Internet Research
emko at internetresearch.com.gh <mailto:emko at internetresearch.com.gh>
42 Ring Road Central, Accra-North
Tel: +233.21.258800 ext 2031
Fax: +233.21.258811
Cell: +233.24.4386792

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