11 Apr 2018

THE FUTURE OF INFORMATION TECHNOLOGY AND DEVELOPMENT

No one wants to be a false prophet although long-term predictions can be even harder, change is happening so quickly that we have no idea about the future. “Skorman (1997) says that in the next five to ten years technology will allow film fans to download movies instantly, directly into their TV or PC screens.” So far, so good, right?

The world of technology is emerging from how we shop, eat and communicate, and society has to adapt just as fast. Since the days of chalkboards, we have modernized and adapted to societal change, in order to provide children and students with the skills they will need as part of a modern ICT workforce.  We get it that many schools and universities are now using portable devices as a learning tool and how these devices are used can vary from classroom to classroom.

Every student learns differently, and technology allows educators to accommodate unique learning styles on a case – by -case basis and remember these educators of today are more concerned with teaching students how to learn on their own.

Education is for the brain to be empowered with information, students are to learn to think, to learn to learn, and to critically assess a situation.

Today computers are in virtually everything we touch, all day long, in our cars, in our thermostats, in our refrigerators. In fact, increasingly computers are no longer objects at all, one reason why we care about what the future of computing holds.

In a near future, the light bulb will itself become a computer, projecting information instead of light from your phone communicate to your refrigerator, which might communicate to the light bulb. We are going to see the increasing infusing of computing into all aspects of our lives, we see now that computing is moving into the fabrics in our clothing and it’s moving into our very bodies.

We are now in the process of refining prosthetics that not only help people reach for something but in reaching, those prosthetics now send a message back to the brain. The first prosthetics were able quite miraculously to take a message from the brain and use it to control the world. But imagine how astounding it is if that prosthetic also tells the brain that it has grasped something. That really changes the way we think about what it means to be human if our very brains are impacted by the movement of a piece of metal at the edge of our hands. Imagine designing parts of the body on a computer using very fine-grained models that are based on the human body, and then using engineering techniques to create living organisms. That’s a very radical difference in what we consider the digital infrastructure and that shift is supporting a radical shift in the way we work, and live, and who we are as humans and of all industry, information and entertainment sectors, that can imagine ads that understand your emotions when you look at them using machine learning; to manufacturing, where the robots on a production line can learn real time as a function of what they perceive. You can imagine a robot arm in a factory that automatically remanufactures itself when the object that it is putting into boxes changes shape. Every sector is changing and even the lines between industry sectors are becoming blurred, as 3D-printing and machine learning come together for example; as manufacturing and information; or manufacturing and the body come together.

But of course, we need to make sure that these developments benefit all of society, not just the wealthiest members of society who might want these prosthetics, but every person who needs them like how do we establish governance for equitable innovation? How do we foster the equitable benefits of these technologies for every nation and every person in every nation? And what is the right model for controlling the use of these technologies, or is the ethical education of those that engage in the development of the technologies and their distribution, a better way to think about how to ensure equitable use?

I believe that all technologists need to keep in mind a multi-level, multi-part model of technology that takes into account the technological but also the social, the cultural, the legal, all of these aspects of development. All technologists need to be trained in the human as well as the technology so that they understand uses to which their technology could be put and reflect on the uses they want it to be put to.

The introduction of physics into the field of computer science is going to become really, very tiny, the size of an atom of which it is going to make a huge difference; Nano-computing, very small computers that you might swallow inside a pill and that will then learn about your illness and set about curing it; that brings together biological computing as well, where we can print parts of the body.

The most important thing is that technology brings people together rather than separating them. The particular gadget that ensures the bond between people is not only continued but strengthened, that the understanding amongst nations and amongst individuals is improved by virtue of the technologies that we encounter. Let look at applying this technology in the classroom.

Connectivity: Schools would be equipped with Wi-Fi that is fast, secure and safe; I will help teachers to maximize the value of the internet in their own classrooms. It also provides students with an opportunity to approach a task more creatively, to enhance their understanding of the material.

Gratification method: It allows schools to build a competitive environment around a certain policy or objective, by using a computer game-style, cross-device platform to monitor progress and, in some cases, provide rewards.

Virtual reality: This has been heralded as an innovative learning resource, capable of immersing students in their chosen subject.

Virtual science labs, for example, could allow students to experiment without open flames or dangerous chemicals, while virtual language labs could allow students to have a conversation with a native speaker without leaving the country. The school will go a step further in developing a state-of-the-art 4D room. Equipped with floor-to-ceiling screens displaying projected video footage, as well as surround sound, lighting and an interactive floor space, the room engages students in a complete sensory experience.

Flexibility: Gone are those days when we were surrounded by the four walls of desks, tables, boards, the classroom has now evolved from a located to a digitalized experience meaning that learning doesn’t have to stop when the bell rings, providing instant feedback instead of paper waste,

Dropbox, GoogleDrive and Microsoft SkyDrive, among others, can make vital documents available to students and teachers in seconds, making dog-related homework incidents a thing of the past.

Video platforms such as Skype are also enabling students, teachers and even parents to work together outside of the classroom. Live video streaming and posting can also help teachers to reach students who are absent, or who may need to review the lesson.

 

 

Article by: Blessing Bassey

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