Investigators Assemble

1. The best way to bring internet access to rural areas is through wired technology
2. People in rural areas don’t have a desire for internet
http://tech.firstpost.com/news-analysis/most-people-in-developing-countries-have-no-internet-access-facebook-256125.html
3. Wired technology is too expensive to bring to rural areas
4. Wireless technology is too new and unreliable to be worth bringing to rural areas
http://www.pcmag.com/article2/0,2817,2381754,00.asp
5. Wireless technology has many options and more are being invented frequently
http://www.telegraph.co.uk/finance/newsbysector/mediatechnologyandtelecoms/digital-media/10870369/Google-spending-1bn-on-internet-in-developing-world.html
http://www.economist.com/blogs/babbage/2011/10/internet-developing-countries

Source Nugget 3

“Some of Google’s steps toward giving emerging markets wireless access are public, with the company working with other organizations to convince governments in sub-Saharan Africa and Southeast Asia to change regulations to create new wireless networks using previously restricted airwaves.”

This nugget brings up an important hurdle that comes with wireless internet access. While Google’s plans to spread internet access in “emerging markets” would help many people, they must gain the ability to do so through the government. As a fairly new technology, I’m surprised these countries even have regulations that could restrict wireless internet airwaves. This concern is not just applicable to wireless internet as companies cannot just dig up miles of ground and place wiring. I think, however, it would be easier to convince governments to allow for building something physical rather than trying to convince a government to allow for the use of airwaves, which is a much newer and more confusing topic, especially when it would cost so much.

Source Nugget 2 (with comparison)

“…$14 billion or so. But no developing country could possibly afford to pay that much. Albania, Papua New Guinea, Cambodia, that sort of cost is more than their entire production each year, more than everyone in the place put together produces. They simply cannot afford to make that leap to fibre broadband for all: whatever effect it might have on the future growth of the economy.
Thus the very much cheaper (even if with less capacity) roll out of mobile broadband makes great economic sense.”

This nugget goes along with what I’ve been finding more commonly about internet in developing areas. The article’s discussion of Google’s ideas for expanding internet access concludes that wireless options will be way cheaper than wired internet. The article compares this to how many rural areas skipped landline phone technology and went straight to mobile phones. Although this created a time gap in these areas in catching up with modern technology, this time gap has already occurred and skipping wired internet will help these areas be up to date with modern technologies.

This article says the opposite of my first source nugget. I think both articles bring up good points about the effectiveness of both wired and wireless internet in developing areas. The first article brings up the point that the second article is making – that wired internet is very expensive to install. The first article concludes that the investment will be more beneficial and more plausible while the wireless options may continue to build up costs overtime. Based on these two articles my opinion is leaning more towards wired internet being the better option for developing areas. We shall see if my opinion remains after more research.

Source Nugget 1

“While the costs of terrestrial Internet connections are high, they’re relatively predictable. And the business model is proven around the world. MainOne, for example, already is breaking even. And, of course, there are already many cables already deployed to build on. ‘You can move the needle further and faster [by investing in terrestrial internet],’ Summer says. ‘And it’s longer term.'”

I was surprised to read this nugget because I have mostly been reading about the new ideas for wireless internet access in developing countries. The many ideas for wireless internet are also mentioned in this article, but it is explained that they will cost way to much money to be reasonable options. The article explains that while the costs of a wired internet line would still be very expensive. They would cost less overall and are more reliable and will last longer. MainOne is a wired internet line that provides internet to many West African countries and has been doing very well.

Finalizing My Dream

While looking at the dreamers’ essays as a whole and what my peers had to say about them gave me a new view on the essays we had looked at over the past weeks. I had definitely noticed a connection between the essays as we read them but going back and looking for more intensive connections gave them new meaning especially in relation to modern technology. This relation will assist in my research for the inquiry project because I will think about using the computer as an extension of how I think and try to insist on the symbiotic relationship discussed by Engelbart and Licklider. My topic, the use of wired versus wireless internet connection in rural areas, will also connect to these essays as rural areas are getting more access to computers and especially the internet they are able to learn and use the relationship between man and computer as well.

Mapping My Dreamers Revision

While looking at my peers blog posts, I was surprised to find only one other post that discussed the same three dreamer essays that I had. This blogger goes more in depth into the differences in Engelbart and Licklider’s thoughts on the symbiotic relationship between man and computer, which I thought was nice to point out, as I was only focusing on the similarities. Their connection between Engelbart and Licklider’s idea of symbiosis and Kay and Goldberg’s essay was very similar to mine in that they explained how the Dynabook could make Engelbart and Licklider’s ideas a reality.

Since I could only find the one post with the same dreamers as mine, I looked at posts that had two of the same. There were still some similarities in what each blogger discussed as what I had since there are so many connections between all the dreamers’ essays. For example, this post discusses how the Dynabook would allow for a better human-computer relationship and this blogger notes the thread of “enhancement of human ability through technology.” This blogger takes an interesting view on the “partnership of man and technology.” They chose to highlight Licklider’s comment in his essay that a symbiotic relationship is not always necessary if man can complete a task without the computer.

Mapping My Dreamers

While all the dreamer essays have many links between them, I found that “Man-Computer Symbiosis,” “Augmenting Human Intellect: a Conceptual Framework,” and “Personal Dynamic Media” have a clear link. The main connection between these essays is the authors’ beliefs in the need for integration of humans and computers. In “Man-Computer Symbiosis,” J.C.R. Licklider discusses how man relying on computer can help “facilitate formulative thinking” and “to enable men and computers to cooperate in making decisions and controlling complex situations.” Licklider continues to explain how the symbiosis of man and computer can help with extending human thought and assist with problem solving. Similarly, in “Augmenting Human Intellect: a Conceptual Framework,” Douglas C. Engelbart explains a parallel idea that computers can assist humans in “comprehending complex situations, isolating the significant factors, and solving problems.” Engelbart discusses how computers should help in all situations and not just use “isolated clever tricks” that are only helpful in very specific situations or one time uses. Alan Kay and Adele Goldberg’s “Personal Dynamic Media” proposes a device that could make Licklider and Engelbart’s ideas a reality. Their device, the Dynabook would allow humans access to many problem-solving programs, such as information recall and filing.