The Jig Saw

Tuesday, May 17, 2005

The New Digital Divide

Seth Godin's post on the new digital divide talks about choice - and choice is okay when the only person it affects is the one who makes the choice!

But what about the people involved in bridging the digital divide – do they really have a choice? And are they now a part of the new digital divide?

Baring a few [involved in development] who belong to the Digirati – most are either unaware or in a state of inertia to change! And I have one question for them - if you are unwilling to adapt to new technologies/ applications then why would a person on the non digital side of the divide leave his comfort zone?

And since fortunately it's only about choice – and while the world can chose to be where it wants to be – the organization(s) bridging the digital hardly have a choice! Because now it's not just about those who have access to computers and the internet, and those who don't; it is about using the plethora of applications innovatively to bridge the gap.

Blogs and wiki's in local languages, jotspot for project management and skype for areas that don't have good voice connectivity! Or is bridging the digital divide only about adding hardware and making software more affordable? Of having a cold website that is updated occasionally and using email and yahoo messenger to communicate?

The choice is yours!

2 Comments:

  • I just realised how easy it is to talk about bridging the digital divide! The real tuff part is to try to step over the dividing line.

    While writing this message, I am just visualising how people directly responsible for bridging the digital divide always behave as if it is the folk from the other side who have to cross over.

    By Blogger Rajesh Barnwal, at 9:49 PM  

  • Check out the sub $200 laptop that nicholas negroponte is developing with the MIT that together with WiMax connectivity could help developing economies frogleap into the 'connected' world.

    The Brazilan govt under lula is also workin out a Free Software/Thin Client based access device supported by state sponsored internet.

    Infact states like Louisiana are thinking of declaring broadband as a public utility and provide local govt supported access as most ISP's are only providing services in the lucrative neighbourhoods and sidestepping the ones which they dont find viable enough.

    So i think we are headed to a more open tech environment where trsanparency would force the divide to bridge out in the long run.

    By Blogger Bladewidth, at 3:53 AM  

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