Educational technology and the world of work In their March 2016 report entitled New Vision for Education: Fostering Social and Emotional Learning through Technology the World Economic Forum (WEF) states, Investors are increasingly interested in the potential of education technology. Private investment in ed-tech for all age groups globally has increased at a 32% average annual pace, from $1.5 billion in 2011 to $4.5 billion in 2015.
In a Media Alert on 12 April 2017 the minister of telecommunications and postal services, Dr Siyabonga Cwele called on the public to provide public written comments on ICT strategies, following approval by Cabinet to gazette the National e-Strategy, National e-Government Strategy and ICT SMME Support Strategy, as follows:
How software communities can create jobs and stimulate the economy The South African economy is at a tipping point. Slow economic growth and the recent downgrading of the sovereign rating has dire consequences for job creation and business growth. In times like these, businesses start looking at where they can cut costs and jobs are usually the first on the chopping block. But the software industry is well-positioned to buck this trend, to create jobs through learning opportunities and to spearhead innovation that can help businesses cut costs and improve on efficiencies in other areas. Digital transformation has become a massive focus in recent years. Spend in the e-business sector continues to rise, with BMI TechKnowledge putting spend on IT services at… Continue reading
ICT EDUCATION IN SOUTH AFRICA Since the mid-Nineties the use of Internet Communication Technology (ICT) has been making its way into South African classrooms. And yet, currently only 28% of public schools around the country use computers and other digital devices to enhance teaching and learning (up from 12.3% in 1999), according to the Department of Basic Education (BDE). The fact that South Africa ranks in 65th place out of 145 economies in overall ICT usage (according to the World Economic Forum’s 2015 Global Networked Readiness Report) indicates the current lack of impact in South Africa’s e-Education initiatives.
At its most basic level, the Internet of Things (IoT) is defined by connectivity between people, processes and things. This has wide-reaching connotations that span all industries, businesses and consumers. One of the central challenges facing the advent of IoT is interoperability, or the ability of systems to communicate and exchange data across organisational boundaries; connecting in a seamless manner and subsequently presenting this data so that it can be understood by a user. Interoperability is a crucial, and regularly missing element, to the progress of IoT.
Unstructured Supplementary Services Data (USSD) – the answer for driving digital transformation in Africa 3.9 Billion people across the globe do not have access to the internet, according to recent research from the United Nations telecommunications agency, International Telecommunication Union (ITU). The report also reveals that 75% of Africans are offline – a surprisingly high figure given the rapid growth of mobile across the continent. The challenge for Africa, and particularly for South Africa, is lack of access to data and internet-enabled smartphones. However, technology is already used extensively throughout Africa today that could be the answer to helping drive digital transformation in Africa.
ALL-TIME HIGH FOR MOBILE, IOT DEVICE INFECTIONS According to a Threat Intelligence Report by Nokia, there was a steady increase in mobile device infections throughout 2016, with malware striking 1.35% of all mobile devices in October 2016. The report also reveals a surge of nearly 400% in smartphone malware attacks in 2016. Smartphones were the most targeted devices in the second half of the year, accounting for 85% of all mobile device infections. The report exposes major vulnerabilities in the rapidly expanding universe of IOT devices, underscoring the need for the industry to re-evaluate its IOT deployment strategies to ensure these devices are securely configured, managed and monitored.
While some experts are concerned that technology and taking in fragmented information may shorten children’s attention span. Others suggest that today’s media may stimulate children to think and learn in new and positive ways. In the first place, an estimated 60-80 percent of children are visual learners, and technology makes it easier for teachers to supplement verbal instruction and reading with pictures and graphs. Secondly, video games encourage children to solve problems by speculating, probing for new information, rethinking a problem as a result of new information, persisting in a task, and reaching a conclusion.
While Internet access, speed and cost may be improving in South Africa, the country remains well behind the global standard with the result that we are missing out on growth opportunities. ADSL, Wi-Fi, Mobile Broadband or Fibre – what are our options and how much do they cost?