|Every Computer & Its Man|
Computers are magnificent tools for productivity, communication and entertainment. The history of their evolution is rather short. Humans took 2 million years to run 100 metres in under 10 seconds. Computers took 50 years to gain speed of over 1000 times. However, New Zealand has contributed little to the development side although we are not too far behind on the adoption side. The gap between development and adoption is believed to be due to a lack of the understanding of the roles of computers in the progression of human civilization. If not rectified soon, the gap will widen further like the degrading of New Zealand economy on the world ladder over the last 10 years.
This seminar will assist students to know about the computer as if it is a human body, and lead students to appreciate the applications of computers. The computer is now an extension of the human brain. Many thought the computer was just an invention next to the printing press, and that the Information Age is just an extension of the Industrial Age. These views are being simplistic. Imagine the fact that computers can think and work faster and more reliably than humans. What does that mean? As Star Trek has revealed, computers are more objective and accurate than human. Fortunately, computers do not have emotions and do not reproduce at their own desire yet.
This seminar will provide some examples of how human uses computers to improve our standards and conditions of living. Thanks to a few living and outstanding human beings such as Vint Cerf, Tim Bernards-Lee and Linus Torvald; we have entered the Information Age. We have a new open technology platform and sharing culture. We have an IP (Internet Protocol) that allows us to connect with everything in the world. We have www that provides millions of information and action windows to us. We want our students to know them and become new role models of the world.
This seminar is designed for senior secondary school students (year 12 and 13) as the principal audience, and will also appeal to senior teachers in computer science and social science for the depth of messages and technical information conveyed. Compared to the seminar in May 2008, this seminar will have 50% of new content for a deeper exploration into the topics described above. One day when the computer takes over, they will say “every computer and its man in the street”.
This seminar is an original effort of the author and it is the first attempt of its kind in New Zealand if not anywhere.