Close encounter with the technology natives

MY friend Haliza told me that we are the generation of technology migrants. When we were born and grew up, much of the current technology gadgeteries were still unheard of or at best stuff of science fictions. With current crop of sophisticated gadgets, we really have to learn and pore thru’ manuals to even begin to grasp the basics of their functions. Unlike us, teenagers these days were born with the technology as part and parcel of their lives. They never knew life without TV, videos, telephones, computers, let alone electricity. These are the technology natives.
Yesterday I had the chance to see the astounding power of the technology natives – even in the boondocks of Bukit Pasir, Muar. There is this school in Bukit Pasir which had the fortune of being installed with this 10Mbps internet under the Fibre to The School (FTTS) initiative by TM. Of the 26 schools so far under this programme, SMK Bukit Pasir in Muar in the only one outside the Klang Valley. At thesame time the government embarking on a programme to improve the HSBB penetration in this country, especially in the rural areas by the end of the year. The giveaway of one million 1Malaysia netbook drive by SKMM is an initiative to accelerate the process (the company which undertake the contract to supply the computers, I imagine would be terribly thankful to the Government). So yesterday there was an event on the IMalaysia netbook and FTTS. I was rather mysteriously handed the onerous task of briefing the powers that be on the use of the FTTS in education (incidentally, you can see the not so handsome photo of yours truly in page 2 of the Mingguan Malaysia, today). Half an hour after the event, I saw three students huddled under the tent. Most of the guests have gone home, but these three boys were busy with their new toy – a IMalaysia netbook. As i checked them out, they are in the midst of installing Google chrome. I can see that they have already installed Facebook, Avira antivirus, youtube and a host of other applications. Thanks to the FTTS. The news of the event is already posted on their Fb. So there u are, a true proof of technology natives in action. What struck me most when one of the teenager remarked, “If every student is given this netbook, you’ll see real changes in our society in the near future” Those were the words of students not from elite school of Seri Puteri or Victoria institution or MCKK, but of a boy from SMK Bukit Pasir! So watch out for these technology natives in future. Don’t think that the rural areas are really that behind in technology.

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