19 abril, 2010

Digital Divide

In one of our firsts Hands on Project, we studied the phenomenon of The Digital Divide in our society.

This is an interesting video about the phenomenon:


Due to the information we deal with, we have the false impression that we live in a perfect information society, in which we all have access to free flows of information, the ideas and the knowledge all across the globe. Unfortunately, this is just how we would like it to be. As we know, the The Digital Divide refers to a process that differs those who are connected to the digital revolution from those who have no access to the benefits of the new technologies. This phenomenon is not only present accross international frontiers but also within communities where people are separated by economical and knowledge barriers.

As a Digital Native from the Digital Age, I am strongly concerned about the role that technology has played in my education. As a result, I have been trying to figure out how I would have changed if I were born in a disadvantaged zone or among people that are not connected to the Digital Age.

Nowadays, technologies have become a necessity in my routine because I grew up in this environment. But what about those who did not? In our globalized world technology must be reachable for everyone if we all want to evolve at the same pace; real progress will be only attained by sharing a common target.

Digital divide eradication is related to poverty eradication. But are we going to let it become such an utopian topic? As the advantageous part of the society, the Digital Divide is our problem and we must solve it.
It seems that lucky human beings have focused so much on going ahead that have left behind those unable to move forward. Isn't it sad?

The Digital Age puzzle won't be completed if each puzzle piece is not placed correctly.

Why "puzzle pieces"?

As a kid, I used to play puzzles games with my big brother. He loves puzzles and we used to spend many Sunday’s afternoons fixing pieces. I really enjoyed when we were almost finishing and he focused for a while on looking for some specific piece that actually, was hidden in my hand. (That has to be our secret!).

I think life is kind of a puzzle; pieces that get fixed and allow taking steps forward and reach objectives. Although frustrating at times, puzzles are a challenge. Each time I found a piece that fit, it was extremely rewarding.

In a puzzle, each piece plays such an important part in the big picture. In life, those pieces are people and events. As pieces in a puzzle, each of us is unique, special in our own way. Even though we may appear similar, there are no two alike. Ironically, it is their difference that makes them fit. Aren’t those similarities?

Sometimes, when working on a puzzle, there is one piece that you are sure it belongs to a particular spot but it doesn't fit. When I used to play with my brother, I just kept going back to it and try again to make it fit. Now, I would have never tried to force it; I wouldn’t have tried to make things happen that just weren’t meant to be.

If you do many puzzles, you will know what is to spend so much time looking for one specific piece. You think that you know what it looked like, because it seemed so obvious, but you couldn’t find it; you end up getting so wrapped up into finding it that you cannot see beyond it.
My brother used to close his eyes for few seconds before getting frustrated and breath in and out. Afterwards, he found it immediately. I used to think that he was just so lucky. In my case, I used to get mad with myself for not finding them.
I hated those times when after an hour I realized that the one that I needed was just in front of me. Is it possible to be stupid having a lucky brother?
It seems that sometimes, it isn’t until you stop, take a step back, breathe and let it go, that the answer finds you.

Puzzle pieces depend on other puzzle pieces to find its right location. I use to think about the pieces as my family, my friends, victoria’s birthday that I couldn’t go and my brother’s beard, which had brought him a girlfriend.
So it was because of those pieces that other pieces were able to fall into place. Everything in life must happen for a reason. So does each event represent a piece of the puzzle? What will my ongoing headache mean?

This morning, I am not really sure why, I have been thinking about those puzzle pieces and puzzle games. And as I had to start writing a blog for the college subject “Participation on the Web”, I decided that “Puzzle pieces” would be a nice title.

We are living in an age where technologies allow us to choose among more options and discoveries and inventions change the way we do our routine stuffs. I believe that the “digital era” is the result of an important piece in the history puzzle that has caused and will cause more changes in our life habits. So, shouldn’t we stop for a moment and think carefully about these new puzzle pieces roles?