# 12: Future of the internet

In my opinion, the future of the internet in one word: 3D. (Or maybe two words). I’m sure many people think that web 3.0 is already considered a ‘wow’ thing. What else can the internet possibly give us?

Here is a video to show what the CEO of Rezzable Productions believes what the future of the internet will look like.

Other predictions of the internet in the future:

1. Transparency – the people and organizations on the internet will become more transparent as more people are connected to it.

2. Voice recognition and touch user interfaces

3. The division between personal time and work time will be further removed for everyone who is connected as the results will be mixed based on their social relations.

I believe that social media platforms will change. First it was Friendster, and then it became Facebook. Google+ may just take over. The apps that Google+ contains seem more sophisticated compared to what Facebook has to offer. Who knows what the future holds for social media?

More businesses will begin to rely heavily on the internet to communicate with suppliers and even conduct their entire business online. More productivity in businesses will occur online rather than offline.

Mobile internet will become most dominant as practically all mobile devices will come equipped with internet services. With the internet being so portable, why wouldn’t most people be using it all the time? One can receive information anytime and anywhere.

In terms of education, all schools may turn to paperless learning – relying on the internet and e-learning to educate their students. (Plus one for saving the trees!) in my opinion, the internet is considered one of the biggest schools as it contains information about anything you want to know. The amount of resources about any particular topic is countless.

I think my impression on this module has come a long way from the first lesson. My expectation of this module on the first day would be to learn about how the internet works. Fortunately for me, (as I hate the technical portion of anything), my eyes were open to the internet in a very different way. Instead of learning about the components of the internet, I learnt about the impact the internet had on areas such as politics, journalism, business and education – to name a few.

My favourite topic during this module was internet and the politics. It shows how far the world has changed in terms of reaching out to the public. The government, known for being traditional has decided to keep up with the changing times and use the internet as a platform to garner support and raise awareness for issues. Through this method, the younger generation is also looped in to politics as they use the internet quite often and access to such information becomes easier to gain. For politicians to use the internet to campaign shows how far they have come to advertise, fundraise and mobilize themselves. (Not to mention the scandalous gossip one can find about a politician.)

As the future is difficult to predict, it is uncertain the possibilities that will come about from the internet 10 years down the road. One thing we do know is that its popularity in the use of social relation, education, politics and entertainment will never die down.

# 11: Understanding the innovators ~ Google, Microsoft, Apple

In this week’s lesson, we learnt about having a clearer understanding as to where Google, Microsoft and Apple stood in current and future times of the technology world.

All three companies are similar in a sense as they are all fighting for industry dominance as they compete with the varying technology the different companies have to offer. But who will be left standing at the top?

Currently, Apple is winning the race due to its success being solely placed on the shoulders of Steve Jobs. As many of us know, Steve Jobs IS Apple. Before he returned to Apple in 1996, the company was not doing well. With his return, many money-losing projects were ended as he oversaw the creation of products such as the iPod, iPhone and iMac. As long as Steve Jobs is around, the company is bound to do well. However, with his recent and unfortunate departure, will there be anyone who can match his vision? This may lead to Apple having a slow decline of consumers.

As for Google, they are best known for being one of the world’s best search engines and with the revenue they receive, they are able to fund any project they wish to. Recently Google has had many projects which are rising in the markets. Those include Google+ and the new and innovative Google glasses.

Lastly, there is Microsoft, who over a decade ago was the top dog. They have had a steady growth in the technological industry with its operating systems and productivity application. Windows 7 is still doing well and is a great success to Microsoft. Their revenue skyrocketed by 14% just from Windows 7 alone. Microsoft has been trying to win Google in terms of search engine with Bing, but I still think that Google wins, hands down. (But maybe I’m bias like that.)

One thing all 3 companies have in common is cloud computing.

  1. Apple – the cloud pushes content to your device. It basically means that Apple’s iCloud will sync all your stuff without the need for wires
  2. Google Android – stores it all in the cloud, access it from your device. By signing into your Google account, all your settings and contacts would automatically ‘push’ to your device. In addition, you can upload up to 20 000 songs on Google Music and access it through an Android app
  3. Microsoft – stores in cloud, windows live is your new ID. With 25GB of free could storage and you can have your camera set to automatically upload all your photos online for backup.

In my opinion, even though Google seems to be coming out on top, different consumers have different wants and needs which different companies satisfy for them. Each company, although has their own benefits, also contain some imperfections. At the end of the day, although they may have something similar to offer consumers, they have their differences that set them apart. In addition, it also depends on which company the consumer feels comfortable with.

It is not possible to say who would do better than the other but we should ask which company provides us with what we need.

So what about you, which do you prefer?

#10: Internet and journalism

The internet has changed the way in which news is spread around the world. In the past, everyone was dependant on the radio or the television to find out about events going on in other parts of the world. With the use of the internet, something that happened in Bulgaria can be made known to someone in Singapore within two minutes. The best thing about it is that you or I could be the one reporting the incident.

In addition, with the amount of modernization that is taking place in society today, technology has developed and will soon make paper journalism become a thing of the past.

With the internet, anyone can report about the news. If I were on holiday in Indonesia and felt the effects of a small earthquake, I could tweet about it even before the news got to Channel News Asia. People in Singapore could find out about the earthquake even before they switched on the television to watch the news.

With news being able to be reported in real time through the internet, the news from the newspaper would be considered ‘old news’. Say for example, someone famous was dying and news about it was printed in the papers. However, said person died at 10am in the morning. The news in the newspaper would then be considered old news as it is not current.

There however is a downside to journalism on the internet. And that is the very same reason that is good about it. With just about anyone reporting the news, one will never know if the source is credible. Someone could be playing a prank and report fake news which everyone may think actually happened. Another reason being someone doing it as a publicity stunt.

In addition, with anyone being allowed to be a ‘journalist’ and post news on the internet, information which should not be released to the public could be leaked. For example, information regarding the army and security of a country.

A famous incident would be of Wikileaks where information and comments on leaked documents alleging government and corporate misconduct were released on the internet. They claim to bring important news and information to the public. In a way, are they not considered to be doing the job of a journalist?

With the good and bad effects the internet has caused journalism, this dual-edged sword will never come to an end. In my opinion anyways.

# 9: Internet in politics

The internet has changed politics in a way that has made it more well-known to the masses. Candidates that use the internet to promote their campaign have reached out to a new set of target audience – the web savvy users.

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            Politicians have seen the power the internet has to spread a message (eg. Kony 2012) and how information and awareness can be reached to those who only minutes ago, had no clue what was going on. Through the use of blogs, Facebook and Youtube, campaign messages are displayed for potential voters to see.Image

            Not only are these websites used to post campaign messages but are also used for supporter outreach, fundraising and organizing rallies online. Through the use of the internet, funds are not depleted quickly as it is less costly compared to television advertising.

            Even in Singapore, during the recent elections, many candidates turned to Facebook to garner support from citizens. This was also a tool used to connect with younger voters in a surrounding familiar to them.

            By using the internet to post up rallies that occurred a few hours ago or even stream it live, those unable to attend the actual event are still able to know what is going on. They may even leave their comments and thoughts about the rallies on the political parties’ website. In addition, with the video being posted online, viewers are able to playback the video as many times as they want to and are even able to share it with others whom they think should see it too.

            With politics being taken to the internet, politics has now become mobile. Anyone can view information or a video about a candidate on their smart phone will on a bus. People can be kept up to date with everything that is going on. An iPhone application (SG elections) was even created to allow people to have the latest news regarding all political parties during the recent elections in Singapore. During the vote count, for those who were not able to catch the results on television, a notification would be sent to one’s iPhone every time results were tallied. Politicians are also able to answer any questions or queries citizens may have posted on their website almost instantaneously.

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          Despite the internet being a huge step up the ladder in terms of the way political campaigns are run, there are a few downsides to it too. Firstly, the fact that everyone has at least one embarrassing photo of them which they never wanted anyone to see will suddenly surface. It will be something that may have caused a scandal or even cause voters to see you in a different light. These pictures don’t go away easily and the bad publicity may not be good for one’s campaign.

            Secondly, countries such as China and Cuba have built national firewalls that block the people to learn and carry out actions of being democratic. Even Burma has banned the internet from the public. Politicians in countries such as these would not do well carrying out their campaigning over the internet.

            The internet has played a pivotal role in changing the way political campaigning has taken place over the recent years. In my opinion, the power of the internet on political campaigning far outweighs the limitations.

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# 8: Multimedia in marketing communication

Multimedia for marketing communication can be used in a number of ways. Creating a video or using a podcast is one way of doing it. Another, more efficient method would be to use sites with regular high traffic such as Twitter, Facebook and Youtube to promote their products.

To use multimedia to promote a product, vivid pictures and text explaining the advantages of the product is displayed on the website. Videos are also posted to show potential customers how the product would look like in 3D and what it would look like when used. It is always important to provide information regarding the product in a marketing campaign to attract customers.

An example of such an event was when Casa Del Mar, a luxury beach hotel in California wanted to spread the word about a drink special they were organizing. They used Twitter and Facebook saying “Text CASA to 21534 and enjoy unlimited champagne or Bloodys. Free”. Those who texted received videos of the potential weekend they would experience when they got there and received the beverage of their choice when they got to the hotel. The end result was highly viral boosting the popularity of the hotel.

Another example of a company using multimedia for marketing communication would be Nokia. I checked out the Nokia N9 and was glad to find that it provided a huge amount of information about the phone. (All being advantageous.) Even though there was a lot of information, it was all provided in small tid bits which were easy to take in. a 360-degree view of the phone was also provided and the user is able to rotate the phone to get a better look at it.

Although there was no dialogue or storyline in the N9 advertisement, I was still able to learn about all the functions the phone provided.

Marketing communication is not as traditional as it used to be and has become more engaging for the current generation. In a way, it provides consumers with an individualized experience when learning about the product and can even be a form of entertainment. In addition, it creates knowledge connections with the user and the product as they get to know the product better.

# 7: Internet security

In recent news, Estonia has decided to extradite a cyber crime suspect to the United States earlier this week on alleged cyber crimes involving iTunes, Netflix and the US tax service.  Alleged cyber criminal Anton Ivanov is suspected of internet fraud conspiracy, committing internet fraud, interfering with computers and committing other cyber crimes.

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Click the link to read the full article: http://news.yahoo.com/estonia-extradite-high-flying-cyber-crime-suspect-us-172448066.html

The alleged crimes, which were committed between 2007 and October 2011, involved redirecting users search for websites such as iTunes, Netflix, the US tax agency and NASA to other sites.

The US authorities are seeking the extradition of six other Estonian citizens involved in the same case. In addition, a Russian is also suspected of infecting computers, including NASA machines with malware as part of an online advertising scam that earned nearly USD$14 million. Approximately 500 000 computers infected were in the US and at least 10 belonged to NASA.

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Although the number of computers affected does not seem large, there are other scams similar to these going on around the world. They may be small-scaled and unnoticed by many internet users which thus makes it more important for us to be extra vigilant and cautious of the sites we click.

Here are some tips to avoid falling for phishing scams.

  1. Avoid giving out personal data such as financial information, passwords, credit card numbers and user IDs through email which states ‘urgent request’. Digitally signed emails do not ask for personal information and thus it is better not to send such information through email.Image
  2. Do not use links in an email, IM or chat to get to a web page if you suspect the authenticity of the message or if you do not know the sender of the message. It would be better to type the web address in the browser to get the desired web page.
  3. Personal information should only be communicated via a secure website. When filling out personal information online, the tiny padlock icon should be visible to ensure the security of the website. If the padlock is not there, it is best not to fill out any personal information on the site.Image
  4. Regularly log into your online accounts. It is best to regularly check your bank, credit and debit card statements to ensure that all transactions are made by you and only you. Contact the bank if something looks suspicious or if you don’t recognize the transaction.
  5. Report ‘phishing’ emails. Although you may be smart enough to avoid such a website, others may not be as lucky. To prevent others to be affected by phishing, it is best to report such occurrences and reduce the amount of phishing occurring on the internet.Image

# 6: Internet tools

To me, Google is just a search engine. I use it to look for images, information, videos and even journal articles when I have to write a research paper. I never really thought about Google providing any other services or tools.

To my surprise, we learnt about Google alerts in class today and I was kind of fascinated by it. Google alerts are emails sent to you when Google finds results about something you are searching for. Basically, you enter a query you are interested in and Google alerts makes regular checks to see if anything new matches your query. If there happens to be anything new, Google alerts sends you an email about it. Some queries will net get results every day. However, an email will be sent when something new and relevant is published. For a common query, a summary of the results will be sent to your email each day.

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There are different types of alerts one can ask for. For example, news, web, blogs or videos. The frequency of receiving alerts is also up to the user. One can opt to get one alert a day, meaning only one email will be sent per day with a summary of all the results. Another option would be to receive an alert ‘as it happens’ which sends an alert every time a new result is found. The maximum number of alerts a person can have is a thousand. I could never imagine a person needing that many alerts. But, you never know.

So we had to make a video for this entry and I made my video using an iPhone app called Splice. It works exactly like windows movie maker so it was quite easy and straight-forward to use. I used 3 different videos for this one. Are you ready?