I am writing this essay to determine what the impact of ICT has on an adult in employment, and also the effect on his or her working style. I plan to find out the personal, social and work uses and needs of technologies of an individual, and also evaluate them. The three technologies I will be discussing are:
* Digital Camera
The individual I am going to investigate is Sekukuni Sisulu who is an ICT teacher at Preston Manor High School.
His official work hours are from 8.30am to 3.30pm but sometimes he has to work overtime due to some circumstances and ends up going home at 5.00pm. Even after going home he still has to continue to work, he has to plan his lessons for the following day and he also has to do marking.
E-mail is a system for sending and receiving messages electronically over a computer network, through modems using telephone lines, or, through wireless transmissions to anybody around the world who has access to a computer and has their own personal e-mail address.
Examples of messengers are: yahoo messenger, windows live hotmail, g-mail.
In an e-mail you can send notes, letters and most kinds of files – music, image video, word processing and others.
To send e-mails you first need an email address this consists of five parts;
* Firstly, the username (e.g. john_smith), this refers to the recipient’s mailbox.
* Then there is a “@” sign.
* Thirdly you have the host name (hotmail, yahoo etcetera) this refers to the mail server this is mainly the company name.
* The host name is followed by a dot “.”
* It is then completed by the domain (com, co.uk, gov.uk etcetera)
There are many advantages to e-mail such as:
* You can use e-mail at any time of the day and it will be sent to the preferred destination.
* It is much quicker than by post – snail mail and you can ensure that it doesn’t get lost because it doesn’t have to go through the process of sorting.
* It’s free to use.
* It can be sent to anyone around the world so long as they have an Internet connection.
* You can send messages to large numbers of people
Along with the advantages there are also disadvantages to e-mail such as:
* You can’t ensure you will get an instant reply because the receiver might not check his mail until later
* You are subject to getting spam
* There is less security as third parties are able to retrieve your email address
* Not always suitable for serious business documents or transactions requiring signatures.
Mr. Sisulu needs to be able to contact his family via e-mail at any time of the day as he has family abroad and it is a free way of communicating to them instead of wasting a lot of money in making international calls. He also needs to be able to send some files to himself if he ever needs to. For example music files.
How the technology meets his Personal Needs
With e-mail he is able to contact his family abroad or if they are at work on a regular basis. E-mail is a free type of mail which can be network based or web based or on a certain computer. If an email address is based on the web then it can be accessed from any computer that has an Internet connection but an email that is based on a certain computer or network can only be accessed from that computer or any computer which is connected to the network. Mr. Sisulu uses yahoo mail to send e-mails to family around the world. He logs on to his yahoo account and then enters the recipient’s email address and then types in his message and sends it, it is received within minutes, if not, seconds. Using Email is much more efficient and easier for him because to be able to contact his family without the use of a telephone makes it cheaper to use because e-mail is free.
Evaluate Personal Needs
His personal needs are met very well by the use of e-mail due to he being able to contact his family anywhere in the world very quickly and at no extra cost this makes his life easier and also better in the sense he has more money, because he doesn’t need to spend money making international calls and instead use e-mail he is able to save money to get the same message across.
Ways that e-mail can be made better are that it should automatically detect spam mailings and delete them and to make matters better for everyone who holds an e-mail address, hosts like hotmail and yahoo should not allow third parties to have access to our information.
Mr. Sisulu needs to use e-mail to contact his friends when he is unable to call/text them. It is an alternate way for him to communicate with his friends if he ever needs to talk to them about certain matters.
How the technology meets his Social Needs
Instead of the phone to communicate he can use e-mail or the more instant version IM, Instant Messaging, which is absolutely free to use. IM is when people are able to communicate with friends and family through different chat rooms. Windows Live Messenger, for example allows him to talk to friends and family when, the person he wishes to speak to, and him are online at the same time it is similar to using the phone but the main difference is you are not talking but instead you are typing. He is able to arrange to meet up with people to go to the cinema or Brent Cross whenever he pleases. He can also just generally talk with his friends about things that are going on in their lives etcetera. It allows his friends to talk to him if ever they need anything. Many IM servers allow you to play games with your friends like tic-tac-toe or poker, Mr. Sisulu takes advantage of this feature and plays the games with many of his friends. The use of e-mail and IM, socially, means hassles like friends arriving at place too early or late can be avoided because he can tell each quickly and simply through this technology.
Read about the role and function the messenger in Antigone
Evaluate Social Needs
E-mail and IM meets Mr. Sisulu’s needs for social uses very well because he is able to converse with his friends and family and arrange events like going to the cinema with great ease. He doesn’t have to go through the process of phoning different people at different times and spending money on calls; he can just go on an IM server and talk to all the necessary people at the same time and in one conversation making it more like speaking to them in person.
Ways it can be improved to meet my social needs are that it should be more easily accessed; you should be able to use these IM services on your mobile phone for free so you don’t need to be on a computer all the time.
Mr. Sisulu can use e-mail to help him with his work as he is able to send work-related files to him and then access them at home and vice versa.
How this technology meets his Work Needs
People who do not have their own external mass storage device, for any reason, can take advantage of using e-mail to send work. On some occasions Mr Sisulu has forgotten to bring his USB Pen Drive to school but that hasn’t stopped him from being able to take his work home with him. Thanks to e-mail he is able to send necessary files to himself so he can complete that work at home. Also, his friends are able to send him files which can aid him in doing his work via e-mail. He can also send documents concerning different things to relevant subject teachers.
Evaluate Work Needs
He is able to use e-mail to meet his work needs very well. He can send work to himself so he can continue to do the work at home. This is very good because a lot of the work as an ICT teacher requires doing work, not only at school, but a lot at home as well and people like Mr. Sisulu who, sometimes forgets to bring his USB Pen Drive to school, can benefit the use of e-mail to send work home.
Ways that it could be improved to meet my school needs are that it should allow you to send whole files at the same time, because currently it only allows him to send any number of files but it has to be done all separately, this is very time consuming as he has to upload each individual file into an attachment and then has to download each file onto the computer when he gets home. By allowing you to send a whole file at once it saves much more time and hassle.
As technology has progressed, so have work styles in everyday life, Newer and faster ways of doing tasks have been made to make jobs such as having to create a database by hand, filling in each and every record and then trying to find certain records in large filing cabinets, incredibly easy just through the use of a computer and the correct software: Microsoft Access for example. The way that e-mail has changed Mr. Sisulu’s working style is that before he had to send messages via snail mail to family and not only did it cost to send snail mail but it was also slower – it would take up to 2 weeks to send mail internationally hence the name snail mail. There is also the high possibility of mail getting lost or being sent to the wrong destination. Now, he is able to send messages, images, music and all other types of files over the internet via e-mail.
A Digital Camera is compact camera where it can take digital pictures and be able to record small clips of videos and sound digitally. A digital camera is very useful because you are able to view and be able to delete the picture as soon as it has been recorded on a memory stick
Mr. Sisulu uses a ‘Kodak z1275’; it has 12 mega pixels this means that the picture quality would be very high and sharp.
Mr. Sisulu travels a lot so the compact digital camera comes in handy whenever he needs it. Places such as Gambia, Tunisia, Portugal, France and Kenya where he has previously travelled to he is able to take pictures of him with his family and keep them on their computer or USB, and then show them to others when he comes back.
How the technology meets his personal needs
Mr Sisulu regularly travels abroad and likes to keep pictures of when he travels. The technology meets his personal needs because he is able to take as many pictures as his memory stick allows which is generally 1GB – 2GB, this can take around 500- 600 pictures which is more than enough. He is able to delete any pictures he doesn’t want and retake pictures that didn’t come out properly. He can then share his photos with family when he comes back from his holidays and he can download them onto his computer and even print them out on photo paper if he wishes to keep some pictures in his photo album. He can also take pictures of himself for his job applications or for passport photos where he can print them off with his colour printer which would save time and money instead of going to a picture booth.
Evaluate Personal Needs
The digital camera meets Mr. Sisulu’s needs very well because he is able to take pictures whenever and wherever he needs to he is also able to print and delete pictures which he doesn’t want at no extra costs. Ways that it could be made better are that it should support Bluetooth so you can send pictures directly to phones or computers without the use of wires, also it is quicker to put onto a phone rather than uploading it onto a computer and then putting it on the phone by connecting wires/ inserting memory cards.
Mr Sisulu uses his camera socially in many ways as well. He goes out with his friends regularly and likes to take pictures of the parties e.t.c he goes to. He also uses the digital camera to put the photos he has taken and puts them onto social networking websites such as facebook and myspace.
How the technology meets his social needs
Firstly, Mr Sisulu goes to night clubs with his mates where he can capture fun social moments with his friends with his digital camera as it is very lightweight, mobile and easy to carry whilst at a variety of different places such as crowded places remote places. With that he can also copy and delete any pictures directly on his camera rather than on his laptop which can save time and space on his camera as he is able to take more pictures. Furthermore, with his camera he can edit the image settings on his ISO sensitivity settings so he doesn’t get any low light pictures at the night club he can change the settings according to the surroundings for example if it has low lighting or if he is indoors/outdoors. However, if Mr Sisulu had a Polaroid camera he would not be able to edit the light sensitivity settings which would be a limitation.
Moreover, Mr Sisulu can download his photos from his digital camera with his Universal Serial Bus connection (USB) or be just be able to store them on his computer where he can upload and his photos on to ‘Facebook’ where he can socialise with other people around the world and to share his pictures with his friends and family.
Evaluate Social Needs
The digital camera meets Mr. Sisulu’s social needs very well because he can take pictures in a variety of conditions such as in crowded places as a result of the camera being very compact.
Mr Sisulu uses his camera for work related issues as well. He needs it to produce quick videos or images and by uploading them he can attach them to his documents or his presentations as it needed for his teaching resources to show students. However, there are disadvantages. Firstly, with not enough space on his memory stick he is not able to record long movie clips which can be a limitation. Although, he can use a camcorder to record movie and sound clips to attach to his presentations. He attaches his videos by uploading them onto his computer by using inserting the memory stick into the computer and then moves them onto the computer and from there he inserts it into his presentation. He also edits the clips, taking out any unnecessary things.
Evaluate Work Needs
Although the Kodak camera meets his needs to an acceptable level, it could be made better if it had a larger memory, as taking videos takes up a lot of space on cameras. Also it could be even better if the camera quality was increased even more to qualities equal to professional cameras.
His digital camera has changed Mr Sisulu’s lifestyle noticeably. Even though his digital camera is more expensive than a regular Polaroid they eventually would pay off from Polaroid because of the films, you would have to keep on going to get them developed which costs money and also then have to buy more film, also pictures might not come out properly but he wouldn’t know until he would’ve got them developed and that would be a waste of money. Moreover, there is much software which Mr Sisulu can use to edit his pictures on his computer whereas on a Polaroid camera he would have to scan the picture and then edit the picture, then, he would have to print the picture again with the edits.
A laptop computer, or better known as laptop, is a small, which usually around 8 kilograms depending on size, materials, and other factors. A laptop is able to do the same tasks as a desktop computer as they contain components that are similar to the desktop, and they also perform the same functions, but are minturised for mobile use and efficient power consumption. The laptop comes with a AC/DC adapter which is able to charge the battery and also give the laptop a power supply at the same time so you are able to use your laptop while it charges. A laptop usually has a LCD (Liquid Crystal Display) screen and an in-built keyboard with a touch pad instead of a mouse, though you are able to connect an external mouse or keyboard through a USB connection
* It is mobile so it can be used anywhere
* It doesn’t always have to connected to a mains plug
* Its compact
* Lightweight – it can be carried
* It isn’t a capable as a desktop computers – less hard drive memory, RAM, processors normally weaker, graphics and sound card not up to the standard in desktops
* Has to be charged for it to work and battery life is only a several hours
* The touch pad mouse isn’t always favoured by people because of its high sensitivity.
* Has to be in range of a wireless internet connection to be able to use the internet
Mr Sisulu needs to be able to keep pictures on his the laptop which can be used for future use. He can also edit images using programmes such as Adobe(tm) Photoshop 6.0. He also needs to listen to music, which he has downloaded or copied from a CD, any time he wants to because of the in built speakers. He also needs access to the internet to do various things such as check email e.t.c.
How the technology meets his Personal Needs
The technology meets Mr Sisulu’s needs very well as he can store his files on it just as he would be able to on a desktop computer and can view them any time he needs to. He can also view his images taken by his digital camera on his laptop and delete, sort, send and even edit them. This is important to Mr Sisulu because he needs to be able to do that where ever he is. Music on his laptop is crucial because he likes to listen to music so he evidently has a lot of music on his laptop. He downloads his music files from the internet as it is easier and cheaper than buying a CD album. As well as downloading music, Mr Sisulu uses the internet to access his email. As he has family all around the world he needs to be able to stay in contact with them, he can do this by using the laptop’s Microsoft Outlook programme or going to a web based email server.
Evaluate Personal Needs
The laptop meets Mr Sisulu’s needs very well because he can send messages to family, keep images and music on his laptop and go onto the internet. Ways that the laptop could be made better to further meets his personal needs is to increase memory because along with his work and social files very little is left to fit in his personal files.
Mr Sisulu needs to be able to take his laptop to his friend’s house whenever he needs to so he can send files to them or show them files. He also needs to be able to use the internet to go on social networking sites. He also puts images of his days out with friends and other social events on the laptop.
How the technology meets his Social Needs
Mr Sisulu is able to all that is mentioned above. He takes his laptop to his friend’s house so he can show them files such as pictures from a social event he went to or a party he went to with his friends. He also takes his to play the music, as he has a large store of music, at his friend’s house. He connects his laptop up to his surround sound system when he has parties and plays the music from his laptop. He also goes onto the internet from the laptop and goes onto social networking sites and uploads pictures of nights out and social events. He also uses the laptop to go on instant messaging servers such as Yahoo and MSN where ever he wants to and talks with his friends.
Evaluate Social Needs
The laptop meets Mr Sisulu’s needs very well because he is able to do the same things he is able to do on a desktop but only difference is that he can do it where ever he wants to. This is important to him because he needs to take his computer with him and that’s possible with the laptop. Ways that the laptop could be made altered to further support his social needs is that it should have a way that it can connect to the internet wherever without needing to be within a wireless range like certain mobile phones which can access the internet anywhere.
Mr Sisulu needs to be able to take his work files to and from school, being an ICT teacher he has a lot of files to take to school and home. He needs to carry on working at home because he gets a lot of coursework, exams and homework to mark.
How the technology meets his needs
Mr Sisulu is able to work from home because he can work from his laptop. He can access his files from home because he has a USB Pen Drive which he takes to school everyday so he can save any files that he needs to take home. When he does get home he doesn’t stop working he continues to work on his laptop; planning lessons for the next day, marking work and other things, this is helpful because he can finish any incomplete work.
He also takes the laptop itself to school whenever he has something to show that the school computers don’t support such as specific software.
Evaluate Work Needs
The laptop meets Mr Sisulu’s needs very well as he is able to continue doing his work at home which is essential as he has deadlines to meet in marking, lesson planning, e.t.c. A way that it could be made better so that it could meet more of his work needs is that it should be able to connect to the school computer network like the people who work from home, this would make it easier because he could save his work on his account on the school computer and then go home and open his account and carry on working instead of putting all files on a USB which sometimes don’t have enough memory to save files.
The laptop has changed Mr Sisulu’s working style a lot because before everything was done on computers and wasn’t mobile but now he has access to a computer whenever and wherever he needs it. Before he was only able to do work when he had a desktop and those had to be connected to a power supply all the time to work and they are simply too big to take around everywhere. So, the laptop has changed all that because now he can continue doing work anywhere with great ease.
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