Overview of ICT


ICT stands for information and communication technology. The plural form is information and communication technologies (ICTs). They are a diverse set of technological tools and resources used to create process, store, retrieve, communicate, and manage information. ICTs comprise a range of technology products and activities that enable the recording, storage, recording, storage, processing and retrieval, transition, and reception of information.

EXAMPLES OF ICT GADGETS
ICT gadgets include;
[1] Computers
[2] Telephone (GSM)
[3] Cellular network
[4] Satellite communications
[5] Television
[6] The Internet.

THE BENEFITS OF ICT
The benefits of ICT are numerous which include the following;
1.Timely, better and cheaper access to knowledge and information.
2.Speeds up transactions and processes.
3.Provides opportunities for human beings to interact with one another in new ways easily.
4.Makes distance to become irrelevant in business transactions and dealings.
5.ICT has brought about innovative ways of interaction.
6.It provides employment opportunities to people globally  
7.It is very useful as a medium of instruction in schools. It also makes people to acquire knowledge especially in ICT.
8.When used in governance, it leads to efficiency. This is called e-administration.
9.It is useful in medicine for medical diagnosis.

SUB-TOPIC 4: DISADVANTAGES OF ICT
Despite the benefits of ICT, it has some disadvantages some of which include the following:
1.It can lead to job loss as a result of computerization of transactions in an office.
2.Youth often abuse the internet by using it mostly for entertainment, watching pornography and using it to commit crime, notably cybercrime.
3.ICT use often leads to a breakdown in social bonds between people. 4.People prefer to send e-mails or call their loved ones on phone rather than visiting them.
5.Extensive use of ICT often leads to some health implications like eye strains, backaches, etc.
6.ICT use can lead to computer addiction, obsessive computing behavior and stress.
7.Advent of ICT has led to infringement of people’s privacy and confidentiality of information today can no longer be guaranteed.

GSM (GLOBAL SYSTEM FOR MOBILE COMMUNICATION)
The Global System for Mobile Communication(GSM;original from Group Special Mobile) is the most popular standard for mobile phones in the world. GSM service is used by over 2 billion people across more than 212 countries and territories.The ubiquity of the GSM standard makes international roaming very common between mobile phone operators, enabling subscribers to use their phones in many part of the world. GSM differs significantly from its predecessors in that it is considered a second generation (2G) mobile phone system.

From the point of view of GSM users, the key advantage of GSM systems has been higher digital voice quality and low cost alternatives to making calls such as text messaging.

Also, like other cellar standards, GSM allows network operators to offer roaming services which means subscribers can use their phones all over the world.

One of the key features of GSM is the subscriber identity module (SIM), commonly known as a SIM card. The SIM is detachable smart card containing the user’s subscription information and phonebook. This allows the user to retain his or her information after switching off the handsets.

Alternatively, the user can also change operators while retaining the handset simply by changing the SIM, some operators will block this by allowing the phone to use only a single SIM  or only a SIM issued by them; this practice is known as SIM locking, and is illegal in some countries.

SUB- TOPIC 6 : FAX MACHINE
Fax (short for facsimile, i.e. “make a copy”) is a telecommunications technology used to transfer copies (facsimiles) of documents, especially using affordable devices operating over the telephone network. The word telefax, short for telefacsimile, for “make a copy at a distance”, is also used as a synonym.

A fax machine is essentially an image scanner, a modem, and a computer printer combined into a highly specialised package. The scanner converts the content of a physical document into a digital image, the modem sends the image data over a phone line, and the printer at the other end, makes a duplicate of the original document.

Fax machines with additional electronic features can connect to computers; can be used to scan documents into a computer, and to print documents from the computer. Such high-end devices are called multifunction printers and cost more than fax machines.

THE TELEPHONE
The telephone is a telecommunication device which is used to transmit and receive sound (most commonly voice and speech) across distance. Most telephones operate through transmission of electric signals over a complex telephone network which allows almost any phone user to communicate with almost any other.

Thus, a telephone is an electric tool. Using a telephone, two people who are in different places can talk. Computer can use a machine called a modem to talk to other computer over a telephone line. This allows a computer to connect to other computer networks including the internet.

MOBILE PHONES
Early telephones needed to be connected with wires. Now telephone calls can be sent with radio. This is also called wireless. While the term “wireless” in this context means radio and can refer to any telephone that uses radio waves, it is primarily used for cellular mobile phones.

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