The expansion of Internet use is not likely to follow the rocket-like trajectory of mobile services, but it will hit quickly and run deep. Too deep for some, I fear. Having lived on the bleeding and the trailing edge of technology (sometimes both at once), I find the contrast between the two is enough to cause a kind of cognitive whiplash.
Heaven alone knows what will happen when it reaches the village.
[Originally published in the Vanuatu Independent newspaper.]
“Everyone thinks of changing the world, but no one thinks of changing himself.” – Leo Tolstoy
On Wednesday this week at a quiet ceremony in Chantilly’s Resort, Minister Rialuth Serge Vohor presented six organisations with telecommunications operator licenses. His action marked the beginning of a new chapter in Vanuatu’s integration into the wider technological world.
The Minister’s speech touched on many aspects of the technical and social challenge ahead of us, but its illuminating principle was his lifelong conviction that Vanuatu should control its own destiny. Acknowledging and applauding the invaluable assistance provided by numerous donor and commercial partners from overseas, he nonetheless displayed great satisfaction at seeing local operations moving into the spotlight.
There was an air of quiet excitement in the room as, after patient months of waiting, representatives from the six groups, along with Digicel Vanuatu CEO Tanya Menzies, strode to the front of the room to accept the newly signed documents.
At the risk of sounding like a giddy shoolchild, I wonder if everyone realises just how fundamentally this moment is going to affect our generation and the next.