November 2006

News

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Agriculture

Nictor, wireless technology for irrigation
Nictor- a wireless device developed in Melbourne, Australia is heralding a revolution that could save massive amounts of water and help to upkeep the state’s agriculture industry afloat.

The wireless technology is the core part of the system that gets water to the crop and farm on demand basis, more efficiently than a conventional irrigation system and, requires less water to be used. Each nictor, is wired to five sensors — they can be soil moisture sensors, or air temperature or leaf sensors — and the wireless technology passes the information to a laptop computer, the base station. The sensor measures the soil moisture and activates the drip irrigation system; the water comes on when the soil moisture gets too low. The three-year, $4.2 million research programme is being conducted by the Melbourne Water Research Centre, NICTA, Goulburn Murray Water, and Melbourne University’s engineering, as well as land and food departments.
www.freshplaza.com


Community radio

EU to consider the laws concerning to RFID tags
In response to the perceived threat being posed to privacy by radio tags that emerged in EU study of technology, the commissioner Viviane Reding assured citizens that radio tags would not lead to any large-scale surveillance.

These RFID (radio frequency ID) tags are increasingly used by businesses to monitor goods as they move along supply chains. The cross section of the population are willing to be convinced that RFID can bring benefits but they want to be reassured that it will not compromise their privacy. The Information Society Commissioner, Ms Reding expressed her concern at a conference called to mark the end of a six-month EU consultation exercise, in which it sought opinions about the growing use of radio-frequency ID (RFID) tags. The EU would ann-ounce the final conclusions from the consu- ltation process by the end of year 2006 & if needed  new laws  would be drafted in 2007.
bbc.com 


e-Commerce

Sahara Care House, India is to offer online services for NRIs
Sahara India is to offer NRI services, like transactions, medical cover, wedding planning and even delivering of fresh flowers and gifts on online basis.

Sahara Care House, a single window service platform would be helping out with this service for the Indians residing overseas and, who want to get connected with their families and friends in India. Spread across 197 Indian cities across, the service will be launc-hed in Britain next week.It comes with a subscription-funded business of 40 pounds, an annual registration fee, besides an additional 800 pounds advance against the services in future.
economictimes.indiatimes.com

Ugandan tourism ministry adopted ICT policies
The ministry of tourism trade and industry in Uganda has been accredited to become the first ministry to launch an Information and Communication Technology policy that will improve information flow within the ministry and its affiliated institutions.

The sector policy launched by Dr Ham Mulira, the ICT minister is expected to boost tourism and trade figures by availing qualitative information to tourists and investors in an efficient manner. Under the project the ministry has an online documents database (data.mtti.go.ug) that facilitates sharing of documents within the sector through a documents database (Intranet) and the website has been redesigned www.mtti.go.ug to meet existing needs. Under the project guidelines have also been developed for the procurement of Information and Communication Technology tools and an accepted standard system for efficient governance.
Allafrica.com

Reliance Communications to enter into PDA market
Reliance Communications is planning to enter high-end wireless data services market in India and, is in various stages of negotiations with personal hand-held device and personal digital assistant (PDA) manufacturers across the world.

The devices have corporate data applications, such as web browsing, Internet faxing, instant messaging (IM), supporting of a number of mail accounts on a single device, apart from the regular personal digital assistant (PDA) functionalities, such as Microsoft Office (including Word, PowerPoint and Excel). This will help Reliance Communications to increase its average revenue per year. The host of manufacturers with whom Reliance is negotiating includes Motorola in the US, Nokia in Finland, NEC and Matsushita in Japan, LG and Samsung in Korea and other handset makers in Taiwan and China.
www.business-standard.com

Reliance in conversation with co-operative societies to connect rural India
Reliance group had recently entered into negotiations with co-operative societies to unleash the ICT potential among rural masses in India.


http://www.itu.int/osg/spu/wsis-themes/ict_stories/Images/rural_ICTs/pondicherry.jpg

The corporate giant has made a move to take technology in a more natural way, conditioned to rural mode of transaction. Besides, the trust cooperatives’ hold for the principles of equity, economic growth and the confidence it has built among the ordinary people would also have a lasting effect. In alignment with the government’s commitment for rural development, employment generation and making every village a knowledge centre, the Reliance, found that leveraging the capacity of cooperatives would be helpful  in the long run to bring technology to grassroots, thereby reducing the existing disparities to the minimum.
www.financialexpress.com

e-Governance

UNESCO launches e-Govern-ance project in the Caribbean
United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organisation(UNESCO), in collaboration with the Caribbean Centre for the Development Administration (CARICAD), and the United Nations Department for Economic and Social Affairs (UNDESA) launches a series of electronic governance related capacity development activities in Caribbean.

These activities are being implemented within the framework of UNESCO’s project ‘ICTs as tools to improve local governance in Africa, Latin America and the Caribbean’ supporting the implementation of eGgovernance components of the action-oriented e-Government strategies for countries of the Caribbean Region.
Portal.unesco.org

e-Governance enters in rural region in India as Prajahita
e-Governance is taking its doorsteps towards rural areas. In India, the Nalgonda, Andhra Pradesh district administration, is set to launch a website named, ‘Prajahita’.

Home Minister K. Jana Reddy will formally launch the project on the Andhra Pradesh Formation Day. Prajahita web site would come handy for those people who want to file their complaints and applications to officials without visiting to the Collectorate. Prajahita is Telgu version of the ‘Lokvani’ of Sitapur, UP, India. 
www.hindu.com


Education

UK residential college opens new ICT learning centre for disabled students
Portland College, UK residential college for physically disabled students has unveiled the first ICT centre for disabled students. This college has around 300 students aged between 16 and 60 and all are physically disabled.

This new ICT centre has all facilities for learning and career development which will provide all benefits like high standard equipment for learning. With help from a number of charitable donations and corporate sponsorships, they raised the sum of

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