The story of “Big Data and a little island”
How much has a human life changed since Bronze Age man walked on the very same fields that we walk on now. There are certain things that are consistent, how life begins, the fact that it will end sometime and the process of growth; from baby to infant, to youth, to adult, to older adult, still exists.
How much have political parties dreams for a bright new future, with numerous jobs provided by ICT companies which will reform our economy, where Ireland is a shining example to the whole world. Certain things are consistent; they hire highly experienced, highly priced experts, produce reports, produce action plans, launch the report and are very sincere.
In 1999, the Government of the day, released a plan called ” Implementing the Information Society – Action Plan”. It contained many useful suggestions as to how Ireland could be a world leader in the ICT field.
In 2013 the Government released a plan called the Jobs action Plan, with plans to make Ireland a European leader in “Big Data”. Which also proclaims to be a way of securing Ireland’s economic recovery. through creating jobs and making Ireland a leader in the area of computing.
‘Big Data’ comprises; all the posts on social media websites, photographs, videos, information from sensors that are use to gather climate information, purchase transaction records, and cell phone GPS signals to mention just a few bits, accumulated it is Big Data. According to IBM, 90% of this data has been gathered in the last two years.
Firstly, how many of us want our social media posts or pictures processed, and our transactions used in any way other than to record that a bill was paid, or the GPS position, of our phone at any time used for anything. It seems ludicrous that this information can be made useful enough, to build economic recovery on, by someone, somewhere.
It also seems to beggar belief that companies would ignore the far superior communications set up that exists in countries such as Bulgaria, Estonia, Finland, Germany, Holland and Latvia to mention but a few, and choose Ireland. In figures provided by Speed test.net, Ireland is positioned 53rd in the rankings for download speed to houses and in a survey of the top 20 European cities for network speed, no city in Ireland even appears. In fact only Italy, Greece and Cyprus have slower internet speeds than Ireland.
Unfortunately,the more familiar situation, particularly in rural Ireland, is the sight of people leaning out their window with their laptop and broadband dongle in an attempt to get enough reception to download a YouTube video. But maybe there is something I am missing, as an aside though in 1992 I wrote to the then Minister for Communications asking him to reconsider putting Eircom on the market as in the future many jobs could be created in Ireland, if we had an independent secure telecommunications system, owned by the country. He was very grateful for the letter or so he said and told me not to worry.