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Sample Essay – Human Computer Interactions

Words 1,320

Human-Computer Interactions refers to the use of information technology and psychology in order to bring to reality the dream of humans and computers existing within one structure. It has been an active research area where number developments have been made over the last 50 years, that is, since the computer has been with us.

When talking about digital divide, one of the major areas of concern for all is the use of computers by people with special needs and those who had spend much of their time without any access to the computer or related technologies.  And in the previous studies that have been carried by various life style organizations in this regards have indicated some strong statistics which point toward the fact that the digital divide has been significant. One of the major inventions of the recent years in the field of information technology has been the Internet. Its evolution has totally changed the way with which people communicate with each other and share ideas. Used as a broadcast, information dissemination as well as a medium for collaboration, the Internet has totally redefined how time and space are perceived in the world today.  Despite the fact the number of worldwide internet users is soaring, the width of the digital divide still remains the same, and in some cases, even widening with time. However, with the increase in the technical capacity of the Internet and the exponential growth that its contents has seen in recent years, closing this digital divide  has become increasingly important  to economic success of the country as well as personal advancement of the individual.

Taking America for example, in a survey conducted by Pew Internet and American Life Project, it was found that half of the adults in America did not have the Internet Access and 57% of them were not even interested in getting online. A large number of adults not using the internet were older individuals, who were often fretful about the online world and did not believe that it carried any benefits. Furthermore, the survey also found that in the rural areas, as a whole, 57% of the residents  did not have access to the internet, compared to 47% of participant living in urban areas and 46% living in suburban areas. The survey also found that another aspect of the digital divide involved people with disabilities, who face a number of challenges in using the computer and accessing the Internet. These disabilities include visual disabilities, hearing disabilities, disabilities relevant to cognition or learning, seizure disorders as well physical/motor disabilities. The survey reports that 85% of Americans with such disabilities had no online presence. Furthermore, another aspect of the digital divide highlighted in the study was between students who did and did not have access to the Internet at home. It showed that the students who already possessed the knowledge of computers and the Internet had greater skills in searching and locating knowledge within educational website and thus had significant advantage over their peers. It was also found that those students who did not have access to the Internet were reluctant to do so even in its presence because they found it difficult to become proficient in even the basic computing skills required to use the internet, and in extreme cases, lacked the basic reading and writing skills required by the online world (Kibum, 2009).

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