The Field of Dreams

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field of dreams poster

Remember that old Kevin Costner movie? Y’know, the one where he builds a baseball diamond in the middle of Iowa and a famous baseball team show up. Doubters were told,  “If you build it, he will come.”

It feels as if digital by default is driving thousands of build it and they’ll come websites all over the country at the moment. Everyone I talk to of late are re-evaluating their digital strategy, their digital operations plan, their digital customer journey and their pathways to digital inclusion. Literally hundreds of thousands of pounds being spent by organisations both public and third sector now. Goodness knows how high that figure will go as the digital by default deadline draws nearer.

We are working hard to make our website the most understandable and user friendly website, accessible in every way. So simple that a ………. could use it.

With between 8 and 16 million citizens unable to use the internet (depending who you read) and a Venn diagram sweet spot of those citizens having literacy and numeracy difficulties as a major contributing factor to digital illiteracy then I seriously wonder if the target users of this huge fiscal, intellectual and emotional input will come when it is built. Will the people who need to find the field let alone play baseball?

Time will tell. In the meantime stand by for more concerned citizens reeking of fear, uncertainty and doubt.

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Consistently inconsistent

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Using web browsers and emails –
the only consistency is the inconsistency!

For 2 years I have battled to teach computing to people who have never turned on a computer before and I am now reaching the point of total despair!

If I have a washing machine (and I am sure I do somewhere) I don’t expect the company who produced it to turn up in the middle of the night to paint it a different colour and move all the knobs and buttons around. When I get in my car in the morning I expect the dashboard to look the same as it did last night when I parked it. And when I turn the key I don’t expect a sign to appear blocking out the windscreen asking me if could send my mobile phone number or asking me if I know all these other people who drive a similar car to me and who the manufacturer feels I would really like socially if I would just allow everyone access to my car. More

The wood for the trees

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At the moment I seem to be engaged is several digital inclusion initiatives and strategies. Some practical and some still at the vision stage. Being an operations kind of person at heart this period of my digital inclusion journey is incredibly frustrating. The issue is clear. Anything between 8 and 16 million people (depending what figures one reads – source http://www.ukonlinecentres.com/about-us.html and http://www.go-on.co.uk/challenge/uk-snapshot) people in the UK are deemed to be digitally excluded. Either way its a lot of people. More

Pay As You Go, the fast and expensive way to digital exclusion

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For reasons rather complex and difficult to understand I found myself in a void between ending an O2 contract and starting a Vodafone contract with the promise of an iPhone 5 from Phones4u. Needless to say Phones4u couldn’t keep its promise to deliver me an iPhone 5 in 5 working days (no other provider could promise more than 3-4 weeks but good old Phones4u were adamant 5 working days)!) So I ended up back with O2 with my iPhone 4 on “Pay As You Go” while I waited. More

DI & 1

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And then there was the BBC Micro ~ set to change the world, or at least the UK. It did.

By 1985 a million and a half of them had been sold with 85% of schools having a “Beeb” as their learning computer. More

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