I bought my first laptop, a Toshiba Satellite 110 CS, back in 1996. It possessed an 11,3" STN colour screen with a resolution of 800 x 600 and a 100 MHz processor “for all those lavish presentations and complex programs” - like it was mentioned in the product brochure. It had a Windows 95 operating system and an 810 million byte hard disk drive. “Isn't that the sort of storage you've always dreamt about? At last, enough space for all your vital data and software programs - and they're mobile too!” – someone could read in the product brochure. In our days, it looks like a museum item, but it was huge at that time, and having it gave me a feeling like being Captain James Tiberius Kirk on the bridge of the Enterprise.
Today the internet has changed every aspect of our daily lives - from the way we spend our time to the way we spend our money. The internet has changed the world of computers and the way we communicate like nothing before. It changed also the way we do business, entertain ourselves and the way we see and receive information.
The invention of the telegraph, the telephone, the radio, and the computer prepared the way for this unprecedented integration of capabilities. The internet is at the same time a world-wide broadcasting capability, a tool for information dissemination, and a medium for collaboration and interaction between persons and organisations and their computers.
As a society, we need to communicate and share. The internet allows us to communicate and exchange information in a matter of seconds. In 1989, Sir Tim Berners-Lee invented the web while working at the CERN. Back in the 80s, even the simple concept of documents which could be hyperlinked was hard to understand. And indeed, someone could wonder how digital life would be like in 20 years from now.
New technology is sometimes received with excitement and sometimes with fear when it is introduced for the first time. The telegraph sped up communication between people and organisations in the 1830s, like it is the case today with internet. It was at the time "to metamorphose business practice, give rise to new forms of crime, and overwhelm its users with a deluge of information," as Tom Standage notes in his book about the telegraph, The Victorian Internet.
In my e-book -> Powerful Online Communication, I describe different aspects of digital communication, how to manage your online reputation and how to become the first thought in your stakeholder's mind. The book focuses on the challenges of building trust in the digital age and includes practical advice. Whether a private organisation, a government or an individual, we must understand technology if we want to understand the future.
by Stavros Papagianneas
With a background including positions such as communication officer at the European Commission and press officer and spokesperson to various diplomatic missions in Brussels, Stavros Papagianneas is currently a managing director of public relations consultancy StP Communications. He is a senior communications expert with more than 20 years’ experience in strategic communications, public affairs, public relations, digital communication, social media and media relations. He has also been a member of the Working Party on Information of the Council of the European Union. He is the author of several articles in EU media like New Europe, L' Echo, Communication Director and Research Europe. He is also the author of the book Powerful Online Communication. How to Position Yourself as a Leader.
Website: www.stpcommunications.com Twitter: @StPapagianneas
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