Does Chicken Broth Go Bad?

I think here in this country we’re excessively concerned with germs. I don’t doubt that scientific studies prove that certain microbes might survive or even flourish in an environment like an unrefrigerated pot of rice. On the other hand, if u cooked meat and or seafood with the rice, then YES, you could get sick and yes ur bacterial theory might have some substance. Uncooked rice can contain spores of bacillus cereus and those spores survive cooking. You could read more about the benefits of airtight containers onthis post.

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Does Flour Go Bad?

Quality of white rice retail packaged in No. 10 cans for long-term storage. Poster presented at the Institute of Food Technologists Annual Meeting, . Consider cooking your rice in stock such as chicken, green indo kratom effects vegetable, or beef to help with the smell of the rice. You can either use a stock cube and add it to the water that you are boiling your rice in or substitute it entirely for the water.

According to Still Tasty, “White, wild, Arborio, jasmine and basmati rice all have an indefinite shelf life when kept free from contaminants. Uncooked rice is one of those long-lasting pantry staples that you can count on when you’re all out of fresh groceries. According to Still Tasty, cooked rice lasts about 4 to 6 days in the fridge when it’s in a covered airtight container or a resealable plastic bag. If your cooked rice smells weird or feels slimy, that also belongs in the trash and not in your mouth. Another method to keep the brown rice fresh would be to store it in a tightly sealed container with an oxygen absorber (if you can find them!). This will essentially suffocate any eggs, insects or mold, and will reduce the likelihood of spoilage.

Four days would still be in my threshold of ok to eat. This is an all-natural liquid that has many skin and hair benefits. Use it regularly for beautiful skin and nourished hairs. Use it whenever you need to and store the leftover in the refrigerator for up to a week. Rinse your rice to clean any dirt and debris from the rice grains.

Does Basmati Rice Go Bad

If kept in airtight containers and refrigerated its shelf life can be extended to 6-12 months. When frozen it will stay fresh for a year to a year and a half. It is definitely the most convenient rice type to store without the risk of spoiling. Store original packaging into a dark and dry pantry with a constant low temperature.

How Long Does Cooked Rice Last?

Food grade airtight plastic containers are the best storage containers for rice. Make sure that the box is clean and dry before you store your rice in it. You can also get the ones that are certified BPA-free if you’re worried about the chemicals from plastic containers that may be absorbed in the food. And, if you have plenty of rice to store, you can use food-grade buckets. Cooked white rice will generally stay good for 4-6 days in the refrigerator and 6 months in the freezer.

Coloured rice, in particular, is a great source of antioxidants as well, with black rice rivalling or exceeding even blueberries with their antioxidant content. With all that said, the actual strain of rice is not especially important. Whether wild rice, basmati, sticky rice, or jasmine, they are safe for your beaked buddy.

Use Bay Leaves In Food Containers

Cooking rice more like pasta — in six to 10 parts water per one part rice — drastically reduces arsenic levels. Researchers also found cooking rice in a coffee pot reduces arsenic by up to 85 percent. Although black rice contains beneficial nutrients, grains are usually most beneficial when they are eaten in moderation as part of an otherwise healthy and well-rounded diet.

There are vital amino acids and other active ingredients in rice vinegar that can help your body fight off fatigue and give your metabolism a boost precisely when you need it. I just bought a package or Korean rice cakes at HMart. They are thinly sliced, vacuum packed and were in the refrigerator section. How long do they keep in the fridge once the package has been opened?

Except that, to me, isn’t “going bad” in a survival sense. I can guarantee you that, if the shtf, I won’t be worried about my rice having an odd texture, as long as it provides energy. Back to cooked rice, if you leave it at room temp for 3-4 days you’ll notice mold growing on it. If you do this experiment, I suggest you get an airtight, clear container and never open it. Gauging the state of your cooked rice is much easier to do if you’ve got plain, white rice, as opposed to rice with sauce or some food where the rice is in the main dish.

#3 The Cooked Rice Is Cooled And Then Heated Many Times

Simmering corresponds with a water temperature of 180 F to 205 F, producing small, gentle bubbles as opposed to a full rolling boil. In many cases, this is achieved by bringing the water to a full boil and then lowering it to the lowest setting on the burner . But of course, there’s no rice recipe in the world that can take into account every conceivable single kind of cookware. Thus, every recipe, including the cooking instructions on the package of rice, is at best an approximation.

A quick peek will tell you if most of the water has been absorbed and that it’s time to let the rice sit off the heat. Many people referenced the studies that we’ve linked to within this article as scientific evidence. Unpleasant as it is, diarrhea dehydrates your body not only of water but also important vitamins and minerals.

Uncooked White Rice/Arborio/Jasmine/Basmati – White rice has been milled and its layers of nutrients removed. Uncooked and stored well, you can expect white rice to last four to five years if stored in the right manner, even at room temperature. Refrigeration and freezing will lengthen its shelf life even longer. It can sometimes be challenging to tell if products in your pantry are “bad.” For example, do you know how to tell if a sweet potato is bad or if your olive oil is rancid?

When in doubt, it’s always worth inspecting signs of spoilage before use. Fresh store-bought pasta has a shorter shelf life than dried one. Since this variety is perishable, you can only expect it to be edible for a day or two after passing the expiration date. And what about dried pasta, can you refrigerate dried pasta? Barilla company suggests not to store dried pasta inside the fridge or freezer due to the risk of picking up excess moisture. Dried and canned pasta are shelf-stable and can be stored in a cool, dry area, away from heat and lights.

Additionally, gluten-free all-purpose flour, which typically combines several nut- or root-based flours, may be more vulnerable to mold due to its high moisture content . Many people keep flour in their pantry for long periods of time — even well past the expiration date. Predicting what bacteria will take over unsafe food, or retroactively explaining it, is as difficult as predicting the weather. So a literal answer to your question (why did it happen now when it hasn’t happened before) will take mountains of data and weeks of developing an appropriate model. Also, there is no way to give you advice under which circumstances to expect it – as long as you don’t follow food safety rules, it can happen any time. It will sometimes make you ill, most of the time do nothing.

For instance, the more popular English breakfast tea brands are likely to have higher quality, and more customer ratings if you’re buying online. Then, you need to think about whether or not you like full-bodied flavors, or whether you prefer something lighter to add milk and sugar to. One other thing we want to mention is that if your tea has an acrid or strange smell, you might have one that’s been produced around pesticide or other added chemicals. how many mg cbd oil for anxiety Also, it’s a good idea to use minimal milk and sugar to get a true idea of how things taste, so don’t go crazy with the added flavors until you’ve found your favorite. If you’re looking to buy a hearty English breakfast tea, here are a few things you’re going to want to think about for your next breakfast blend of black tea. Teas that are produced in Africa are not as well-known as others, as they are often re-sold in sachets or tea bags.

However, excess moisture will greatly affect its shelf life. White rice lasts for 4 to 5 years when stored in your pantry, oxygen-free white rice will last up to 25 to 30 years, and brown rice will last for 6 to 8 months. Brown rice can last up to a year after its use by date if stored in the refrigerator. Lastly, oxygen-freewhite ricewill last up to 30 years after its use by date if stored in the freezer.

Anything longer than two weeks makes the oils in the food rancid. Once you open the bag of food, you expose the contents to oxidation. Once the oils turn rancid, it becomes harder for the dogs to absorb the fat content in the formula. Do not throw away the original bag that the dog food comes in because it contains useful information such as the expiration date, the barcode, and the batch number. The data comes in handy in case you want to return the dog food, or there is a recall of the product.

If there is a noticeable smell that is unfamiliar, the rice has gone bad. Sometimes it can last a week or even day or two longer, but that’s just pushing your luck. Luckily, when it comes to storing dry, uncooked rice, the storage guidelines are similar regardless of the variety. Many health communities view white rice as an unhealthy option.

Red Yeast Rice

When the hull, bran, and germ layers are removed, the white rice remains. It is the endosperm and the most commonly consumed part in all varieties of rice. Pasta won’t spoil easily because it’s a dry product. You can use it well past the expiration date, so long as it doesn’t smell funny . Generally, dry pasta has a shelf life of two years, but you can typically push it to three.

Olive Oil

The fat can form a solid layer on the top of the chicken broth, if it is stored in the fridge. You should remove this layer before consuming the chicken broth later. If you have stored the chicken broth for more than a few days you should check if there are any signs of spoilage.

Nevertheless, keep in mind that brown sugar can go bad if it’s not stored under ideal conditions. It’s for this reason that the storage method is the make-or-break of its shelf life. If the refrigerated or frozen sushi rice emits an unpleasant or off odor when you open the packet, this means that the rice has gone bad.

Well, Sort Of Apparently, If You Dont Properly Store Cooked Rice, It Can Make You Sick Later On

The FDA issued a statement discouraging parents to not use rice and rice cereals as a primary food due to arsenic contamination. Cook rice in 6 to 10 parts water to one part rice, draining off the extra water after cooking. You can also check company websites and contact rice companies to see if they conduct independent testing for arsenic levels in their rice.

This likely won’t be harmful, but you may want to look into it first. The amount of water you use depends on your method of preparation. If you soak the rice, use about three to four times as much water as rice. The rice will absorb very little water, so this ratio makes a lot of rice water. This isn’t the easiest question to answer, because it varies from person to person. We strongly encourage you to experiment with different methods of preparing and applying rice water to see what works for you.

Unopened chicken broth that is packaged in aseptic containers has the shelf life of about one year if it is kept in the pantry. The same shelf life has also a chicken broth that is packaged in cans. But, when you open the container or the can of the chicken broth, it can last only 4 to 5 days in the fridge. If you place an opened package of yeast into the refrigerator to store, it should be tightly sealed. This product is highly perishable when it is exposed to any amount of heat, moisture, or air even if in your freezer or refrigerator. Place the opened package of yeast into a sealable bag or tightly roll down the top until you reach the yeast level.

It’s up to you, but many people even put bottles of it in the refrigerator. Lay the pasta noodles in a tray to air dry before transferring them into an air-tight glass container where the other weevils cannot enter. Pasta must dry out without any moisture otherwise, the noodles will become soggy and spoil. The beans placed must be placed in an air-tight plastic container or freezer bag.

Upon the sugar hardening, taking small amounts can be a challenge. Therefore, it’s important to take out the sugar a few hours before consumption for you to apply some remedy to restore the sugar to its original form. To get the best results, ask for the shinmai variety of short-grain rice. It refers to the first crop that was harvested in the season and processed for sale. Shinmai gives you the perfect texture needed for making sushi.

If the package is damaged or any spoilage symptoms are spotted, better to stay on the safe side. Hence, cooked pasta or leftovers should not be consumed if it’s been too long in the fridge. When reheating pasta, make sure it’s hot all the way through. Outside storage is okay for rice as long as it is done correctly. Here is some information about the best way to keep your rice outdoors. Rice vinegar is not mostly used as compared to other kinds of vinegar.

Eating spoiled rice can cause food poisoning, so it is a good idea to throw out any rice which does not smell right. It is not a good idea to reheat and cool cooked rice too many times, as this presents a perfect environment for bacteria to grow. After it has canine health concern cbd oil been boiled, put in a rice-cooker or microwaved, the rice is safe to eat for a certain amount of time if kept at the right temperature. One of the best ways to tell it has spoiled is to smell the rice. Spoiled rice will have a foul or funny smell to it.

As long as there aren’t any signs spoilage , your white rice should be perfectly safe to eat. With cooked rice or leftover rice dishes, always keep it refrigerated. Consider freezing it if you don’t plan to eat it within a few days. To reheat rice safely, make sure it is thoroughly heated. If any spoilage symptoms are spotted, stop using it to prevent foodborne disease.

Once completed immediately remove the straw and then seal the bag. You can accumulate a lot of lemon juice cubes without taking up too much space in the freezer. If you’re sure that vomiting is the result of eating contaminated food or liquids, don’t try to stop it.

Despite the agreement in 2005, in 2006, North Korea test fired long range missiles. The UN Security Council demanded North Korea suspend the program. In 2007, Rice was involved in another nuclear agreement with North Korea . Rice, other negotiators for the United States and four other nations (six-party talks) reached a deal with North Korea. In this deal North Korea agreed to close its main nuclear reactor in exchange for $400 million in fuel and aid.

They produced cane vinegar from sugar cane and is used primarily in the Philippines. It is light yellow and is similar to rice vinegar in flavor. If you look at any container of vinegar, you will see a “best before date,” or expiration date.

Their CEO wrote a letter about the issue and how the company is addressing it. Rice grown in Arkansas, Texas, Louisiana, and most other U.S. states had the highest inorganic arsenic levels. So it’s best to minimize or avoid rice grown in these areas.

The easiest way to know when your Arborio rice has gone bad is to look for the pesky rice weevils that infiltrate rice that has not been properly stored. However, in most cases, once the seal is broken, you need to make an effort to ensure that it stays fresh. Conversely, cooked rice has a limit to how long you can keep it before it is unsafe for consumption.

And we think you should just always keep some in your freezer, so you never have to eat pancakes without the good stuff ever again. Instant coffee will keep in the freezer forever, whether sealed or not. No need to hurry and finish that magnum bottle of rum, hard liquor will keep in a cool dark place for longer than necessary. Your liquor cabinet could itself be an inheritable item, passed down from generation to generation. The liquor may lose its aroma slightly, but not enough for it to be noticeable.

Ways to Optimize Your Blog Posts for SEO and Reader Response

Every company person knows the fact a fruitful company depends considerably on the existence of an audio advertising strategy. In the absence of this type of strategy, all of your other initiatives are essentially useless. This really is all the more true when it comes to online organizations, as your competition is fiercer on the Internet. We could get as far as expressing that your Web company will quickly arrive at an end if you crash to produce great use of all assets that you’ve at your disposal when it comes to generating quality traffic to your online site.

Your advertising strategy ought to be a complex one and includes a variety of search engine optimization services, such for instance article distribution, directory submissions, cultural bookmarking, and website posting. These are some of the top ways to promote a web page and the expense of such seo services are nothing set alongside the advantages they bring. Only consider what advantages would derive from having thousands as well as thousands of prospective customers visiting your website every day and you’ll certainly concur that search engine optimization services are an investment worth making. Guest post

An SEO post is one of the most effective ways of generating long-haul traffic, particularly if applicable material is submitted on private blogs. Needless to say that your freshly produced website is likely to be found by key search motors faster than it would be if you had been to only wait for that to take place without resorting to any advertising strategies. Moreover, a seo post will also support improve your position with the most important search motors, which, will change into more targeted traffic to your online site.

Once you’ve handled to have continuous quality traffic to your website, you decide to help keep your guests finding their way back, but more regularly than perhaps not, getting to the stage where you’ve to show unexpected customers into devoted types is probably the most difficult task. And this really is where each one of these seo strategies, including website submitting, comes into place. However, a seo post is not a thing that everybody can do. Wherever you post your article is of the utmost value and therefore is the caliber of the text and its relevance for search engines. Along with all this, website submitting can be a really time-consuming task. Therefore, it’s recommended that you make use of a professional website submitting service.

A professional website submitting support could be the surest method to take advantage of all of the advantages that derive from applying all of the advertising possibilities that the Web provides. SEO specialists can create articles that can be abundant with applicable keywords and post them manually on tens or a huge selection of private quality blogs. Quite simply, an excellent website submitting support can help raise your rank with key search motors and create targeted traffic to your online site.

A seo post is really a cheap, yet equally effective alternative to an expensive advertising campaign. It can be a really powerful advertising software, offered it’s employed by skilled seo specialists. Important material and submitting on well-ranked websites is something that only a professional website submitting support can provide.

The Reasons You Should Consider Becoming a Sports Betting Handicapper

A sports handicapper can help you turn your knowledge of sports into money. There are certain businesses that are “evergreen”, they never go out of business and they don’t become obsolete or outdated. Because everyone wants to make more, making money is one of these businesses. This is a great opportunity to use your money to help others make more money by being a sports betting handicapper.

Sports entertainment is becoming more popular every day. This means that there are increasingly many sporting events across the globe, which is good news for big-money. Fans can make money betting on their favorite What sports, such as football, baseball, or horse racing. Due to the popularity of sporting events, people are increasingly interested in sports betting and trying to make money. This is the chance to make money, and help others, by becoming a sports betting handicapper.

It is easier than ever to place a wager on any of the games. There are many sportsbooks online as well as offline. Many of them operate overseas to avoid restrictions. They may not be all legal. The fact is, as long as people have an interest in betting on sports they will continue to see an increasing number of books offering this service.

While people may be interested in being wealthy and making money, it’s well known that many people are naturally lazy and want to avoid doing as much work as they can. This gives them the opportunity to make easy money. But they don’t want to do their research. They may not be experts in the field or not have the desire to conduct a systematic study on the games. They want someone to guide them in placing their bets and making money. The services of a sports betting handicapper can help them with this. He provides the expert, the research, the predictions, and charges money. Sports betting handicappers will continue to be in demand because, as we said, it is an ongoing market. The pursuit of making money will never cease. They will never tire of sporting events.

The Day and Age of the Smartphone – Let Smartphone Reviews Update You on the Latest in the Market

The initial type of applications to keep in mind as it pertains to increasing your living production is apps related to operating and obtaining your path around. They are GPS apps, and they primarily change your smart phone in to a small portable GPS device. These programs enable you to simply plug in your local area and you will be able to see regional eateries as well as the addresses of your pals and family.

Bing Maps Navigation is an ideal request that will help you complete only that. That is essentially a smart telephone version of the wildly common web site on the internet that lets people select in guidelines and look for locations. Google’s Maps Request offers satellite and road views that different mobile apps do not provide.

Company programs for the LG Thrill will also be extremely important since they can support people stay structured and produce living much easier for us. Organizational programs may contain apps that allow you to with scheduling and conference sessions and deadlines, as well as applications at that help you add up calendars and even develop your own personal to accomplish lists through the touchscreen and typing efficiency of the phones. It is becoming more difficult to remain along with things today in modern life, as most people have so many different obligations to have a tendency to, so when you can change your cell phone into an ally to help you keep connected and current with modern living, then it’s value taking advantage of.  Shycocan

Mobile Shopping has also become remarkably popular and that’s why there are lots of looking applications obtainable in the Application Market. Most of these applications may give you recommendations and handles and results to the closest malls, retailers, supermarkets, and other areas of contemporary life that you may be enthusiastic about locating in the real world. You may also use such programs to see a number of reviews of shops that will allow you to figure out which keep you are interested in visiting or getting things from.

As you will see, there are several features concerning the LG Thrill can be advantageous to day-to-day living through a number of applications, including programs for operating, buying, and work. Along the way, it would not be considered a poor strategy to look in to some extras such as a data wire, an incident, monitor guard, and a Wireless headset. With a information wire you will have a way to move documents from your own PC to your telephone and the Wireless headset enables you talk hands-free while you travel which is often very advantageous to your safety.

their residence to review if the storage door closed. Acquire some little bit of mind and do not worry about turning everything off before you leave. You are able to turn everything off without actually being there. Hook up to the consumer program, shut storage door and check always any components you may have forgotten. A smart home will also help stop you on-time.

Simplify your house and operate the Home Theater music, video, and several other parts all in one remote control. One remote control is an easy and convenient solution to perform music in virtually any space at anytime. If you prefer audio, use the multi-room sound feature and balance the acoustics in your home. You may be environmentally friendly and enjoy an ideal atmosphere in every room with lighting control. Dimming your lights uses less energy, therefore saving you money. Enjoy control from everywhere with a good phone or net connection. Acquire some bit of mind and monitor your house security while on the road.

5 Types of Business Insurance and Why You Need Them

An individual spark may collection a shop on fire. A straightforward slip may lead to a lengthy and costly legislation suit. You are able to awaken the very next day and your corporate car isn’t on their parking slot. If there’s a very important factor every business owner understands, it’s the fact that there’s nothing certain and it’s essential to cut back chance to ab muscles minimum.

Many business owners fall into the trap of maybe not finding the right business insurance coverage. Let us dissect that statement further. It’s insufficient to make certain your business. Commercial Business insurance ought to be your failsafe. Meaning, your business protect ought to be something that encompasses all probable scenarios.

Determining All the Risks Associated with Your Company

The first step in deciding the right business insurance for your enterprise is doing a comprehensive audit of your complete business operations from start to finish. Ensure that no stone is remaining unturned. If you are the dog owner, there’s a high possibility that you might not be familiar with everything that’s occurring in your daily business operations, so it’s most useful to bring in all of your managers in addition to the main element employees to ensure you don’t miss anything.

Understanding the Different Forms of Company Insurance

You will find four important broad kinds of industrial business insurance.

The initial type is the absolute most common – business house insurance. To put it simply, this sort of insurance will provide you with monetary reimbursements, if your business houses (i.e. Your workplace, your machineries, etc.) were broken or destroyed.

The second general classification of business insurance is responsibility insurance. If you wounded an individual or broken a house during the conduct of your business, this sort of insurance will take care of that. For instance, if you are a cafe owner, and some body tucked within your restaurant as a result of built consume, you need to use your responsibility insurance to protect for the victim’s hospitalisation expense.

Next could be the car insurance which can be generally similar to your individual car insurance. It will protect the problems inflicted in your company-owned cars including these resulting from collision accidents.

Last but not least, the umbrella industrial business insurance doesn’t play a particular role. Rather, it runs the limits of your different insurance policies. It are often used to protect other activities beyond those which are covered by your responsibility, house and car insurance guidelines

Enough Investing Towards Your Insurance Procedures

By determining all of the parts in your operations that’ll trigger economic failures to your company, you will be able to spot which kinds of insurance you need. Apart from choosing an insurance type, you moreover need to ensure you’re investing enough towards these business insurance policies.

For instance, if you work a resort business with a few luxury vehicles to move your visitors, you need to invest greatly on car insurance and the plan you need to get should have a higher premium. You can not have a $30,000 BMW luxury sedan and just have $5,000 worth of car insurance.

Secret Behind Technology Blogging: A Best Niche In Blogging

It is no secret that there is a secret behind technology blogging; it is one of the best niches in blogging. Blogging about technology is one of the best ways to get ahead in modern society. In fact, technology blogging is the best niche in blogging these days for anyone who wants to start up a successful business.

If you plan to create a new business or any successful business ventures, one of the best ways to do so is to consider the technology niche in blogging.

The Secrets of Niche Blogging: Technology

These days there are so many technologies to choose from, it’s hard not to blog about them. Some popular examples of technology blogs include:

iPhone how to guides and tutorials

Information and technology news

Technology updates and rumors

The latest technological breakthroughs

Android

Windows and Mac

Technology Editorials and Opinion Pieces

Technology blogs are the perfect accompaniment to a day job although many people find running a niche technology blog can be exciting and take up a bit of time on the side.

How To Run A Successful Secret Technology Niche Blogging Business

It doesn’t take very long to get a niche technology blog up and running. All one need to do is set up a blog account, which is easily done through WordPress or any other free blogging module.

Typically it helps to add a new blog post at least once or twice a week, if not daily. This helps to compete with ultra high-ranking websites. The technology niche is one of the simplest niches to write about.

There are tons of information readily available about most forms of technology. There is always something new in the news about the latest iPhone, or what some star or celebrity has done with their Mac, or latest technology device.

The other approach to technology is writing about how you made money using technology. Most people want nothing more than to learn about how they can make money using technology. And, that is essentially what you do when you create a niche technology blog… make money using technology.

Another great niche in the technology arena is a blog focusing on general technological advances and information. However, the competition for a niche that broad however, may be very high, especially when it comes to purchasing AdSense revenue. If you can narrow your technology niche down significantly, to something very narrow, then you will reap the benefits.

Good, narrow niches are well thought out. Some examples may include very detailed subjects and niche topics, including:

iPhone covers and cases

Android Travel Phones

Mac laptop covers and cases

Windows technological breakthroughs

The more narrow the subject material, the more likely you are to select keywords that bring in targeted audience members. There is also less likely to be competition for your keywords. You want to pay as little as possible to attract AdSense revenues. This is how to make the most bang for your buck when blogging on technology.

Remember that the secret is out; technology is a great niche to take advantage of. People are constantly seeking new and exciting information about technology. So discover the areas you can write better about, and dig in. Discover for yourself the secret behind technology blogging and find a good niche in the technology blogging that you and your business can get benefit from.

Leaping Into the 6th Technology Revolution

We’re at risk of missing out on some of the most profound opportunities offered by the technology revolution that has just begun.

Yet many are oblivious to the signs and are in danger of watching this become a period of noisy turmoil rather than the full-blown insurrection needed to launch us into a green economy. What we require is not a new spinning wheel, but fabrics woven with nanofibers that generate solar power. To make that happen, we need a radically reformulated way of understanding markets, technology, financing, and the role of government in accelerating change. But will we understand the opportunities before they disappear?

Seeing the Sixth Revolution for What It Is

We are seven years into the beginning of what analysts at BofA Merrill Lynch Global Research call the Sixth Revolution. A table by Carlotta Perez, which was presented during a recent BofA Merrill Lynch Global Research luncheon hosted by Robert Preston and Steven Milunovich, outlines the revolutions that are unexpected in their own time that lead to the one in which we find ourselves.

 

  • 1771: Mechanization and improved water wheels
  • 1829: Development of steam for industry and railways
  • 1875: Cheap steel, availability of electricity, and the use of city gas
  • 1908: Inexpensive oil, mass-produced internal combustion engine vehicles, and universal electricity
  • 1971: Expansion of information and tele-communications
  • 2003: Cleantech and biotech

 

The Vantage of Hindsight

Looking back at 1971, we know that Intel’s introduction of the microprocessor marked the beginning of a new era. But in that year, this meant little to people watching Mary Tyler Moore and The Partridge Family, or listening to Tony Orlando & Dawn and Janis Joplin. People would remember humanity’s first steps on the Moon, opening relations between US and China, perhaps the successful completion of the Human Genome Project to 99.99% accuracy, and possibly the birth of Prometea, the first horse cloned by Italian scientists.

 

According to Ben Weinberg, Partner, Element Partners, “Every day, we see American companies with promising technologies that are unable to deploy their products because of a lack of debt financing. By filling this gap, the government will ignite the mass deployment of innovative technologies, allowing technologies ranging from industrial waste heat to pole-mounted solar PV to prove their economics and gain credibility in the debt markets.” 

 

Flying beneath our collective radar was the first floppy disk drive by IBM, the world’s first e-mail sent by Ray Tomlinson, the launch of the first laser printer by Xerox PARC and the Cream Soda Computer by Bill Fernandez and Steve Wozniak (who would found the Apple Computer company with Steve Jobs a few years later). 

Times have not changed that much. It’s 2011 and many of us face a similar disconnect with the events occurring around us. We are at the equivalent of 1986, a year on the cusp of the personal computer and the Internet fundamentally changing our world. 1986 was also the year that marked the beginning of a major financial shift into new markets. Venture Capital (VC) experienced its most substantial finance-raising season, with approximately $750 million, and the NASDAQ was established to help create a market for these companies.

Leading this charge was Kleiner Perkins Caulfield & Beyers (KPCB), a firm that turned technical expertise into possibly the most successful IT venture capital firm in Silicon Valley. The IT model looked for a percentage of big successes to offset losses: an investment like the $8 million in Cerent, which was sold to Cisco Systems for $6.9 billion, could make up for a lot of great ideas that didn’t quite make it.

Changing Financial Models

But the VC model that worked so well for information and telecommunications doesn’t work in the new revolution. Not only is the financing scale of the cleantech revolution orders of magnitude larger than the last, this early in the game even analysts are struggling to see the future.

Steven Milunovich, who hosted the BofA Merrill Lynch Global Research lunch, remarked that each revolution has an innovation phase which may last for as long as 25 years, followed by an implementation phase of another 25. Most money is made in the first 20 years, so real players want to get in early. But the question is: Get in where, for how much and with whom?

There is still market scepticism and uncertainty about the staying power of the clean energy revolution. Milunovich estimates that many institutional investors don’t believe in global warming, and adopt a “wait and see” attitude complicated by government impasse on energy security legislation. For those who are looking at these markets, their motivation ranges from concerns about oil scarcity, supremacy in the “new Sputnik” race, the shoring up of homeland security and – for some – a concern about the effects of climate change. Many look askance at those who see that we are in the midst of a fundamental change in how we produce and use energy. Milunovich, for all these reasons, is “cautious in the short term, bullish on the long.”

The Valley of Death

Every new technology brings with it needs for new financing. In the sixth revolution, with budget needs 10 times those of IT, the challenge is moving from idea to prototype to commercialization. The Valley of Death, as a recent Bloomberg New Energy Finance whitepaper, Crossing the Valley of Death pointed out, is the gap between technology creation and commercial maturity.

But some investors and policy makers continue to hope that private capital will fuel this gap, much as it did the last. They express concern over the debt from government programs like the stimulus funds (American Recovery and Reinvestment Act) which have invested millions in new technologies in the clean energy sector, as well as helping states with rebuilding infrastructure and other projects. They question why the traditional financing models, which made the United States the world leader in information technology and telecommunications, can’t be made to work today, if the Government would just get out of the way.

But analysts from many sides of financing believe that government support, of some kind, is essential to move projects forward, because cleantech and biotech projects require a much larger input of capital in order to get to commercialization. This gap not only affects commercialization, but is also affecting investments in new technologies, because financial interests are concerned that their investment might not see fruition – get to commercial scale.

How new technologies are radically different from the computer revolution.

Infrastructure complexity

This revolution is highly dependent on an existing – but aging – energy infrastructure. Almost 40 years after the start of the telecommunications revolution, we are still struggling with a communications infrastructure that is fragmented, redundant, and inefficient. Integrating new sources of energy, and making better use of what we have, is an even more complex – and more vital – task.

According to “Crossing the Valley of Death,” the Bloomberg New Energy Finance Whitepaper,

 

“The events of the past few years confirm that it is only with the public sector’s help that the Commercialization Valley of Death can be addressed, both in the short and the long term. Only public institutions have ‘public benefits’ obligations and the associated mandated risk-tolerance for such classes of investments, along with the capital available to make a difference at scale. Project financiers have shown they are willing to pick up the ball and finance the third, 23rd, and 300th project that uses that new technology. It is the initial technology risk that credit committees and investment managers will not tolerate.” 

 

Everything runs on fuel and energy, from our homes to our cars to our industries, schools, and hospitals. Most of us have experienced the disconnect we feel when caught in a blackout: “The air-conditioner won’t work so I guess I’ll turn on a fan,” only to realize we can’t do either. Because energy is so vital to every aspect of our economy, federal, state and local entities regulate almost every aspect of how energy is developed, deployed, and monetized. Wind farm developers face a patchwork quilt of municipal, county, state and federal regulations in getting projects to scale. 

Incentives from government sources, as well as utilities, pose both an opportunity and a threat: the market rises and falls in direct proportion to funding and incentives. Navigating these challenges takes time and legal expertise: neither of which are in abundant supply to entrepreneurs.

Development costs

Though microchips are creating ever-smaller electronics, cleantech components – such as wind turbines and photovoltaics – are huge. They can’t be developed in a garage, like Hewlett and Packard’s first oscilloscope. A new generation of biofuels that utilizes nanotechnology isn’t likely to take place out of a dorm room, as did Michael Dell’s initial business selling customized computers. What this means for sixth revolution projects is that they have much larger funding needs, at much earlier stages.

Stepping up and supporting innovation, universities – and increasingly corporations – are partnering with early stage entrepreneurs. They are providing technology resources, such as laboratories and technical support, as well as management expertise in marketing, product development, government processes, and financing. Universities get funds from technology transfer arrangements, while corporations invest in a new technologies, expanding their product base, opening new businesses, or providing cost-benefit and risk-analysis of various approaches.

But even with such help, venture capital and other private investors are needed to augment costs that cannot be born alone. These investors look to some assurance that projects will produce revenue in order to return the original investment. So concerns over the Valley of Death affects even early stage funding.

Time line to completion

So many of us balk at two year contracts for our cell phones that there is talk of making such requirements illegal. But energy projects, by their size and complexity, look out over years, if not decades. Commercial and industrial customers look to spread their costs over ten to twenty years, and contracts cover contingencies like future business failure, the sale of properties, or the prospect of renovations that may affect the long term viability of the original project.

Kevin Walsh, managing director and head of Power and Renewable Energy at GE Energy Financial Services states, “GE Energy Financial Services supports the creation of CEDA or a similar institution because it would expand the availability of low-cost capital to the projects and companies in which we invest, and it would help expand the market for technology supplied by other GE businesses.”

Michael Holman, analyst for Lux Research, noted that a $25 million investment in Google morphed into $1.7 billion 5 years later. In contrast, a leading energy storage company started with a $300 million investment, and 9 years later valuation remains uncertain. These are the kinds of barriers that can stall the drive we need for 21st century technologies.

Looking to help bridge the gap in new cleantech and biotech projects, is a proposed government-based solution called the Clean Energy Deployment Administration (CEDA). There is a house and senate version, as well as a house Green Bank bill to provide gap financing. Recently, over 42 companies, representing many industries and organizations, signed a letter to President Obama, supporting the Senate version, the “21st Century Energy Technology Deployment Act.”

Both the house and senate bills propose to create, as an office within the US Department of Energy (DOE), an administration which would be tasked with lending to risky cleantech projects for the purpose of bringing new technologies to market. CEDA would be the bridge needed to ensure the successful establishment of the green economy, by partnering with private investment to bring the funding needed to get these technologies to scale. Both versions capitalize the agency with $10 Billion (Senate) and $7.5 Billion (House), with an expected 10% loss reserve long term.

By helping a new technology move more effectively through the pipeline from idea to deployment, CEDA can substantially increase private sector investment in energy technology development and deployment. It can create a more successful US clean energy industry, with all the attendant economic and job creation benefits.

Who Benefits?

CEDA funding could be seen as beneficial for even the most unlikely corporations. Ted Horan is the Marketing and Business Development Manager for Hycrete, a company that sells a waterproof concrete. Hardly a company that springs to mind when we think about clean technologies, he recently commented on why Hycrete CEO, Richard Guinn, is a signatory on the letter to Obama:

 

“The allocation of funding for emerging clean energy technologies through CEDA is an important step in solving our energy and climate challenges. Companies on the cusp of large-scale commercial deployment will benefit greatly and help accelerate the adoption of clean energy practices throughout our economy.” 

 

In his opinion, the manufacturing and construction that is needed to push us out of a stagnating economy will be supported by innovation coming from the cleantech and biotech sectors. 

Google’s Dan Reicher, Director of Climate Change and Energy Initiatives, has been a supporter from the inception of CEDA. He has testified before both houses of Congress, and was a signatory on the letter to President Obama. Google’s interest in clean and renewable energies dates back several years. The company is actively involved in projects to cut costs of solar thermal and expand the use of plug-in vehicles, and has developed the Power Meter, a product which brings home energy management to anyone’s desktop-for free.

Financial support includes corporations like GE Energy Financial Services, Silicon Valley Venture Capital such as Kleiner, Perkins Caulfiled and Byers, and Mohr Davidow Ventures, and Energy Capital including Hudson Clean Energy and Element Partners.Can something like the senate version of CEDA leap the Valley of Death?

As Will Coleman from Mohr Davidow Ventures, said, “The Devil’s in the details.” The Senate version has two significant changes from previous proposals: an emphasis on breakthrough as opposed to conventional technologies, and political independence.

Neil Auerbach, Managing Partner, Hudson Clean Energy

The clean energy sector can be a dynamic growth engine for the US economy, but not without thoughtful government support for private capital formation. **[Government policy] promises to serve as a valuable bridging tool to accelerate private capital formation around companies facing the challenge, and can help ensure that the US remains at the forefront of the race for dominance in new energy technologies.

Breakthrough Technologies

Coleman said that “breakthrough” includes the first or second deployment of a new approach, not just the game changing science-fiction solution that finally brings us limitless energy at no cost. The Bloomberg New Energy white paper uses the term “First of Class.” Bringing solar efficiency up from 10% to 20%, or bringing manufacturing costs down by 50%, would be a breakthrough that would help us begin to compete with threats from China and India. Conventional technologies, those that are competing with existing commercialized projects, would get less emphasis.

Political Independence

Political independence is top of mind for many who spoke or provided an analysis of the bill. Michael Holman, analyst at Lux Research, expressed the strongest concerns that CEDA doesn’t focus enough on incentives to bring together innovative start-ups with larger established firms.

 

“The government itself taking on the responsibility of deciding what technologies to back isn’t likely to work-it’s an approach with a dreadful track record. That said, it is important for the federal government to lead – the current financing model for bringing new energy technologies to market is broken, and new approaches are badly needed.” 

 

For many, the senate bill has many advantages over the house bill, in providing for a decision making process that includes technologists and private sector experts. 

 

“I think both sides [of the aisle] understand this is an important program, and must enable the government to be flexible and employ a number of different approaches. The Senate version empowers CEDA to take a portfolio approach and manage risk over time, which I think is good. In the House bill, CEDA has to undergo the annual appropriation process, which runs the risk of politicizing every investment decision in isolation and before we have a chance to see the portfolio mature.” – Will Coleman, Mohr Davidow. 

 

Michael DeRosa, Managing Director of Element Partners added, 

 

“The framework must ensure the selection of practical technologies, optimization of risk/return for taxpayer dollars, and appropriate oversight for project selection and spending. **Above all, these policies must be designed with free markets principles in mind and not be subject to political process.” 

 

If history is any indication, rarely are those in the middle of game-changing events aware of their role in what will one day be well-known for their sweeping influence. But what we can see clearly now is the gap between idea and commercial maturity. CEDA certainly offers some hope that we may yet see the cleantech age grow up into adulthood. But will we act quickly enough before all of the momentum and hard work that has brought us this far falls flat as other countries take leadership roles, leaving us in the dust? 

THE GREEN ECONOMY is an information company, providing timely, credible facts and analyses on companies adapting to meet the challenges of a green future.

Markets are in transition; customers are demanding a higher quality of life, such as clean water and energy. These pressures are affecting commodity prices, access to markets, the nature of innovation and more. At the same time, infrastructure (water, energy, transportation), is becoming more – not less – localized. These changes mean opportunities and demand new partnerships to deliver increasingly complex solutions. THE GREEN ECONOMY tells those stories.

Impacts of Information Technology on Society in the New Century

In the past few decades there has been a revolution in computing and communications, and all indications are that technological progress and use of information technology will continue at a rapid pace. Accompanying and supporting the dramatic increases in the power and use of new information technologies has been the declining cost of communications as a result of both technological improvements and increased competition. According to Moore’s law the processing power of microchips is doubling every 18 months. These advances present many significant opportunities but also pose major challenges. Today, innovations in information technology are having wide-ranging effects across numerous domains of society, and policy makers are acting on issues involving economic productivity, intellectual property rights, privacy protection, and affordability of and access to information. Choices made now will have long lasting consequences, and attention must be paid to their social and economic impacts.

One of the most significant outcomes of the progress of information technology is probably electronic commerce over the Internet, a new way of conducting business. Though only a few years old, it may radically alter economic activities and the social environment. Already, it affects such large sectors as communications, finance and retail trade and might expand to areas such as education and health services. It implies the seamless application of information and communication technology along the entire value chain of a business that is conducted electronically.

The impacts of information technology and electronic commerce on business models, commerce, market structure, workplace, labour market, education, private life and society as a whole.

1. Business Models, Commerce and Market Structure

One important way in which information technology is affecting work is by reducing the importance of distance. In many industries, the geographic distribution of work is changing significantly. For instance, some software firms have found that they can overcome the tight local market for software engineers by sending projects to India or other nations where the wages are much lower. Furthermore, such arrangements can take advantage of the time differences so that critical projects can be worked on nearly around the clock. Firms can outsource their manufacturing to other nations and rely on telecommunications to keep marketing, R&D, and distribution teams in close contact with the manufacturing groups. Thus the technology can enable a finer division of labour among countries, which in turn affects the relative demand for various skills in each nation. The technology enables various types of work and employment to be decoupled from one another. Firms have greater freedom to locate their economic activities, creating greater competition among regions in infrastructure, labour, capital, and other resource markets. It also opens the door for regulatory arbitrage: firms can increasingly choose which tax authority and other regulations apply.

Computers and communication technologies also promote more market-like forms of production and distribution. An infrastructure of computing and communication technology, providing 24-hour access at low cost to almost any kind of price and product information desired by buyers, will reduce the informational barriers to efficient market operation. This infrastructure might also provide the means for effecting real-time transactions and make intermediaries such as sales clerks, stock brokers and travel agents, whose function is to provide an essential information link between buyers and sellers, redundant. Removal of intermediaries would reduce the costs in the production and distribution value chain. The information technologies have facilitated the evolution of enhanced mail order retailing, in which goods can be ordered quickly by using telephones or computer networks and then dispatched by suppliers through integrated transport companies that rely extensively on computers and communication technologies to control their operations. Nonphysical goods, such as software, can be shipped electronically, eliminating the entire transport channel. Payments can be done in new ways. The result is disintermediation throughout the distribution channel, with cost reduction, lower end-consumer prices, and higher profit margins.

The impact of information technology on the firms’ cost structure can be best illustrated on the electronic commerce example. The key areas of cost reduction when carrying out a sale via electronic commerce rather than in a traditional store involve physical establishment, order placement and execution, customer support, strong, inventory carrying, and distribution. Although setting up and maintaining an e-commerce web site might be expensive, it is certainly less expensive to maintain such a storefront than a physical one because it is always open, can be accessed by millions around the globe, and has few variable costs, so that it can scale up to meet the demand. By maintaining one ‘store’ instead of several, duplicate inventory costs are eliminated. In addition, e-commerce is very effective at reducing the costs of attracting new customers, because advertising is typically cheaper than for other media and more targeted. Moreover, the electronic interface allows e-commerce merchants to check that an order is internally consistent and that the order, receipt, and invoice match. Through e-commerce, firms are able to move much of their customer support on line so that customers can access databases or manuals directly. This significantly cuts costs while generally improving the quality of service. E-commerce shops require far fewer, but high-skilled, employees. E-commerce also permits savings in inventory carrying costs. The faster the input can be ordered and delivered, the less the need for a large inventory. The impact on costs associated with decreased inventories is most pronounced in industries where the product has a limited shelf life (e.g. bananas), is subject to fast technological obsolescence or price declines (e.g. computers), or where there is a rapid flow of new products (e.g. books, music). Although shipping costs can increase the cost of many products purchased via electronic commerce and add substantially to the final price, distribution costs are significantly reduced for digital products such as financial services, software, and travel, which are important e-commerce segments.

Although electronic commerce causes the disintermediation of some intermediaries, it creates greater dependency on others and also some entirely new intermediary functions. Among the intermediary services that could add costs to e-commerce transactions are advertising, secure online payment, and delivery. The relative ease of becoming an e-commerce merchant and setting up stores results in such a huge number of offerings that consumers can easily be overwhelmed. This increases the importance of using advertising to establish a brand name and thus generate consumer familiarity and trust. For new e-commerce start-ups, this process can be expensive and represents a significant transaction cost. The openness, global reach, and lack of physical clues that are inherent characteristics of e-commerce also make it vulnerable to fraud and thus increase certain costs for e-commerce merchants as compared to traditional stores. New techniques are being developed to protect the use of credit cards in e-commerce transactions, but the need for greater security and user verification leads to increased costs. A key feature of e-commerce is the convenience of having purchases delivered directly. In the case of tangibles, such as books, this incurs delivery costs, which cause prices to rise in most cases, thereby negating many of the savings associated with e-commerce and substantially adding to transaction costs.

With the Internet, e-commerce is rapidly expanding into a fast-moving, open global market with an ever-increasing number of participants. The open and global nature of e-commerce is likely to increase market size and change market structure, both in terms of the number and size of players and the way in which players compete on international markets. Digitized products can cross the border in real time, consumers can shop 24 hours a day, seven days a week, and firms are increasingly faced with international online competition. The Internet is helping to enlarge existing markets by cutting through many of the distribution and marketing barriers that can prevent firms from gaining access to foreign markets. E-commerce lowers information and transaction costs for operating on overseas markets and provides a cheap and efficient way to strengthen customer-supplier relations. It also encourages companies to develop innovative ways of advertising, delivering and supporting their product and services. While e-commerce on the Internet offers the potential for global markets, certain factors, such as language, transport costs, local reputation, as well as differences in the cost and ease of access to networks, attenuate this potential to a greater or lesser extent.

2. Workplace and Labour Market

Computers and communication technologies allow individuals to communicate with one another in ways complementary to traditional face-to-face, telephonic, and written modes. They enable collaborative work involving distributed communities of actors who seldom, if ever, meet physically. These technologies utilize communication infrastructures that are both global and always up, thus enabling 24-hour activity and asynchronous as well as synchronous interactions among individuals, groups, and organizations. Social interaction in organizations will be affected by use of computers and communication technologies. Peer-to-peer relations across department lines will be enhanced through sharing of information and coordination of activities. Interaction between superiors and subordinates will become more tense because of social control issues raised by the use of computerized monitoring systems, but on the other hand, the use of e-mail will lower the barriers to communications across different status levels, resulting in more uninhibited communications between supervisor and subordinates.

That the importance of distance will be reduced by computers and communication technology also favours telecommuting, and thus, has implications for the residence patterns of the citizens. As workers find that they can do most of their work at home rather than in a centralized workplace, the demand for homes in climatically and physically attractive regions would increase. The consequences of such a shift in employment from the suburbs to more remote areas would be profound. Property values would rise in the favoured destinations and fall in the suburbs. Rural, historical, or charming aspects of life and the environment in the newly attractive areas would be threatened. Since most telecommuters would be among the better educated and higher paid, the demand in these areas for high-income and high-status services like gourmet restaurants and clothing boutiques would increase. Also would there be an expansion of services of all types, creating and expanding job opportunities for the local population.

By reducing the fixed cost of employment, widespread telecommuting should make it easier for individuals to work on flexible schedules, to work part time, to share jobs, or to hold two or more jobs simultaneously. Since changing employers would not necessarily require changing one’s place of residence, telecommuting should increase job mobility and speed career advancement. This increased flexibility might also reduce job stress and increase job satisfaction. Since job stress is a major factor governing health there may be additional benefits in the form of reduced health costs and mortality rates. On the other hand one might also argue that technologies, by expanding the number of different tasks that are expected of workers and the array of skills needed to perform these tasks, might speed up work and increase the level of stress and time pressure on workers.

A question that is more difficult to be answered is about the impacts that computers and communications might have on employment. The ability of computers and communications to perform routine tasks such as bookkeeping more rapidly than humans leads to concern that people will be replaced by computers and communications. The response to this argument is that even if computers and communications lead to the elimination of some workers, other jobs will be created, particularly for computer professionals, and that growth in output will increase overall employment. It is more likely that computers and communications will lead to changes in the types of workers needed for different occupations rather than to changes in total employment.

A number of industries are affected by electronic commerce. The distribution sector is directly affected, as e-commerce is a way of supplying and delivering goods and services. Other industries, indirectly affected, are those related to information and communication technology (the infrastructure that enables e-commerce), content-related industries (entertainment, software), transactions-related industries (financial sector, advertising, travel, transport). eCommerce might also create new markets or extend market reach beyond traditional borders. Enlarging the market will have a positive effect on jobs. Another important issue relates to inter linkages among activities affected by e-commerce. Expenditure for e-commerce-related intermediate goods and services will create jobs indirectly, on the basis of the volume of electronic transactions and their effect on prices, costs and productivity. The convergence of media, telecommunication and computing technologies is creating a new integrated supply chain for the production and delivery of multimedia and information content. Most of the employment related to e-commerce around the content industries and communication infrastructure such as the Internet.

Jobs are both created and destroyed by technology, trade, and organizational change. These processes also underlie changes in the skill composition of employment. Beyond the net employment gains or losses brought about by these factors, it is apparent that workers with different skill levels will be affected differently. E-commerce is certainly driving the demand for IT professionals but it also requires IT expertise to be coupled with strong business application skills, thereby generating demand for a flexible, multi-skilled work force. There is a growing need for increased integration of Internet front-end applications with enterprise operations, applications and back-end databases. Many of the IT skill requirements needed for Internet support can be met by low-paid IT workers who can deal with the organizational services needed for basic web page programming. However, wide area networks, competitive web sites, and complex network applications require much more skill than a platform-specific IT job. Since the skills required for e-commerce are rare and in high demand, e-commerce might accelerate the up skilling trend in many countries by requiring high-skilled computer scientists to replace low-skilled information clerks, cashiers and market salespersons.

3. Education

Advances in information technology will affect the craft of teaching by complementing rather than eliminating traditional classroom instruction. Indeed the effective instructor acts in a mixture of roles. In one role the instructor is a supplier of services to the students, who might be regarded as its customers. But the effective instructor occupies another role as well, as a supervisor of students, and plays a role in motivating, encouraging, evaluating, and developing students. For any topic there will always be a small percentage of students with the necessary background, motivation, and self-discipline to learn from self-paced workbooks or computer assisted instruction. For the majority of students, however, the presence of a live instructor will continue to be far more effective than a computer assisted counterpart in facilitating positive educational outcomes. The greatest potential for new information technology lies in improving the productivity of time spent outside the classroom. Making solutions to problem sets and assigned reading materials available on the Internet offers a lot of convenience. E-mail vastly simplifies communication between students and faculty and among students who may be engaged in group projects. Advances in information technology will affect the craft of teaching by complementing rather than eliminating traditional classroom instruction. Indeed the effective instructor acts in a mixture of roles. In one role the instructor is a supplier of services to the students, who might be regarded as its customers. But the effective instructor occupies another role as well, as a supervisor of students, and plays a role in motivating, encouraging, evaluating, and developing students. For any topic there will always be a small percentage of students with the necessary background, motivation, and self-discipline to learn from self-paced workbooks or computer assisted instruction. For the majority of students, however, the presence of a live instructor will continue to be far more effective than a computer assisted counterpart in facilitating positive educational outcomes. The greatest potential for new information technology lies in improving the productivity of time spent outside the classroom. Making solutions to problem sets and assigned reading materials available on the Internet offers a lot of convenience. E-mail vastly simplifies communication between students and faculty and among students who may be engaged in group projects.

Although distance learning has existed for some time, the Internet makes possible a large expansion in coverage and better delivery of instruction. Text can be combined with audio/ video, and students can interact in real time via e-mail and discussion groups. Such technical improvements coincide with a general demand for retraining by those who, due to work and family demands, cannot attend traditional courses. Distance learning via the Internet is likely to complement existing schools for children and university students, but it could have more of a substitution effect for continuing education programmes. For some degree programmes, high-prestige institutions could use their reputation to attract students who would otherwise attend a local facility. Owing to the Internet’s ease of access and convenience for distance learning, overall demand for such programmes will probably expand, leading to growth in this segment of e-commerce.

As shown in the previous section, high level skills are vital in a technology-based and knowledge intensive economy. Changes associated with rapid technological advances in industry have made continual upgrading of professional skills an economic necessity. The goal of lifelong learning can only be accomplished by reinforcing and adapting existing systems of learning, both in public and private sectors. The demand for education and training concerns the full range of modern technology. Information technologies are uniquely capable of providing ways to meet this demand. Online training via the Internet ranges from accessing self-study courses to complete electronic classrooms. These computer-based training programmes provide flexibility in skills acquisition and are more affordable and relevant than more traditional seminars and courses.

4. Private Life and Society

Increasing representation of a wide variety of content in digital form results in easier and cheaper duplication and distribution of information. This has a mixed effect on the provision of content. On the one hand, content can be distributed at a lower unit cost. On the other hand, distribution of content outside of channels that respect intellectual property rights can reduce the incentives of creators and distributors to produce and make content available in the first place. Information technology raises a host of questions about intellectual property protection and new tools and regulations have to be developed in order to solve this problem.

Many issues also surround free speech and regulation of content on the Internet, and there continue to be calls for mechanisms to control objectionable content. However it is very difficult to find a sensible solution. Dealing with indecent material involves understanding not only the views on such topics but also their evolution over time. Furthermore, the same technology that allows for content altering with respect to decency can be used to filter political speech and to restrict access to political material. Thus, if censorship does not appear to be an option, a possible solution might be labelling. The idea is that consumers will be better informed in their decisions to avoid objectionable content.

The rapid increase in computing and communications power has raised considerable concern about privacy both in the public and private sector. Decreases in the cost of data storage and information processing make it likely that it will become practicable for both government and private data-mining enterprises to collect detailed dossiers on all citizens. Nobody knows who currently collects data about individuals, how this data is used and shared or how this data might be misused. These concerns lower the consumers’ trust in online institutions and communication and, thus, inhibit the development of electronic commerce. A technological approach to protecting privacy might by cryptography although it might be claimed that cryptography presents a serious barrier to criminal investigations.

It is popular wisdom that people today suffer information overload. A lot of the information available on the Internet is incomplete and even incorrect. People spend more and more of their time absorbing irrelevant information just because it is available and they think they should know about it. Therefore, it must be studied how people assign credibility to the information they collect in order to invent and develop new credibility systems to help consumers to manage the information overload.

Technological progress inevitably creates dependence on technology. Indeed the creation of vital infrastructure ensures dependence on that infrastructure. As surely as the world is now dependent on its transport, telephone, and other infrastructures, it will be dependent on the emerging information infrastructure. Dependence on technology can bring risks. Failures in the technological infrastructure can cause the collapse of economic and social functionality. Blackouts of long-distance telephone service, credit data systems, and electronic funds transfer systems, and other such vital communications and information processing services would undoubtedly cause widespread economic disruption. However, it is probably impossible to avoid technological dependence. Therefore, what must be considered is the exposure brought from dependence on technologies with a recognizable probability of failure, no workable substitute at hand, and high costs as a result of failure.

The ongoing computing and communications revolution has numerous economic and social impacts on modern society and requires serious social science investigation in order to manage its risks and dangers. Such work would be valuable for both social policy and technology design. Decisions have to be taken carefully. Many choices being made now will be costly or difficult to modify in the future.

Does Technology Benefit Young Children’s Education?

As parents, all of us have fought the battle with our kids as they are absorbed into a video game or movie on an iPad, tablet or smartphone. We’ve had a better chance of getting the attention of Tom Cruise walking the red carpet than our kids.

Today, it’s common for two-year-olds to be using iPads, elementary schoolers hooked up to video games, and we all suffer (or live with) the challenge of prying your middle-schooler away from the computer long enough to eat a decent meal…

Technology is everywhere and its draw on kids is obvious, but is technology helping our kids learn?
Technology is becoming more social, adaptive, and customized, and as a result, it can be a fantastic teaching tool. That stated, as parents, we need to establish boundaries.

Today, software is connecting kids to online learning communities, tracking kids’ progress through lessons and games, and customizing each students’ experience.

By the time your child is in elementary school, they will probably well-versed in technology.

Learning with Technology at School
Schools are investing more and more in technology. Whether your child’s class uses an interactive Smartboard, laptops, or another device, here are three ways to make sure that technology is used effectively.

Young children love playing with technology, from iPads to digital cameras. What do early childhood practitioners – and parents, too – need to think about before handing kids these gadgets?

Let’s start at the beginning: what is technology in early childhood?
Technology can be as simple as a camera, audio recorder, music player, TV, DVD player, or more recent technology like iPads, tablets, and smartphones used in child care centers, classrooms, or at home.

More than once, I’ve had teachers tell me, “I don’t do technology.” I ask them if they’ve ever taken a digital photo of their students, played a record, tape, or DVD, or give kids headphones to listen to a story.

Teachers have always used technology. The difference is that now teachers are using really powerful tools like iPads and iPhones in their personal and professional lives.

Technology is just a tool.
It shouldn’t be used in classrooms or child care centers because it’s cool, but because teachers can do activities that support the healthy development of children.

Teachers are using digital cameras – a less flashy technology than iPads – in really creative ways to engage children in learning. That may be all they need.

At the same time, teachers need to be able to integrate technology into the classroom or child care center as a social justice matter.

We can’t assume that all children have technology at home.

A lack of exposure could widen the digital divide – that is, the gap between those with and without access to digital technology – and limit some children’s school readiness and early success.

Just as all children need to learn how to handle a book in early literacy, they need to be taught how to use technology, including how to open it, how it works, and how to take care of it.

Experts worry that technology is bad for children.

There are serious concerns about children spending too much time in front of screens, especially given the many screens in children’s lives.

Today, very young children are sitting in front of TVs, playing on iPads and iPhones, and watching their parents take photos on a digital camera, which has its own screen.

There used to be only the TV screen.

That was the screen we worried about and researched for 30 years.

We as a field know a whole lot about the impact of TV on children’s behavior and learning, but we know very little about all the new digital devices.

The American Academy of Pediatrics discourages screen time for children under two years old, but the NAEYC/Fred Rogers position statement takes a slightly different stance.

It says that technology and media should be limited, but what matters most is how it is used.

What is the content?

Is it being used in an intentional manner?

Is it developmentally appropriate?

As parents, we need to be aware of the drawbacks of technology and its impact on eyesight, vocabulary and physical development. We also need to be cognizant of our kids overall development,

My advice to teachers and parents is to trust your instincts. You know your child and if you think they have been watching the screen too long, turn it off.

It’s up to us, as parents, to notice that your child’s computer time is reducing or limiting interactions and playtime with other kids and nudge them in new directions. To encourage them to be physically active, to get outside and play.

It’s also up to the adult to understand the child’s personality and disposition and to figure out if a technology is one of the ways the child chooses to interact with the world.

At the same time, cut yourself some slack.

We all know that there are better things to do with children’s time than to plop them in front of a TV, but we also know that child care providers have to make lunch, and parents need time to take a shower.

In situations like that, it is the adult’s job to make the technology time more valuable and interactive by asking questions and connecting a child’s virtual experience on the screen with real-life experiences in her world.

Learning with Technology at Home
Whether you’re giving your child your smart screen phone to entertain them, or it’s your toddlers’ preferred playtime is on an iPad or tablet, here are eight ways to make sure your child’s experiences with technology are educational and fun.

Focus on Active Engagement

Any time your child is engaged with a screen, stop a program, or mute the commercials, and ask engaging questions. What was that character thinking? Why did the main character do that? What would you have done in that situation?

Allow for Repetition DVDs and YouTube videos add an essential ingredient for young minds which is repetition. Let your young child to watch the same video over and over, and ask him what he noticed after each viewing.

Make it Tactile Unlike computers that require a mouse to manipulate objects on the screen, iPads, tablets and smartphones allow kids manipulate “physical” objects with their fingers.

Practice Problem Solving An emerging category of games will force your child to solve problems as they play, potentially building concentration and analytical skills in the process; although the jury is still out on this. There is no clinical data that supports the marketing message of app makers.

Encourage Creation Use technology for creation, not just entertainment. Have your child record a story on your iPod, or sing a song into your video game system. Then, create an entirely new sound using the playback options, slow down and speed up their voice and add different backgrounds and beats until they’ve created something uniquely theirs.

Show Him How to Use It Many computer games have different levels and young children may not know how to move up or change levels. If your child is stuck on one level that’s become too easy, ask if he knows how to move up and help him if he wants more of a challenge.

Ask Why If your child is using an app or game the “wrong” way, always pressing the incorrect button, for example, ask them why. It may be that they like hearing the noise the game makes when they get the question wrong, or they might be stuck and can’t figure out which group of objects match number four.

Focus on Play Young kids should be exploring and playing with technology. This should be considered play, and not a focus on drilling skills.

Ask For Your Own Log-In Often, school programs come with a parent log-in that will allow you to see your child’s progress. If it doesn’t, ask to see the reports that a teacher has access to. Then, check his progress every few weeks. It’s a great way for you and your child to be on the same page about their progress.

Ask About Teacher Training Technology is often implemented in classrooms without appropriate professional development. If your child’s classroom is using a whole-class system, such as Clickers or an Interactive Smartboard, ask how it’s used in class and what training the teacher has had. “As a parent, you want to know if teachers feel well trained and they’re putting [new technologies] to good use.

Find Parent Resources One of the best ways that technology can help your child is by helping you learn more about learning.

Computers, smartphones, and tablets aren’t going away, but with a few tweaks and consideration, you can make your child’s technology-time productive, educational, and fun!

Let’s be honest. Most children can use a mouse, open and close apps, and even search the internet by the time they are three years old.

Once they have the cognitive ability, it’s time to talk with your child about internet safety.

Set clear guidelines and internet safety rules about what types of media are acceptable and carefully support and monitor your child’s technology use.

Tell your child to never share her name, address, or personal information online or on social media.

Talk with your child about what to do if he comes across inappropriate content (close the screen and alert you), and make sure you have a high-quality web filter and security system in place.

Wrapping it Up
Help your child understand that technology is just one of many tools for learning. Download educational games, read books and conduct research. When your child asks a question, conduct an Internet search to find the answer.

What Is the Relevance of Technology?

“Technology in the long-run is irrelevant”. That is what a customer of mine told me when I made a presentation to him about a new product. I had been talking about the product’s features and benefits and listed “state-of-the-art technology” or something to that effect, as one of them. That is when he made his statement. I realized later that he was correct, at least within the context of how I used “Technology” in my presentation. But I began thinking about whether he could be right in other contexts as well.

What is Technology?

Merriam-Webster defines it as:

1

a: the practical application of knowledge especially in a particular area: engineering 2 <medical technology>

b: a capability given by the practical application of knowledge <a car’s fuel-saving technology>

2

: a manner of accomplishing a task especially using technical processes, methods, or knowledge

3

: the specialized aspects of a particular field of endeavor <educational technology>

Wikipedia defines it as:

Technology (from Greek τέχνη, techne, “art, skill, cunning of hand”; and -λογία, -logia[1]) is the making, modification, usage, and knowledge of tools, machines, techniques, crafts, systems, and methods of organization, in order to solve a problem, improve a preexisting solution to a problem, achieve a goal, handle an applied input/output relation or perform a specific function. It can also refer to the collection of such tools, including machinery, modifications, arrangements and procedures. Technologies significantly affect human as well as other animal species’ ability to control and adapt to their natural environments. The term can either be applied generally or to specific areas: examples include construction technology, medical technology, and information technology.

Both definitions revolve around the same thing – application and usage.

Technology is an enabler

Many people mistakenly believe it is technology which drives innovation. Yet from the definitions above, that is clearly not the case. It is opportunity which defines innovation and technology which enables innovation. Think of the classic “Build a better mousetrap” example taught in most business schools. You might have the technology to build a better mousetrap, but if you have no mice or the old mousetrap works well, there is no opportunity and then the technology to build a better one becomes irrelevant. On the other hand, if you are overrun with mice then the opportunity exists to innovate a product using your technology.

Another example, one with which I am intimately familiar, are consumer electronics startup companies. I’ve been associated with both those that succeeded and those that failed. Each possessed unique leading edge technologies. The difference was opportunity. Those that failed could not find the opportunity to develop a meaningful innovation using their technology. In fact to survive, these companies had to morph oftentimes into something totally different and if they were lucky they could take advantage of derivatives of their original technology. More often than not, the original technology wound up in the scrap heap. Technology, thus, is an enabler whose ultimate value proposition is to make improvements to our lives. In order to be relevant, it needs to be used to create innovations that are driven by opportunity.

Technology as a competitive advantage?

Many companies list a technology as one of their competitive advantages. Is this valid? In some cases yes, but In most cases no.

Technology develops along two paths – an evolutionary path and a revolutionary path.

A revolutionary technology is one which enables new industries or enables solutions to problems that were previously not possible. Semiconductor technology is a good example. Not only did it spawn new industries and products, but it spawned other revolutionary technologies – transistor technology, integrated circuit technology, microprocessor technology. All which provide many of the products and services we consume today. But is semiconductor technology a competitive advantage? Looking at the number of semiconductor companies that exist today (with new ones forming every day), I’d say not. How about microprocessor technology? Again, no. Lots of microprocessor companies out there. How about quad core microprocessor technology? Not as many companies, but you have Intel, AMD, ARM, and a host of companies building custom quad core processors (Apple, Samsung, Qualcomm, etc). So again, not much of a competitive advantage. Competition from competing technologies and easy access to IP mitigates the perceived competitive advantage of any particular technology. Android vs iOS is a good example of how this works. Both operating systems are derivatives of UNIX. Apple used their technology to introduce iOS and gained an early market advantage. However, Google, utilizing their variant of Unix (a competing technology), caught up relatively quickly. The reasons for this lie not in the underlying technology, but in how the products made possible by those technologies were brought to market (free vs. walled garden, etc.) and the differences in the strategic visions of each company.

Evolutionary technology is one which incrementally builds upon the base revolutionary technology. But by it’s very nature, the incremental change is easier for a competitor to match or leapfrog. Take for example wireless cellphone technology. Company V introduced 4G products prior to Company A and while it may have had a short term advantage, as soon as Company A introduced their 4G products, the advantage due to technology disappeared. The consumer went back to choosing Company A or Company V based on price, service, coverage, whatever, but not based on technology. Thus technology might have been relevant in the short term, but in the long term, became irrelevant.

In today’s world, technologies tend to quickly become commoditized, and within any particular technology lies the seeds of its own death.

Technology’s Relevance

This article was written from the prospective of an end customer. From a developer/designer standpoint things get murkier. The further one is removed from the technology, the less relevant it becomes. To a developer, the technology can look like a product. An enabling product, but a product nonetheless, and thus it is highly relevant. Bose uses a proprietary signal processing technology to enable products that meet a set of market requirements and thus the technology and what it enables is relevant to them. Their customers are more concerned with how it sounds, what’s the price, what’s the quality, etc., and not so much with how it is achieved, thus the technology used is much less relevant to them.

Recently, I was involved in a discussion on Google+ about the new Motorola X phone. A lot of the people on those posts slammed the phone for various reasons – price, locked boot loader, etc. There were also plenty of knocks on the fact that it didn’t have a quad-core processor like the S4 or HTC One which were priced similarly. What they failed to grasp is that whether the manufacturer used 1, 2, 4, or 8 cores in the end makes no difference as long as the phone can deliver a competitive (or even best of class) feature set, functionality, price, and user experience. The iPhone is one of the most successful phones ever produced, and yet it runs on a dual-core processor. It still delivers one of the best user experiences on the market. The features that are enabled by the technology are what are relevant to the consumer, not the technology itself.

The relevance of technology therefore, is as an enabler, not as a product feature or a competitive advantage, or any myriad of other things – an enabler. Looking at the Android operating system, it is an impressive piece of software technology, and yet Google gives it away. Why? Because standalone, it does nothing for Google. Giving it away allows other companies to use their expertise to build products and services which then act as enablers for Google’s products and services. To Google, that’s where the real value is.