Happy 25th Birthday – ITGS

ITGS will be 25 years old this month!

At the end of October 1990, members of the Computing Studies Subject Committee (now called Computer Science) met to write the Proposal for a Pilot Program for Information Technology in a Global Society.  ITGS was “born”.

Over the years, I have stack away ITGS documentation: the Proposal, the ITGS Guide for the Pilot programme and the various versions of ITGS Guides. It is amazing to see how the topics and approach to teaching and learning the subject has evolved over the years with each iteration of the guide.

Please browse the introduction in the Proposal from October 1990 below. How well has it held up over the test of time? What would this statement look like now in October 2015?

NATURE OF THE SUBJECT

The rapid advances in technology have plunged modern man into the information age. Extensive international databases of information can be readily accessed and communications can be sent around the world in minutes. The cost of technology has drastically declined as the speed of processing information has increased. Powerful, reliable, affordable and easy-to-use information processing tools are available for personal use. Organisations needing to make decisions quickly and accurately can process vast amounts of information effectively and efficiently. Consequently, the collecting, processing, analyzing and representing of information has become a dynamic dimension in today’s society.

Technology has invaded areas once reserved for people – forecasting future events from past trends, controlling production of goods, and simulating the human thinking processes, etc. New horizons for exploration have emerged – artificial intelligence, robotics and fractal geometry – to name a few. New moral issues have also surfaced – the protection of the rights to personal data, information destruction by viruses, and the proliferation of hacking and technology-based crimes.

Moreover, technology has also taken over processing tasks that are too boring, tedious, dangerous or expensive to be performed by humans. New job opportunities and careers have been created and other have vanished. The challenges face modern man: to understand the uses of information systems; to evaluate the consequences of those technologies on society; to question the social impact which has resulted; and to project with changes will most likely emerge in the future.

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