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Staying Connected

2006 (22:00 mins) Island Topics #48 Business

The information highway is changing at a dazzling speed. Cell phones are commonplace today-far more so than the old CB radios were twenty years ago, or ham radios were twenty years before that. Today we routinely make long distance calls to relatives living abroad. Photos and music are transmitted instantly to anyone anywhere. Local island radio programs can now be picked up via computer by Micronesians living abroad. Students access Internet as a matter of course, and some even do the course work for their Master's degree online. Medical reports and x-rays can be sent instantaneously to experts in Honolulu or Manila. Fishing boats determine their position by GPS. Even in the outer islands, communications are being rapidly modernized.

The fiber optic cable that is scheduled to reach these islands soon promises to greatly expand and speed the information flow in and out of Micronesia. This video provides a glimpse at these changes and suggests what they might mean for Micronesians. A high-speed information highway is more important than ever now that one out of every four Micronesians lives overseas. The globe may have shrunk, but our own island world is constantly expanding. Staying connected-with our own people and what the world has to offer us-is no longer a luxury, but an absolute necessity.

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