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Part 11. Информатизация общества

Exercise 1. Before reading the text, give Russian equivalent to the following words. Make up sentences with each word.

labor

inspire

civilization

determinism

dimension

highlight

extent

expand

encompass

whereby

discourse

feature

unprecedented

coin

prefer

Exercise 2. Read the text then answer the questions below.

Informatization

Informatization or informatisation refers to the extent by which a geographical area, an economy or a society is becoming information-based, i.e., increase in size of its information labor force. Usage of the term was inspired by Marc Porat’s categories of ages of human civilization: the Agricultural Age, the Industrial Age and the Information Age (1978). Informatization to the Information Age is what industrialization was to the Industrial Age. It has been stated that:

The Agricultural Age has brought about the agriculturization of the planet. The Industrial Age has caused among other things the industrialization of agriculture. The Information Age has resulted to the informatization of the agricultural industry.

The term has mostly been used within the context of national development. Everett Rogers defines informatization as the process through which new communication technologies are used as a means for furthering development as a nation becomes more and more an information society. However, some observers, such as Alexander Flor have cautioned about the negative impact of informatization on traditional societies.

Recently, the technological determinism dimension has been highlighted in informatization. Randy Kluver of Texas A&M University defines informatization as the process primarily by which information technologies, such as the World Wide Web and other communication technologies, have transformed economic and social relations to such an extent that cultural and economic barriers are minimized. Kluver expands the concept to encompass the civic and cultural arenas. He believes that it is a process whereby information and communication technologies shape cultural and civic discourse.

G. Wang describes the same phenomenon (1994) which she calls "informatization" as a "process" of change that features (a) the use of informatization and IT (information technologies) to such an extent that they become the dominant forces in commanding economic, political, social and cultural development; and (b) unprecedented growth in the speed, quantity, and popularity of information production and distribution."

Origin of the term

The term informatisation was coined by Simon Nora and Alain Minc in their publication L'Informatisation de la sociйtй: Rapport а M. le Prйsident de la Rйpublique which was translated in English in 1980 as The Computerization of Society: A report to the President of France. However, in an article published in 1987 Minc preferred to use Informatisation and not computerization.

Exercise 3. Questions under discussing:

  1. What does the term “informatization” mean?

  2. Who used this term first?

  3. Which Ages do you know?

  4. How does Everett Rogers define informatization?

  5. Has anyone of the observant cautioned about the negative impact of informatization?

  6. What helps to minimize cultural and economic barriers?

  7. How does G.Wang describe informatization?

  8. Who and when coined this term?

Exercise 4. Choose of the definitions, which is the best, in your opinion. Prove your answer. Express your opinion and try to give your own definition of this term.

Exercise 5. Make up a short dialogue with your partner, in which you describe to him this term in your words.

Exercise 6. Say TRUE or FALSE to the following statements. Use information from the text:

  1. “Informatization” and “informatisation” mean the same.

  2. Informatization means that geographical area, an economy or a polocy is becoming information-based.

  3. Everett Rogers states, that informatization develops the usage of new devices and technologies in order to develop the society.

  4. G. Wang describes informatization as a process of decrease in the speed, quantity, and popularity of information production and distribution.

  5. Alain Minc chose the term computerization instead of Informatisation in an article published in 1987.

Exercise 7. Put the words together:

communication area

cultural technologies

geographical Age

labor force

Agricultural industry

dominant impact

agricultural force

negative development

Exercise 8. Before reading the text, give Russian equivalent to the following words. Make up sentences with each word.

far-reaching propel

repercussion usher

living scarce

view commodity

centrality redefine

arena overlap

participative diminish

issue proliferation

Exercise 9. Read and translate the text.