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Technology In The Age Of Participation

14 September 2005 - Welcome Speech By Mr Chan Yeng Kit, Chief Executive Officer, Infocomm Development Authority of Singapore At IDA Distinguished Infocomm Speaker Series, Singapore International Convention and Exhibition Centre.

Welcome Speech By Mr Chan Yeng Kit, Chief Executive Officer, Infocomm Development Authority of Singapore At IDA Distinguished Infocomm Speaker Series on 14 September 2005, Singapore International Convention and Exhibition Centre.

Distinguished Guests,
Ladies and Gentlemen,

Good afternoon.

1. Many of you would have come across it before - that steaming coffee cup logo. Java technology, which the logo represents, has become the iconic symbol of Sun Microsystem's vision of seamless connectivity and anywhere computing.

2. From toys, to cars and planes, and even NASA's Mars rover, Java software powers many of the onboard computers within. Sun estimates the total Java economy to be more than US$100 billion in sales annually, driving an additional US$110 billion in related IT spending. Or to put in perspective, this is more than the GDP of many countries, including Singapore.

3. IDA has been collaborating with Sun on initiatives to develop Java capabilities in Singapore, since 1997. Our series of Java Tarik programmes have helped to transfer Java technology to local infocomm companies, train local infocomm manpower, and spur the development of Java applications. The on-going Java TONE programme has resulted in the setting up of the Managed Computing Competency Centre, to develop capabilities in utility and grid computing.

4. This year is the 10th anniversary of the invention of Java. In the short span of one decade, Java has become a pervasive and powerful platform for connectivity, communication and collaboration for millions of users worldwide. Much of this is a result of the vision and drive of the man behind Sun Microsystems - Mr Scott McNealy.

5. Scott, it's a privilege to have you here today as IDA's Distinguished Infocomm Speaker.

6. Sun owes much of its reputation as a constant innovator and forward-looking company to Scott. Scott is widely recognized by the industry as a visionary and a thought leader. His ideas about computing are often ahead of his time. He had been advancing Sun's slogan, that the "Network is the Computer", way before the Internet and grid computing became buzzwords.

7. Scott will be talking later about the role of technology in the Age of Participation. To put it in Scott's own words, we have moved beyond the Information Age to the Age of Participation - where technology will provide even greater network access, near universal connectivity and dramatically increase the connectivity between individuals, communities and organizations. What we see and use today is only just the beginning. We look forward to hearing Scott share with us, his views of how this Age of Participation is poised to open up new and exciting opportunities and possibilities.

8. To all the IT professionals present here today, I hope you will be inspired by Scott, and seize the opportunities ahead. To all the students who are already pursuing Infocomm courses, I hope you will be re-assured that you have made the right choice. And to all the students who are still deciding whether to take up infocomm as a career, I hope Scott can motivate you to take the plunge. It is a dynamic and exciting profession, where you have a chance to make a real difference - to society and even the world.

9. It now gives me great pleasure to once again welcome Mr Java himself - Scott McNealy!