Monday, September 24, 2012

Click is a BBC TV programme about developments in technology. This week it began with a report from a remote location in South America, where internet communication is now possible. Spencer Kelly introduced the report, explaining that many of the developing nations have skipped expensive wired telephone networks, and gone straight to wireless.

Spencer Kelly: ... that means there aren't actually many places in the world where you can't get a signal these days. But one such place, until very recently, was 300 miles up the Amazon River, in Brazil, deep in the heart of the rain forests. And that's where we sent Dan Simmons - nothing personal - he was there to report on one of the last places on Earth to get a signal.
(Dan's report)

Yesterday's Newsround (2pm) included a short item based on the BBC Click report. The programme was introduced by Ore. "Here's what's coming up - Kids in Brazil get connected for the first time. And why we won't be seeing our Becky in Rio. First up: Liverpool have kicked off against Manchester United in the first game at Anfield since findings were published from an investigation into the 1989 ...."

(Newsround studio with Amazon River on backing screen)
Ore: There aren't many places left in the world where a mobile signal and cheap readily available internet hasn't yet been reached. But here is one place that just got connected. A new project in the Amazon has seen people in isolated villages get in touch with the digital world for the first time. Watch this.

Ore: Three hundred miles up the Amazon River, deep in the heart of the rain forest, it's about as remote as you can get. Until recently the idea of getting mobile phone coverage around here was barely believable. The cost and effort to run the cables and navigate the signals through the dense rain forest would have made it almost impossible. But now 4 bars! (signal strength indicator)

Giant masts have been built here to send phone signals for the local communities. And for the first time - wireless internet too! This school has now logged on for work and play. People here are finally enjoying the benefits of modern technology.

School pupil (translated): We can now take pictures and videos of our circus, and show others what we do. We'll be able to ask people for what we need - more resources to expand and improve.

Ore: The project has already seen pupils' reading improve as a result. But there are benefits beyond the classroom. They say the improved communication has helped save lives too.

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