draft declaration at Kozhikode
==This is a Draft Declaration==
We request all those who read this to suggest any changes before
Monday 13th September 2010, so that the declaration can be released
sooner than later.
==The Role of ICT and Education in Social Inclusion==
Information & Communication Technology (ICT) is one of the most powerful
technologies ever developed by humankind. It has drastically changed
the way we do things, the way we communicate and even the way we
think. Education is one of the spheres of human activity that is being
strongly influenced by ICT. While the teaching of ICT has been
incorporated at the school-level, ICT itself is being used in the
classroom and outside for teaching and learning more
effectively. However, access to ICT is not universal due to various
reasons, including obscurity and the high cost of proprietary software.
Education is a basic requirement for a comfortable life in
today's society. In view of this, some countries, including India,
have made it a fundamental right. This is certainly a move in the
right direction. Education in ICT and ICT-enabled education are also
becoming wide-spread. Part of the reason for this is the rapid decline
in the cost of hardware. At the same time, the high cost of software
is acting as a hurdle for further progress. Another factor that
prevents more wide-spread use of ICT is the fact that the interface is
not available in many languages, which bothers a lot of people.
Obscurity stops people and especially students to learn how things work,
software in particular. The right to use, know, change and share
about modern artefacts is an essential human right in knowledge societies.