Stanca Express

pony express.jpg

At the end of his glorious five years at the head of the Ministry of Inovation, Stanca is throwing in the towel.
He has understood that the Italians, distracted by digital terrestrial, annoyed by connection costs among the highest in the world, and often not living within the areas covered by ADSL, haven't yet gone digital.

What to do with this amazing situation?
It’s simple, just inform them about the digital revolution with a 48-page booklet: “Digital Innovation for Families” that will be sent out to the 16 million Italian families.
By post of course, otherwise how would the families get it?
They’re not connected to the Internet.
Otherwise they would read it at their convenience using their PC as you all can do.
Using paper to explain digital is like sending a letter by pony after the invention of the automobile.

How much will it cost to send 48 pages x 16 million families?
Sevenmilliontwohundredandseventythousand Euros which is 45 cents a copy to print, stuff into an envelope and send.
But excuse me, what the f...k! wouldn’t it have been better to provide Italian schools with a few hundreds of thousands of PCs with that money?

The booklet is accompanied by a comic piece from the dwarf carrier of Internet: “the Government is promoting the digital revolution by a series of initiatives unequalled in Europe, starting from the teaching of informatics in the first year of school, and even facilitating the purchase of computers and access to Broadband.”

Let’s do our duty as citizens, helping the coffers of the State:
1 – let’s download the booklet from the Internet and thus avoid this waste of paper.
2 – let’s send an email to Stanca (address: L.Stanca@governo.it) asking him not to send us anything by post.
3 – let’s have a whip-round so that we can donate a PC to Stanca, we’ll digitalise him!

Posted by Beppe Grillo at 05:43 PM in | Comments (3)
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Let's skip the discussion about teaching primary school students computer skills and go right to the important stuff. In other countries-Canada for one, where I am from-the school system has a wonderful little course in the first year of high school-a mandatory course-called TYPING. For some people it's easy, for some it's hell on wheels, but imagine....

You walk into a classroom full of computers (first day of classes, I remind you) thinking this is going to be sooooo easy. Then you look at the keyboard and realize that they've taken all the keys with letters printed on them away, and replaced them with blank, white, keys. Above the monitor there is a chart with a drawing of a keyboard on it, which tells you where all the letters are located. Needless to say, you have to learn to type while looking at the document you need to type and not the keyboard. After a year (or a symester in some schools) you learn to type using all 5 fingers and looking at the screen (or document you're typing) and at a minimum speed (if I remember correctly) of 50 words per minute. But wait, there's more! If you don't manage to do this in a year, you get to repeat the course the following year. That's right folks, you just keep on typing until you get it right.

And wait! To keep you using your computer skills throughout the rest of high school, they make it mandatory that you take either a computer programming or information processing course in the second or third year. Furthermore, every single project or report you hand in to any teacher on any subject has to be typed either on computer or typewriter (not that anyone has a typewriter anymore), and students have no excuse not to, because the public libraries have computers you can use for free, and they charge something like 2 cents a page to print. And if you really don't have the money, the teacher's usually organized (volunteered) a half hour 3 times a week for students to come in during lunch time and type thier projects!

These are real skills! They're job skills! Employers want people who can type as fast as they can talk (trust me I type 110 word per minute, they love it when they see I can keep up to them). These are the things they need to be teaching in the Liceo's of Italy. And not just in the "Linguistico" or "Turistico" in every single High School of every kind. Even the guy at the gas pumps these days has to know how to use a computer(that's what the cash registers are now).


This people, is what we need in our schools.

Posted by: Cara Rowley | January 28, 2006 11:38 PM


You want to know why?
Italy is a nation of people technically smart on one side and lazy under the political point of view.
This gave way to bad and lazy government and to the mafia inside it.
Everybody does whatever they want and when everything gets out of hand they blame everybody else but themselves, barking to each other like zealots of a parallel world.

Posted by: Giovanni Principe | January 26, 2006 11:33 PM


I post this on an analog line at 50666 bps, located just 50 km from Perugia and 6 km from Citta di Castello. I have been promised a broadband connection "tra poco" for over 5 years. There is fibre-optic cable and a sign warning where it is TO MY HOUSE. But I cannot even get ISDN. They call me up asking why I don't abbonarmi every month, then I ask them to check availability and it ends, "Mi dispiace, signora."
Is it any wonder that online commerce and IT capability are a daydream in Italy? How can the same country make the Ferrari, which looks like a moon car and not have decent fast internet connection?
When the certificate was offered for the digital TV decoder, I went to buy it, but the salesman went online and showed me that we are not covered. So most of Italy got a 150 euro break on high definition TV, and we got a load of ...
Oh well, I'll stop before I sound bitter. Boh! Too late.

Posted by: Judith Greenwood | January 23, 2006 09:39 PM


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