Digital

6G: how can we make it open, inclusive and focussed on the great global challenges?

In this EngShort we discuss the future of 6G. The quest for higher data speeds has been the driver of mobile technology change. We have seen this from 1G to 5G where increased data speeds have reduced download times. But this approach to next-generation mobile technology is no longer sustainable. A new approach for 6G is needed and we are advocating for 6G to be seen as a framework for thinking long-term about the digital infrastructure that will be needed beyond 2030.

Internet voting: Why can’t I vote online?

This #EngShort by the IET looks at whether technology is ready to offer internet voting in a safe and secure way. Flexible methods of voting provide better service and support to voters but we must ensure that solving accessibility issues doesn’t generate a #digitaldivide. 7% of households in the UK don’t have access to the internet. Robust cybersecurity processes must be in place for any #internetvoting system to be considered feasible. If you voted online, would you trust that your vote is safe from #fraud?

Are you protecting your privacy online?

We are living in an increasingly digitalised world and more digital technology is being used in schools, businesses and governments. But what should we consider when embracing these digital technologies? Did you know that false news spreads 6 times faster than the truth on Twitter? When we like, share or comment on social media we are also sharing personal data about ourselves. While digital skills are encouraged in workplaces and schools, digital ethic guidelines should also be considered. User awareness is crucial as we continue moving to a digital world. How are you protecting your digital privacy?

How are subsea cables keeping our world connected?

The demand for internet capacity grows in excess of 40% per year but did you know that 99% of the world’s communications are provided by subsea cables?

So, how secure is this vital infrastructure? Despite being built to withstand the harsh marine environment, they are vulnerable to dame and disruption. The biggest threat to subsea cables is anchoring and fishing. How can we promote marine safety and protect submarine cables? Find out more at escaeu.org

Should you be concerned about 5G?

5G is the next evolution in mobile technology that provides a wide variety of features including faster download speeds, more consistent quality and greater capacity to cope with the increasing demands of customers.

There is, however, still false information about 5G and its health effects. Some of it is pure fantasy, but there have also been sincere concerns expressed by some, including scientists, who are not up to date with how 5G has evolved in the UK.

How will digital technology advance post-COVID?

COVID-19 has introduced new challenges for us all.

As the world begins to recover, we must think about the lessons we have learnt and what technologies should stay in place. Will working from home become taboo again?

What are other countries doing that we can implement or learn from?

IET EngShorts - What level of privacy would you give up to stay safe?

In an attempt to stop the spread of COVID-19 and enforce social distancing practices, governments across the globe are building relationships with social media and telecommunications providers.

The hope is that this information will provide a better understanding of how the virus is spreading globally and whether individuals are practicing appropriate social distancing measures.

But there are still many concerns and factors that need to be considered.

IET EngShorts - Is working from home the future?

How easily adaptable has working from home been? And can companies afford to keep putting our health first? With schools now predominately closed and increased pressure on internet bandwidth, can working from home become the norm?

Access our free home learning resources to free up your bandwidth by allowing children to do activities.

IET EngShorts - Are engineering firms prepared for cyber attacks?

Cyber attacks are now the fastest-growing crime across the globe, and with engineering companies at the heart of the digital revolution, they're becoming increasingly vulnerable to cyber threats.

But are UK firms ready to respond to new attacks, and how can they ensure they're prepared?

IET EngShorts - Why cant I vote online?

Would you want to vote online? We already use electronic voting for quizzes, reality TV and online polls, so why not elections?

Not only could it save us a trip to the polling station, but it could also potentially increase voter turnout, especially with younger people. What do you think? 

IET EngShorts - Will a robot take my job?

As a society, we're seeing technology change the way we work, rest and play. The use of robots in the workplace is growing fast, with some manufacturers already using robot workers alongside humans.

So, could robots improve our health and happiness at work?

IET EngShorts - Will everyone have access to 5G?

5G promises to help connect billions of devices across the globe, transforming healthcare, making autonomous vehicles a reality and powering factories for the future.

To ensure this happens, we need an innovative approach so that 5G can go further and faster for everyone, no matter their location.

IET EngShorts - Why do we need 5G?

5G may seem like an upgrade from 4G, but it’s so much more than just a faster connection.

5G has a far greater capacity to process huge amounts of data, which will be essential for new technology like smart homes, self-driving vehicles and even remote healthcare.

IET EngShorts - Should 5-year-olds learn to code?

Should 5-year-olds learn to code? In the next 20 years, 90% of jobs could require digital skills.

Given the growing demand for digital skills in the workplace, should more schools have coding in their curriculum?

IET EngShorts - Could AI be biased?

Could AI be biased? Artificial intelligence learns from the world around it by analysing the data we give it.

So, could AI pick up discriminatory behaviour from its surroundings too?

Got an idea for a future topic?

If you have any questions, feedback, ideas or just want to see if it can fit in with anything you are working on get in touch!

Please email SEP@theiet.org.