Information and Communication Technologies

Communication technologies include techniques, tools and methods used to facilitate communications. Information technologies include the techniques, tools and methods used to create, record, modify and display the communicated content. These two types of technologies were developed separately until the 1970s, when information technology began to be applied to the telecommunication network.

The term “information and communication technology” (ICT) has been adopted to reflect the convergence of these two types of technologies and associated industries. ICTs developed and applied today are technologies applicable to computers and communication systems. They are integrated or associated with modern telecommunication networks. In a wider historical sense, however, it is recognized that ICT also includes languages, gestures, habits, codes of behavior and religious rituals, as well as artistic and cultural traditions. (See also Communications )


The telegraph (1837) and the telephone (1876) allow almost instantaneous wireless communication over long distances, a major advance compared to the old methods of using railways, boats or stagecoaches. Communication based on wireless telegraph (1895), HF radio (1926) and radio-radio (or microwave) (1946) eliminate the physical constraint of having to connect each point with a cable.

Microwaves enable the use of high bandwidth channels for the transport of television signals and pave the way for the development of  satellite communication systems and space (1957). The 1970s saw the development of the first portable communication handsets and technologies on the Internet and the Web. Mobile and online communication systems have grown rapidly since their introduction in the 1980s, so that mobile Internet access (for example with smartphones) is now the dominant form of communication and the one that progresses fastest.

The development of ICT in the XXI th century is primarily focused on expanding the features and capabilities of equipment and facilities used to communicate via telephone networks. During the 1990s and 2000s, there is talk of “technology convergence” to describe how ICTs are used to link previously separate media – such as the telephone, radio, television, newspapers and newspapers. computer data – on a single platform, the Internet, which allows the dissemination of information over improved networks of high capacity and high bandwidth.

The increased ability to gather huge volumes of detailed information (metadata) and the establishment of networks of connected devices (via the Internet) has enabled the creation of new and beneficial applications such as real-time monitoring of various parameters in the field. field of science, health and environment. However, this has been accompanied by a significant erosion of confidential data protection by allowing governments, businesses and some “talented” hackers to spy on individuals and organizations.

Nation building

It has long been known that advanced communication technologies can offer enormous economic, political and military benefits. Information is power. Communication technologies have strongly influenced the distribution of power within societies, as well as the rise and fall of empires, as Canadian researcher Harold Innis has shown . A significant portion of ICT-led research and development has been funded by the military budgets of the major powers, which continue to invest in this area today.

For Canada and many other technologically advanced nations, ICT is currently the cornerstone of industrial and political strategies to promote the national economy, unify the nation and position itself in a growing global economy. more competitive. As a leader in ICT-related development and applications, Canada is well positioned to benefit from the benefits of the current revolutionary development of these technologies.

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