Internet as global information infrastructure
The global information infrastructure (GII) is the developing communications framework intended to eventually connect all telecommunications and computer networks world-wide. Sometimes called a network of networks, the GII would eventually make all electronically stored or transmitted information accessible from anywhere on the planet.
According to Christine L. Borgman, author of From Gutenberg to the Global Information Infrastructure: Access to Information in the Networked World, the creation of a successful GII could have as much impact on global culture as Gutenberg’s printing press has done since its development in the mid-fifteenth century. The GII is expected to revolutionize the ease with which electronic information can be shared across the planet much as the printing press enabled an abundance of printed information to become easily accessible for anyone who knew how to read.
The Internet is considered the de facto global information infrastructure right now. However, for the GII to evolve as envisioned, either the Internet or its successor must deal with challenging issues such as security, privacy, hardware and software compatibility, translation, rights to information, identity management, digital rights management (DRM), competition, and governance. Over 50 countries across the world are working, independently or collaboratively, to resolve these issues.
Often called as the network of networks, the global information infrastructure (GII) is the communications framework that intends on connecting all the computer network to create one global network. The factor that spurred the conception of this framework is to eventually ensure all the electronically stored or transmitted information can be accessed from anywhere around the globe.
Impact of GII
Leading industry experts deem that the successful creation of the GII could lead to a global impact that would be akin to what Gutenberg’s Printing press did for the modern world. Currently, the internet is considered as the global information infrastructure as it is the closest to what we have toward achieving this networked world. However, the multitude of challenges that come along with this information infrastructure like privacy, security, right to information, governance and other technological problems have led to GII becoming a work under progress. Today, over 50 countries are still working to solve these problems in order to find the successor of internet.
The political, economical and socio-cultural dimensions would need to adapt to the GII if its successfully implemented. As several countries have already prepared themselves for this transformation, most notably in the telecommunications department, this has led to a Global Information Society (GIS) taking shape. Furthermore, access to information for government and non-governmental organizations will become faster and lead to greater economic growth once the GII is implemented. Although still in its proposed stage, the dissemination of information across world networks is bound to change the way information is accessed in the near future.