Role model in IT usage
Mudunkotuwa West, village in the Ratnapura district has become a role
model in the IT skills development and the use of IT to integrate the
village development and livelihoods of the people with the markets.
The youth camp held on March 7-8 at the village showcased these
achievements of the village especially the IT skills achieved by the
village youth. The youth camp where 68 people from 19 villages
participated was organised by the ITshed society of the village.
The ITshed commercial web portal of Gemidiriya is the business link
of the Gemidiriya villages with the markets. The web provides supply and
demand information of the Gemidiriya village and links the producers
with the markets. It provides up to 500 web pages for a village which
some of the techno savvy village youth use creatively to give various
information of the village.
A training session
Sanath Mudunkotuwa, a young artist who engage in making murals has
his own web page in the ITshed web portal. The village company gives the
details of products, services and skilled labour available in the
The first day of the youth camp covered IT skills development,
including designing of web pages and learning how to use the technology
effectively link the village IT centres with relevant institutions.
After the theoretical session, they designed their own web pages and
published on the web.
On the second day they learnt about the green productivity and 5S
concepts and practically implemented the concepts in the selected
households and the village. They arranged houses according to 5S
concepts and launched green productivity initiative to the village. They
collected a lorry load of recyclable waste materials from the households
and sold them to a private company in Colombo.
On the third day they learnt lessons on how to deal with media in the
development process including training on preparation of radio and TV
programs. The camp ended with a cultural event.
In the youth camp they have optimally used IT and communication
resources the village had acquired from Gemidiriya , the resource people
who participated live far away thanks to technologyThe Gemidiriya CEO,
Dr. Gamini Batuvitage regularly participated at live discussions through
Skype and all these technical preparations were done by the village
Explaining the IT skills development of the people in Mudunkotuwa
West village, the technical consultant of the ITshed Commercial Web
portal, Ven. Mahinda Thera said, "there was a Nenasala IT centre in the
Mudunkotuwa village initiated by the Gemidiriya project. It had physical
resources but there was a lack of human capabilities and the centre was
under utilised. We supported in capacity building and at first we
trained one youth giving instructions through telephone.
Then they learnt to use Skype facility, chatting, web page designing,
office packages, desk-top publishing and got information related to
After that they started to use their knowledge and resources in a
more innovative manner and today they have integrated the IT with their
village development activities.
Their achievements are impressive", he said. Minister of Samurdhi
Development Pavitra Vanniarachchi was the chief guest at the youth camp
and she was impressed by the IT skills of the youth. Addressing the
participants she said that none of the rural development projects in Sri
Lanka is successful as Gemidiriya in the capacity building of the
As the political leader of the area who persuade to get Gemidiriya to
Ratnapura district I am happy to see the development in Gemidiriya
villages, she said.
Mudunkotuwa West is a small village with around 250 families situated
in Kiriella in the Ratnapura district.
The main livelihood of the people is agriculture, mainly tea
smallholdings and the village was isolated due to dilapidated village
Under Gemidiriya, the villagers have constructed access roads to the
village by laying concrete. The village youth have used skills
development fund to follow various technical courses, including computer
courses and some of them have already completed these courses and are
Today Mudunkotuwa West has become a model village not only for
Gemidiriya but also for similar foreign rural development programs.
Several foreign delegations have shared Mudunkotuwa experience and
last week a delegation from Afghanistan visited Mudunkotuwa.
Naoko Ishii the World Bank Country Director of Sri Lanka recently
visited Mudunkotuwa West and witnessed the development goals achieved by
this courageous people under the Gemidiriya project. Gemidiriya is a
World Bank funded project.
Virtusa supports rural schools
Virtusa Corporation (NASDAQ: VRTU), facilitated setting up IT
laboratories for fifty rural schools in the Uva province partnering as a
part of Virtusa's CSR initiative "Digital Reach". The program is carried
out in partnership with Uva Wellassa University.
This is aligned with Virtusa's sustainable strategic plan and the Uva
Wellassa social responsibility program.
The goal is to empower communities by creating avenues that
strengthen capabilities in education and employment through access to
information and communication technology (ICT). This enables societies
to improve standards of living. The company provides schools with
computer laboratories as well as necessary text books and material.
General Manager - Sri Lanka Madu Ratnayake said, "Access to computers
and ICT in general has a tremendous potential to empower rural youth to
become an active participants in the global knowledge society. We are
happy to make a contribution towards empowering rural Sri Lankan youth
with ICT. With the strong support from Uva Wellassa University, we hope
that this initiative will open doors for many students now and years to
come." Vice Chancellor of the Uva Wellassa University Chandra
Embuldeniya said "This is an impressive social responsibility act on
part of Virtusa and the Uva Wellassa University. Uva is a province where
the majority of the families are living in impoverished conditions. The
project is an opportunity to enrich our community to experience IT
education by providing access to higher educational paths. We have
looked into the sustainability of the project in selecting the correct
schools, in terms of school infrastructure, resources and security. And
we are armed with a committed set of lecturers and IT students.
The Uva Education authority extended their cooperation to make this
program by selecting the broad category of schools and communicating
High-end server segment
Intel Corporation has extended its lead in the high-end server
segment, setting new standards in virtualisation performance with the
launch of seven 45 nanometer (nm)-manufactured Intel (Xeon) Processor
7400 Series products.
With up to six processing cores per chip and 16MB of shared cache
memory, applications built for virtualised environments and data
demanding workloads, such as databases, business intelligence,
enterprise resource planning and server consolidation, experience
dramatic performance increases of almost 50 per cent in some cases.
Platforms based on these processors can scale up to 16 processor
"sockets" to deliver servers with up to 96 processing cores inside,
offering tremendous scalability, ample computing threads, extensive
memory resources and uncompromising reliability for enterprise data
centers. This new processor series helps IT manage increasingly complex
enterprise server environments, providing a great opportunity to boost
the scalable performance of multi-threaded applications.
IFS launch management tool
IFS, the global enterprise applications company, launched its
eco-footprint management tool to provide organisations with
unprecedented control and transparency on the environmental impact of
their operations. The tool offers customers for the first time an
enterprise standard methodology to help them control costs and meet an
urgent need to prepare for compliance with environmental legislation.
Eco-footprint management will be added to IFS's software suite, IFS
applications. Users will be able to configure IFS applications to
capture environmental impact information from throughout their business
just as easily as they configure their financial system to capture cost.
IFS customers will be able to track the impact of a broad spectrum of
activities ranging from raw material sourcing to product design to
logistics and emissions - helping them analyse their operations, learn
environmental patterns and plan for urgent legislative requirements.
"Existing components within IFS applications that capture financial
cost will now be able to monitor carbon dioxide, lead, sulphur and other
environmental impacts as an additional cost," said IFS Vice President
Product and Marketing Thomas Petersson. "For example, users will be able
to assign different carbon footprints to various methods of transport
helping them see the environmental as well as financial cost of shipping
materials by train versus truck, and compare the carbon footprint of
local versus offshore sourcing." The new application will support IFS
customers around the globe who are under increasing pressure to comply
with upcoming environmental legislations such as Europe's EuP Directive,
the Environmental Liability Directive and the EU restriction,
evaluation, and authorisation of chemicals (REACH) regulation as well as
Australia's National Greenhouse and Energy Reporting Regulation and the
US Climate Action Partnership's recently proposed `Blueprint for
Legislative Action' against climate change.
PEO Street TV launched
PEO TV, the first Internet Protocol Television Service (IPTV) in Sri
Lanka launched its PEO Street TV promotion recently beaming a wide range
of entertainment options on a daily basis from 6.30 pm to 11.00 pm to
the public. This has been a huge success thus far, attracting people
from all walks of life, showcasing an all in one entertainment solution
on a large screen from its strategically located SLT VisionCom office at
60, Davidson Road, Colombo 4.
One can now experience an out of the box Personalized Entertainment
Option, featuring 43 channels on all genres, such as entertainment for
adults and kids, business, education, news and sports in addition to
free-to-air local television stations, which includes Rupavahini,
Channel Eye, ITN, Derana and Max TV.
Speaking on the significance of the PEO Street TV, CEO, SLT VisionCom
(Pvt) Ltd. Thusha Weerasooriya said. "Our aim is to attract the
attention of the public that walks past our head office, and arouse
their curiosity, encouraging them to walk into our modern showroom and
have the unique opportunity of experiencing interactive television. Our
PEO Street TV promotion, which is currently in progress has been a huge
success, with a cross section of society having already visited the
They were able to watch and experience how IPTV works as well as how
to use the features such as Video on Demand (VoD), Trick Play
Functionality, Time Shift TV and other special features that the future
of entertainment offers.
A popular feature of the PEO Street TV promotion is the Time Shift
TV, where a wide variety of programs, including the recently concluded
cricket tournament between Sri Lanka and India was beamed, giving those
who have missed, the opportunity to watch it. Time Shift TV gives
greater flexibility to the viewer, allowing them to watch any programme
at a time convenient to them.
PEO TV is available at the SLT VisionCom head office well as all 16
selected SLT Teleshops and 12 Regional Telecom Offices in the covered
areas of the initial stage of expansion. It covers all major areas of
Greater Colombo with the inclusion of Kalutara, Kurunegala, Kandy and
Katunayake. Further services will be made available in Gampaha, Negombo,
Galle, Matara, Avissawella and Ratnapura during the early part of 2009.