26 Mar Communication Matters
Today, being able to communicate is more important than ever. Where did communication begin and how it has revolutionized the way our world is operating at the moment.
A Brief History
- The ancient world developed postal systems using horses.
- The invention of printing brought the first newspaper to England in 1641.
- Royal Mail was a result of monarchs setting up postal services to carry their messages.
- The telegraph was invented in 1837 and less than 30 years later it was possible to send messages across the Atlantic Ocean.
- The first telephone exchange opened in 1879 and by 1930 a telephone link from Britain to Australia had been established.
- By the late 20th Century we were introduced to radio, radio stations, television, advertising, satellites, mobile phones and eventually the internet and smartphones.
All these methods of communication paved the way for the development of systems we use every day. At present there are millions of people still able to work, learn, teach and communicate via online systems. Technology is always evolving and communication has been doing the same.
Here are a few methods of online communication that are essentially keeping the world going, whether it be through schooling, working, providing a service or simply just lightening the mood.
Online courses have been around for over 30 years. In fact distance learning dates back to the 1800’s when people could complete assignments and submit them by mail.
Today there are online classrooms, virtual lectures, live streams and constant connectivity. Students can work remotely. People can continue to learn even if they are not physically able to attend a classroom. Not only does this help with the current world situation, students who are unwell for a period of time, people who cannot work or learn in the standard environment. Specialist courses that are not available in a physical location, are now available online.
Distance learning also makes education more accessible. People may need flexibility due to circumstances or commitments. Being able to log on to a platform and complete assignments as a more flexible time gives opportunities to those who may not have had access previously.
Google Classroom is a free web service that many teachers use to distribute assignments. It provides the students the ability to receive work and then send it back to be marked, all in a paperless way. Google Classroom makes sharing files between teachers and students straightforward.
Learning Management Systems
Originally, Learning Management Systems (LMS) were designed for the education sector, but the corporate world has adopted them and it allows businesses to track and deliver industry specific or job related courses. Staff training could be quite time consuming and not cost effective. LMS allow training to be completed through an online portal. Often there are short tests or questions at the end of a section to make sure the user has understood and completed the training. Other systems are developed to offer mass training if there is an important update to a procedure or policy. Staff members can be required to log into the system and update their training. LMS allow companies to keep track of employee training and make sure that they are up to date.
Google, LinkedIn, Microsoft and Adobe all offer learning platforms to educate users on the key aspects of their systems.
Live streaming is a video that is live to the audience over the internet. Similar to a video call or chat, live streaming is popular as it allows for interaction between the creator and viewers. Live streaming is particularly popular at the moment for physical activity with exercise classes and trainers offering live classes straight to people’s living rooms. During live streams with large audiences, viewers can communicate by acknowledging they are watching, commenting in a feed with feedback or questions.
There are many live streams that offer users the chance to experience things they might never see, here are a few fantastic live streams that are worth a watch!
- Abbey Road Studios in London – Made famous by the Beatles, the live stream allows you to see the infamous zebra crossing. http://www.abbeyroad.com/crossing
- Shark Lagoon at the Aquarium of the Pacific in California. http://www.aquariumofpacific.org/exhibits/webcams/webcam_shark_lagoon
- See Elephants at a watering hole in Africa. http://www.africam.com/wildlife/tembe_webcam
- Check out the International Space station live feed. https://www.nasa.gov/multimedia/nasatv/iss_ustream.html
- You can even tune in to watch a live wedding at a Las Vegas Wedding Chapel https://www.earthcam.com/usa/nevada/lasvegas/index.php?cam=wedding
Adaption and evolution is important for technology and communication too. Never has there been a more important time to have a strong online presence. Staying connected with your audience, customers, clients as well as your employees, investors or followers is key.
Keep communicating. If you can’t communicate why not check out some live feeds, learn something new or keep your online training up to date!