Posts

Upcoming 2020 General Elections in Trinidad and Tobago

We are being asked to decide who to hire to run this country for the following 5 year period. Our choices are limited. I often hear that it is a choice for the lesser of two evils. Some things we often hear about are sycophants, diehard supporters, racial divide, safe seats, marginals, and electoral reform. I want to be a responsible voter. I want my decision to lead to the future prosperity of my country.
We can judge a party's performance in government by looking at the indicators and rankings and the problems that were solved. Their role is to run the country. What about the party in opposition, how do we judge their performance in opposition as well as past goverment? What is the role of the opposition? We can look at the work of the opposition MPs. We can look at the amendments and suggestions put forward. How effective was the opposition in holding the government accountable? What about future actions? We can look at the manifestos but we have to look at the past and how many…

Being a Manchester City fan

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I am not remembering the thing that made me become a Man City fan but I remember supporting the winning Inter Milan at the 2010 champions league final. I was in Tobago that day. The jersey came off. The shouting at the TV was real. It was the day before my birthday. The next day I was on the ferry to Trinidad and Monday was the general election.
Mario Balotelli was on that team. Then I remember becoming a Manchester City fan and Mario was there also. I followed Mario to the EPL. There are plenty support for EPL teams in Trinidad. I was accused of being a bandwagonist in the earlies but I have been a fan for 8 plus years now. Banter among fans is part of football although I am not participatory.
I am the type of fan that watches every game. I am not into the analysing and stats and strategy. I am mostly on it for the fun and support. I am there for the highs and lows. The last minute goals. The almost had it moments. The tears. The fist pumps. The fight until the end attitude. The smile …

Third mobile operator in Trinidad and Tobago

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CWC Insights sent out a Post-Lockdown Survey-Trinidad today and the last question asked,
Based on your experience during the quarantine, would you consider a new mobile service provider?
I did a Google search to see if there was any new info related to a 3rd mobile operator in Trinidad and Tobago. The only info I came across was this bit from wikipedia
"FLOW plans to add a mobile network to their portfolio in Trinidad. The company applied to the governing telecoms body, Telecommunications Authority of Trinidad and Tobago (TATT), in 2014 for a mobile license. To date, however, FLOW has yet to receive a license despite being named as the recipient of the license being tendered by TATT. They plan to build an LTE network as well despite incumbents, bmobile (TSTT) and Digicel, having well established mobile customer bases."
I will update this blog post with any new info that I get as time goes by.


RFID number plates in Trinidad and Tobago

There is a plan to introduce RFID number plates in Trinidad and Tobago. RFID stands for Radio Frequency Identification. Radio waves are used to read data stored on a chip. These chips are in the form of tags that are attached to objects. Like a vehicle for example. The data and communications is encrypted and the tags are designed to be difficult to tamper with.
EVI is another term that you will come across. This stands for electronic vehicle identification. I imagine the roadways will be equiped with readers so that the police can easily locate particular vehicles involved in crime. What happens if the plates are removed? Will the system be able to identify vehicles without chips or invalid chips or switched chips? These are situations that should be considered and provided for.
From searching Google, it does not appear that many countries are using RFID vehicle tags. Is it cost outweighs the benefits? In this article, China wants to track citizens’ cars with mandatory RFID chips, it s…

Getting older

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This month I turn 40 years old. Child of the 80s. Age brings wisdom. We can choose to make use of this wisdom and we should. I don't feel old. I do feel like a young adult. Often times we hear the term "grow up" but is this a worthwhile pursuit considering the bad state of many parts that are managed by "grown ups". I want to keep the passion, learning, exploring and energy of the younger me.
According to what I read, I am borderline belonging to the millennial generation. Millennials were born between 1980 and 1994. We are currently between 26 and 40 years old. I also read that the song Call Me by Blondie was popular during the week I was born. Let me hang up a disco ball and grab a pair of bell bottom pants, thank you.
I don't do anything special to celebrate my birthday. If I happen to buy something special around my birthday, I would say that it was for my birthday. I have no cake but I have muffin mix to just add water and bake. I have no cupcake cups bu…

FOSS - Free and Open Source Software in Trinidad and Tobago

The free part and cost benefits of FOSS is very attractive but we shouldn't forget the open source part of this where we can review the code and contribute modifications. FOSS are distribured under different licenses, for example, there is GNU GPL (General Public License) and BSD (Berkeley Software Distribution).
Our latest national ICT plan 2018 - 2022 makes no mention of open source. I am very surprised at this. I am contacting iGovTT to see if they have plans for FOSS locally. Over the years we have had several national ICT plans, Fast Foward, SmarTT and Fast Forward II. The SmarTT plan (2014 - 2018) had a section on FLOSS and states, "Research and position papers have already been developed at the National ICT Company Ltd. (iGovTT) to aid in developing policies for FLOSS uptake."
There have been attempts over the years to develop a position on FOSS by the government. In my research, I found, The role of Open Source Software in Trinidad and Tobago (2006 – 2008) A Consul…

Our Silicon Valley in Trinidad and Tobago

What is Silicon Valley? This is the home to many startup and global tech companies in California, United States. Words like disruption and innovation are often used when talking about Silicon Valley. The name came from the large number of silicon chip innovators that were based in the region.
What is our tech startup culture like in Trinidad and Tobago? Where is the innovation? What are we missing? How does this fit with our economic diversification goals? I would say that startups and innovation are limited because we have mainly risk-adverse investors. There is limited startup funding including venture capital and angel investors. We have become complacent because of our dependence on the energy sector. Tech and tech startups would be pivotal to our diversification efforts.
In this article, Tamana Intech Park marries ecology with technology, then minister Maxie Cuffie says, “This can be our Silicon Valley – where creation and collaboration can produce new high-paying sustainable caree…