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ELECTRONIC VOTING MACHINE TO BE PRESENTED IN NATIONAL ASSEMBLY ON MONDAY AUGUST 9, 2021

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Federal Minister for Science and Technology Senator Shibli Faraz presented Electronic Voting Machine to the Prime Minister of Pakistan. Prime Minister appreciated and highlighted the importance of the introduction of Electronic Voting Machines for free and credible elections. The Electronic Voting Machines thus will be presented in National Assembly Session on Monday, August 9 before the session begins.

The Federal Minister, Senator Shibli Faraz cordially invited members to share their observations and constructive remarks on Electronic Voting Machine. Subsequently, after the National Assembly Session, the Electronic Voting Machine will be presented to all four provincial assemblies and members will be requested to vote using the EVM in order to understand the process better.

As free and credible elections using technological advancements is the need of time. Ministry of Science and Technology is playing her active role in expediting the process towards electronic and transparent elections under the leadership of the Honourable President and Prime Minister. To achieve this landmark step of transparent elections acceptable to all, this was the much-needed step.

Furthermore, the EVM will be presented to Chairman Senate on Tuesday, August 10, 2021, followed by its presentation to Speaker National Assembly on Wednesday, August 11. The Federal Minister for Science and Technology Senator Shibli Faraz welcomed any observations from fellow members National Assembly and emphasised that suggestions will be taken into account in detail.

The Federal Minister Shibli Faraz said that change of political culture using modern and transparent means will help strengthen the true democracy and he is thankful to the President of Pakistan and the Prime Minister for their continuous support in achieving this landmark development.

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IT & Telecom

Work hard, you have thousands of opportunities in IT sector: President Arif Alvi

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Advising the students, President Dr Arif Alvi said that they should work hard and focus on IT education in the country and once they have completed, they would avail thousands of opportunities in this sector across the world.

The President expressed such view while addressing the Presidential Initiative Artificial Intelligence and Computing (PIAIC) Grand Entrance Test 2022 organized by Saylani Welfare International Trust (SWIT) here at National Stadium on Sunday.

There is a need of 8 crore of people having expertise in IT sector across the world, the President told, saying that you would not have job opportunities but entrepreneurship opportunities. The government is extending all kinds of support to IT sector and the laws have been made to facilitate the growth of this sector, he informed.

President Arif Alvi mentioned that besides, the government had initiated some programs like Digital Skill Program which was free and imparting the IT education through online classes and thousands of students had got benefits from this program and were earning in dollars.

After completing your training or education in IT sector, you might need the financial support to start entrepreneurship, he uttered and suggested that you don’t need to worry because the government has also launched Kamayab Jawan Program (KJP) to extend the financial support up to Rs.10 lacs.

Financial facility under KJP is very easy to avail and it is interest-free, Arif Alvi elaborated. In addition, the government has opened the way for foreign investors and China wants to invest in Pakistani IT industry.

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He further added that the youth of Pakistan were striving for knowledge and this was a changing Pakistan. So let the youth forget other things and young people should only focus on their training and education, he mentioned.

Highlighting the achievements of Pakistan Tahreek-e-Insaf (PTI) led government in the province, the President said that no polio case has been reported in the last year and it is because the government has taken some initiatives to control it.

Talking on the issues being faced by refugees across the world, the President told that the refugees had to suffer a lot because they were not allowed to enter the different countries but it was only Pakistan which allowed 40 lac Afghan refugees living there for the last 40 years.

Speaking on the occasion, Chairman SWIT Maulana Bashir Ahmed Farooqui said that the main object of SWIT was to serve the people and the Trust was trying to do its best to support each person in the country.

The representative of Presidential Initiative Artificial Intelligence and Computing (PIAIC) Zia Ullah Khan also spoke on the occasion and highlighted the importance of IT sector.

More than 25000 students from different parts of Sindh province participated in the Presidential Initiative Artificial Intelligence and Computing (PIAIC) Grand Entrance Test 2022.

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Digital

How 5G puts airplanes at risk – an electrical engineer explains

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New high-speed cellphone services have raised concerns of interference with aircraft operations, particularly as aircraft are landing at airports. The Federal Aviation Administration has assured Americans that most commercial aircraft are safe, and AT&T and Verizon have agreed to hold off on installing their new cellphone antennas near airports for six months. But the problem has not been entirely resolved.

Concerns began when the U.S. government auctioned part of the C-band spectrum to wireless carriers in 2021 for US$81 billion. The carriers are using C-band spectrum to provide 5G service at full speed, 10 times the speed of 4G networks.

The C-band spectrum is close to the frequencies used by key electronics that aircraft rely on to land safely. Here’s why that can be a problem.

Keeping order on the spectrum

Wireless signals are carried by radio waves. The radio spectrum ranges from 3 hertz to 3,000 gigahertz and is part of the electromagnetic spectrum. The portion of the radio spectrum that carries the signals from your phone and other wireless devices is 20 kilohertz to 300 gigahertz.

If two wireless signals in the same area use the same frequency, you get garbled noise. You hear this when you are midway between two radio stations using the same or similar frequency bands to send their information. The signals get garbled and sometimes you hear one station, at other times the other, all mixed with a healthy dose of noise.

Therefore, in the U.S., the use of these frequency bands is tightly regulated by the Federal Communications Commission to ensure that radio stations, wireless carriers and other organizations are assigned “lanes,” or frequency spectra, to use in an orderly fashion.

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Bouncing radio waves off the ground

Modern airplanes use altimeters, which calculate the time it takes for a signal to bounce back from the ground to determine a plane’s altitude. These altimeters are a vital part of automatic landing systems that are especially useful in cases where there is low visibility.

A hand on an aircraft yoke in front of a multicolor display panel
The radio altimeter in an aircraft tells the pilot how far off the ground the aircraft is. AP Photo/Rob Griffith

So, if an altimeter interprets a signal from a wireless carrier as the rebounded signal from the ground, it may think that the ground is closer than it is and prematurely try to lower the landing gear and do the other maneuvers that are needed to land an aircraft. If interference with wireless carrier signals corrupts and garbles the altimeter’s radio signals, the altimeter may not recognize the rebounded signal and thus be unable to figure out how close to the ground the plane is.

[Understand new developments in science, health and technology, each week. Subscribe to The Conversation’s science newsletter.]

The portions of the radio frequency spectrum used by airplanes and cellphone carriers are different. The problem is that airplane altimeters use the 4.2 to 4.4 gigahertz range, while the recently sold – and previously unused – C-band spectrum for wireless carriers ranges from 3.7 to 3.98 gigahertz. It turns out the 0.22 gigahertz difference between the signals may not be quite enough to be absolutely sure that a cellphone carrier signal will not be mistaken for or corrupt an altimeter’s signal.

Four vertical rectangular devices mounted on the corner of a roof of a building with a church spire in the background
Full-speed 5G signals like those in services that wireless carriers are currently rolling out might interfere with aircraft altimeters. AP Photo/Alastair Grant

Steering clear of trouble – for now

The telecommunication industry has argued that the gap of 0.22 gigahertz is enough and there will be no interference. The airline industry has been more cautious. Even if the risk is very small, I believe the consequences of a plane crash are enormous.

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Who is correct? The chances of such interference are very small, but the truth is that there isn’t much data to say that such interference will never happen. Whether there will be interference depends on the receivers in the altimeters and their sensitivity. In my view, there is no way to ensure that such stray interfering signals will never reach altimeters.

If the altimeters can register the stray signals as noise and filter them out, then they can function correctly. Upgrading aircraft altimeters is a costly proposition, however, and it’s not clear who would pay the cost.

The FAA has been testing altimeters and clearing ones that can be relied on in the near future. AT&T and Verizon have agreed to not put up 5G transmitters and receivers near the 50 largest airports for six months while a solution is being worked out. This has averted a major crisis in the near term, but it isn’t a permanent solution.

Moreover, regional airlines and rural airports remain at risk of interference.

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Digital

Pakistan Moves Closer to Train One Million Youth with Digital Skills

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Enabling people to bring at least an additional US$1 billion each year into the Pakistani economy through E-Commerce skills by 2025.

Pakistan Moves Closer to Train One Million Youth with 100+ eCommerce and Digital Skills

Karachi, Pakistan, February 05, 2021  ………Pakistan has a large labour force that stands among the top 10 largest labour forces in the world, and it’s growing day by day. To create adequate employment opportunities for them is a huge challenge. On the other hand, employers frequently keep saying that they are unable to find workers with the appropriate skills necessary for their businesses. This obviously shows that there is a mismatch between the demand and supply of skills.

The International Labor Organization (ILO) has shown that skills development can play a major role in the alleviation of poverty, when carefully planned and implemented in the context of the available and emerging employment and income-generation opportunities. This multiplies many folds when the skills are acquired in the digital spheres. It not only widens the work opportunities but also opens up avenues for entrepreneurial ventures as well.

Extreme Commerce, Pakistan’s largest and renowned E-Commerce capacity building platform has excelled in its mission of making Pakistan a hub of entrepreneurial opportunities. Under the guidance of Sunny Ali, thousands of aspiring individuals from Pakistan have successfully initiated global e-commerce businesses.

Extreme Commerce, Pakistan’s largest e-commerce skill development and the entrepreneurial platform has achieved yet another milestone with the expansion of 100+ skills training courses through the “Video Boot Camp (VBC).” The Video Boot Camp includes virtual sessions and videos encompassing around 100 essential e-commerce and digital skills required to excel in the spheres of online businesses. The Video Boot Camp training program is specifically tailored to facilitate the budding entrepreneurs and businessmen and freelancers.

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According to Ali, “E-commerce has skyrocketed after the pandemic and is estimated to grow to a whopping $4.3 trillion within this year.” He further adds, “There is a huge potential for growth in eCommerce both domestic and international, and that is why Extreme Commerce has pledged to enable people to bring at least an additional $1 billion each year into the Pakistani economy through E-Commerce skills by 2025.”

The Video Boot Camp includes over a 100 plus income generating E-Commerce skills (income streams) which an entrepreneur needs to skyrocket their businesses. Some skills offered through the VBC include: Selling through Fulfillment by Amazon (FBA) model, Virtual Assistant and FBA Freelancing, online store management of international and local E-Commerce marketplaces, bookkeeping account management services, digital and social media marketing, content writing and graphic designing, 3D designing & modelling, data science and analytics and more.

This initiative of Extreme Commerce will be immensely fruitful in helping their trainees become leading entrepreneurs of the country. Ali, contented with his vision states, “At Extreme Commerce, we offer a multitude of digital skills that are categorized into 100+ courses/income streams under the umbrella of Video Boot Camp (VBC 2021). These skills are pivotal to reducing unemployment and enhancing the capital of our country.” Sharing his focus and goals, he adds, “Skills that actually help you succeed as an online freelancer and even in the real-life environment plus increase your income thereby, are our prime focus right now.”

Earlier, Extreme Commerce and Mishal Pakistan, the Country Partner Institute of the World Economic Forum had signed a partnership to mainstream e-commerce in Pakistan, this includes capacity building initiatives for the media and industry players, including trainings, seminars and workshops.

ALSO READ:  Five Industries the Most impacted by Covid-19 Pandemic

The government of Pakistan has estimated digital skills global industry, often referred to as online outsourcing, is expected to generate gross service revenue between $15 billion and $25 billion in 2021.

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