3.1 Introduction

As well as looking at the behaviour of firms and the industries and markets to which they belong, economists also engage in a different style of inquiry, thinking about what economic change means for the lives of the people involved. Once again there is a variety of interpretations and different ideas but this time they concern the desirability of economic change. What benefits does the ‘new economy’ bring and what costs, or negative effects, does it impose on people? In analysing these b
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2.4 Information and communication technologies

The new economy is much more than a shift from manufacturing to services and the increased integration of economies on a global scale. It is also strongly linked to the development of ICT, which has facilitated the development of new processes and products, especially ‘knowledge goods’ which are described below.

The internet has increased the ‘connectivity’ or interconnectedness between economies by making textual communication possible in real time as well as providing a new me
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Learning outcomes

After studying this unit you should be able to:

  • appreciate different understandings of the new economy;

  • understand claims about the benefits and costs of the new economy.


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6 Conclusion

As you moved through the various techniques we can use to analyse media texts in Sections 2 to Section 4, you should have discovered how rich even the simplest text can be in its drawing on political, social and cultural meanings discernible by close attention. Textual analysis enables you to register and negotiate the polysemy of texts and to see how the preferred reading is not the only one available. The preferred reading may be given prominence, however, by anchoring or by the genre chose
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Acknowledgements

This chapter is taken from Living Political Ideas (eds) Geoff Andrews and Micheal Saward published in association with Edinburgh University Press (2005) as part of a series of books which forms part of the course DD203 Power, Dissent, Equality: Understanding Contemporary Politics.

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4 What is a ‘nation’?

Guibernau (1996, p. 47) has defined the nation as: ‘a human group conscious of forming a community, sharing a common culture, attached to a clearly demarcated territory, having a common past and a common project for the future and claiming the right to rule itself’. So awareness, territory, history and culture, language and religion all matter. However, it is rare in the real world to find a case of a nation with a clear-cut and homogenous character in terms of this list of possibilities.
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Learning outcomes

After studying this unit you should be able to:

  • illustrate what is social about social science;

  • demonstrate how certain social constructions become dominant;

  • distinguish how labelling something can create expectations about behaviour and actions;

  • give examples of inequalities that result from particular social constructions.


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Digital communications
Optical-fibre communications became commercially viable in the 1970s and innovation continues today. This unit will illustrate how very high data rates can be transmitted over long distances through optical fibres. You will learn how these fibres are linked, examine the technology used and assess the future direction of this continually developing area of communication.Author(s): Creator not set

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2.2 Characters

Characters are another fundamental form of data. Computers store characters as integers, and system hardware and software translate these integer codes so that monitors and printers can display them.

As well as the familiar characters appearing on a keyboard, the current international standard (UNICODE) includes codes for characters from a variety of languages and alphabets (such as ê and ö). For simplicity, examples in this unit will use only a part of this code, as given in
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2.1 Numbers

The supermarket example discussed in Section 1 involves various forms of data that a computer may need to handle. Some of these, such as numbers and characters, are simple but fundamental. Other forms of data, such as sequences, involve more complicated structure. In this section, we will introduce sets, which are a variety of data collection that is different from sequences. But first we will look more carefully at numbers and characters.

When developing software we need to dist
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4.1 Introduction

Personal computers, or PCs, are very versatile computers and can perform a huge range of tasks. So whereas the uses of the kitchen scales and the digital camera indicate clearly what types of data are to be represented, the PC leaves the field very broad indeed. I have therefore chosen to consider some of the data representations used when families and friends use emails to keep in touch. Very conveniently, these lead to some different data representations.

At their simplest, emails are
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2.2.2 Positive integers: binary numbers

Just as a denary number system uses ten different digits (0, 1, 2, 3, … 9), a binary number system uses two (0, 1).

Once again the idea of positional notation is important. You have just seen that the weightings which apply to the digits in a denary number are the exponents of ten. With binary numbers, where only two digits are used, the weightings applied to the digits are exponents of two.

The rightmost bit is given the weighting of 2°, which is 1. The ne
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2.2 Representing numbers: positive integers

A very straightforward way of finding binary codes to represent positive integers is simply to use the binary number that corresponds to each integer. This is because every positive integer in the everyday number system (known as the decimal or denary system because it uses 10 different digits) has a corresponding number in the binary number system.

As you will see later, in Section 7 of this unit, just as arithmetic (addition, subtraction, etc.) can be performed on everyday denary numb
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2.1 Introduction

There are many types of system – not just ICT systems. For example, we all have a nervous system and, as you are studying T175, you are in a higher education system. Our homes have plumbing systems and electrical systems.

Activity 1 (exploratory)

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12.3 Further security issues

The problems discussed so far can have major implications for users. They may:

  • slow your PC;

  • cause the loss of important data;

  • damage your reputation by sending false information or viruses via email;

  • access the Internet without permission, and in the process use up bandwidth;

  • be time-consuming to remove;

  • cause loss of private information;

  • have financ
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8.5 Reviewing

Undoubtedly this is the most difficult phase to apply to revision and an exam or to the preparation and production of an end-of-course assessment. Most of us heave a huge sigh of relief when it is all over and then try to put it out of our minds during the weeks while we wait for the results. When these arrive, it is very difficult to think back to the exam itself or revisit the details of the end-of-course assessment. With very little feedback to help, learning how to learn from exams or the
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3.1 Skimming

Did you read the Layard article quickly enough, or perhaps too quickly? Reading speed is a persistent worry when you study. There always seems to be much more to read than you have time for, so you feel a tremendous pressure to read faster. But then, if you go too fast, you don't learn much. So what is the ‘right’ speed? The answer is – it depends on what you are trying to achieve.

It's surprising how much you can pick up if you push on quickly through a few pages.

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4.9 When there's too much to do

This can be a real problem in large conferences. If, for whatever reason, you join a conference later than the other participants, or are unable to be involved for a while, the prospect of joining in can be a bit daunting. There will be lots of messages you haven't read and you may feel that everyone else knows each other.

The main thing to remember is that everyone will be pleased to ‘see’ you when you do join in, and will be helpful and supportive. Here are some strategies you can
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3.3 Real time chat

Online chat is a means of having a quick written conversation with one or more people who are online at the same time. Compared with email, there's less of a time lag in waiting for a response. Messages are likely to be more spontaneous, and it can be anarchic when several people reply at once.


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2.3 Learning more

Consider your main use for the PC, and check that you have the skills or knowledge you need. Although some students use spreadsheets and databases, the key skills for most students are:

  • word processing study notes and assignments;

  • searching for information on the web;

  • using conferencing and email.

If you feel you need to know more about using your computer there are a number of options open to you.
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