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Workshops to focus on telecommunication trends


There has been dramatic changes in technology in the last few years, with the Internet, local and wide-area networking, videoconferencing, distance education, and health informatics having an impact on our daily lives.

Not wanting small communities such as Fort Frances to miss out on how these technologies can benefit them, the Northwestern Ontario Telecommunications Committee, along with its community partners, is sponsoring a series of free workshops here Jan. 13-14 to share information on the latest trends.

Slated for La Place Rendez-Vous, organizers suggested everyone from small- to medium-sized business owners and health care providers to educators and regional organizations attend.

“When you consider we come from a rather isolated area here in Northwestern Ontario, trends in telecommunications are important to everyone in the area,” said Jeanette Cawston, community program co-ordinator for the Rainy River Future Development Corp.

“[Telecommunications] can only enhance the community . . . and not only bring more people into the area but improve the standard of living for those who already live here,” she noted.

Introductions will be made at 5:15 p.m. next Wednesday (Jan. 13), during which time refreshments will be served. There also will be an official welcome from a representative of the Northern Ontario Heritage Fund Corp.

Then from 6:30-8 p.m., Bell Canada will hold a presentation about trends in small business. Afterwards, those on hand will have an hour to “network.”

Starting at 9 a.m. on Thursday (Jan. 14), Northwest Information Systems will hold a session called “Trends in Health Informatics,” which should wrap up around 10:15 a.m.

Then a talk on new videoconferencing applications is slated from 10:30 a.m. to 12:30 p.m., followed by lunch from 12:30-1:30 p.m. during which people can check out videoconferencing demonstrations.

After lunch, Contact North will speak on “Trends in Distance Education” from 1:30-3 p.m. Then the sessions will wrap up with an open discussion on “future directions” from 3:15-4 p.m.

The workshops are sponsored by RRFDC, Northwestern Regional Ontario Regional Telecommunications Committee, Bell Canada, FedNor, and Northern Ontario Heritage Fund.

Those planning to attend should contact the RRFDC (274-3276) or Dawn at the Fort Frances Chamber of Commerce (274-5773).

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