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INFORMATION TECHNOLOGY HISTORY IN MALAYSIA Introduction Malaysia is preparing to be part of the Information Age in the new millennium by transforming

itself towards a knowledge-based economy. Recognizing that information technology (IT) and multimedia will be the future enabling tool to increase the efficiency, productivity and competitiveness of the economy, various initiatives were taken to promote the use and development of IT during the review period. The National Information Technology Agenda (NITA) was formulated in 1996 to provide the framework for a coordinated and integrated approach in developing the three strategic elements comprising human resource, infostructure and IT-based tenders. To deliver the catalyst for the expansion of IT and multimedia industries, the Multimedia Super Corridor (MSC) was launched. In the context of rapid global developments in science and technology, IT has become an increasingly critical enabling tool which has led to changes in the comparative advantage and competitiveness of economies worldwide. Information and Communications Technology (ICT) has brought about new changes to the management of science and technology, and in particular IT. As a result, it became imperative that the various sectors of the Malaysian economy undertake ingenuities to gradually integrate new IT-based systems into existing work processes. During the review period, both the public and private sectors continued to invest in IT paraphernalia and infrastructure to facilitate the production and delivery of goods and services. There was also an increasing consciousness of the use of IT for home and personal use. The development of IT infrastructure, such as the telecommunications network as well as IT-related services and training, also expanded in tandem with the demand for such facilities and services. In addition, a number of IT-related laws were formulated to provide the enabling legal environment to facilitate the expansion of IT and multimedia. Utilization of IT Investment in IT expanded at a rate of 8.4 per cent per annum during the review period, increasing from RM3,800 million in 1995 to RM4,840 million in 1998. The increase was attributed in part, to a number of fiscal incentives introduced to promote the use of IT. These incentives included the removal of sales tax on computers and components, and the granting of accelerated capital allowance for expenses on computers and other IT equipment. Although almost all of the companies in the manufacturing sector utilized PCs, only 13 per cent owned 1

more than 100 PCs. In terms of IT usage, the manufacturing sector was classified as a medium user with only half of its activities supported by IT. The most intensive use of IT was in the business function of finance and accounting for financial control and administration. However, the use of IT was not extensive in the more strategic function of operations and production for product design, quality control, process planning, production and materials planning. While internal networks were more prevalent for the business function of finance and accounting, they were less utilized for the more strategic business functions of sales and marketing as well as operations and production. In the transportation sector, IT was utilized as a strategic businesstool to improve the efficiency of operations. The Port Klang Community System implemented the Electronic Data Interchange (EDI) to facilitate trade documentation and payments of duties through the SMKDagang.Net. During the review period, 98 per cent of exports and 93 per cent of imports that went through Port Klang were processed through this electronic system, thus reducing cargo clearance time and cost of operations. In the logistics industry, IT was utilized for the management and tracking of fleet efficiency, warehousing and distribution.

Utilization of IT in the Government Sector During the review period, IT was used to enhance productivity and efficiency as well as improve the quality of services, particularly counter services. In this regard, a total of RM976.6 million was spent on the computerization programmes of the various departments and agencies. These involved the acquisition of hardware and software, telecommunications equipment, systems development and other value-added services. To coordinate and monitor the development and utilization of IT and Internet in the public sector, the Government IT and Internet Committee (JITIK) was established in February 1998. There were significant improvements in payment processing, documentation and information dissemination. Agencies such as the Road Transport Department, Immigration Department, Royal Malaysian Police, National Registration Department and Registrar of Business improved their counter services and revenue collection through on-line processing. The Social Security Organization and Registrar of Business utilized document management technology to improve workflow management, resulting in faster and better delivery of services. Similarly, IT was used by the Fisheries Department, Malaysian Agricultural Research and Development Institute (MARDI) and Forest Research Institute of Malaysia (FRIM) to support their research and development (R&D) efforts. Government 2

agencies also used computer networks such as local andwide area networks based on state-ofthe-art fibre optic backbone and asynchronous transfer mode (ATM) technology to improve information flows and communications. The Ministry of International Trade and Industry (MITI) is connected to its branch offices both within the country and overseas, facilitating access to up-to date information and data on trade and investment. In 1997, the public sector kiosk project, known as e-link, was launched in the Klang Valley as part of the EG initiative. E-link provided facilities for, among others, renewal of expatriate employment permits and visa, renewal of television licenses as well as electronic payments of telephone bills and traffic summonses. The Government also identified five key services for implementation as EG pilot projects. These services are the electronic delivery of driver and vehicle registration, licensing and summonses, utility bills payments and Ministry of Health On-Line Information; electronic procurement; the Prime Ministers generic office environment; human resource management information system; and project monitoring.
Reference from:

Information and communication technology spending in 2005,

Explaination about computer engineering Computer engineering, also called computer systems engineering, is a discipline that integrates several fields of electrical engineering andcomputer science required to develop computer systems.[1] Computer engineers usually have training in electronic engineering (or electrical engineering), software design, and hardware-software integration instead of only software engineering or electronic engineering. Computer engineers are involved in many hardware and software aspects of computing, from the design of individual microprocessors, personal computers, andsupercomputers, to circuit design. This field of engineering not only focuses on how computer systems themselves work. Usual tasks involving computer engineers include writing software and firmware for embedded microcontrollers, designing VLSI chips, designing analog sensors, designing mixed signal circuit boards, and designing operating systems. Computer engineers are also suited for robotics research, which relies heavily on using digital systems to control and monitor electrical systems like motors, communications, and sensors. The first accredited computer engineering degree program in the United States was established at Case Western Reserve University in 1971. As of October 2004, there were 170 ABETaccredited computer engineering programs in the US.] Due to increasing job requirements for engineers, who can concurrently design hardware, software, firmware, and manage all forms of computer systems used in industry, some tertiary institutions around the world offer a bachelor's degree generally called computer engineering. Both computer engineering and electronic engineering programs include analog and digital circuit design in their curricula. Moreover with most engineering disciplines, having a sound knowledge of mathematics and sciences is necessary for computer engineers. In many institutions, computer engineering students are allowed to choose areas of in-depth study in their junior and senior year, because the full breadth of knowledge used in the design and application of computers is beyond the scope of an undergraduate degree. Other institutions may require engineering students to complete one year of General Engineering before declaring computer engineering as their major focus.

Reference from online: The free encyclopedia

The Usage of Information Technology in Computer Engineering IT is the area of managing technology and spans a wide variety of areas that include computer software, information systems, computer hardware, programming languages but are not limited to things such as processes, and data constructs. In short, anything that renders data, information or perceived knowledge in any visual format whatsoever, via any multimedia distribution mechanism, is considered part of the IT domain. IT provides businesses with four sets of core services to help complete the business strategy: business process automation, providing information, connecting with customers, and productivity tools. IT professionals perform a variety of functions (IT Disciplines/Competencies) that ranges from installing applications to designing complex computer networks and information databases. A few of the duties that IT professionals perform may include data management, networking, engineering computer hardware, database and software design, as well as management and administration of entire systems. Therefore, Information technology is starting to spread further than the conventional personal computer and network technologies, and more into integrations of other technologies such as the use of cell phones, televisions, automobiles, and more, which is increasing the demand for such jobs. List and explain the affected factors of IT application. Multimedia Super Corridor (MSC) - During the review period, efforts were taken to develop the MSC to provide the catalyst for a synergistic expansion of IT-related industries and products as well as create the enabling environment for the orderly development of IT. Malaysian Exchange of Securities Dealing and Automated Quotation(MESDAQ) - These efforts included the provision of fiscal incentives for the setting up of IT and multimedia industries, building-up of the telecommunications infrastructure, development of the intelligent cities of Putrajaya and Cyberjaya,and the establishment to finance technology companies. Human Resource Development for IT The total number of IT workers was about 87,000 by the end of 1998.The largest group was the technical support with about 28,000 personnel or 32.2 per cent of the total, while the smallest group was the software engineer of about 8,000 or 9.6 per cent. Among the expertise and skills in demand were systems development and integration, operations management, R&D, software development, database management and telecommunications networking. Development of Telecommunications Infrastructure Telecommunications operators continued to upgrade and improve services through investments in telecommunications infrastructure comprising fiber optics, satellite and wireless technology during the review period. Accordingly, the backbone of the information superhighway was formed capable of supporting extensive public, educational and business applications. With the expansion of the telecommunications infrastructure, accessibility as measured by telephone penetration rate improved from 16.6 per 100 population in 1995 to 22.5 per 100 population in 1998. In line with the trend towards networking, the Government Integrated Telecommunications Network (GITN) project was initiated to facilitate the exchange and sharing of information 5

between government agencies via a secure and reliable high-capacity intranet. The network connection services frame relay was completed in early 1997 to provide connectivity among the government agencies, public access to the various government networks and international connectivity via the Internet. Benefits of IT Globalization- IT has not only brought the world closer together, but it has allowed the world's economy to become a single interdependent system. This means that we can not only share information quickly and efficiently, but we can also bring down barriers of linguistic and geographic boundaries. The world has established into a global village due to the help of information technology allowing countries like Chile and Japan who are not only separated by distance but also by language to shares ideas and information with each other. Communication- With the help of information technology, communication has also become cheaper, quicker, and more efficient. We can now communicate with anyone around the globe by simply text messaging them or sending them an email for an almost rapid response. Furthermore, the internet has also opened up face to face direct communication from different parts of the world thanks to the helps of video conferencing. Cost effectiveness- Information technology has helped to computerize the business process thus streamlining businesses to make them extremely cost effective money making machines. This in turn increases productivity which ultimately gives rise to profits that means better pay and less strenuous working conditions. Bridging the cultural gap - Information technology has helped to bridge the cultural gap by helping people from different cultures to interconnect with one another, and allow for the exchange of views and ideas, thus increasing awareness and reducing prejudice. More time - IT has made it possible for businesses to be open 24 x7 all over the globe. This means that a business can be open anytime anywhere, making purchases from different countries easier and more convenient. It also means that you can have your goods delivered right to your doorstep with having to move a single muscle. The Limitation of IT Unemployment- While information technology may have streamlined the business process it has also crated job layings-off, downsizing and outsourcing. This means that a lot of lower and middle level jobs have been done away with causing more people to become unemployed. Privacy- Though information technology may have made communication quicker, easier and more convenient, it has also bought along privacy issues. From cell phone signal interceptions to email hacking, people are now worried about their once private information becoming public knowledge.

Lack of job security- Industry experts believe that the internet has made job security a big issue as since technology keeps on changing with each day. This means that one has to be in a constant learning mode, if he or she wishes for their job to be secure. Dominant culture- While information technology may have made the world a global village, it has also contributed to one culture dominating another weaker one. For example it is now argued that US influences how most young teenagers all over the world now act, dress and behave. Languages too have become overshadowed, with English becoming the primary mode of communication for business and everything else.
Reference: central blog information technology

CONCLUSION During the review period, efforts were focused on expanding and upgrading the telecommunications infrastructure and human resource skill as well as reviewing IT-related legislation to provide the enabling environment for the development of IT and multimedia. For the remaining Plan period, the Government will continue to play a proactive role in providing a conducive environment for the development of IT and multimedia while the private sector is expected to increase the usage of IT as an enabling tool to enhance productivity, efficiency and competitiveness. Local investors are expected to take advantage of opportunities in the global IT and multimedia market through the development of IT and multimedia industries.