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     FrontPage Edition: Sun 27 August 2006

Government continues to invest in technology-enabled work environment


Government Continues to Invest in Technology-Enabled Work Environment

Imagine in year 2010, public officers will be working in an environment with their identity authenticated with biometric system via palm vein or facial recognition.
They will enjoy a rich integrated user interface that is self-learning, adaptive and intelligently predicts the type of content required.
All in-coming communications, such as emails, phone calls, faxes and instant messages, can be forwarded to any electronic device that the officer is carrying.
Should there be a virus attack on the computer, it can be discovered, diagnosed and recovered remotely even if the computer is turned off.
To realise these possibilities, the government will creatively exploit new infocomm technologies through a collaboration between IDA and industry partners such as Intel, Microsoft and Fujitsu.
This is the first time three major multi-national corporations come together with IDA to set up a public sector showcase using technologies in research and development.
This showcase known as "Government Executives in the New Information and Knowledge Era" (GENIE Showcase) was launched today (25 Aug 2006) by the Head of Civil Service, Mr Peter Ho.
The GENIE Showcase comes amid changes in an increasingly complex and fast-paced working environment where public officers have to deal with large amounts of information.
Therefore, there is a need for an effective integrated application system to manage information flow.
Advances in infocomm technologies also mean that public sector officers today need to be mobile contrary to the conventional desk bound office. They will need to communicate using various electronic devices such as mobile phones, PDAs and computers across platforms and geographical locations.
The government also recognises the challenge to keep pace with infocomm security through better management of infocomm systems.
The GENIE Showcase is in-line with one of the key thrusts of iGov2010 masterplan1 to raise the capabilities of public officers where their work experience will be enriched through innovative use of infocomm.
Speaking at the launch of the GENIE Showcase, Mr Ho said, "Infocomm will continue to be a key enabler for all sectors of the economy, including the public sector. The GENIE Showcase represents how infocomm can be exploited to transform the way public officer work, and to create solutions that will enhance operational efficiency and productivity for the public sector. The GENIE Showcase further reaffirms Singapore's position as one of the leading e-Governments in the world and an early adopter of infocomm technologies."
As part of the collaboration, IDA will work with Intel, Microsoft and Fujitsu to experiment and develop innovative solutions for the government workplace using current and emerging technologies and products.
Many of these technologies are prototypes and will only be commercially available in three to five years.
For a start, 16 technologies were weaved into scenarios to demonstrate how seamless technological innovations and applications support public officers in their work.
These scenarios that depict activities in the future work environment are characterised by Office-of-the-Future and Home-of-the-Future. Along with multi-national corporations, IDA is also partnering local company, GT&T in the provision of RFID solutions for the GENIE Showcase.
Over the next three years, GENIE Showcase will have the following targets:
  • 30 new and relevant technologies and products for the public sector will be included in the showcase;
  • At least three new technologies and products will be piloted at public agencies; and
  • At least two new technologies and products will be adopted service-wide.
Referring to the joint partnership, Mr Chan Yeng Kit, Chief Executive Officer of IDA Singapore said, "This partnership is timely and will contribute to our iN2015's goal to enhance Singapore's position as number 1 in the world in harnessing infocomm. As our Prime Minister, Mr Lee Hsien Loong said in his recent National Day Rally speech that one of the biggest changes which will impact Singapore's future is the arrival of digital age, and we must be prepared to embrace and take advantage of digital technologies. The GENIE Showcase presents a platform for the public sector to keep abreast of latest technological developments and adopt them in their work environment. In addition, this showcase facilitates technology transfer between IDA and our partners, leveraging technical knowledge from the industry to better serve the public sector."
"Transforming how the Singapore government harnesses technology requires a stable and secure PC platform that can meet the rigorous demands of the civil service. Based on the Intel? CoreTM 2 Duo processor, Intel? vPro? technology is the revolutionary shift in desktop PC security and manageability along with remarkable energy-saving computing performance," said Gregory Bryant, general manager of Intel Corporation's Digital Office Platform Division. "The GENIE showcase is the ideal foundation for achieving the Singapore government's iN2015 goal and for the technology infrastructure of all governments globally."
"Microsoft is thrilled to partner with the IDA on the GENIE showcase, in support of the iN2015 vision to transform Singapore into an intelligent nation", said Mr Barney Lau, Managing Director, Microsoft Singapore. "Anyone walking into GENIE will get a powerful and people-ready experience of futuristic productivity solutions that empower public officers to find, use and share information easily, quickly and timely. The innovative concepts and evolving technologies on display at GENIE come from throughout Microsoft, but every prototype is focused on the belief that people armed with the right tools and technology can achieve great things".
"Fujitsu is proud to be part of the GENIE initiative and showcase state-of-the-art technologies designed for workplace needs, such as the world's first film-based e-colour paper, steganography and award-winning PalmSecure biometric access control device," said Mr Masaki Kajiyama, President, Singapore Operations, Fujitsu Asia. "Fujitsu has enjoyed wonderful collaborations with various government bodies. As we continuously reinvent and introduce new technologies to the market, we will work closely with IDA to make the GENIE showcase a successful one," added Mr Alex Leung, President and CEO, Fujitsu PC Asia Pacific.
Please refer to Annex A for highlights of key technologies in the GENIE Showcase.
1 The iGov2010 is a $2 billion five-year e-Government masterplan launched in May 2006, developed in consultation with the people, private and public sectors. The vision is to be an integrated government that delights customers and connects citizens through infocomm. For more information, visit

Source: Media Release 25 Aug 2006

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