UNIVERSITY OF PENNSYLVANIA - AFRICAN STUDIES CENTER
AFRICA AND AFRICAN STUDIES IN THE INFORMATION AGE D R A F T PACKET RADIO IN EARTH AND SPACE ENVIRONMENTS FOR RELIEF AND DEVELOPMENT Gary L. Garriott, Ph.D. Director, Informatics Volunteers in Technical Assistance 1815 N. Lynn Street, Suite 200 Arlington, VA 22209 ABSTRACTThe history of packet radio in terrestrial applications and in low earth orbit satellites for humanitarian relief and development work is reviewed, with an emphasis on Africa. The need to decrease the turnaround time" of time-dependent technical and management information is described, as well as limitations to project success when such information is not available. Sociological and regulatory concerns are overviewed. The paper concludes that packet radio systems, in both terrestrial and space environments, have the potential to provide the "missing link" of reliable and inexpensive communications from isolated regions. Integration with low-cost landline (telephone)-based systems could dramatically increase connectivity without significant increases in cost.
Prepared for Panel on ELECTRONIC BULLETIN BOARDS AND COMPUTER NETWORKS: AFRICA AND AFRICAN STUDIES IN THE INFORMATION AGE 34th Annual Meeting of the African Studies Association St. Louis, Missouri November 23-26, 1991 PACKET RADIO IN EARTH AND SPACE ENVIRONMENTS FOR RELIEF AND DEVELOPMENT*INTRODUCTION
The role of communication in development has been debated and researched for over thirty years. One of it most prolific apologists, Wilbur Schramm, stated in the early sixties that "communication, by its very nature, is always at the very center of existence for any society, developing or not. It is the basic social process [and is] about to play a key part in the greatest social revolution of all time -- the economic and social uplift of two-thirds of the world's people." (1) The modernization paradigm, from which such statements derived, relied and invested heavily on diffusionist ("trickle down") theories of mass communications to break down traditional habits of thinking and behaving, which were seen as responsible for Third World backwardness. But it didn't work.
By the mid-1970's, it was clear to many social scientists that only those individuals with higher socio-economic status were listening to mass media messages urging adoption of new technologies and processes, thus increasing the gap between rich and poor. The role of communication as a manipulative product of corporate power as well as structural barriers in society itself received more scrutiny instead of only communications variables and the speed with which innovations were moving through society. Schramm himself concluded at this time that "things are not as simple as had been assumed, and the generality sought by the old paradigm may not now be possible. Back to the old drawing board!" (2)
The diffusionist model then underwent some radical surgery, for the first time embracing such values as equality of distribution, popular participation, local invention and re-invention of technology as people- serving tools. This was the period of the "greening of development communication." But just as the perception began to change, the new microprocessor-based information technologies, especially communication satellite technologies, exploded onto the scene. The seductive appeal of these technologies together with the human shortcoming of designing simple strategies for complicated situations seem to have smothered lessons learned from structural analyses surrounding the older communication technologies. Comments as the one below are sadly not uncommon:
"We are moving toward the 21st century with the very great goal of building a Computopia on earth, the historical monument of which will be only several chips one inch square in a small box. But that box will store many historical records, including the record of how four billion world citizens overcame the energy crisis and the population explosion; achieved the abolition of nuclear weapons and complete disarmament; conquered illiteracy; and created a rich symbiosis of god and man without the compulsion of power or law, but by the voluntary cooperation of citizens to put into practice their common global aims." (3)
Our challenge today, it seems to me, is to learn from the mistakes and unbridled optimism of the past, including the "greened" diffusionist theories, which were never completely implemented because the protagonists not always understood or adopted for themselves the same technologies they were preaching to their audiences (a downside to the "appropriate technology movement," a parallel phenomenon). Today there is a "mother lode" of new, low-cost but skill intensive information and communication technologies lending themselves to adoption by the same people and organizations who promote them to others. It is against this backdrop that the groundswell of interest in packet radio, packet radio satellites and low-cost telephone line computer-based messaging and networking deserves widespread attention.
EARLY HISTORY - PACKET RADIO SATELLITES (1984-1990)
As is common with many information and communication technologies (the origin of Apple Computer comes to mind), hobbyist interest created low-cost packet radio. Amateur radio operators, notably those connected with the Tuscon Amateur Packet Radio Association (TAPR), adapted an international packet communications protocol (X.25) for use over radios. Packet radio is so called because digital information prepared on a computer is converted to short, swift audio bursts ("packets") by a "terminal node controller" or "packet controller," and transmitted through a radio to another location where a similar station delivers it error-free to the receiving computer. In this paper, packet radio is given the most attention because of its ability to handle text and binary files. However, reference is also made to "digital radio," a more generic term that includes other non-packet modes such as TOR -- "teleprinting over radio" -- which is essentially upper-case only telex.
Another amateur radio special interest group, the Radio Amateur Satellite Corporation (AMSAT), was the first organization to propose putting packet radio into low earth orbiting (LEO) satellites. LEO orbits are approximately 500 miles above the earth, in which satellites traverse the earth in equatorial or polar trajectories about once every ninety minutes. In October 1981, AMSAT, the American Radio Relay League (ARRL) -- a noncommercial association of radio amateurs -- and the Amateur Radio Research and Development Corporation (AMRAD), sponsored the first "ARRL Amateur Radio Computer Networking Conference" in Washington, DC. At this meeting, the first public mention of "PACSAT," a proposed LEO satellite using packet radio technologies for store-and- forward digital communications among radio hams was made.
Curiously, at exactly the same time, one of the major conclusions of a workshop sponsored by the International Development Research Centre (IDRC) in Ottawa on "Computer-Based Conferencing Systems for Developing Countries" was that the IDRC support feasibility studies for both "the development of low-cost, narrow-band ground stations for research institutions" and "international geostationary satellites for computer- based conferencing in developing countries." Presenters at that meeting included S. Ramani (Bombay) and R. Miller (California) who proposed "a new type of communication satellite needed for computer-based messaging" in equatorial orbit for developing countries. Digital methods suggested included radioteletype, telegraphy, and broadcast videotext. (4)
Apparently, neither meeting was known to the other. In March 1982, Dr. Yash Pal, an eminent Indian space scientist and Secretary-General of UNISPACE '82 (Vienna) proposed that an "orbital postman" using LEO satellites and digital methods be studied for some of the communication needs of the United Nations system. (5)
In early 1983, VITA, in consultation with IDRC, Dr. Pal and others, approached AMSAT for a "design definition study" of a PACSAT mission. At that time VITA had accumulated nearly two years of real-time audio teleconferencing experience over an old NASA satellite, ATS-1, on the Pacific PEACESAT network providing information on renewable energy technologies through lessons prepared by its volunteers. VITA believed that the PACSAT concept could represent an alternative to the transfer of technical information to isolated regions presently served by slow or unreliable methods (mule train mail), if at all. Even PEACESAT had its drawbacks as an information dissemination tool, namely the difficulty in arranging for user groups to be present during the pre-arranged conference due to intervening factors as well as the unavailability of hard copy records of questions and answers.
An agreement with AMSAT to jointly pursue development of a PACSAT mission was reached and in early 1983, with modest funding from VITA, AMSAT initiated a process which culminated in a Final Design Meeting near Boston attended by VITA and AMSAT personnel and volunteers. Participants at the meeting included staff from the UoSat Spacecraft Engineering Research Unit at the University of Surrey (Guildford, England). The Surrey team, which had earlier (1981) constructed and arranged for a NASA launch of UoSat-1, had successfully demonstrated the highly "sophisticated functions necessary to support store-and-forward communications services within very small budgets." (6) Surrey offered to integrate a "Digital Communications Experiment" (DCE) into their UoSat-2 spacecraft if it could be readied in less than six months! VITA hired a consultant to coordinate the technical activities of AMSAT and VITA volunteers in three countries (UK, Canada, and the U.S.], and April 1984 UoSat-2 was successfully launched into space. (7)
Thousands of messages were exchanged on the DCE from 1984 to 1990 among a small number of radio amateurs, including a station established at VITA headquarters. For reasons more fully discussed in a future section, these messages could only be of a non-consequential nature (ie, radio hams talking about their equipment, location, or the "weather") and could not legally include development information or activities. But the experience did vividly illustrate that low-cost messaging from LEO satellites was technically feasible. The DCE was the first non-military LEO digital messaging satellite in the world and, while it has fallen into general disuse because of later satellites, continues to function normally well beyond its five year design lifetime.
RECENT HISTORY - VITASAT PROGRAM (1990 - PRESENT)
In January 1990 the PACSAT Communication Experiment (PCE) was launched by Arianespace as part of the UoSat-3 satellite, again prepared by the University of Surrey. This satellite upgraded the 1984 technology to faster speeds and more on-board memory. It also contained special transmitters and receivers operating on non-amateur frequencies so that VITA could begin to conduct real demonstrations and experiments within a development context. It also supports amateur radio communication and at this date has provided reliable communication to more than a hundred amateurs from thirty countries.
VITA's first installation operating through the PCE on the non- amateur frequencies was for PLAN International in Freetown, Sierra Leone. While government interference on this frequency prevented immediate operation, this situation has been recently rectified. The station is now sending administrative and programmatic memoranda back to VITA which is then forwarded to PLAN International Headquarters in Rhode Island via electronic mail. PLAN sends its messages/files in the reverse direction in a similar manner. The PLAN-VITA interaction marks the first time ever that low earth orbit satellites have exchanged development-related information on non-amateur frequencies.
VITA is installing as many as fifty PCE groundstations with institutions having applications in health, education and environment/energy throughout developing countries, most in Africa. VITA develops "Memoranda of Understanding" (MOU) with potential sponsors which outlines the responsibilities of the sponsor and VITA. One of these is SatelLife, a Boston-based organization which has launched its own Surrey-built system, also operating on experimental frequencies, but which is not yet functioning as this is written. SatelLife expects to install PCE-style groundstations in a number of East African "ESANET" countries linking medical schools at national universities in Kenya, Tanzania, Uganda, Zambia, Zimbabwe amd Mozambique.
At the present time, VITA, through its MOUs, intends to install and train national African staff on additional PCE stations in Nigeria, Tanzania, Niger, Mali, Ghana, and Guinea-Bissau.
While the PCE phase is in the midst of implementation, VITA is also in the midst of planning for the third phase which will involve the launch of VITASAT-A and -B, operational satellites that will accommodate up to 500 ground stations each, operating on "permanent" (non- experimental) frequencies. There is more on this in a later section.
RECENT HISTORY - TERRESTRIAL PACKET RADIO (1986-PRESENT)
As a spinoff of its LEO satellite activities, VITA realized that the continued development and approaching maturity of packet controller technology would soon make it possible to implement terrestrial projects employing computer-to-computer communication via radio without the satellite interface. In 1986 two VITA volunteers traveled to Ethiopia supported by corporate and church donors to conduct a three week demonstration of packet radio between CARE operations in Addis Ababa and Dire Dawa, several hundred kilometers to the north. It was the first known successful demonstration of terrestrial packet radio for humanitarian purposes. Since then VITA has implemented a variety of packet radio projects in the Sudan, Jamaica, Chad, and the Philippines. Studies and demonstrations have been performed for groups in Lesotho, Tanzania, Nigeria, Pakistan, Afghanistan, and Kenya. VITA also conducts an annual week-long course on digital and packet radio under the auspices of the United States Telecommunications Training Institute.
One of the features of multiple station packet networks, such as that installed in the Philippines for the Department of Health (DOH) under grants from the Japanese Government through the World Bank, is that various kinds of radio frequencies -- each optimized for distance and speed -- and even landline (telephone) modems, can be integrated into a single system. Radio stations and telephone modems are connected to computers operating special bulletin board software which then communicate automatically with each other passing administrative and health data and statistics. In this way, messages and files are forwarded throughout the network even though any given station may not be able to directly communicate with another given station. The DOH project also demonstrated that this networking capability can be useful during emergencies, and a portable site at a hospital site was hastily established for communications during the initial exodus following the Mt. Pinatubo eruption.
One of the fascinating technical possibilities is that terrestrial packet radio networks may find it useful to add some additional equipment to one of its stations (perhaps the "hub" station running the bulletin board program) and become a node on the PCE/VITASAT network. PLAN/Sierra Leone will be the first organization to pursue this possibility with a three-station terrestrial network connected to the PCE station in Freetown (the capital).
Additional networking power may be realized by linking packet radio in terrestrial and/or space environments with ordinary dial-up telephone links using FidoNet and Fido-compatible software ("Fido" refers both to the network of personal computer users as well as to the original mailer software used on the network). These systems have been popular among experimenters for many years and basically involve PCs calling each other up in the middle of the night when rates are low and passing messages, files and programs. Routing has become quite sophisticated such that it is now possible to send messages across the United States for free throughout the Fido system and to other points worldwide as well. There are some Fido systems available in Africa, notably Kenya, Zimbabwe, South Africa, and Senegal. There are also gateways available to public and commercial networks, such as BITNET, USENET and CompuServe. Others at this meeting will be able to provide a more complete overview of Fido technology and network topology. The main point is that, unlike commercial networks requiring high quality telephone circuits and main frame or mini-computers and therefore high cost, Fido style networking is accomplished much more cheaply and perhaps with more individual enthusiasm than commercial networking. Highly committed Fido "Johnny Appleseeds" have goals of establishing Fido-style systems throughout the world, notably in Africa. Fido- style mailers can be combined with bulletin board systems (BBS), allowing the operator to become node in a true sense--his/her bulletin board takes messages from anybody else who happens to dial in, then the mailer forwards these messages to the correct computer by dialing it at a pre-determined time (when the other computer is waiting for the call).
VITA has been running both a stand-alone BBS and stand-alone Fido- style mailer for some time, and is now completing an implementation to integrate the two together ("VITANET"). The VITANET BBS at present is mostly a repository of information on technical and commodity assistance available in international disasters. The VITANET mailer currently links VITA projects in the Philippines, Australia, Kenya, Pakistan, and Nigeria to U.S. headquarters. Eventually, the mailer will be automatically connected via gateway software to the VITASAT groundstation at headquarters, thus allowing any user in the VITASAT network to communicate with any user within the VITANET domain (vast, because the Fido system as well as BITNET/Internet and others are available through gateways). Mailers have caught the attention of a number of international organizations, including the IDRC and the Sub- Saharan Program of the American Association for the Advancement of Science (AAAS).
SOME SOCIOLOGICAL CONCERNS
"An answer to a technical problem that takes minutes to obtain in Europe can take months to obtain in Somalia or Sudan. To give just one example, a medical advisor in Mogadishu needed background information on excretion of antimalarials in breast milk to help him decide on the details of a prophylaxis programme for about half a million people. The agency funding him had no staff in Europe who were themselves qualified to make a thorough search for this information or who knew who to ask to do it for them. The telephone calls necessary to set up and pay for a search through a Western information centre would have taken weeks, given the communication problems at that time. The solution was to get a friend who was passing through Nairobi to pay himself for a search in Europe, personally photocopy the papers concerned, and then to mail the printout and copies of papers to Mogadishu. The total time needed to get the information on this routine inquiry was about four weeks. The programme was already underway when the material arrived. Hundreds of highly technical decisions affecting huge numbers of people are made each month in relief programs with a bare minimum of scientific background data."
So writes R.S. Stephenson in the October 1986 issue of Disasters. His is a graphic way of stating that the accuracy of information is an important but insufficient condition for its use, especially in Africa. In order for most technical and logistical information to be employed in the execution of a relief operation or project, it must be timely as well as accurate in content. Scientists, engineers, physicians and researchers are also keenly aware of the time dimension to technical information requirements, amply illustrated by the popularity of BITNET and Internet activities in the U.S. and some other countries.
Information which is time-critical to project execution is time- dependent. This means that the same information, if delivered after a certain time, has lost much--if not all--of its value. This is frequently due to the intrinsic value of information itself. Even more important is the potential loss of human and material resources that can become inputs to other projects or wasted altogether if not used when critically needed.
From the standpoint of planners, projects are sometimes viewed as objectives compartmentalized into specific activities, all having discrete beginning and ending points. From the perspective of field staff, however, it is often more realistic to consider accomplished objectives as having successfully recognized and exploited "windows of opportunity." When the window is "open," it is critical to have the right information available at that time. When the window is "closed," (e.g., field staff have promised skeptical village leaders information on a new treatment for cholera but have not delierved same) it may be twice as difficult if not impossible to reactivate interest.
Most useful technical information is the result of multiple pairs of query-response: each response provides more feedback for an ever- refined query. This makes the reduction of turnaround time important and suggests that communication modes that specifically address reliability and speed, particularly from isolated areas, can be enormously significant for a variety of rural projects or activities. Insofar as some of the African research community is itself subject to isolation, it is obvious that these technologies could provide not only a useful research link with peers scattered worldwide, but also mitigate the loneliness that many young professionals report. In numerous countries, for example, medical doctors must complete a year of service in a rural or isolated location before they can earn their degrees.
The above describes the "last mile" problem in which communications almost but not quite get to the enduser who is simply beyond the reach of normal commercial channels. The point is that commercial circuits will probably never get to these isolated people -- at least not within our lifetimes and not in most of Africa -- because the social overhead is too high and return on investment too low to be justified by the weak demand. The situation thus lends itself to technology more matched to lower levels of demand and cost.
With all of the obvious advantages, it is sometimes discouraging that implementation of projects and diffusion of innovative communications technology is coming about with mixed velocities, but generally slowly. There are many ways that technology is "transferred," but generally it is the last element in a complex process in which institutions or individuals ready themselves for the technology. Sometimes this is lightning fast or spontaneous, such as the rapid exploitation of cocoa cultivation technology by the Ashanti people of southern Ghana which took place without intervention of agricultural extension agents or foreign consultants. Sometimes it is time-consuming, such as the complicated socio-political-religious value shifts required to implement family planning methods.
Which will it be for low-cost digital radio networking? The jury is still out, but we might well ask ourselves the following set of questions. You can be assured that the government is asking many of the same questions!
1. How accessible are present communication media? How and who controls this access?
2. How is the rural social and economic structure organized and what control does it exert over individual or project decisions?
3. Who decides whether digital radio systems can be made available and to whom? Are local people and/or project personnel consulted?
4. Will such systems have any measurable impact on individual or family welfare? On regional and national development in the short, medium and long range? Will it tend to increase employment or unemployment, fixation of the rural population or migration to the cities, enrichment of the already rich or better income distribution?
5. Does the adoption of the system have any implications for modifications of local work habits, practices or even cultural norms?
6. How technically sound is the technology? What level of maintenance and problem-solving in the event of difficulties can be handled by users themselves and what needs to be supplied from the outside? What kind and levels of training must exist?
7. How frequently are stations checked or monitored? Do local telecommunications authorities impose any limits to time, duration and destination of communications? Is there any attempt at blockage or censorship of communication?
8. How important are local personal or peer networks in formulating the questions or topics requiring information as well as disseminating the results?
9. Do digital radio systems help identify local resources that users might not have known about previously? Can identification and use of these resources eventually replace such systems as an international communication media for far-away information resources or are packet radio-style communications required in perpetuity?
10. How much does the PTT think it will lose in revenues if it permits terrestrial and/or satellite packet radio systems?
As applied to digital radio, the problem with the "Johnny Appleseed" approach to the dissemination of low-cost networking technology is that these kinds of questions don't usually get asked during project planning and implementation. Thus the issues may not be thought through, and therefore the entire effort is not taken seriously by officials who must sign off on everything. While such has been true as well for landline networking in the past, that situation does seem to be gradually changing in at least some African countries. But the cautions remain. Outside of South Africa, almost 100% of the landline networkers are not native-born Africans, the situation being somewhat better for VITA-assisted African digital radio projects. This has implications for how networking technologies get disseminated ("transferred"). Western values emphasize information-sharing, while sharing is anathema to many African societies (and other cultures around the world) to whom information is power. Information is to be carefully guarded, because sharing it will only give someone else an advantage. Thus, in an African context, it would be more natural to see fewer bulletin boards and more peer-to-peer links.
SOME REGULATORY CONCERNS
In 1986 it took the Relief and Rehabilitation Commission of Ethiopia, a government agency, more than a year to acquire temporary authorization for a three-week demonstration of packet radio in a CARE food program. After its success (the first of its kind ever), the government quashed all further experimentation and a permanent network was never implemented. Similar, though less dramatic, experiences have been logged in other African and Asian countries.
One international agency, while implementing a packet network in an African country, decided not to request authorization for its proposed packet radio system, but rather strategized a "fait accompli" situation under the guise of an existing voice radio license. When the system was ready for inauguration, all the proper individuals were invited to a generous reception and any objection quietly buried. One noteworthy Asian country has a five-tiered licensing process, which could take years to complete if followed to the letter. Time and time again, the difficulties and delays in licensing or obtaining temporary authorizations stymie packet radio projects in terrestrial and satellite applications alike. Every country and situation is different.
This situation has not gone unnoticed by some of the international organizations concerned with the technology. The IDRC and VITA have long hoped to hold an international workshop on digital radio applications which would include direct participation by African PTT and telecommunications authorities in an attempt to educate and promote more responsive policies. The Electronic Networking Component of the Sub-Saharan Africa Program of the AAAS also plans to look more generally at regulatory and tariff issues affecting the diffusion of information technology in Africa. There may some understandable reasons for xenophobic, seemingly short-sighted policies. Persistent rumors mention RENAMO in Mozambique using packet radio technology, likewise the Eritreans in Ethiopia, Marxist factions in the Philippines, contras in Nicaragua. Anti-drug packet radio networks operated by the U.S. government function throughout Latin America. VITA was once approached by a sincere sounding individual to explore creation of a clandestine packet radio network operating from Tibet (no further exploration occurred).
While acknowledging that some legitimate security concerns exist, VITA generally relies on the reputation of the sponsor to mitigate doubts and anxieties of the host government. One African country has demanded that special security software be implemented before authorization to operate a PCE station is provided. The software will allow telecommunications officials to monitor transactions with the satellite by arriving unannounced and, using a secret software key, unlock log files which cannot be operator altered.
One major event early in 1992 should improve the regulatory climate of packet radio LEO satellites. The World Administrative Radio Conference (WARC) will be held in Spain and for the first time, partly through VITA's efforts, LEO satellites are on the agenda. WARCs allocate frequency spectrum internationally, and VITA's hope is that recognition of the value of a non-profit humanitarian LEO service and corresponding frequency allocations will occur at WARC '92. Without a favorable outcome at the WARC, VITASAT and and other satellite services like it will have to depend on experimental frequency authorizations on a country-by-country basis -- an unstable and less desireable situation. Yet the effort to influence the U.S. position and win international votes at the WARC as well as pursue national authorizations through the Federal Communications Commission has thus far cost in excess of $250,000, not a small amount for a grant-dependent PVO.
The situation would be considerably simpler if international amateur radio regulations allowed humanitarian-based communications, which are generally prohibited except in emergencies. Modified amateur radio hardware is frequently used in both terrestrial and space packet radio applications and is usually 10-30% cheaper than its commercial counterparts. Even the interpretation of what constitutes an "emergency" message varies widely. In the United States there is a strong tradition of using amateur radio in the public service, while this is not generally true in Europe. Since many African countries derive their administrative apparatus and attitudes from European colonialism it is not surprising that similar restrictions may apply to amateur radio and amateur radio-derived technologies in those countries.
It is still too early to say that LEO store-and-forward satellites are "here to stay" for relief and development applications in Africa. As 1991 draws to a close, there is undeniable widespread interest, as there is in terrestrial packet radio applications and low-cost landline networking. The potential contributions that these technologies can make are immense, however, and collectively have fired the imaginations of many people who see one or more of these as possible solutions to the age-old problem of communicating from isolated regions.
It is likely that none of these technologies alone will have the kind of impact required to truly make a difference. As pointed out earlier in this paper, technologies alone rarely play that role. They interact with values, norms and institutions to produce changes in society.
But personal, decentralized networks integrating all three technologies for problem-solving purposes cut across society. They can empower people to make changes in their lives, gain new knowledge through links with others, and ameliorate duplication of effort. We should remind ourselves that communication technologies are, after all, mere extensions of our abilities (and frailities) at manipulating and relaying the data and information we create. The use of those data and information in the creation of knowledge depends on people, as individuals, and not on the technologies themselves.
If we can keep the focus on individuals, then it may turn out that Wilbur Schramm's vision of communication as the "core social process" helping to alleviate poverty may turn out to have been right after all.
*(The opinions expressed are solely those of the author and do not necessarily reflect those of VITA or of any other organization cited.)
1. Wilbur Schramm, Mass Media and National Development (Stanford, CA: Stanford University Press, 1964), pp. 248 and 91.
2. Wilbur Schramm, "End of an Old Paradigm?" in Schramm, Wilbur and Lerner, Daniel, eds. Communication and Change - The Last Ten Years - and the Next (Honolulu: The University Press of Hawaii, 1976), p. 47.
3. Yoneji Masuda, The Information Society (Bethesda, MD: The World Future Society, 1981), p. 156.
4. David Balson et al, Computer-Based Conferencing Systems for Developing Countries. Report of a workshop held in Ottawa, Canada, 26-30 October 1961. Organized by the International Development Research Centre in cooperation with the International Federation for Information Processing.
5. Yash Pal, "A Proposal for an 'Orbital Postman' to Meet Some of the Communication Needs of the United Nations System" at the International Round Table on Alternative Space Futures and the Human Condition, New York, 8-10 March 1982.
6. M.N. Sweeting and J.W. Ward, "Low Cost, Digital satellite Communications for Rural Areas" at IEE International Conference on Rural Telecommunications, London, 24 May 1988.
7. Gary Garriott, "The Evolution of a Satellite," VITA News, Arlington, VA,
April 1984, p. 6.