BBC 6 Minute English | THE OUTERNET | English CC | Daily Listening

source: Daily Listening   2016年10月11日

0:06 Now, how was your holiday?
0:08 My holiday was lovely, Neil.
0:10 I was staying on a beautiful island.
0:12 It was very remote and there was actually no internet access.
0:16 So, I did feel quite cut off actually.
0:19 And cut off means isolated.
0:22 How did you survive, Catherine?
0:24 Well, it wasn’t easy.
0:26 But I had my e-reader - that's an electronic device which lets you store and read lots
0:31 of books from the internet.
0:33 And I read a lot of Harry Potter...
0:35 Harry Potter?
0:36 I know you like wizards, Catherine, but shouldn't you have downloaded some classic literature?
0:41 How about Shakespeare’s The Tempest?
0:43 That's got a wizard in it too.
0:45 Well, yes indeed.
0:46 But Shakespeare on the beach isn't quite right for me, Neil.
0:49 Right.
0:50 Well, today we're talking about how the poorer and more remote - or distant - parts of the
0:55 world can get access to learning.
0:58 That's right.
0:59 But before we start, Neil, I believe you have a quiz question for us.
1:02 Yes, I do.
1:03 I would like to know what the proportion of the world's population that still has no internet
1:08 access is.
1:10 Is it... a) a quarter?
1:12 b) half? or c) two thirds?
1:15 I'm going to go for c) two thirds.
1:18 Well, we'll find out if you're right or wrong later on in the programme.
1:21 So Catherine, how can these people get connected to the internet and start surfing?
1:27 By using the Outernet.
1:29 The Outer what?
1:30 The Outernet.
1:31 That's the idea of entrepreneur Syed Karim and its goal is to give people in unconnected
1:37 communities access to information without having to use expensive mobile phones or two-way
1:43 satellite networks.
1:45 I see.
1:46 And an entrepreneur, by the way, is a person who makes money by starting their own business
1:51 that typically involves some financial risk.
1:54 Yes, I've always fancied myself as a bit of an entrepreneur.
1:57 Well, you'll need money and ideas, Catherine.
1:59 Have you got either of those?
2:02 I've got ideas.
2:03 Right.
2:04 OK.
2:05 I get it.
2:06 So, can you tell us how the Outernet works, Neil?
2:08 Yes, I can.
2:09 The Outernet uses existing communications satellites to store and broadcast data - broadcast
2:16 means to send out signals or programmes.
2:18 Special equipment on the ground picks up - or receives - the data, and this can be copied
2:24 to phones and computers.
2:26 But the Outernet broadcasts data offline - which means it's not connected to the Internet.
2:32 There's no communication with the internet for user - so, no emails, no chat forums.
2:37 And that can be a big drawback - or disadvantage.
2:40 Yes.
2:41 The Outernet doesn't provide two-way communication.
2:45 But let's hear Syed Karim discussing why one-way access has some advantages.
2:51 And see if you can spot another word meaning 'two-way'.
2:54 Anything that is related to bi-directional communications, the internet, to be able to
2:58 provide that to the entire world, those are billion dollar projects, multi-billion dollar
3:02 projects with huge time horizons and enormous complexity.
3:07 And, you know, our solution that we are offering is instantaneous, I mean, it exists right
3:11 now.
3:12 Did you get it?
3:13 Another way of saying two-way is bi-directional.
3:17 So what are the advantages of one-way communication, Catherine?
3:21 It's significantly cheaper.
3:23 Bi-directional communications are multi-billion dollar projects.
3:27 But the Outernet allows poorer communities to benefit from access to information.
3:31 Yes, it does.
3:32 And the other big problem is the time it would take to establish two-way access.
3:37 Syed says these projects have huge time horizons - and this means the length of time it takes
3:43 to complete a project - they're huge, so very big.
3:47 But the Outernet is already providing access to some of the world's most valuable knowledge.
3:51 That's right.
3:52 The project aims to create a library of information taken from websites including Wikipedia and
3:58 Project Gutenberg, which is a collection of copyright-free e-books.Copyright-free means
4:04 the right to use material without paying any fees.
4:07 That sounds good.
4:09 But let's go back to the internet and hear from a BBC reporter talking about another
4:15 project which aims to get people connected.
4:18 Google for example is working on Project Loon, a network of high-altitude helium balloons,
4:24 which will boost Internet connections across much wider areas beyond coverage from conventional
4:29 masts.
4:30 It's called Project Loon - meaning crazy - because Google thought it was such a crazy idea, and
4:35 loon sounds like balloon!
4:37 Yeah.
4:38 The idea is that users will connect to the balloon network - or group of interconnected
4:42 balloons - using an antenna attached to their building.
4:47 The signal travels through the balloon network from balloon to balloon, and then to a station
4:52 on the ground that's connected to the Internet.
4:54 The balloons will boost - or increase - the number of people who will be able to access
4:59 the Internet.
5:00 Yes, it will.
5:01 And that's because there will be lots of them - compared to the number ofmasts - or tall
5:05 metal towers that send and receive signals - that are currently used.
5:10 OK, let's have the answer to the quiz question I asked: What proportion of the world's population
5:15 still has no internet access?
5:18 Is it ... a) a quarter?
5:20 b) half? or c) two thirds?
5:22 And I said c) two thirds.
5:25 And you were right!
5:26 The answer is two thirds.
5:28 Well done, Catherine.
5:29 Thank you.
5:30 Now just time to listen to today's words once again.
5:33 Catherine.
5:34 OK.
5:35 We heard: e-reader
5:36 remote entrepreneur
5:38 broadcast picks up
5:41 drawback bi-directional
5:44 one-way time horizons
5:47 copyright-free balloon network
5:50 boost masts