Electronic technology: The role of the Internet

Peter Anderson
Centre for Policy Research on Science & Technology, Simon Fraser University, 515 West Hastings Street, Vancouver, British Columbia V6B 5K3, Canada.
Tel. : +1-604-291-4921, Fax: +1-604-465-8797,
E-mail: anderson@sfu.ca

The emerging development of the so-called information highway provides a new and potentially revolutionary option for the rapid, automatic, and global dissemination of emergency information. A number of individuals and groups, including several national Meteorological Services, are experimenting with the Internet for real-time dissemination of weather observations, forecasts, satellite and other data. It is already possible for subscribers to the Internet to access a wide array of environmental information and products on the network. Clearly, the advent of the Internet provides both opportunity and challenge in determining how best to harness its potential for dissemination of warnings and for the relay of other data and products while minimising the problems associated with a new and open communications technology. With the advent of the Intranet for more secure internal distribution and the plans continuously underway in the development of the next generation on the Internet, the increased use of electronic and other technological advances will be presented.