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UK Government wants to get all citizens online; sets agenda

The minister for digital inclusion (and arguably against exclusion), Paul Murphy, told the National Digital Inclusion conference, possibly another Quango, that efforts have to be made to get all UK citizens online.

"We came up with the following mission statement: To coordinate policies and a coherent strategy that all citizens, especially the disadvantaged, can benefit from new technologies." he said.

Latest surveys show that a third of the UK population, around 17 million citizens, is still unconnected as they do not have access to a computer either at home or at their place of work.

Paul Murphy said that he plans to slash this number by 50 percent within two years, adding that a significant proportion come from four non-exclusive groups : old age people, economically, socially or geographically disadvantaged groups.

The BBC also reported that Jim Knight, the minister for schools and learners, wants his department to "get access to every household with a child aged between five and 19" to teach teenagers and youngsters online.

Désiré has been musing and writing about technology during a career spanning four decades. He dabbled in website building and web hosting when DHTML and frames were en vogue and started writing about the impact of technology on society just before the start of the Y2K hysteria at the turn of the last millennium. Following an eight-year stint at where he discovered the joys of global tech-fests, Désiré now heads up TechRadar Pro. Previously he was a freelance technology journalist at Incisive Media, Breakthrough Publishing and Vnunet, and Business Magazine. He also launched and hosted the first Tech Radio Show on Radio Plus.