Organisers of this year’s Digital Africa Conference and Exhibition, with the theme: “Africa Tech Renaissance: Preparing Africa for the Age of Abundance”, which holds in June in Abuja, have said the conference would capture the salient issues and the way forward to enjoying the Age of Abundance in Africa.
With the Fourth Industrial Revolution making a speedy entry into the globe via exponential technologies such as Cloud Computing, Artificial Intelligence (AI), Big Data and Analytics, Machine Learning, Augmented Reality (AR), Blockchain technology, among others, the global economy is now at the mercy of these disruptive technologies, a situation that the conference promises to address.
As technology is changing every part of human life – jobs, relationships, economies, industries and entire regions, it has been argued that Africa’s greatest resource is its people and they alone can determine the direction for Africa’s digital revolution.
There is therefore, the need for an Africa with clean water, nutritious food, affordable housing, personalised education, top-tier medical care and non-polluting, ubiquitous energy, and the time is now to position Africa for abundance through exponential change, the conference organisers said in a statement.
Speaking on the choice of the theme for this year’s event, Chairman of Digital Africa Group, Dr. Evans Woherem said: “An Age of Abundance is coming and almost here with us. It is being fuelled by the exponential technologies. With the right type of decisions and actions by citizens, we can ensure that each of the countries in Africa will benefit from this new age of abundance.”
According to him, “Imagine a situation where just by wearing a t-shirt in form of a technology tool, heartbeats are measured, uploaded to the cloud via bluetooth, and algorithms process them to accurately detect the irregular heartbeats.
“Imagine converting wastes from the coffee industry into biofuels for heating buildings and powering transportation or disrupting the air surrounding a fire and quenching it eventually by the pressure waves of sound. These are some of the things going to be prevalent in the Age of Abundance driven by technology.”
Woherem, however, warned that in getting ready for the ‘Age of Abundance’, Africa should avoid sitting idle and letting the train of the new industrial revolution pass her by, insisting that governments must take this challenge very seriously and do something with a great sense of urgency.
“However, regardless of what the government does or does not do, the challenge is on us all, especially the youth to ensure that this new train of development does not pass us by. I implore you all thus: arm yourselves with knowledge, start research and projects in AI and other exponential technologies, even if it is from your bedrooms or garages.
“We must not miss this opportunity. If you don’t, especially if your children do not, they won’t be economic active members of society. For the sake of your economic well-being at least, do something, embrace these new technologies,” Woherem added.