Nowadays, people can be classified according to how knowledgeable they are about the net. My brother, for instance, is a real nethead (=an Internet expert), while my parents represent the extreme opposite – they are typical web-haters. Of course the younger generations have the advantage of growing up with the internet as one of the basic tools, which makes them digital natives. On the other hand, there are older people, who did not know the net when they were young and learned to use it as adults –the so-called digital immigrants. The variety of internet service providers (=companies that offer its customers access to the internet) to choose from, and all sorts of applications, such as browsers (=programs that make it possible for you to read information on the web), makes it easy for most people to access the internet. Obviously, the main role of the web is sharing all kinds of information, hence search engines (=programs which find information on the Internet by looking for words which you have typed in) are one of the most commonly used web pages. At the same time, the net is absorbing more and more of our every-day activities: online shopping and online banking have become a standard and millions of people now use social networks (for example Facebook) and chatrooms. There are downsides, of course; the piles of spam that come to one’s e-mail box, pop-up adds (=advertisements which appear in separate windows as you browse the internet), and even the risk of one’s computer being hacked. So, install a good firewall (=a program that stops people getting access to a computer without permission), remember to filter the content you download and off you go!
More contexts for the new words:
- The first stage of selection is filtering out all unsuitable candidates.
(= to remove people/things from a group)
- Don’t you think this information should be accessible to the public?
(= easy for anyone to obtain and use)
- I’m just ringing up for a chat.
(= a friendly conversation)
Complete the sentences with the words from the text. The first letter is given. Sometimes you may need more than one word.
- I’m going to need to change my p……………………., the current one I have is not very reliable, the connection breaks almost every day.
- You spend too much time in c……………………….. . Wouldn’t it be better to talk to some ‘real’ people instead, you know, face to face…?
- Oh, I hate these p…………………… adds, you click something and three of them appear all of a sudden!
- Google is my favourite s…………………………….. .
- I try to f………………………. the things my children download from the internet, but sometimes is not as easy as it seems.
- I have never met such a n……………………. as Jim before. He can talk about nothing but computers!
- Open your b……………….. and type in the website address in the bar at the top.
- I would like to start protecting my computer better. Which f……………………….. would you recommend?
Match the two parts of the questions and then answer them.
- Are you a digital native a) do online?
- How often do you b) or a digital immigrant?
- What kinds of things do you c) access the internet?
ENGLISH IN USE
Look at this sentence from the text:
Nowadays, people can be classified according to how knowledgeable they are about the net.
The adjective “knowledgeable” is derived from the noun “knowledge” using the ending “-able”. This is a very productive ending, which is added to many words in English to make adjectives. The meaning of the adjective usually stays in close relation to the basic word and is somehow connected to ability or easiness.
solve -> solvable (possible to solve)
predict -> predictable (possible to predict)
cure -> curable (possible to cure)
afford -> affordable (easy to afford)
The ending may also take the form of –ible, with the same function. This one is often added to words which are of Latin origin and/or do not function as separate English words, for example:
audible (possible to hear)
visible (possible to see)
edible (possible to eat)
incredible (impossible to believe)
A/ Any breakthroughs in fixing the computer?
B/ Well, I think I finally CONNECTED THE DOTS and I know what has been causing the problem, now I need to work out how to get everything to work back again.
If you connect the dots, you discover and start to understand the relationship between different ideas or experiences.
PHRASAL VERBS CLOSE-UP
1. If you LOG IN / ON, you enter into a computer the information required to begin working, using a system or a website.
Log in and scroll down the page.
Logging on is really easy, let me show you.
2. The opposite action is LOG OUT / OFF.
If you don’t use the system for five minutes, it will automatically log you out.
Log off now and let’s go, you’ve had enough of this game for today!
Decide if the sentences are true or false.
- When you want to start using a social network, you need to log in.
- Connecting the dots means that you have solved a given problem.
- “Log out” and “log off “may be used interchangeably.
FIGHTING DIGITAL ILLITERACY
Over one third of Polish adults do not use the Internet and do not plan to start any time soon, a recent study by CBOS showed. Non-governmental organizations call on the Prime Minister to introduce programmes to fight ‘digital illiteracy’. They argue that if no measures are taken, the exclusion of these groups of people will deepen both in the business world and within the social sphere. The research also confirmed the common knowledge that the younger and the more educated the group, the greater their interest in modern technology.
– illiteracy – not being able to read and write
– a measure – a way of achieving something or a method for dealing with a situation
– exlusion – when someone or something is not allowed to take part in an activity
– common knowledge– something that everyobody in a group knows or understands
- search engine