Cuba inagurates first computer factory

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ikosmos ikosmos's picture
Cuba inagurates first computer factory

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On December 23, Cuba inaugurated its first factory to produce tablets and laptops in a bid to promote technology and digital literacy on the island.

The factory, owned by the state-run Informatics, Communications and Electronics Entity, has a production capacity of 120,000 units per year.

According to a report by Cuba's national television, the new factory produces sixth-generation laptops with i3, Celeron and i5 Cores, as well as 8- and 10-inch tablets.

Let it be Linux ... let it be Linux ... let it be Linux!!!!

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With this initiative, Cuba is taking a major step forward in its technological development, which has been severely hampered by the U.S. economic blockade.

Despite an ongoing process to normalize relations between the two countries - which began on December 17, 2014 - and President Obama’s March 2016 visit to Cuba, the economic blockade remains in effect.

Cuba reported earlier this year that the blockade has cost the island 753.7 billion USD over the last six decades, and 4.7 billion over the last year alone.

This year, the U.N. General Assembly voted against the U.S. blockade on Cuba for the 25th year in a row.

Cuba inaugurates first computer factory

lagatta4

That is wonderful news!

ikosmos ikosmos's picture

well, let our friend, radiorahim, intervene. He might sober us up, and quickly too.

Mr. Magoo

Seems cool, and I'm not being quarrelsome when I ask this, but will Cuba also be making a parallel investment in network infrastructure so that these new tablets aren't simply for playing Candy Crush?  Any Cuban with a smartphone already has all the computing hardware they need for "digital literacy" but they need to be connected to the rest of the world.  If not through some U.S. service provider, then through any other country.  If you can't connect to the internet then it's just a GameBoy.

ikosmos ikosmos's picture

In case you didn't read my first post right to the end, Magoo, perhaps you'll go back and have a look at the last sentence. In that sentence i noted that the UN, for the 25th year in a row, voted against the barbarous US blockade against Cuba. That's 3/4 of a trillion dollars over the 6 decades, almost 5 billion in losses to their economy  in the last year alone. The stinking - sorry, I mean "enlightened" - Obama regime is still carrying out this imperial policy that would make a Roman Caesar blush.

But not, it seems, "liberal", Nobel Peace Prize winner  Barak "Yes We Scan" Obama.

The Cubans would be very wise to make sure that the smallest bolt in their computers doesn't say "Made in the USA" somewhere in the small print.

I wish them all the luck in the world, which, it's clear, you don't. So stop pretending you give a shit.

 

Mr. Magoo

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In case you didn't read my first post right to the end, Magoo, perhaps you'll go back and have a look at the last sentence.

I certainly saw it, and read it.  And I get that the U.S. doesn't trade with Cuba.

I'm just wondering whether Cuba's new computers will be connecting with the rest of the world.  If not then they're not really "computers" so much as game platforms or mp3 players.

6079_Smith_W

Well that's not quite true, but I do take your point about the importance of internet access. There is a great deal you can do with a computer without it.

In fact, if computers are readily available it means a lot more freedom to move information around, even without the internet.

But it is about time they had a tech company like this, when you consider how far ahead they are in medicine.

 

ikosmos ikosmos's picture

The Cubans would be wise to set up their network independent of the US regime. Any US regime. And that's not an easy task. I read, some time ago, about Venezuela and/or Chile helping with this.

If only that US regime would just hurry up and collapse. I'm sure Cuba would find itself at the hub of a huge trade and technology network in the Carribbean. And they could then do what they've been wanting to do ... send doctors and aid workers to the impoverished USA.

swallow

Cuban medical aid workers in the USA would be awesome. And really useful, in fact. 

Presumably China is happy to trade computers/parts/tech with Cuba. Internet access - well, that's tough for anyone to do without links into the USA, isn't it? 

ikosmos ikosmos's picture

swallow wrote:
Cuban medical aid workers in the USA would be awesome. And really useful, in fact.

Agreed. Too bad the USians rejected the Cuban offer of assistance during Hurricane Katrina. The US regime would literally rather have their citizens die than accept help from the "dreaded" Cubans.

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Presumably China is happy to trade computers/parts/tech with Cuba. Internet access - well, that's tough for anyone to do without links into the USA, isn't it?

This last point our friend Magoo "just doesn't understand" - or pretends not to.

It's funny.

Knowing that a computer isn't much without a good internet connection - check.

Knowing that relying upon the neighbouring US regime for anything to do with their technological development is like relying on a convicted pedophile to take care of your children - nope, Magoo doesn't get it. What could possibly go wrong?

lol.

Mr. Magoo

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This last point our friend Magoo "just doesn't understand" - or pretends not to.

Cuba's first connection to the internet was to Sprint in the U.S.

If the U.S. were to refuse to allow Cuba to connect to the internet through the U.S., that only leaves about 100 or so other countries in the world.  The way the global internet works, it doesn't really matter so much where you get on.

But it's really not a question of whether Barack Obama will permit the people of Cuba to access the internet.  It's about whether the government of Cuba will permit the people of Cuba to access the internet.

lagatta4

A friend who spends considerable time in Cuba says that computer and internet availability is one of the things people - especially younger people - are clamouring for most. The WIFI posts in parks and other public places are flooded with people.

I'd love to visit there, but the lack of internet access means it could be only a short visit. No, not because of "internet withdrawal system", but because I depend on it for (precarious) work.

Yes, more Caribbean cooperation would be excellent. So many of those countries depend on one or other metropolis even for necessities of life. The 2009 general strike in Guadaloupe, which spread to Martinique was a response to the very high cost of living due to much food being imported from or via France.

And obviously having to import many of the necessities of life has far more dramatic consequences still in Haiti, where there is such dire poverty (people in the French Antilles receive at least the RMI), the arable land has been so degraded by erosion (deforestation of the mountains above) and the dire situation in the country discourages the tourism that is such an important factor in other Caribbean nations. Cuba is providing a lot of medical aid to Haiti, but the fundamental problems remain.

Mr. Magoo

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A friend who spends considerable time in Cuba says that computer and internet availability is one of the things people - especially younger people - are clamouring for most. The WIFI posts in parks and other public places are flooded with people.

I'd love to visit there, but the lack of internet access means it could be only a short visit. No, not because of "internet withdrawal system", but because I depend on it for (precarious) work.

If you're a tourist, you can access the internet in Cuba, though I doubt that speeds are all that great.  Surely sufficient for you to download or upload a translated document and such, though.

Apparently, back in 2011, Cuba was to implement a new fibre-optic undersea link to Venezuela that would increase bandwidth available to Cuba by 300,000%, but it's yet to materialize.

swallow

I'm not much on the science, but a physical cable of some sort is required to carry high-volume traffic, isn't it? So access needs to go through the USA or another country close to Cuba with lots of money ... whoever that might be.

Doesn't the bulk of internet traffic go through the USA, including data packet transfers between a Canadian user and a Canadian web site? 

Mr. Magoo

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but a physical cable of some sort is required to carry high-volume traffic, isn't it? So access needs to go through the USA or another country close to Cuba with lots of money ... whoever that might be.

Well, lots of cash isn't a prerequisite, but an internet connection would be.  As I noted above, the plan was to hook up with Venezuela. 
Certainly someone has to pay for that cable, but what's the other way?  Iceland is a similarly small island, with need of a similar cable, and yet they have one of the highest rates of internet use in the world.  And no, it's not through the U.S. of A.

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Doesn't the bulk of internet traffic go through the USA, including data packet transfers between a Canadian user and a Canadian web site?

Perhaps, in practice, but there's no internet protocol requirement that all internet packets pass through the U.S.  The way the internet works, a packet could conceivably pass through any country that's on the internet.

kropotkin1951 kropotkin1951's picture

Mr. Magoo wrote:

Iceland is a similarly small island, with need of a similar cable, and yet they have one of the highest rates of internet use in the world.  And no, it's not through the U.S. of A.

Gee I wonder how Iceland could do that. Oh yeah get to Europe somehow.  For Cuba it means trying to get to South America or routing through the US. Of course there is that minor thing called a fifty year blockade. I guess maybe it wasn't the socialist form of government that is the problem after all, like you love to imply. 

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Iceland is currently connected via these submarine communications cable system to the rest of the world:[5]

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Internet_in_Iceland

Mr. Magoo

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For Cuba it means trying to get to South America or routing through the US.

"Trying to get to" Central America??

Look at a map.  And tell us if it's actually further from Cuba to Cancun than from Iceland to Germany... if that's your point.  And if that's not your point then what's your point?

kropotkin1951 kropotkin1951's picture

Mr. Magoo wrote:

Quote:
For Cuba it means trying to get to South America or routing through the US.

"Trying to get to" Central America??

Look at a map.  And tell us if it's actually further from Cuba to Cancun than from Iceland to Germany... if that's your point.  And if that's not your point then what's your point?

LMAO

Boy you are really incoherent aren't you?

Mr. Magoo

Well, I don't think I've been accused of being incoherent all that often.

But I'm thinking you'd probably rather not discuss whether the government of the United States, or the government of Cuba, is the more resistent to Cubans enjoying open internet access.   Sorry to be so blunt and plain, but now it's out there.  Who's really keeping Cubans from registering a new Twitter account?

ikosmos ikosmos's picture

kropotkin1951 wrote:
Boy you are really incoherent aren't you?

"As soon as some question becomes clear, opponents arise who,on the pretext of novelty, try to confuse and muddle the issue. I have often met such opponents and opposing opinions."                     Cuno Fischer (1824-1907)

Fischer was a famous historian know for the clarity of his thought. He's the guy who, more than anyone else, introduced the idea of categorizing recent philosophers according to the empiricist/rationalist distinction (still used today). Fischer's expression was borrowed by Georgi Plekhanov in his essay "A Critique of our Critics" as the Marxist philosophical tradition, once its enemies started disguising themselves as Marxists, had to deal with this muddling of issues on a permanent basis. We still have fake Marxists today.

Magoo does this with everything all the time. Nothing is good enough, all revolutions are doomed to failure, all are more corrupt and harmful than the bourgeois dictatorships they replace, no point in trying, the difficulties are insignificant and, therefore,  if social change doesn't fall like fresh fruit then it's not worth the effort.

Did I miss anything Magoo? lol.

lagatta4

I don't believe Magoo claims to be a Marxist.

I will remind him though, that Mexico isn't in Central America, the wee mainland countries between North and South America. However the Mayan language speaking areas in the far south are culturally very close to the adjoining Central American countries. However in general the latter are much poorer and there is labour migration north to Mexico now.

I'd love to see a left government in Mexico (I'm referring to the main left opposition party - the one that had their victory stolen by corruption, not to anything far left) offer such an arrangement to Cuba. What do the other Caribbean islands do? Are they all connected via the US?

cco

Here's a map of the major undersea cables. Of course, due to the packet-switched nature of the protocol, the fastest route is seldom the one followed, nor is it really possible to quarantine your data from passing through the US just by having a cable that doesn't enter the US. Out of curiosity, I just ran a traceroute from Montréal to the Cubana Airlines website. It went from here to New York to Sweden to Germany before losing the thread. (Just for fun, after that I did a traceroute to North Korea, and that one went Montréal-New York-China.)

kropotkin1951 kropotkin1951's picture

Mr. Magoo wrote:

Well, I don't think I've been accused of being incoherent all that often.

But I'm thinking you'd probably rather not discuss whether the government of the United States, or the government of Cuba, is the more resistent to Cubans enjoying open internet access.   Sorry to be so blunt and plain, but now it's out there.  Who's really keeping Cubans from registering a new Twitter account?

Maybe you could just do a little basic research before you get into your predictable anti-socialist government rant. The government of the US has not to date lifted its embargo on telecommunications products. The Cuban government has opened up more connections with its limited resources and Cubans use them to access Twitter as well as other Western sites. So crawl back into your Cold War hole. 

I am not surprised but your definition of freedom is how much of the Cuban internet is  controlled by US corps like Twitter and a complete wilful blindness to the US security state that has been seeking to overthrow the Cuban government for over 50 years.

In Canada we were just shown once again that you can change the political party but not the master's policies. In Cuba you can't change the party but there are democratic  avenues to change the policy of the government. 

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Outside the home, the situation has changed in the past year with the appearance of more than 40 government approved wi-fi hotspots around the capital, Havana, and other major cities.

There, Cubans can enjoy largely unfettered internet access and a higher speed connection than most have been used to.

Entire families and crowds of young people armed with smartphones, tablets and laptops can be seen at all hours of the day and night hovering around the wi-fi hotspots to get in touch with family and friends in Florida and other parts of the world.

Access to social media sites such as Facebook and Twitter is available at the hotspots - but opposition sites are blocked.

http://www.bbc.com/news/world-latin-america-35865283

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Verizon was one of a number of companies, including Marriott and Western Union, to announce new deals before the president’s visit but it was not the first US telecom to make a move. That honor belongs to IDT Corp, which last year became the first US telecom company to sign such a deal with Cuba and capitalize on the US government’s efforts to reopen relations with its former cold war foe. And while other deals are in the offing, with Google, AT&T and others all looking keenly at Cuba, the string of agreements masks a lingering distrust between the two countries that has so far made it difficult to close larger-scale agreements to provide telecommunications services and equipment within Cuba. Overcoming the US trade embargo against Cuba and decades of hostile relations between the countries is challenging for any US business trying to tap potential new opportunities in Cuba. But for telecom and information technology firms, the more recent revelations about the National Security Agency’s global surveillance practices add another hurdle to cracking the nascent Cuban market. In 2014 it was revealed that the US government had secretly financed ZunZeno, a social network dubbed the “Cuban Twitter”, in the hopes of using it to undermine the Castro regime. “The Cuban government is rightly suspicious of US telecommunications companies, courtesy of Mr [Edward] Snowden,” said John Kavulich, president of the US-Cuba Trade and Economic Council, a New York-based not-for-profit body that aims to promote trade between the two countries.

http://www.bbc.com/news/world-latin-america-35865283