Workshops aim to get people online

By David Porter

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TechnologyWise consultants Bryan Winters, Steven Vincent and Pascale Hyboud-Peron.Photo/John Borren
TechnologyWise consultants Bryan Winters, Steven Vincent and Pascale Hyboud-Peron.Photo/John Borren

A Tauranga information technology company sees a market in helping people master the ability to use a range of internet-connected devices.

Whether it's using smartphones, tablets, or social media, TechnologyWise will offer tuition in getting people online and competent.

"We've been running IT courses for several years," said Bryan Winters, who along with fellow consultant Pascale Hyboud-Perrin, teaches the firm's Digital Competence programme.

"We had customers telling us the digital world was moving too fast for them, so we decided to expand our offerings."

TechnologyWise director Steven Vincent is one of the co-founders of Venture Centre, an online resource to encourage entrepreneurs, which will set up a physical presence, Basestation, in Durham St in September.

TechnologyWise has developed a range of two-hour modules, which are limited to 10 attendees, and held at TechnologyWise's office.

Mr Vincent said even IT professionals had gaps in their knowledge.

"Everyone is in the same boat today. And we're all busy. People like short, hands-on courses.

"Two hours doesn't eat up their day, or even their morning, and people go away with a buzz."

Mr Winters said the firm did not just talk about cloud concepts. "We help participants set up their smartphone or tablet with the cloud apps they need, such as backing up contacts, and in a business environment, reviewing that document prepared at the office."

He emphasised that the course was designed equally for personal and business use. "Social media and mobile technology are present in both lives," he said. "We carry our connection to the world with us now."

Mr Winters said a number of people remained confused about the array of social media alternatives. "So many don't know where to start.

"Given all the options out there, helping people make sense of it is important."

Mr Winters said that the firm's method was to approach learning through a matrix of options, rather than sequentially, though he said that two of the key digital competencies involved getting a handle on social media and managing mobile connectivity.

Technologywise was an open source company and its training focused on open source platforms, including Android, which was the dominant mobile platform, rather than Apple, said Mr Winters.

"Our idea is that you can start anywhere, take a two-hour course and work out which direction you want to go in.

"Participants are welcome to attend one, or as many of the 12 modules as they like - they all complement each other."

- BAY OF PLENTY TIMES

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