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Y4iT 2016: IT professionals are heroes of the next century

Y4iT 2016: IT professionals are heroes of the next century
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“Our country needs new heroes, and IT professionals will be the heroes of the next century.”

This was the statement of Dr. Atty. Ivy Patdu of the National Privacy Commission as she delivered a talk on data privacy to thousands of young Filipinos as part of the series of discussions at the Youth Congress on Information Technology (Y4iT) on September 28, 2016 at the SMX Convention Center, Pasay City.

Acknowledging the country’s current data protection status to be in its early stages, Dra. Atty. Patdu noted how the Philippines ranks 143rd among 170 countries. “That’s how the world views protection of personal data in the Philippines, considering that BPOs are a billion dollar industry in the Philippines. That’s unacceptable. Imagine the opportunities that will come to the Philippines if we can say to the world that we can keep your personal data safe,” she said.

“In a digital world where everything, all the basic services, usually involve information and communication technology, database, digital transmission of data, we need to keep our country safe. We need to keep personal data safe, and it’s very important that we are able to encourage people, motivated only by sincere desire to help protect personal data in the country,” she continued in reference to what the youth could do regarding the state of data protection in the country.

Apart from providing an avenue to discuss pressing issues like data privacy, Y4iT continues to be a platform in showcasing the latest technologies to the youth. Virtual reality, which is able to create virtual worlds that replicate a real environment, and augmented reality, which enhances the way people perceive the real world, were among the technologies presented.

Lamudi Founder and CEO Jacqueline van den Ende shared how the largest online real estate website pioneered virtual reality in their field, which shows how technology can change the way people do things like purchasing properties.

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Lamudi Founder and CEO Jacqueline van den Ende

“In three to five years, people at home will have VR goggles and they will check out whatever property in virtual reality instead of going to it,” said van den Ende, as she demonstrates how the goggles are used in viewing real estate.

Furthermore, VR technology can also be instrumental in the growth of the country. “In the Philippines, there are a lot of islands and small cities, so virtual reality and augmented reality can help the students in the regional areas to know the cutting edge knowledge and also be able to assess technologies which is not available in the region,” said Association for Computing Machinery Distinguished Speaker Prof. Henry Duh.

With the unstoppable progress of technology, the congress speakers pushed the delegates to partake in the process of continues development. Recognizing these advancements, Prof. Duh said, “It requires students and people working on these areas to make technology better and to advance the development of technology.”

The delegates, who were encouraged to dream big and take risks by the speakers, also learned more about IT and its relation to healthcare, finance, and more.

After a day of lectures and discussions, the day ended with a performance from alternative Pinoy pop band Let Gravity.

On September 29, 2016, the three-day congress will conclude with discussions on Cyber security, digital entrepreneurship, and Internet of Things, among others.

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