|M.Sc Student||Razia Zahavi|
|Subject||Home Telematics: Preliminary Evaluation of Social Influences|
|Department||Department of Architecture and Town Planning||Supervisor||Professor Emeritus Carmon Naomi|
The revolution of home telematics has been discussed over the last 30 years. This new technology was professed to enable people to do most of their required activities through advanced telecommunication means, while being seated on a chair at home: study, work, be entertained, buy and communicate with other people. Hence, it was expected to completely change people's life style and the human-made environment (just as former communication means - train, car, etc. did).
This research investigates the progress towards this revolution. Its first part reviews the development of teleworking and the dispersion of home telematics systems in Western countries; it also analyzes the gaps between the anticipation for far reaching social and economic implications and the reality, in which changes are occurring little by little. The second part describes the development in Israel, mainly over the first half of the 1990's, where vigorous public support and impressive participation of the private sector were identified. This part includes a detailed analysis of an experiment in community telematics which was conducted in the town of Carmiel, based on a survey of telematics users.
All these, combined with interviews with Israeli experts, lead to the research conclusions: in spite of impressive development in the early 1990's, home telematics in Israel is still in its infancy, both technologically and from the point of view of usage. However, there seem to be fairly good chances for progress (not a rapid one) in the next few years. Preliminary stages of usage have been developing in the country periphery almost as much as in its center, and a proper planning and public involvement can guarantee that the periphery is not far behind in this field. Contrary to early anticipations, home telematics does not seem to become in the foreseeable future (20-30 years ahead) an alternative to currently common behavioral patterns. It will rather constitute an additional means of communicating, studying, working, shopping and entertaining. These means will be used by some of the people, some of their time for some of their total activities in these fields.