TECHNOLOGY APPLE VS SAMSUNG
INTERVIEW AERIALTRONICS CONFLICT IN THE UKRAINE
WORD OF PRESIDENT East vs. West
CONFLICT IN THE UKRAINE What’s up in the east?
Apple vs. Samsung
DREAMGADGETS What would you pick?
Conflict in the Ukraine Opinion Article: Wilders Photo page
What is your dream technological gadget? Aerialtronics EFR/EenVandaag Debat Technology
The Erasmus Swan
A Drone company
A report on an interesting debate at the EUR
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WORD OF EDITOR-IN-CHIEF
DEAR READERS, Do you still remember the time when you had to ask your parent’s permission to make a dial-up connection to access the internet? Or the hours in class without a constant connection with your friends via Whatsapp and Facebook? Technology has changed enormously in recent years and changed our way of living significantly. Instagram, selfies, Snapchat and Tinder now occupy a great part of our lives, but the access to information for people in all parts of the world has increased as well. We can now look up almost all the information there is to know on the internet and thus education is changing as well. The classroom might be replaced by digital learning environments in the future enabling you to follow a course in the US while discussing the notes you made in your online economics books on your tablet with your peers. It will no longer be necessary to travel somewhere physically to exchange information. Who knows what universities will look like in a couple of years? Will you still visit the same buildings that we now use for studying? Trends are hard to foresee and the next app or lifechanging development will probably come as a surprise. It is a certainty however that there will be change, and I am looking forward to see what wonderful inventions will keep altering the way we study, work and live. Kind Regards, Jolien Paalman President of the 50th EFR-Board
DEAR READERS, Once on a sunny afternoon, I was riding a horse and passing a row of small, wooden houses and tiny farms in order to get to the village nearby to pay my friend Carolin a visit. But suddenly a storm broke out making my horse extremely scared which made him run in a completely different direction where I had never been before. I was completely lost with no sense of direction and where to go, when suddenly… I heard some strange music. Oh, this must be my iPhone on the bed table which wakes me up exactly at 7:40 as every morning and reminds that one more ‘snooze’ button pressed and I will be late. I had a terrible nightmare that I lived in a world with no cars, no computers, no navigation, no cell phones. However, this is no longer a reality and we are surrounded by intelligent machines, computers which are supposed to make our lives much easier. But do they actually achieve that? Or maybe bring us even more worries? I hope that this issue will affect you the same way as my nightmare affected me and stimulate you to reflect on the answer. Enjoy (and sweet dreams)! Agnieszka Wietrzyk Editor in Chief
in Technology world
Samsung On January 9th 2007 the launch of the Apple Iphone took place. This launch was the breakthrough for smartphones. The revenues of Apple as well as those of Samsung have increased rapidly in the years 2007-2012, though this does not apply for their market shares. In 2011 Apple was at its top with a world market share of 18,8%, while in 2013 it has dropped to 15,3. Samsung however, shows a different pattern. In the years 2007-2013 the world market share of Samsung increased with 28,6%, and was at its highest in 2013 with a percentage of 31,3. Looking at those facts (which are confirmed by the trustworthy data of the American research company IDC) it seems Samsung is doing a lot better these days than Apple. samsung
2007 2008 2009 2010 2011 2012 2013
ownes a smartphone
marketshare for apple and samsung worldwide marketshare
One of the pieces of technology that most of the people of this generation own is a smartphone. According to the Dutch Newspaper ‘de Volkskrant’ in 2013, 61 percent within the Dutch population owned one. No wonder; the battle between the different companies that produce smartphones has been on for years. When you look around, you could notice that most phones are from the popular brands Apple and Samsung. But the question is: which company is actually doing the best job so far? The Dutch newspaper ‘De Telegraaf’ recently reported that among the American population no less than 68 percent of the market share belonged to Apple and Samsung. On the world market this percentage is smaller but still considerable, namely a market share of 34 percent for Samsung and 15 percent for Apple. Thus, together they own almost half of the world in the market share for phones!
But what could be a clear explanation for this? Are the sales of the Apple Iphone falling? Or is the Samsung Galaxy series just doing very well? Of course there are a lot of factors influencing the market share. For example Samsung has decided to launch different series for the various price categories whereas Apple is continuing to produce only one expensive model.
To check if this could apply for Apple and Samsung, we we have to consult the facts. According to the annual reports of Apple and Samsung and the site Orbis, the R&D expenses in relation to the revenues have decreased for Apple and increased for Samsung during the years 2007-2012. The relative expenses were the same for both the companies up to 2009, but from 2010-2012 the expenses for R&D of Samsung in relation to the revenues were more than twice as high as those of Apple. When you look back at the facts of the market shares, you can see that exactly the year after the moment Samsung started spending more on R&D, the market share of Samsung increased way more than the years before and way more than Apple’s. Is this just a coincidence? Or is it a possible connection between the market share position on the smartphone market and the expenses on R&D, namely a positive one. This last thought is only suggestive while it is limited by the fact that the data for the R&D expenses for Samsung are for the whole company and not just the smartphone department. Whatever the explanation is, the battle still keeps on going and other brands will have to try to keep up with Samsung and Apple. Think about last year’s commercial from Sony about the fight at the wedding between the family with the Iphones and the family with the Samsung phones.
However, one of the other factors for success can be the expenses spent on innovation. A reason could be that if a company spends more on research and development (R&D) it improves its ability to innovate. According to the theory of economist Joseph Schumpeter, R&D can lead to creative destruction which means that new techniques destroy old ones. This results in a better product for the company who spends more on R&D. Text: Michelle de Nie
06 world 08 Politics
“Oh, East is East and West is West, and never the twain shall meet, Till Earth and Sky stand presently at God’s great Judgment Seat; But there is neither East nor West, Border, nor Breed, nor Birth, When two strong men stand face to face, though they come from the ends of the earth!” - J.R. Kipling
Never ending struggle between East and West: conflict in the Ukraine Last month a series of events took place in Eastern Europe which are without discussion historically significant. The map of the world was once again attempted to be redrawn. This conflict has stirred up all old and new discussions regarding the relationship of East and West. In this article we are trying to briefly and objectively describe the escalation of the conflict and it causes, and attempting to point out a long term possible scenarios. However, the most important goal of this article is to show that the current difficult situation should not divide people but instead, encourage the search for a common solution and an objective truth. As usual, there is no black and white, it is a geopolitical issue where millions of lives are at stake.
Description of the events preceding the conflict over Crimea The protests in Kiev seem to escalate unexpectedly and to an unprecedented degree of violence. Ukrainians have always been divided over the idea where their place is within the international community. This is due to the ethnic diversity of the population (67% are Ukranians, 30% Russians and others are Tatars, Bulgarian, Moldovian, Polish and Jewish minorities). This issue eventually became the stumbling block, towards the end of 2013, Viktor Yanukovich decided to postpone Ukraine–European Union Association Agreement in favor of the Russian side proposition to buy bonds worth of $15 billion. This lead to mass protests for the integration with EU in Kiev starting from February 18, also known as Euromaidan. At one point in time, the country was in complete chaos, with different political forces, including radical ones, capturing administrative centers of regions. Eventually, protests became anti governmental; they were severely repressed by the police which resulted in at least one hundred victims. The government was overthrown and a new one established. All key ministers were replaced with leaders of the opposition. Yanukovich was impeached, though it is not clear whether it was a legal procedure or not. Yanukovich then escaped to Russia. After these events, the new government was recognized by all countries except Russia. On the first of March, the parliament ratified Putin’s proposition to send troops to Ukraine, explained by motives to protect the ethnic Russians on the peninsula of Crimea. The attention of the international community has switched from the crisis on the mainland of Ukraine to annexation by Russia of Crimea. Crimea conflict: two points of view Crimea has, undoubtedly, suffered the most. Of course, the majority of its population is pro-Russian and seems to be accepting the current developments. However, the Crimean minorities, such as pro-Ukrainian people and the Crimean Tatars are desperate: not only did they have to deal with the unexpected switch of authority, they also suffered in numerous conflicts with pro-Russian activists, which during the recent events have become more radical than ever (previously, people in Crimea were managing to live together quite peacefully). Most of them do not accept the changes that happened, and are forced either to live in a currently ‘foreign’ land or to escape. For some of them, escaping is not easy they have businesses, families and children in Crimea, which attach them to that peninsula. Luckily though, the Russians do not seem to block the escapes heavily - reportedly,
there have been many arrivals of Crimean residents to the mainland of Ukraine. Hopefully, these people will be able to restore their lives. From the perspective of the Russian government, the Crimean people themselves decided to join Russia. According to their interpretation, there was no military intervention, as the Russian army troops have been present in the Crimea for a long time, due to former agreements. According to the Russians, their military presence did not exceed the level stipulated in agreement with Ukranians. The fact that the regional government was overthrown was entirely attributed to self-defense forces. As the result, the referendum is claimed to be completely legitimate. Moreover, it is considered to be in accordance with the right for the selfdetermination stated in UN charter. Crimea is being compared to Kosovo separation from Serbia, when UN has declared that in this case no approval of the central government is needed. Furthermore, as argument for the annexation, it is stated that the Russian government is seeking to protect Russians, who form the majority of population on the peninsula, from nationalistic direction actions of the government. Among other arguments, it is claimed that the oppression of the Russians in Ukraine has begun when in 2012 a law about the use of regional languages in courts, such as Russian, Hungarian and Tatar was attempted to be repealed. It is claimed that it was not repealed because of the pressure from the EU leaders. All in all, Russia claims to protect the region with wich it has always had close historic and cultural ties.
The protests were severely repressed by the police which resulted in at least one hundred victims
From the Ukrainian perspective, Russia has disrupted the sovereignity of the country against the international law and the UN treaty which both sides signed. Crimea is considered to be seized by Russian military units whose presence increased since February 26th. On February 27th a group of gunmen without insignia seized the Building of the Supreme Council of Crimea (regional government) and the building of the Council of Ministers in Simferopol. The parliament has dismissed the Prime Minister of Crimea, and replaced it with Sergey Aksyonov, a businessman who is known for his close ties to Russia. On March 11th, the regional government adopted a resolution of independence with a possibility of joining Russian Federation. The referendum in Crimea on March 17th is considered illegitimate both by the Ukranian side and by most of the international community. Since, according to the Ukranian government, this kind of decisions have to be made on the national level and with the governmnet approval. The
western nations believe that the Crimean population was put under pressure to vote and that the overthrowing of the regional government was organized by Russian side. All in all, it is possible to say that there are a lot of disagreements between media from both sides, it is difficult to see what really happened. For instance, whether the Cremian media were also seized and to what extent the new government can become more radical. However, the most important and controversial issue is to what degree the referendum reflects the true will of the Crimean population. The fact is that Crimea is a key strategic region for Russia, which is why Russia would never want to have access restrictions to the area if Ukraine becomes more intergrated with the EU. Prospects and conclusion As for the further development of the situation in Ukraine - the perspectives are pretty unclear. It appears already obvious though, that Crimea is already part of Russia, and none of the Ukrainians seems to be happy with it. Adding to that is the presence of Russian army just 10 kilometers from the Eastern Ukrainian border and highly intensified weapon circulation in some regions of Ukraine. This does not necessarily mean that any salient actions from the Ukrainian side will follow - the prevailing majority of those do acknowledge that any military confrontation with Russian troops would not yield any positive results. Still, a significant amount of volunteers are being registered as the national guard - they are willing to defend their country in case of war and are currently being trained by army officials. Also, the mobilization of the real Ukrainian army is taking place. This is also being supported by citizens via different funding initiatives. But that is not enough: mobilization was started quite late, the army size is comparatively small - only 20 thousand people mobilized (plus they have not been engaged in any real martial actions for a long time) and the volunteers, which also amount to around 20 thousand, are incomparable in terms of their skills to the trained Russian troops. As a consequence, there seems to be a confusing mix of some pre-war moods and a feeling of despair all over mainland Ukraine. However, this probably is a temporary effect. If no further actions by Russian army (e.g. invasion of Eastern parts of Ukraine) take place in the nearest future - the existence of these warlike preparations and moods are going to be settled down. One has to admit that Ukraine is on the crossroads between the West and Russia. Both the USA and Russia have proceeded with many barely justifiable actions during the last decades. For instance ‘violation of sovereignty’ and ‘acting regardless the opinion of international community’ are not
something entirely new to either of them. The international community has to acknowledge that there cannot exist any type of international democracy while the ‘big players’ are explicitly shifting the important decisions based on their interests, while having no fear of being objected. The Crimean conflict has shown once again, that regardless of economic interdependence, there is a lot of distrust in relationship between the West and Russia, which at this point is reflected in economic sanctions towards the latter. The USA and Russia seem to be about to repeat the same mistakes as they did before: readily plunging in accusations and alienation policies. Does that really work? It is up to us to think more critically, understand the other side of the situation and work together on solutions, so that “there is neither East nor West, Border, nor Breed, nor Birth” standing in the way of better future relationships.
h a ll
A Fewer G r od o Moroccans, fewer problems? k
Some politicians make great use of rhetoric to compensate for their meaningless ideas. Speaking endlessly but not saying anything. The most refined form of such politician can be found in the character of Geert Wilders. Participating only in two of the plenty municipalities one may wonder why he was centre of attention during the entire week. The secret recipe, a simple question and an ignorant audience. Mr Wilders clearly took his anti-immigration policy to a new low. ‘…and I really can’t say this but in this city and in The Netherlands, do you want more or fewer Moroccans?’ to which the audience repeatedly exclaimed ‘fewer, fewer, fewer…’. Wilders finished by telling his audience ‘Well, than that’s what we’ll take care of’. A step too far this time? Opponent or supporter, Wilders is a clear example of a politician that speaks to the gut of the voter. Some are disgusted by his words and views, others believe that he is the only one that dares to spread the consensual thought. When asking supporters of Wilders why they are so fond of the man, they will quite possibly respond by telling you how dismayed they are by the policies of the governing parties. However, when you specifically ask them to indicate their reasons for disappointment you won’t hear much more than silence. The Wilders voter typically finds it hard to define disappointment. Thank god (or Allah), the voter finds it surprisingly convenient to point its finger. Wilders makes excellent use of this by outlining exactly who can be blamed. When you just divorced after 20 years of marriage, removing a mosque or two may prove very helpful to find another partner. When your brother is diagnosed with cancer, deporting a bunch of Moroccans will most certainly improve the healing process. Sentiment is his instrument, fewer Moroccans his solution. It is exactly what makes Wilders a brilliant politician.
About authors Sergey is from Vinnitsa, a town in the heart of Ukraine. Anastasia is from Moscow. Both are students of the second year IBEB.
Using the sentiment of the people is not a new phenomenon. Throughout history politicians have made use of this tremendously efficient asset. After all, the holocaust was precisely what the German people needed to recover from economic despair. Not coincidentally, the German media drew the comparison between Goebbels and Wilders. German papers put forward the infamous Sportpalast speech by Goebbels in 1943 where he fiercely said ‘Ich frage euch: wollt ihr den totalen krieg’ (I ask you: Do you want total war?) With regards to Wilders’ grown support the Berliner Zeitung wrote: ‘The man has arrived amidst a society full of fear.’ The two papers illustrate exactly the fundaments of Wilders’ triumph. A man that fills and defines an abstract lacuna creating a sense of control for his voter. Wilders’ speech of last week fits perfectly the profile of a desperate man in his pursuit of success, seeking attention where possible. The main question is whether his voters are desperate enough to maintain their supportive stance towards him. The danger to this country lies not in the hands of a single man, it lies in the hands of those ignorant enough to support a man that has no genuine solutions to (sometimes) valid observations.
Text: Philip Luckmann
Sentiment is his instrument, fewer Moroccans his solution.
Sofia Da Silva Amorim
My dream technological gadget is a flying car. I hate being stuck in traffic. I would love to have a car, which can fly over town, take me where I need to be fast. One of such cars was actually invented in the Netherlands.
What is your dream technological gadget?
Alexander Elias My dream technology gadget is a screen integrated into a contact lens, which can connect to your mobile device and is self powered. This device would enable you to keep up with your notifications without having to take your phone out of your pocket.
Rogier Goghres For my technological gadget I took inspiration from the movie “Her” where the main character had a smart computer which read his email, organised his agenda etc. I would not mind possessing such a device, as it would make my life much easier.
FELICIA de JONG I would love to have the Slimo iPhone charger. It is an ultra thin wireless charging system for my iPhone. With it I will no longer have to carry my charger around with me, risk the cable getting damaged, search for an outlet and I can have my phone near me and use it while it is charging.
My dream is the biotech gadgets like the ones used in Star Trek. With a small device you can measure your hearth rate, blood pressure etc. The possibilities in future are endless. Such device could give all health details in a simple spread sheet form and give a user an indication if something is wrong.
She says ‘yes’, but does it mean ‘yes’? Or not? What does that laugh mean? I don’t know! Hence, a device, which is able to read women’s brains, would be very desired by me. Life would be so much easier…
Text: Agnieszka Wiertzyk
My dream technological gadget would be one that would improve my Return on Study Investment (ROSI). For example a device that is like glasses that scans the study material that my eyes read at that moment and triggers the right neuron in my brain to remember it. This would imply that new theories and stories are stored instantaneously in the right part of the brain, which makes repeating less relevant. I heard Google is working on such a device...
the future is already here Aerialtronics is young company from the Hague. It designes, produces and distributes unmanned aerial systemes, better known as ‘drones’. Drones are small quadrocopters with a camera which can fly for an hour at low altitude, are controlled by a tablet and find their way home and land themselves. There is no doubt that these machines have various applications: they are useful in emergency situations, industrial checks and surveying (not to mention that they are very aesthetically satisfying). Nevertheless, there is a big public discussion in the USA about drones in connection to privacy issues. In Europe this matter is not on the list of the ongoing problematic issues. The development of the drones is generally encouraged. For instance, EU has spent over £320 million so far on developing surveillance drones. Aerialtronics had a series of successes on European markets. In this interview, the founder of the company, Robin van de Putte, addresses the environment for aerial business in Europe and tells a story behind the founding of the company.
1) What is the story behind the establishment of Aerialtronics? Aerialtronics was founded three years ago by a creative innovator with a graphic background. Initially, the founder became involved in unmanned aerial systems (uas) to supply in the demand for aerial imagery. At this stage, the concept of uas for aerial imagery had just evolved and the quality of images was quite poor. As he started working on improving his own uas to deliver better results, it struck him that aerial imagery could be useful to a multitude of other businesses. And so the founder decided to shift away from servicing companies with aerial takes to designing and manufacturing systems that can deliver high quality aerial imagery. In the following years, Aerialtronics became a leading manufacturer of professional uas for civilian purposes. The company differentiates itself by integrating aviation grade technology in the hardware and software to enable superior flight quality whilst implementing the founder’s photographical knowledge to facilitate premium imagery and using his graphic skills in designing a uniquely streamlined systems. With the wide variety of possible applications in mind Aerialtronics has managed to develop the single most versatile platform on the market today, that allows users from diverse businesses to mount their payloads and gimbals (payload holders) in an optimal way.
Text: Anastasia Mirkina
Robin van de Putte
2) A lot of discussion is going on about the legislation over the use of commercial drones in US, they are yet to be fully implemented. How would you describe the environment for unmanned aircraft systems business in Europe nowadays and its prospects? On the one hand, businesses and governments are gradually beginning to see the potential value of unmanned systems to their operations. On the other hand, the current laws and regulations concerning uas are still unclear. Whilst the general public opinion is shifting, the governing institutions are having a hard time catching up. Ideally, governments should agree upon an international manufacturing standard that is to be upheld by all commercial uas manufacturers. Licensing only the safe and reliable manufacturers, would provide a useful handle to end users, who are currently overwhelmed by the vast amount of uas suppliers. In addition, it would be great to have an international certification for piloting as well. At the moment, there are various national pilot licences, however I believe that there should be a standard international pilot certificate, just like for regular aircrafts. Uas are versatile and can improve many processes. However, not using them in the proper manner could cause great safety hazards. Therefore, it is important that only certified personnel handle the uas, preferably in the same manner across borders. Finally, it would make the lives of our end users a lot easier, if governments could agree upon international laws in terms of flight areas.
3) What are the main market segments you address and how would you expect your business to develop in the future? As many other companies, Aerialtronics’ first clients were photographers and videographers. Nowadays, our largest segments are safety, security and inspection. Our uas are employed to improve safety conditions for fire fighters and police, can facilitate aerial surveillance, have improved inspection for wind turbines and many other industries and can offer instant support in crisis situations like earthquakes. Aside from that, our systems have been used to perform Surveying and mapping, assist in agricultural activities and even research concerning air quality. Because we can equip our systems with cameras, sensors, sniffers and microphones the possibilities are endless. We feel, that within the next couple of years, many companies will start improving their processes by having uas perform aerial surveillance and inspection, thereby making uas a common part of society.
4) What was the main motivation for you when you have decided to found the Aerialtronics? I founded the company because I felt there was a need for access to aerial imagery. Gradually though I realised uas can improve many businesses. My goal is to improve operations for all sorts of business with uas, to create safer working environments and ultimately to lower the costs for society.
Fractievoorzitters debat A divided political landscape
A week full of discussion and emotion initiated by the most anticipated EFR event, the party leader debate. The collaboration between our own EFR and the news broadcaster EenVandaag typically provides one of the largest platforms to reach the Dutch electorate. The Activities Committee deserves great acknowledgement for this successfully organized event, watched by one million viewers. Six party leaders were invited to debate head-to-head about some of the major contemporary issues for Dutch municipalities. Diederik Samsom (PvdA), Emile Roemer (SP), Sybrand Buma (CDA), Alexander Pechtold (D66) en Arie Slob (ChristenUnie) discussed health care, living and economic reforms. Viewers were somewhat distracted by the absence of liberal party leader Halbe Zeilstra (VVD) saying that he didn’t agree with the format and content of the debate. A common practice or reason for concern?
When asked after the show about the absence of Zeilstra, D66 party leader Alexander Pechtold indicated his disappointment. ‘Party leaders should stand to defend their views on whichever political topic, it is a shame that Holland’s largest party is absent tonight.’ He told us. Pechtold did however put the negotiation of topics by political parties into some perspective saying that broadcasters are increasingly demanding towards political figures. ‘Television producers even ask us to bring pictures of our holidays to talk about, while obviously more important issues are at stake’. With regards to this, EenVandaag reporter Bas van Werven reacted that ‘within his company nobody would ever endanger the integrity and responsibility of journalism and that he therefore felt disgraced by the absence of Zeilstra’.
Back to the show that for its entire duration lacked any form of surprise, especially in terms of content. With ferocious claims left and right viewers were entertained nonetheless. Socialist party leader Roemer faced labor party leader Samson to discuss health care decentralization. Roemer indicated that with Samson’s current healthcare reforms 50000 jobs will be lost. Samson on his turn accused Roemer of evoking fear amongst the people. Almost all the leaders agreed that the reforms are being implemented too rapidly. Talking about economic recovery critics indicated that the arguments were too far-fetched and irrelevant to the municipal elections, Buma and Slob now faced eachother head-to-head. According to Slob, Buma had taken a sabbatical last year not participating in any way. With regards to the last topic of the evening, social living, Roemer said Text: Philip Luckmann
that due to the government policy social living is no longer affordable. The most remarkable moment of the evening may very well be when Samson accused Pechtold that he merely represents the happy few to which Pechtold replied ‘your ideas will leave only few happy’. Most of the present students agreed that the winner of the debate was Alexander Pechtold. Apart from his exceptional communicative skills, his party has always been a great supporter of education making him beloved amongst the Dutch students. More importantly maybe, he is considered to be the fiercest opponent of far right-wing party leader Geert Wilders.
Political division is perhaps the best way to describe the latest municipal elections outcome. Governing parties were severely punished for their, according to the voters, disappointing performance in the city councils. The local political landscape is left anything but untouched. Parties in most municipalities will face difficulties in establishing coalitions. Whatever the influence of the EenVandaag/EFR debate in these elections may have been, I am sure EFR members are already looking forward to organize the next televised debate for the European Elections on the 19th of May.
How much does technology control our society? We live in a world in which the use of technology is accelerating at a huge speed. From cell phones and video games to smart appliances and social networks: with each passing day, technology more and more becomes a part of everyday life. This is the life of the 21st century. But is technology in control?
Technology is only a tool The history of the world clearly tells the tale of technology, and it’s obvious to even the most casual observer that the great societies have always been those who took advantage of the technologies of their time. From the earliest of humans who first tamed fire, to contemporary times, the societies who best leveraged technology rose to the top. Did the wheel of ancient Mesopotamia control that society? How about the use of iron in ancient Greece and Rome? The steam engine, telephone, electric light, airplane? Has any technology ever controlled any society? Some people fear that intelligent machines will seize control and that a world like the one in ‘the Matrix’ may become reality. This, however, could be explained by fear of an uncertain future, which is without doubt the second of the twofold cause, but it’s not fear of technology controlling society. It’s fear of unscrupulous people of power using technology for purposes that do not serve the wellbeing of the many but rather the few. And at a foundational level, it’s fear of somehow losing our own humanity.
Technology gives possibilities The counter argument is that the increasing power and functionality of technology has invaded our privacy and complicated security matters. From a privacy standpoint, technology has made it possible for the government to track your travel habits, for websites to track your spending and browsing habits, and for employers to track your work habits. This means that potentially any action you take may be traceable by anyone interested in your activities. This increasingly invasive evolution of technology has landed far more people in jail, cost people jobs and undoubtedly cost money and reputation. It has also allowed criminals to steal identities and enabled a whole new class of crimes that were previously impossible or highly improbable. From a security standpoint, it has increased costs associated with security. For example, before the introduction of technology, the only way to steal from a company was to break into their property and steal physical items. Now, with the proliferation of computer networks, small storage devices, and wireless technology, it is possible for employees to steal data without ever being caught and for outsiders to steal information and cause monetary damage to a company without ever setting foot on the property. For that matter, the theft may occur from a different state or even a different country and can be carefully disguised to make it difficult to track down. This has made it harder for companies to avoid theft and made it easier for those wishing to commit theft or vandalism. In short, while technology has made life easier, we have largely traded our privacy and placed our security at risk in order for the conveniences that the technology offer. Text: Agnieszka Wiertzyk
The Erasmus Swan On Monday morning, March 17th, I spotted a post by the Erasmus Paviljoen on Facebook that introduced a contest to name the young swan that recently found his new base in the ‘Erasmus pond’. I found this post interesting as I was already intrigued by the majestic bird as it was swimming solely in front of me when I was tanning at the pond the week before. Therefore I read the post by the Erasmus Paviljoen more thoroughly and found that the name suggestion with the most ‘likes’ would win a breakfast for two persons at the Erasmus Paviljoen. Amongst the comments I noticed very serious suggestions like Desiderius or bEURd, but also a few that I found to be a ‘tiny bit’ funny like Chicken Pesto, Henk or Witte Piet. Nonetheless you may imagine that with these names in competition, my opinion was that a name suggestion which triggers a higher ‘willingness-tolike’ amongst spectators could easily win the competition. I thought that reformulating the name of a person that is famous locally would be the most efficient way to do so. One of the first famous local persons I thought of was Felix Gerard Haan. Felix is a beloved and excellent Master student at the Erasmus School of Economics. I know Felix from activities we both joined at the EFR, moreover we were both member of last years EFR-Business Week committee. One of the interest I have in common with Felix is politics. We discuss politics quite frequently, sometimes even on national radio. For example a few years ago when we got ourselves into a fierce debate that was broadcasted live during the morning show of the Dutch Radio 1. Rumor has it that nowadays there are still ESE professors that use fragments of this debate for educational purposes. Anyway it was easy to transform Felix’s family name from Haan to Zwaan (translation: Haan = Cock, Zwaan = Swan). When I did that at least I thought that it was funny so I posted it as a name suggestion for the swan in the pond. In the first few minutes after I posted the suggestion I estimated the amount of likes I would gain at approximately 12, which was at that time 5 like more than the current leader. When I checked Facebook a few hours later I noticed that the likes were increasing rapidly. Not only people whom I expected to understand the ‘joke’ were liking it but also others, like random HBO students, old Tinder matches and the Erasmus
Felix Gerard Zwaan
WITTE PIET Centennial Office. Later I heard that a friend of Felix found it so funny that he asked all semi-students at his department at KPMG to donate my name suggestion a like. Ultimately this resulted in 50 likes by Friday morning, which was twice as many as the runner up, bEURd. As I already told I met the lonely swan one week before however I wasn’t aware of the fact that it was nameless. Now that his name is Felix Gerard Zwaan, Felix Haan and I agreed to do all our future discussions at the pond so that Felix Gerard Zwaan can join in. Obviously I will share my breakfast with Felix Gerard Haan since I abused his name. However, the Erasmus Paviljoen posted that I should not feed my breakfast to Felix since there is plenty of food for him in the pond. I was not sure which Felix they meant… What will you do next? I hope that the next contest by the Erasmus Paviljoen is one to name the pond. I already have a fantastic name in mind: the Felix Gerard Swan Lake. Text: Marijn Compagner
UNICEF Student Team Rotterdam We Believe in Zero! UNICEF is a United Nations program which provides a longterm assistance to mothers and children in developing countries. It was created in 1946 to support families in countries devastated by war. Since then, it has grown to be a key charity organisation, present nearly in every country in the world. One of the notable achievements is that according to the estimates for 2013, UNICEF contributed to the drop of 47 percent in mortality rate of children under 5 years old. Nevertheless, in Sub-Saharan Africa the mortality rate is 98 death per 1,000 live, 15 times the average of the developed regions. So, there is still an incredible amount of work to be done by UNICEF and the governments to reach the ultimate goal: zero child mortality from preventable deaths. UNICEF is known by its creativeness and ability to engage people, it is one of the major factors of success. The most recent program is the Tap Project (uniceftapproject.org). If you visit this website on your phone and don’t touch it for 10 minutes, the sponsors will provide a child with clean water for one day. The more you don’t use it, the bigger the donation that is made. UNICEF STU continues the tradition of the creative projects. It has definetely managed to get an attention of the Erasmus University students by organizing some of the spectacular fundraising events during the year including Heels and Ties life music party, fundraising for Philippines and a Valintine’s Day photobooth. It has managed to fundraise 2,500 euros so far for children of Sierra Leone, Burundi and Nepal which is equivalent to providing 500 children with 200 days of clean water. What UNICEF STU board, committees and volunteers have proven is that you can do something about the status quo of misery in the world. If you have an idea, belief and a plan about how to make world a better place then you have to go for it! You have to organize your time and mind and find people that support your project. In the end, you can make a change, as did UNICEF STU! Text: Anastasia Mirkina
Questions for Sinan Al-Mansour, Chairman of UNICEF STU Rotterdam. 1. Why you think is it important for the students to become active in such student bodies as UNICEF? What kind of experience can they gain? Over 18.000 children under 5 years die each day! By joining UNICEF you are given a chance to contribute to decreasing this number, to give these children a voice. Our UNICEF student team is focused on brainstorming, creating and organising fun events to collect money for children and mothers all over the world. Being there for others who need it gives one satisfaction, joy and it adds value to society. 2. What do you think about cooperation with other student organisations, for instance EFR? Do you think that by for instance organizing an event together or having other common project could benefit both organizations? We love to collaborate with other organisations, as we can all learn from each other and together I believe we can do more. A cooperation in a project can indeed benefit both organisations and we as a board always encourage and strive for mutual benefit.
short summary of EFR-Events so far The past months, a lot of EFR-Events have taken place. Here’s a short summary of what happened! Entrepreneurship Day The EFR Entrepreneurship Day took place the 27th of January. The event was organized by the Orientation Cycle Committee. It gave people the opportunity to see what it is like to be an entrepreneur and what study opportunities you have in this field. There was a speech of a professor, there were several successful entrepreneurs and also there was an January 27th interactive workshop.
Erasmus Recruitment Days This year’s Erasmus Recruitment Days (ERD) have been a great success thanks to the ERD Committee! It’s the largest on-campus recruitment event in Europe. Over 2400 students and 100 companies participated. January 29th - February 12th
IBEB on ice
On the 12th of February, all the IBEB students could go ice skating with the IBEB committee. Together they went to the ice-skating rink close to the campus.
• Develop your skills • Expand your network • Broaden your horizon Deadline round 1: June 8th Deadline round 2: September 7th
EFR-Drink This edition of the EFR drink was in the theme of Valentine’s Day. There even where heart shaped balloons!
To give students an idea of what it’s like to work in finance, EFR organises the Finance Day. This day consisted of workshops and a presentation where several inspiring speakers and experts gave their opinion on working in finance. For instance from Erik Swelheim, the CFO of KLM Royal Dutch Airlines.
EFR-Drink Beerpong edition This time the Party Crew organized a special edition of the EFR drink. Everybody could sign up as a team for the Beerpong contest. There were a lot subscriptions, and the winner turned out to be the LuCo Team.
Information drink: 15th of May, 16:00-19:00 at Siena
Half yearly general members assembly (HALV) During the HALV everybody was invited to come to the H-building to listen to the board and give some input about what they think could be improved. At 22:30 the HALV moved to ‘Bierhandel de Pijp’ to continue there. March 21st
JOIN A COMMITTEE AT THE EFR! world