How will the Digital Connectivity Blueprint take S’poreans to new heights? June 22, 2023 To be perfectly frank (and appropriately enough for this time of revenge travel), the first-ever Digital Connectivity Blueprint (DCB) that now guides Singapore’s digital future for the next decade is best thought of as like an airport. You see, both the Blueprint and airports integrate three different layers of infrastructure (hard, physical-digital and soft) together so that we get to where we want to be. It also happens that in Singapore, we know a tiny bit (to say the least) about making airports …not bad. Together, we also know the great benefits of long-term planning. So this is how, much like Changi Airport, the DCB is a tangible (and necessary) investment in our future as Singapore moves forward in this increasingly digital world. Source: MCI / Facebook, Devansh Bhikajee / Unsplash Like Minister for Communications and Information Josephine Teo shared at the launch of the DCB (Jun 5), it will “bring greater opportunities for our people and enterprises”. Hard infrastructure: Like airport terminals and runways Imagine Singapore in 2033, where you are even more connected to your friends and clients overseas. This through the hard infrastructure of 10Gbps domestic connectivity speed (10 times what Singaporeans enjoy today), double the existing undersea cable landings and with much activity going through tightly-secured data centres and sustainably green data centres. “The hard infrastructure layer is like your airport terminals and runways, connecting travellers and aircraft to Singapore and the rest of the world,” said Minister Teo. You might be thinking now: Isn’t that already a given for other national digital networks? And you would be right. But also here is our Singapore difference: Our policymakers planned the DCB beyond hard infrastructure so that Singaporeans can move forward. Source: Josephine Teo / Facebook Digital infrastructure: No lost “baggage” “The physical-digital infrastructure is like the system that tracks and transports our baggage without losing them,” said Minister Teo about this other layer of the DCB. In other words, a system which interconnects devices, systems and middleware regardless of their origin and lets them communicate with each other. One result: 2033 Singapore having fleets of reliable autonomous mobile robots. Especially since Singapore’s cutting-edge National Robotics Programme is scaling up. Source: Cecile Jagua Lucas/ Instagram These robots will navigate smoothly through buildings and passenger terminals crowded with humans and work smoothly with other robots and sensors despite being from different creators. They will enter and exit lifts smoothly, despite the lifts and robots being from different vendors, for example. Soft infrastructure: Ensuring digital trust and digital security Underpinning the DCB for Singaporeans is the soft infrastructure layer. It uses the Singapore Digital Utility stack as the foundation for many participants to keep their documents, digital identities, e-payments and personal data secure yet easily adaptable to use. “The soft infrastructure layer is like the system for showing proof-of-vaccination across multiple jurisdictions, which became critical when travel resumed after the COVID-19 pandemic,” explained Minister Teo. “All three layers have come together to make Changi an outstanding air hub and brought tremendous value to Singapore,” said Minister Teo. “In the same way, by integrating our digital connectivity plans across the hard, physical-digital, and soft layers, we hope Singapore can enhance its standing as a technology hub. This will also put us in a better position to seize opportunities from emerging tech trends.” The DCB is a long and ambitious project then, thinking ahead for the public good for the digital future. “There is always a strong human component in any healthy ecosystem that can harness AI for the public good,” said Minister Teo following up (Jun 14) about this digital plan. Source: Justin Lim / Unsplash And much like how Changi Airport went from strength to strength successfully through the decades, the DCB will take Singaporeans to new heights.