Singapore goes .Net

Singapore became the first country to embark on a nation-wide Web services initiative with Microsoft and the Infocomm Development Authority of Singapore (IDA) signing a memorandum of intent (MOI) to develop .Net MySingapore yesterday.

Essentially a community-based Web services project, .Net MySingapore will allow Singaporeans to share information and manage their time better by facilitating daily tasks such as booking a taxi or setting up a meeting with friends, via the Internet. It will also allow other functionality such as MyCalendar, which will allow the syncing of personal calendars with that of friends and organizations, and MyNotification, which will allow notifications to be sent via telephone, SMS or e-mail.

Signing the MOI was Leong Keng Thai, acting chief executive officer of the IDA and Michael Rawding, Microsoft's president of Asia-Pacific and Japan.

The two-year collaboration will begin with the establishment of a steering group, and proceed with studies to understand the needs of various user groups. The pilot for .Net MySingapore is scheduled for August 2002 and is expected to involve 10,000 users.

"By the time we complete this project, Singapore will be the first country to roll out community-based Web services nation-wide," said Rawding. "By collaborating with IDA on .Net MySingapore, we can demonstrate the power of Web services at a grassroots level."

"Singapore aims to be at the leading edge of this new (Web services) technology, and this is a great opportunity for us to build national skills in Web services, improve the lives of Singaporeans and create a new wave of opportunities for entrepreneurs," added Leong.

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