When we began the semester, I knew very little of Costa Rica. I assumed technology usage would be limited, meaning few Costa Ricans were buying high-tech equipment. Therefore, I predicted that it would be difficult to find content about Costa Rican technology use. I was incorrect. Costa Rica is, in many parts of the country, a "modern resort," with a bustling and tech-savvy population spending money on the latest gadgets. We learned artificial intelligence and smart technology are especially prominent in the wealthy region of Guanacaste. The Costa Rican government, recognizing the many advantages technology offers, has implemented legislation to accommodate and regulate technology for the country. Throughout the term, we found many sources that discussed legal processes and public opinions regarding Costa Rican technology. On one occasion, we discovered the Costa Rican government websites were hacked and that intellectual property, privacy, and internet security were major concerns for the country and its people. This speaks to the commonalities between my American culture and Costa Rican culture because we are struggling with similar issues. This surprised me.
While technology was shown to be prominent, some areas of Costa Rica are less developed, technologically speaking. The village of Yorkin, on the northern side of the Costa Rica-Panama border, is home to the indigenous Bribri Tribe. According to an article I discussed earlier in the semester, the BriBri are losing touch with their culture because technology is appealing to the children of the tribe. We learned, on many separate occasions, that gaming and social media addiction are problems for Costa Ricans of all heritages. This content reinforced the realization that our cultures (for me, American to Costa Rican comparison) are similar. At the time we knew the country was Costa Rica, we were a little bit excited and confused. What we confused was that even Costa Rica is so close to U.S.A we often ignored this country, and we didn’t know which part of this country we should know. What we feel excited was that we can learn much about Latin American’s culture in this semester.
After one semester’s study, we are surprised by the vitality of this country and its positive attitude towards technology and we all know it has a highly efficient government. We all know that the government of Costa Rica try its best to protect the Intellectual property which could stimulate economic development. We also shocked by the development of AI in Costa Ria and the support attitudes of the government towards AI. AI has not been applied on a large scale even in some European country, however, we find that AI has been applied in medical and transportation for a long time because of the support of the government. In all, we all think this beautiful Latin American country is very good, open to new technology and now is trying best to construct it and make it a better country for its people.
I was surprised by Costa Rica's culture. At first, I thought the culture of this country would not be different. Then I realized I was wrong. Costa Rica has a diverse culture because it is the cultural crossroads of central and South America. I also learned that Costa Rica's taboos are the same as those of Spain and other European countries and the United States. People generally abhor the Numbers "13" and "5” and prefer the Numbers "3" and "7", which are considered lucky. Costa Rica values teaching. It fulfills the obligation of primary and secondary schools to teach, there are 6,884 primary schools in the country, the teaching level ranks among the forefront of Latin American countries. Education spending accounted for 7 percent of international gross domestic product in 2011. The adult literacy rate is 95.2%.
From this CTI project, I have learned a lot about myself, but I also gained a lot of insight about my classmates. Although all we did was check in with one another when it came to this project, throughout the semester I had the pleasure of reading many of their post, and responses to my post. I have learned that many, just like me were surprised by the technology that is in place. In terms of background and cultural norms, I think many people in the group expected this country to be very family oriented and religion due to the history of the country. From that basic knowledge, I think most of my classmates knew how the upbringing would shape the country. Also, they knew how it would affect the culture such as celebrating religious holidays, being close to family, and having a strong conviction on what is proper according to their faith. Throughout all of this course, we as a group have grown to learn more and more about Costa Rica and how to communicate all of that information amongst each other.
Each of us comes from a different background. We have lived different lives in terms of culture, location, and morals. However, we're all able to come together to in order to complete this project. We had no way to contact each other other than through a computer screen and still, we were able to finish what we needed to and achieve our goals. We embraced and accepted each other culturally and we looked beyond that in order to form a strong bond to finish this very important project. Our research of the history of this country helped us open our eyes beyond the turmoil that is occurring here in the U.S. and focus on a whole other world. A faraway place that I doubt many of us knew about. It opened our eyes to new cultures other than our own which in turn helped us understand each other’s cultures, the norms, behaviors, and religious aspects that none of us previously had known.
When I started this semester and found out I had to do an entire project on Costa Rica is was very intimidating. The reason for this particular reaction is because I have had very little exposure to that particular culture or people in my life. However, as the weeks passed, and my understanding and knowledge grew I began to get an idea in my head more about what this country could be like, and it was very different than what I imagined. I always had preconceived ideas that Costa Rica was a very poor country with limited technology and just very strong family ties.
Now I know that although some of my notions were correct, many, in fact, most were very wrong. The culture of Costa Rica is a blend of Spanish with other small parts of Jamaican, Japanese, Chineses and other immigrant cultures. Religion is a very large part with 76% identifying as Catholic. What surprised me the most is the literacy rate is very high at 97.8% and the technology in the country is growing quickly just like in the United States. They are very “green” conscious and make an effort to help keep the environment safe, and they have had democracy there for more than 60 years. All these facts are just a few of what I learned in my study of Costa Rica which contradicts my old way of thinking. I now know so much more about Costa Rica but some self-awareness that my ways of thinking about other countries need to be verified.
After researching about different technologies, I got a clear perspective about this era of technological advancement and its influence in Costa Rica. With the power of technology many barriers to information, communication, research, commerce has been broken. Due to these advancements, things are faster, better and cheaper because of technology. The trends of mobile, social media, big data, and cloud computing are changing the ways people live, work and play. Even as people celebrate the wonder and benefits of technology but are also aware of its dark side. Social networking has significantly transformed the way people interact with their friends, family members, and associates. Costa Rica ranked the second place in Latin America for using social media.
According to the Global Innovation Index, Costa Rica has been recorded as the most innovative in Latin America. Most of the technologies have functioned efficiently while devising innovations that make our lives simpler and our jobs more constructive but with these technologies, our privacy is at risk. Costa Rica has issued the principles like notice, purpose, consent, security, disclosure, access and accountability under the Personal Data Protection Law. But Costa Rica faces issues with cybersecurity as it does not have an active incident response center or a systematized series of response or procedures to support them alleviate an attack on a large scale. With the technological advancements in Costa Rica over the past years, it is still surprising to know that Costa Rica ranks in the fourth position the world for technology exports.