ccComputers and Communications, with more than 40 employees and offices in both Port Moresby and Lae, is one of Papua New Guinea’s leading computer companies.

Started eight years ago by Tony Royle and Gideon Kakabin, its business is to to sell computers and to train people how to use them.

Specializing in Compaq machines, the company provides for the computing requirements of a range of clients throughout PNG. Tony, an Englishman, has been selling, installing and servicing computers in Port Moresby for the last 15 years. As General Manager he is responsible for the day-to-day running of the business while Gideon specializes in applications, software programming and implementation.

One problem that affects the computer industry in PN G is the lack of copyright protection for software, which means that there is little incentive for software designers to invest time and money devising new programmes. The practice of copying software and trying to use it without much assistance is associated with what Gideon perceives to be a rather slack attitude to computer education and training as a whole in PNG. Computers and Communications now runs a whole range of training programmes in order to remedy this situation.

“We were shocked at how ignorant many people were about computers,” said Gideon. “And this does not refer to first-time buyers only. We could see that there was an urgent need to help the owners of computers get the most out of their machines.”

Computers and Communications’ courses last from one to four days and cover many specific computer applications, from a one-day general introduction to advanced spreadsheets, payrolls and ledgers. “Even small businesses are finding that computers can simplify their operations and save them money in the process,” says Gideon. “We have clients all over PNG, ranging from the large user with say 20 to 30 terminals in their installation to the owner of a single machine for use in the home.”

cc1Experience from round the world indicates that the market in computers is set for expansion for many years to come as their prices come down and the range of tasks they can perform increases. Papua New Guinea will be no exception and it is firms like Computers and Communications who will make that future come about.