#WhyArmenia: Rouben Terzian
Feb 24, 2017
Nov 29, 2016
Name a high-tech country. Japan? USA? South Korea? Germany? Yes, you’re right, they are the world’s biggest high-tech hubs. However, high-tech seems to be spreading throughout the planet rather quickly and planting its roots in many other countries.
Armenia, a tiny crumb of land on the world map, is also a center for developments in high-tech, involving more and more 21st century elements to revolutionize peoples’ everyday lives. Sounds ambitious? Let’s take a look at some examples.
1. Electronic timetables at bus stops
Think of the electronic timetables available at bus stops that track the buses via GPS signal, allowing citizens to see the exact time the buses will arrive! What’s more, you will find free Wi-Fi in many corners of the city, from the National Library to the Cafesjian Center of Contemporary Arts and in many buses, too!
2. QR monuments
If you are a visitor in Yerevan and find an interesting monument (of which Yerevan has plenty) and want to know more about it, you don’t need to wait for a guide. Each of the most famous and important monuments has a QR code attached near the description panel, and all you need to do is scan it! (And what lets you connect to the Internet? Yes—the free Wi-Fi we mentioned earlier!)
3. Smart museums
Museums are another topic of conversation. Though many of the Armenian museums still need a lot of improvement and adjustment to the challenging tech requirements of our century, some of them already have quite a number of surprises for their visitors. For instance, in the house-museum of Hovhannes Tumanyan, a famous Armenian poet and writer, visitors may see his holographic image walking through the rooms and greeting the visitors (if you’re afraid of horror movies, we’re glad to tell you that this is not a ghost!).
Visitors may also go to a special room called “Dark and Light World” (Mut’ u luys ashkharh), where young visitors (and older ones too!) may watch short 3D animations of fairytales interpreted and/or translated by Tumanyan.
The National History Museum of Yerevan also has a 3D projection of miniature Yerevan of the 17-19th centuries.
4. City apps
Source: Yerevan City Guide/Google Play
In terms of app development, Yerevan has a couple of apps that facilitate the lives of its citizens. Moreover, there are apps that allow you to call a taxi, including GG Taxi, Taxoline, and Yandex Taxi. You can also get information about Yerevan streets and directions with the help of the Yerevan Routes app. To get updates on sales and potential bargains, you can use the MySales and 365 Sales apps. In addition to these there are apps like Yerevan City Guide with information concerning transport, cafes, schools, banks, etc. Yerevan Map offline allows you to have the information about Yerevan streets available offline once you download the maps.
5. Online tickets
Finally, fans of cinema, opera, theatre, and other cultural activities can also book tickets online and reserve seats hours or days before the date of the performance. There is a special platform (http://toms.am) where tickets for all of the movies, performances, concerts, and even circus shows are available. The integration of museums on the platform has also begun with the National History Museum, which has already been mentioned on this list.
Like it or not, high-tech is becoming increasingly embedded in our daily lives and can be a mixed blessing at times. Though people may grow into lazybones from having everything available at hand as soon as they turn on their PCs or reach for their smartphones, the high-tech industry also facilitates our lives and saves us a lot of time. Even though it’s good to “accidentally” leave our smartphones at home and go buy the tickets for a movie in person or go to work on foot instead of staring at the electronic timetable, whenever you need anything quickly, you’ll most probably have it if you have internet on your devices. That’s what high-tech aims to do, and that’s how it revolutionizes life around the globe.