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Information and communication technology (ICT) are often thought to hold the potential to level many societal barriers, e.g., those created by gender or ethnicity. Using the NSF Surveys of Public Understanding of Science and Technology (maximum n = 18125 adults), I track five generations born from 1891 to 1988 over periods from one to 28 years, juxtaposing how generation versus aging, coupled with gender, ethnicity, occupation and education, affected computer ownership and Internet access and use between 1983 and 2006. Using n way analyses of covariance, I found by 2006, adults who owned a computer went online from home. Although gender was less important in ICT access and use, significant divides by generation, occupation, education and ethnicity in PC ownership and selected online uses remain.
Date of Conference: 2-3 Oct. 2009