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Survey: Steve Jobs unknown to most Brits

Pixel is a chocolate, dongle an animal

A new voxpop survey suggests that the majority of people have little idea about technical language or the people involved in the IT industry. One in ten people on the streets of London apparently believe that Steve Jobs is a trade union leader rather than the CEO and co-founder of Apple.

Lewis PR conducted the survey in London last month. A video showing general tech ignorance can be viewed on YouTube.

The survey of 1,000 people was conducted to gauge the nation's level of technology knowledge.

People on the street - not all British, it should be noted - were asked a series of questions such as:

  • "Who is Steve Jobs?"
  • "Who is Bill Gates?"
  • "What is a wireless dongle?"
  • "What is a pixel?"
  • "What is a Virtual Hard Disk?"
  • "Can you name a social networking site?"

One in 10 Britons think Apple founder Steve Jobs is a trade union leader, according to the survey.

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A further 20 percent said they had no idea who he is and one in 20 believed he earns a living as a Division Two footballer.

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More people seemed to know that Jobs works for Apple than knew the company (Microsoft) formerly controlled by Bill Gates. Most respondents did know that Gates was "rich", though.

Asked "Who is Steve Jobs?" one woman featured in the video answered "Maybe something to do with Google". Others looked confused.

Three percent thought Gates was an American comedian, and two percent that he was one of the Great Train robbers.

One thought that a wireless dongle was some sort of animal, and another believed that a pixel was a type of chocolate. Another was closer to the truth when she said a pixel was "a little thing to do with cameras".

The survey also found six percent thought a VHD (Virtual Hard Disk) was a sexually transmitted disease and four percent believed phishing - a ruse used by cyber criminals to steal personal details - was an angling method used by Eskimos.

One in 20 thought SAAS (Software as a Service) stood for Special Aviation and Army Squadron and six percent believed it was an 1980s pop band.

No one on the video had an idea what a social networking site was.

In the full survey, despite the rising popularity of social networking sites, 11 percent of those quizzed could not name one. Of those that were mentioned, Facebook was singled out the most (72 percent) with Twitter next at 12 percent.

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