Viodi View – 05/22/15

IPv6 – Is There a Better Way? by Abraham Chen 

A diagram of what it would take to extend IPv4 , as an alternative to IPv6.
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Late last year, we published an article that drew parallels between the early days of broadband and where we stand today with the autonomous vehicle. That article triggered Abraham Chen to ponder the similarities between Internet Protocol addressing and telephone network numbering. Since then, this MIT graduate and Avinta CTO has been researching, refining and evaluating with industry peers an idea for extending the existing IPv4 protocol to solve for the explosion of “things” in the so-called Internet of Things.

Click here to read his abstract.


Highlights of 2015 TiECon Grand Keynotes by Alan Weissberger

The lobby of CenturyLink's technology center in Monroe, LA.
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Alan Weissberger provides an excellent summary of the Grand Keynotes at the 2015 TiECon, which featured corporate icon Jack Welch among others. Telecom providers will find Weissberger’s summary of comments from Gary Gauba’s of CenturyLink Cognilytics. Cognilytics was acquired by CenturyLink and Gauba provides insight into CenturyLink’s transformation into a major cloud player and how they are proving out their ideas in places like their Technology Center of Excellence.

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A Cooperative Form of Crowd Sourcing

Corey McCarthy of the NCTC talks how  cooperation between independent companies can help them provide better solutions to their customers.
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“It’s what a cooperative is about; sharing ideas and bringing a community together,” said Corey McCarthy, CFO and SVP of Business Development of the National Cable Television Cooperative. He was referring to the NCTC’s efforts to crowdsource ideas from its members, as well as bringing together members to devise technology solutions that would be impossible for an individual member to undertake.

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Technology Facilitates Outside Plant Construction – Part 2

A typical scene in cattle country  located in the middle of Florida.
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Brian Nordtvedt of FARR Technologies discusses some of the techniques he and his group uses to more efficiently design outside plant for their clients. Additionally, he talks about the nuances of building in rural areas versus relatively urban areas. He also provides insight on relatively recent state legislation that has eased the cost of railroad crossing easements and rights of way. Nordtvedt emphasizes the importance of planning for all the contingencies and including these in the project schedule.

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Something That Can Transform Transportation

Cars talking to each other in a V2V world of tomorrow.
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The biggest challenge we face right now is a proposed [FCC] rule-making that would potentially open up that spectrum to other users that might, through their operations, effectively jam the safety messages,” according to Ken Leonard, Director of the ITS Joint Program Office of the U.S. Department of Transportation. The proposed FCC rule making Leonard refers to would expand the spectrum available for WiFi and encroach into the 75 MHz (5.85-5.925GHz) band that the FCC allocated in 1999 for Intelligent Transportation Service. This FCC rule making, which has been open since 2013, made the national news this week in an article in the Wall Street Journal.

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The Korner – Open Architecture, Mobile Laboratory in Silicon Valley

Am image of Michael Robinson talking to Doug Davenport at the ProspectSV event.
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Most people would think that self-driving and race car are terms that do not go together, according to Michael Robinson, Creative Director and CEO of ED Design. Robinson points out that in the early days, the race track was a petri dish of sorts for testing and stretching innovation in the automobile field. In the above video, he explains that ED Design’s announcement of the TORQ, autonomous race car is part of a bigger project to test and refine autonomous vehicle concepts into real-world prototypes and products.

The MAAL (Mobile Autonomous Automobile Laboratory) approach Robinson is advocating is an open architecture environment for multiple disciplines and organizations to understand the impact of autonomy on mobility. As he mentions in the above interview, he believes Silicon Valley has an important role in the development of his unique vision for the revolutionary changes we will experience over the coming decades.

Click here to view.

Something That Can Transform Transportation

The biggest challenge we face right now is a proposed [FCC] rule-making that would potentially open up that spectrum to other users that might, through their operations, effectively jam the safety messages,” according to Ken Leonard, Director of the ITS Joint Program Office of the U.S. Department of Transportation.

The proposed FCC rule making Leonard refers to would expand the spectrum available for WiFi and encroach into the 75 MHz (5.85-5.925GHz) band that the FCC allocated in 1999 for Intelligent Transportation Service. The safety messages refer to the Vehicle to Vehicle (V2V) and Vehicle to Infrastructure (V2I) communications that would occur using Dedicated Short Range Communications (DSRC); radios that essentially act as mouths and ears for vehicles and associated fixed infrastructure, such as traffic signals.

This FCC rule making, which has been open since 2013, made the national news this week in an article in the Wall Street Journal. That article emphasized the friction between telecommunications providers and the automobile industry as to how this spectrum should be used.

Also, as widely reported in the past week, U.S. Transportation Secretary Anthony Foxx committed that by the end of 2015, the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration will provide the OMB with proposed rules requiring V2V communications on new vehicles. In that same speech, Secretary Foxx indicated that,

“The Department is committing to complete a preliminary test plan [testing whether the 5.9 GHz can be shared with unlicensed users] within 12 months after industry makes production-ready devices available for testing.”

In the above interview, filmed April 9th, 2015, Leonard provides an important overview and brief history of V2V communications and how the Department of Transportation, the automobile industry and academia have been working together to understand what is needed to for a successful implementation; success being measured in accidents avoided and lives saved. Leonard points to the 3,000 vehicle pilot performed in Ann Arbor, Michigan that provided a proof-point that the technology can work in the real-world. Still, this testing just scratches the surface in terms of understanding how the technology works at scale.

Thus, the next tranche of testing is a two-phase, Connected Vehicle Pilot Deployment Program, that will be larger scale and will continue to 2020. It has parallels to the FCC’s Rural Broadband Experiments program in the sense that multiple organizations are submitting proposals and the DOT has a pool of money that will be award to an estimated 2 to 5 groups with the proposals that will give the best return. The awards are expected to be between $2 to $20M. This testing will occur in parallel with the commercial roll out of DSRC, as, at least one manufacturer, Cadillac, is planning on introducing this technology in the 2017 model year.

The potential benefit of DSRC goes beyond safety and includes a range of application categories according to the DOT’s website:

  • Agency data (e.g. road maintenance)
  • Environment (e.g. eco-traffic signal timing)
  • Mobility (e.g. dynamic ridesharing)
  • Road Weather (motorist advisories)
  • Smart Roadside (wireless inspection)

Leonard is excited about the new applications that DSRC potentially will enable. Similarly, he explains that the DOT is supportive of the greater use of WiFi and is open to proposals that would share the spectrum between WiFi and DSRC.

Still, Leonard reminds that reliability and latency are critical for V2V to be effective and to save lives and that stakeholders should keep that as the priority.

“We need to make sure that this portion of the spectrum that is used for life saving technologies and life saving communications, that, if there is additional uses of that WiFi that they don’t interfere with the safety messages of cars talking to each other.”

He indicates the DOT is working across the government, as well as industry, to reconcile this need for more broadband with the need for reliable V2V and V2I communications. He is optimistic that there is a tremendous opportunity and synergy between the once disparate automotive and communications industries.

Open Architecture, Mobile Laboratory in Silicon Valley

Most people would think that self-driving and race car are terms that do not go together, according to Michael Robinson, Creative Director and CEO of ED Design. Robinson points out that in the early days, the race track was a petri dish of sorts for testing and stretching innovation in the automobile field. In the above video, he explains that ED Design’s announcement of the TORQ, autonomous race car is part of a bigger project to test and refine autonomous vehicle concepts into real-world prototypes and products.

The MAAL (Mobile Autonomous Automobile Laboratory) approach Robinson is advocating is an open architecture environment for multiple disciplines and organizations to understand the impact of autonomy on mobility. As he mentions in the above interview, he believes Silicon Valley has an important role in the development of his unique vision for the revolutionary changes we will experience over the coming decades.

Viodi View – 05/08/15

The Internet of Things is the next step along a path where technology is woven into our every moment and into our very being. Even the simpler things in life, like fishing, are not immune to the invasion of connected sensing and intelligence that we are seeing in formerly mundane devices. Skip to the Korner to read about an IoT fishing accessory that its maker hopes will help facilitate deeper connections between family members by making an old-time pastime even more enjoyable.

Summary of IoT Sessions at 2015 GSA Silicon Summit – Part I by Alan Weissberger

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The Internet of Things (known as “IoT” or for Cisco, Qualcomm and others “IoE”) was the driving theme throughout this superb symposium. GSA says: “the IoT is driving the expectancy for ubiquitous connectivity and universal access to data, immersive technology is changing our expectations on how we interact with the physical and virtual worlds.”  The excellent GSA summit offered two intriguing IoT sessions this year.

Click here to read part 1


The logo for the BroadbandTV Conference.
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IoT Sessions at 2015 GSA Silicon Summit – Part II by Alan Weissberger

MEMS in mobile devices from Virtuix.
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In this second of a two-part article series, Alan Weissberger reviews the afternoon IoT session at the April 15, 2015 GSA Silicon Summit. The topic was MEMS (Micro Electro Mechanical Systems) and Sensors, Shaping the Future of the IoT and featured speakers from GE Global Research, InvenSense, Atmel and Virtuix. This conference points to the future – a future where, according to one of the speakers, “Our new machines will augment human desires…immortality, omniscience, telepathy and teleportation.”

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16 Million Reasons to Challenge CAF

An image from rural Missouri where a fiber optic cable runs parallel to a dirt road.
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With this headline, “Connect America Fund Offers Carriers Nearly $1.7 Billion to Expand Broadband to Over 8.5 Million Rural Americans,” a dispute over $16M would seem like a rounding error. It is a rounding error, unless you are in a place that can’t receive broadband. Making it even worse is if the $16M is to fund areas that not only already have broadband, but that have fiber to the home (FTTH), gigabit-capable broadband.

Click here to view and read more.


Technology Facilitates Outside Plant Construction – Part 1

Brian Nordtvedt talks about the technology for engineering OSP Services
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It is the construction of the network that is sometimes the biggest barrier to realizing FTTH. Fortunately, technology, such as GPS, is helping outside plant engineers be more efficient in the design process. In part one of a two-part interview, Brian Nordtvedt of FARR Technologies discusses some of the techniques he and his crew use to help their clients build FTTH networks.

Click here to view.


One Step to a New Age of Mobility

Peter Dempster of DriveNow describes their unique car-sharing service.
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“A free-floating car-sharing service…it is a total hack of the car-sharing model,” is how Peter Dempster describes DriveNow. Dempster, Business Development and Sales Manager for DriveNow, Gmbh, KG, goes on to explain that DriveNow allows one to pick up and drop off cars in different places, keep the car as long as they wish, while paying by the minute ($12 for the first 30 $0.32/minute thereafter)¹. It turns out, the DriveNow service can be very affordable, compared to alternatives, as, for instance, taking DriveNow from the San Francisco Airport to Union Square would typically $12, as compared to approximately $60 via taxi.

Click here to view and read more.


Bandwidth is the Important Thing

A screenshot capture of ITS Fiber's Cloud University.
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In this interview filmed at IP Possibilities, Jeff Leslie of ITS Fiber suggests that providing businesses superior speed and quality bandwidth leads is a foundation that can lead to new services. Leslie talks about how ITS Fiber has used that bandwidth to become a supplier of IT services to local businesses. He also talks about the importance of defining the scope of the services, so that the customer has clear expectations of what is included in a given project.

Click here to view.


The Korner – The Internet of Fishing Things

An image of the Deeper Fishfinder app.
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The Minnesota Governor’s Fishing Opener began yesterday and represents the start of the summer tourism season. As its name would suggest, a big part of this event is about Minnesota fishing and opening of fishing season. It is fitting that the above video, about a high-tech way to catch fish, made its debut on the ViodiTV channel at the 2015 Minnesota Telecom Alliance’s Annual Convention and Conference.

Although Friday Lab, the developer of the Deeper Fishfinder, is based in Lithuania, the problems it solves is universal. As Friday Lab co-founder/CMO, Rolandas Sereika, explains, their device floats on the water and uses Sonar to detect the location of fish and Bluetooth to communicate information to a smart phone app. He describes how they have recently enhanced their app to provide additional data for ice fishing.

Given that the MN Governor’s Fishing Opener falls on Mother’s Day weekend, the Deeper Fish Finder could be a great present for the mother who likes to fish. And their excellent YouTube video describes the fishing experience as  much deeper than what appears at the surface (the video is reminiscent of the iconic Harry Chapin song about a father-son relationship).

One Step to a New Age of Mobility

“A free-floating car-sharing service…it is a total hack of the car-sharing model,” is how Peter Dempster describes DriveNow. Dempster, Business Development and Sales Manager for DriveNow, Gmbh, KG, goes on to explain that DriveNow allows one to pick up and drop off cars in different places, keep the car as long as they wish, while paying by the minute ($12 for the first 30 $0.32/minute thereafter)¹. It turns out, the DriveNow service can be very affordable, compared to alternatives, as, for instance, taking DriveNow from the San Francisco Airport to Union Square would typically $12, as compared to approximately $60 via taxi.

This joint venture of BMW and German car rental company Sixt, uses a fleet of connected electric BMWs. What makes this model work is the electronic tether these vehicles have to the cloud. That connection allows drivers to find and unlock the closest car. Similarly, it allows the DriveNow team to reposition cars and ensure they are charged (Ka-ching, the driver doesn’t have to pay for electricity – it is included in the aforementioned pricing).

This service is in a handful of cities around the world, including, London, Berlin, Vienna and, in the United States, San Francisco. As Dempster describes, their initial target are locations where the population is less inclined to car ownership and are more concerned about mobility services.

Still, it isn’t difficult to see how the lessons they learn from these initial deployments will inform plans for their service in suburban markets, particularly as automation (e.g. automatically reposition cars without human intervention) further reduces costs associated with this type of service. Ultimately, they may meet their aspiration to some day, “make mobility service so cheap only the rich will buy cars.

¹There is a one-time, $39 registration fee.

Viodi View – 04/24/15

Maybe it was the look of confusion as I stumbled across him while fumbling for my smart phone to find the just-in-time directions for my next move. Having earlier struck up a brief conversation about only one airline serving the regional airport, it was probably obvious to this stranger that I didn’t have a clue about how I was going to execute my next step. After hesitating for a moment, I said yes to his offer to give me a ride to my hotel; a hotel which I discovered was some 30 miles from this rural airport….Go to the Korner, below, to read the rest of the story.


Lots of Possibilities With the Right Mindset

David Seda discussing the flop that service providers must do.
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Mindset change, new business opportunities and cybersecurity are three terms that describe some of the highlights of last week’s 2015 IP Possibilities conference and trade show. The sessions were terrific and the exhibit floor featured some interesting innovations, but the best part of the show, was the interaction with innovators from around the country. In the near-future, we will point readers to a series of Viodi-produced videos about the event, but, in the meantime,

Click here for written highlights.


The logo for the BroadbandTV Conference.
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The Road to FTTH Success Begins With….

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Even before the first fiber is pulled and equipment selected, the road to Fiber to the Home success begins with cost accounting. In the above interview, filmed at the 2015 Minnesota Telecom Alliance Annual Conference and Convention, Darrell Bolen, Director, Separations of FARR Technologies, points to the important interplay that needs to take place between the accounting, engineering and regulatory disciplines to optimize the network design.

Click here to view and read more.


The Burden of Uncertainty

Bob Gessner at the 2015 ACA Summit
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“There are really significant burdens of which we are uncertain and that uncertainty, as always, leads to concern about how you invest capital and how you grow,” said Bob Gessner, president of MCTV and Chairman of the ACA. Gessner was referring to the impact of Title II rules on operators’ investment in broadband (the LA Times reinforces the idea that these rules have created uncertainty in this article). As he pointed out in his opening comments at the 2015 ACA Summit, broadband is the future for ACA members.

Click here to view and read more.


53 Areas of Harm?

53 areas of harm from the Comcast/Time-Warner proposed merger, according to Jeff Blum of Dish Network.
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With Comcast backing away from its merger with Time-Warner, this interview with Jeff Blum of Dish Network at the ACA Summit last month was prescient. Now, with the Comcast/Time-Warner in the rearview mirror, will the DirecTV takeover by AT&T move to the front burner for groups that were opposed to the Comcast/Time-Warner deal? What will be next for Time-Warner, Comcast, Charter, Liberty Global given this new reality? Lots of questions.

Click here to here to see what Jeff Blum said about the proposed merger.


Detroit or Silicon Valley?

Prospect SV's April 2015 event at their Silicon Valley location.
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Connecting vehicles to each other, to infrastructure, to other modes of transport and even pedestrians will be increasingly important, as in the future, traffic will include a mix of human and self-driving vehicles. There may not be consensus on when autonomous vehicles will be commonplace on the roads and highways of America, but one thing all experts can agree on is that testing, testing and more testing will be required.

Click here to view and read more.


Some Tweets and Short Thoughts:

  • Will automating features in cars make us even more inattentive drivers? These studies hope to find out.
  • CS&L has officially been spun-off from Windstream as a Real Estate Investment Trust. Look for them to be calling on independent operators to add to the 64k miles of fiber and other assets that they will lease back to telecom companies. It will be interesting to see how this impacts investment in infrastructure in rural America.
  • As the popularity of connecting TVs directly to the Internet increase and people cut the cord the need for advertisers to easily target messages cross-platform and to very localized groups will be increasingly important and this is the direction things are headed.
  • Hoosiers in Guatemala helping build infrastructure. How cool is that!
  • Time for Congress to Reform Cable TV Laws | Commentary – Beltway Insiders

The Korner – Don’t Accept Rides with Strangers – Except in America’s Heartland

A groundhog in Jefferson City, MO.
A groundhog in Jefferson City, MO.

Taking a page from the 80s and the introduction of just-in-time manufacturing, I often apply this principle to travel. That’s really another way of saying I am not as diligent about mapping out or paying attention to every detail of travel as I should. The plus side to this is it sometimes leads to unexpected adventures and discoveries. Fortunately, there always seems to be a guardian angel that swoops in to help me.

Having earlier struck up a brief conversation, it was probably obvious to the stranger who was educating me on the local geography that I didn’t have a clue about how I was going to execute my next step. After hesitating for a moment, I said yes to his offer to give me a ride to my hotel. As we walked to his car, the thought did go through my mind that this could end up like a bad horror movie on late night TV.

Click here to read the rest of the story.

Don't Accept Rides with Strangers – Except in America's Heartland

Taking a page from the 80s and the introduction of just-in-time manufacturing, I often apply this principle to travel. That’s really another way of saying I am not as diligent about mapping out or paying attention to every detail of travel as I should. The plus side to this is it sometimes leads to unexpected adventures and discoveries. Fortunately, there always seems to be a guardian angel that swoops in to help me.

A billboard from Jefferson City, MO proclaiming it "America's Most Beautiful Small Town.".
“America’s Most Beautiful Small Town”

This week I received a bit of geography lesson, as I found out that Columbia and Jefferson City, MO are about 30 miles apart. I also found out that Jefferson City is one of the few state capitols without its own airport or Interstate connection. I found this valuable bit of information after arriving on the final flight of the day at this rural, regional airport.

Having earlier struck up a brief conversation, it was probably obvious to the stranger who was educating me on the local geography that I didn’t have a clue about how I was going to execute my next step. After hesitating for a moment, I said yes to his offer to give me a ride to my hotel.

Overlooking the Missouri River in Jefferson, MO, near the State Capitol.
Overlooking the Missouri River in Jefferson, MO

As I sat fumbling with my smart phone waiting for the search results to tell me the name of my hotel, I tried to explain that my destination was a hotel in Columbia. This was great news, as he had to take a detour through Columbia to pick up his golf clubs. His ultimate destination was Jefferson City. Given that this was the last flight of the night and there weren’t any taxis or shuttle around, I was glad to have a relatively fast way to get to my hotel.

The search result finally came up and he didn’t recognize my hotel as being in Columbia and, sure enough, upon closer examination, Jefferson City was my destination. As we walked to his car, the thought did go through my mind that this could end up like a bad horror movie on late night TV.

Our first detour took us to his friend’s house, where we picked up his golf clubs. Whew, the friend was real and an affable sort. Although it was dark, I got a glimpse of houses in a development that, from a Silicon Valley native’s perspective, were an unbelievable value.

An image of the MO State Capitol.
The Missouri State Capitol.

As we made the drive from Columbia to Jefferson City, I was told me of some of the interesting people who make the area their home or were from the area, such as, Stan Kroenke – owner of multiple sports franchises, including the St. Louis Rams – and San Francisco 49er Justin Smith, who built a golf course on his family farm. Regarding golf, this California felt a ping of envy when my driver explained that some of the courses could be played for as little as a dollar per hole.

Along the way, he explained that his first career was in city and state government, which made sense, since he lived in Jefferson City. He was also a lobbyist for various business groups in his career, but didn’t realize the challenges of small businesses until his final career move, which was as owner of the oldest continuous business in Jefferson City.

An image of downtown Jefferson City, MO.
Downtown Jefferson City

Situated on a bluff next to the Missouri river, the Missouri State Capitol building is one of the prettiest this author has seen. Fortunately, I had a tour guide who could provide the back story like few others. As it turns out he had been chief administrator for Missouri, so he had an incredible amount of knowledge. What he termed, a “nickel tour of Jefferson City,” was actually priceless.

The plaque on the state building.
The state building cornerstone

He took me by the ornate governor’s mansion, which overlooks both the Missouri River and the capitol building. When I asked him about a sign I saw for a tour of the Missouri State Penitentiary, he immediately made a beeline for a look at this foreboding structure, which is quite a juxtaposition with the warden’s former mansion, which is across the street. We passed one building where he casually mentioned that his name was on the cornerstone, which he attributed to being in the right place at the right time.

A beaver or an otter in Jefferson City, MO.
A Jefferson City groundhog

The next day, I had some free time to wander around and take some photos of this clean and architecturally interesting town. And although I was on foot, I still made the 1.4 mile trek to my favorite health-mex chain restaurant, so I got a pretty close-up view of this 40k+ population town and even two of its furrier critters.

I found myself reflecting as I often do when I make trips to the heartland that this could be somewhere nice to live. The reality is that it’s not the buildings or the geography that make places like Jefferson City special, it is the people, like my tour guide and new friend, John, who puts the heart in heartland.

Lots of Possibilities With the Right Mindset

Mindset change, new business opportunities and cybersecurity are three terms that describe some of the highlights of last week’s 2015 IP Possibilities conference and trade show. The sessions were terrific and the exhibit floor featured some interesting innovations, but the best part of the show, was the interaction with innovators from around the country. In the near-future, we will point readers to a series of Viodi-produced videos about the event, but, in the meantime, here are some highlights.

David Seda describes his concept of the service provider flop.
David Seda & The Service Provider Flop

Tim Bryan, NRTC CEO, kicked off IP Possibilities with a humorous introduction that one could say was about a completely different mindset than telecom. Flipping the mindset to a customer viewpoint was the theme of David Seda’s entertaining keynote speech. He emphasized the service providers need to develop products from the needs of the customer, instead of leading with the network side of things.

Changing culture to be more nimble, react and create the type of services that customers need, was a common theme, even in panels that were ostensibly about technology. Jeff Leslie, CEO of ITS Fiber, emphasized the importance of bringing on board the right sort of staff when he stated, “Don’t be afraid to hire people you can’t afford.” His point being that knowledgeable, trained people will help retain existing and generate new business that will more than pay for the salaries of those skilled individuals.
There were plenty of ideas on how to create new revenue streams at this two-plus day event. Examples of new revenue services included approaches such as:

  • Using fiber networks and secure local data centers to sell cloud voice and IT Services to local and, with the help of groups like WIN and INDATEL, regional and major corporate businesses
  • Installing and managing Bluetooth Low Energy devices that help businesses and institutions provide information on a micro scale to consumers
  • Creating skinny managed broadband video services that complement over-the-top services and provide a new offering to those consumers who don’t want to pay for a cable package filled with content-owner, required programming.

Regarding content challenges, Tom Whitaker, Vice President, Cable for Shentel, a Virginia-based rural operator said, “They are in the content business and not the customer business.” Whitaker was referring to content providers, whether they are providing their content through the operator or as an over-the-top service.

He also made the important point that content is not just video, but includes customer generated and purchased content, such as email, online documents, music and books. His comment was made in the context of Google and their decision to drop their ISP program and the negative repercussions that will have on the consumer of those services.

Whitaker mentioned that one of the features they liked about Google Apps Partner Edition™ and one of the reasons they moved 20k accounts to that service was its effective spam control. Spam is really a window into the threat posed by cyber criminals and terrorists.

The importance of fighting cybercrime through operators’ adoption of the NIST cybersecurity framework was made clear in an excellent panel moderated by NTCA’s Jesse Ward and featuring the FCC’s Jeff Goldthorp and Silver Star Communications’ CFO Jeff England.

That a CFO gave the presentation indicates that cyber security is primarily a business and process decision and secondarily a technology issue. England discussed how they went about implementing the NIST framework and it started with a commitment from leadership. England’s views were echoed in another excellent session that the seemingly overwhelming NIST framework can be split into baby-sized steps.

The important thing is to get started. Bill Trelease, Vice President/CTO of Delhi Telephone, suggested mapping out one’s network and identifying those customers with critical infrastructure (e.g. hospitals, institutions, etc.) and identifying weak points. In many ways operators will find that they are already doing the things that need to be done and it is the conversations with vendors and customers that will provide the most value in both identifying gaps, as well as opportunities.

Jeff England has found that the process has given them a competitive edge, as customers are becoming more aware of the dangers of cybercrime. Keeping customers’ data on-network (away from the Internet) offers potential new revenue opportunities for operators. Still, as he points out, the government needs to aggressively find and prosecute the people behind cyber crimes.

Stay tuned for links to the video interviews with many of the folks mentioned above, as well as many others who had valuable insights about the possibilities of IP and the opportunities it opens to service providers.

Detroit or Silicon Valley?

Connecting vehicles to each other, to infrastructure, to other modes of transport and even pedestrians will be increasingly important, as in the future, traffic will include a mix of human and self-driving vehicles. There may not be consensus on when autonomous vehicles will be commonplace on the roads and highways of America, but one thing all experts can agree on is that testing, testing and more testing will be required.

Given that much of that infrastructure will be in the form of software, compute power, sensors and communications, Silicon Valley will have a role in bringing intelligence into the transportation network. Aiding that effort will be ProspectSV, “the first nonprofit, Silicon Valley-based technology commercialization catalyst for smarter, cleaner cities globally.”

The above video was filmed at ProspectSV’s official unveiling of its ITS Signal Lab & SimLab. ProspectSV’s aim is to help facilitate the transition to an intelligent transportation system and, based on what ProspectSV and their partners demonstrated at its ITS Signal Lab & SimLab unveiling, they are off to an excellent start.

Viodi View – 04/11/15

An apparent spring on Capitol Hill.
Capitol Hill

It is easy to be awestruck when visiting the Washington D.C. area. One can sense the energy when stepping off the airplane and into this center of power. The region is overflowing with smart people, powerful organizations and more history of this great republic than anywhere else. It is understandable how the servant leaders who work in the “beltway”, could forget that much of this awesomeness emanates from the people and businesses inhabiting the other 3.8 million square miles of these United States.


 

The Cablization of the Internet

Patrick Knorr of Wave Broadband discusses how Title II regulation could lead to the
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Unintended consequences are probably the worst thing about laws and regulations. It’s difficult to predict the reactions from both individuals and corporations to outwit a new rule. Patrick Knorr, EVP of Business Services and IP Technology for Wave Broadband, suggests that that one of the unintended, potential consequences of Title II regulation of broadband providers is that “content providers” may begin to charge fees for their content (some of the Disney properties already charge for operators for their broadband content) in a way that is similar to what has occured with traditional, franchised cable television services.

Click here to read more and view.


 

Opportunity Across the Silos

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A take-away from TIA’s Connected Car Workshop is that opportunity exists for those who manage to shatter the silos of once disparate disciplines surrounding the transport of people and goods. That is, the transportation industry is on a cusp of a major revolution that will be manifested through connected vehicles, combined with increasing automation that eventually leads to elimination of the driver. TIA CEO, Scott Belcher, provides highlights of this one day conference held in conjunction with the Contra Costa Transit Authority’s (CCTA) unveiling of its GoMentum Station Connected Vehicle / Autonomous Vehicle Program test facility.

Click here to read more and view.


 

The Logistics of Working from Home – Parts 4 & 5

Dave Fridley discusses the logistics of working from home.
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Dave Fridley discusses the logistics and the tools FARR Technologies uses to support their 24 offices. One of the challenges they found was that their uploading requirements provided a challenge for some of the 14 providers to connect their employees. He points to the importance of recognizing nuances of online communications and the importance of reading between the lines.

Click here to view part 4.

Click here to view part 5.


 

CableTV Icon Wendell Woody Passes

Wendell Woody, a Cable TV icon.
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The CableTV and telecommunications industry saw the passing of Wendell Woody this week. Woody, an icon in the cable industry with 49 years of service at companies such as Jerrold, Catel and Monroe Electronics. Many Viodi View readers may recognize Woody as Mr. Emergency Alert System, as he became one of the industry experts on this technology. This author had the pleasure of working with Woody at Catel. A few years ago, we caught up with him in this interview where he explained, “CAP”.

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The Korner – A Cooperative Book on a Cooperative Business

Vern Dosch discusses the cooperative business model and how it can work for its members.
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Life presents different challenges in rural America, as compared to urban and suburban America. Services aren’t convenient, windshield time is great and the elements have a bigger impact than in the city where there are greater resources on a per capital basis to defend against mother nature. Perhaps, it is because these and other challenges why rural regions have given birth to so many cooperative forms of business organization.

Wired Differently provides the secrets about what make cooperatives successful. It is a book about a culture, but it is also one man’s story of how the culture of the cooperative shaped him and how he and his colleagues shaped the culture of the cooperative, so that it could continue to be relevant to its members.

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