Viodi View – 05/24/11

Picking up coal on a rural train track

Gathering stories from the heartland has been one of the most rewarding things since we launched ViodiTV at the OPASTCO Summer Convention in 2006.  That launch featured a bit of a road trip as we traveled from Madison to VA to South Carolina over the course of a couple of weeks visiting a couple of telcos, airing ViodiTV and holding a local content workshop.  We are trying to do something similar this summer with a tour from California to at least Minnesota.  The details are still being determined, but to get a preview, check out this link.

Ron Laudner At IP Possibilities
Ron Laudner At IP Possibilities

Being the Local Technology Leader

Ron Laudner of OmniTel and Chairman of OPASTCO discusses the challenges and opportunities of serving the networked home.  He emphasizes the importance of understanding the questions and the needs of the customers.  It starts with the simple things, like ease-of-use.  He emphasizes that the operator has to be recognized as the technology leader.  Education and employee training become a part of technology leadership.  He explains some of the clever ways they are getting the message out to their customers and how it is creating opportunities beyond their traditional service areas.

The Networked Lightbulb
The Networked Lightbulb

The Networked Light Bulb

Bringing the power of the Internet to the ordinary light bulb is one of the things that GreenWave Reality demonstrated at Parks Associates’ Smart Energy Summit in Austin last January.  The implications of this meet-up of the network with light source goes beyond energy efficiency and reaches into the fundamentals of home construction.  For instance, why install wall-mount switches, when a smart phone or tablet, both from within and outside the home, can control the light?  Why run AC everywhere, when LEDs light bulbs could conceivably operate on low-voltage D.C. power?

GreenWave Reality’s announcement with semiconductor giant, NXP, is evidence that what was demonstrated in the above video will soon be mainstream.  Click here to view this enlightening video (pun intended)

New Pole Attachment Rules Deserve a Look by Robert Primosch

[Editor’s Note: Robert Primosch is a Partner with the Washington, D.C.-based, communications law firm Wilkinson Barker Knauer, LLP].  The FCC recently lowered the rates providers of telecommunications services pay to utilities for pole attachments.  Much of this is traceable to the FCC’s National Broadband Plan.  There, the FCC found that “the expense of obtaining permits and leasing pole attachments and rights-of-way can amount to 20% of the cost of fiber deployment.  Click here to read why this is important for anyone interested in extending making high quality broadband ubiquitous.

Infonetics: Carriers Making Major Push to OTN; PMC Sierra sees healthy OTN growth during next 5 years by Alan Weissberger

It appears the main incentive for carriers to now move from SONET/SDH to the OTN is encapsulation of aggregated IP and Ethernet traffic.  We see this starting with 10G Ethernet and then evolving to 40G and !100G Ethernet in data centers, Internet exchanges, and for other aggregated long haul packet traffic.  Yet the TDM traffic in SONET payloads can also be ampped to ODUs and combined with packet based ODUs in a single OTUi frame.

Why hasn’t the OTN been deployed sooner (since it was standardized by ITU over 11 years ago)? Click here to learn why and read the entire article.

Comcast Fiber Network Buildout gives rise to Metro Ethernet and PRI trunking services for SMBs by Alan Weissberger

Comcast has been quietly expanding its fiber footprint – initially to offer cable modem based broadband Internet service to residential customers – but more recently to commercial buildings and even new office parks.  Since 2002, the U.S.’s largest MSO has spent over $600M to expand and upgrade its fiber network in Northern California, according to Andrew C. Johnson, Comcast President for CA.  Click here to read the rest of the article and Weissberger’s analysis.

A New Telecom Law in Wisconsin – The Signing (Videography by Roger Bindl)

Wisconsin Telecom Bill The Signing Change has been afoot in Wisconsin and Roger Bindl was there to capture footage of the signing of a telecom bill that promises a different way of doing business and may portend changes nationally.  Among other things, this legislation eliminates price regulation, alternative regulation, rate case activities and requires interconnected VoIP providers to pay into the WI USF.

In this exclusive video shot at the WSTA’s annual convention, Wisconsin Governor Scott Walker says “jobs” was the motivation for this new law.  It was a fast transition from bill to law for the usual slow-pace regulatory world, as this was at the top of Walker’s agenda when he was sworn in last January.  Click here to view.

Some Tweets and Short Thoughts:

  • Our prayers and thoughts with all of those affected by the horrific tornadoes sweeping the Midwest.  Here is the link to the NTCA’s disaster relief clearinghouse page; telcos helping telcos help their communities.
  • Will we all have to be Network Admins? – What Happens When the Cloud Meets a Bandwidth Cap: Tech News and Analysis
  • RT @LeviMaaia: Did you hear? The FCC and Comcast are now merging! MP: Funny!

The Korner – Return to Community – A Message that is “Evergreen”

Robert Keen
Robert Keen

Digging through the archives the other day, I found a 3-part video interview from 2007 with Robert Keen, who is an economist by training and the President/CEO of a hospital in rural hamlet of Greenfield, Indiana.  Although his talk was on board-relations, he spoke of the spiritual nature of corporations as well as the importance of local entities to a community’s vitality.

Keen explains the importance of fiber connectivity for modern healthcare. In their case, they had to reach out to an independent provider to bring fiber to their facility. He briefly touches upon some of the benefits that go beyond his hospital’s immediate incumbent needs and that positively impact the regional community.

He points out that living corporate values is more than just a sign on the wall.  It becomes a way of life for people in the organization.  This vision starts with the board and flows through the work of management.

Keen predicts that the 21st century will see a, “Return to community.”  He points out that bigger isn’t necessarily better, particularly in suburban and rural areas.  Keen is an expert in economic development and, in this interview, stresses that local businesses are more likely to reinvest in the community over the long-term, as compared to larger corporations with headquarters in a far-away locale.

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