Viodi View – 9/25/09

Summer is now a memory and the fall 2009, trade show season is in full swing. From net neutrality to the stimulus, Washington is providing pretty of fodder for the conference agendas. Alan Weissberger provides a very timely article on a topic that is at the center of many of these conversations. Weissberger caught up with Professor Allen Hammond who discussed the nuances of achieving the worthwhile goal of ensuring broadband access for all.  

Making Broadband Access Available and Affordable for all in the U.S., by Alan Weissberger

Professor Allen Hammond, Director of the Broadband Institute of California, offers a perspective on the importance of broadband access and a prescription for making it available and affordable for all U.S. residents. Recommendations for Digital Inclusion, U.S. Broadband Policy, a national wireless network, funding and measurement tools are also included in this interview.  Click here to read the rest of the article.

Weissberger points out how a small number of users are affecting the wireless broadband experience for a large number of users in this next article.

3G Networks at the Breaking Point- and it can only get worse! by Alan Weissberger

Apple’s iPhone is a data guzzler. Owners use them like minicomputers, which they are, and use them a lot. Not only do iPhone owners download applications, stream music and videos and browse the Web at higher rates than the average smartphone user, but the average iPhone owner can also use 10 times the network capacity used by the average smartphone user.  Click here to read the rest of the article.  

The Green Divide – Knowledge is Power

Click here to see the video interview with the CEO of Cincinnatil BellWeissberger’s article reminds me of my video interview with Jack Cassidy,CEO of Cincinnati Bell, at the OPASTCO Summer 2009 Convention this past July.  Cassidy discusses the power of knowledge and how the Internet has become the central repository for virtually all knowledge. He suggests that the real digital divide is one that is between the haves and have-nots. He explains how his company adopted the worse performing high school in their area and helped it go from 18% to 100% graduation rates, by adapting the curriculum to the students. The Internet and various other complementary technologies played a big part in their success helping their local high school. Click here to view.


Watch the good work that Gila River Telecom has done in connecting their people.Kudos to our friends and frequent Viodi View sponsor, NeoNova, for bring their business to their customer’s community by holding their affiliate meeting at the Gila River Casino Resort (owned by the Gila River Nation, which also owns Gila River Telecom). Gila River Telecom is a classic case of how local control solved the problem of a telephone divide (something like 2/3 of the homes didn’t have phone access as recently as the 1970s), while yielding broadband dividends for the community. Check out this ViodiTV interview from a few years ago to learn more about the good things.

Kudos and congratulations to our friends and frequent Viodi View sponsor, 8×8, Inc. for their move into a new facility in Sunnyvale. I am sorry I missed their open house for their new headquarters. At that event, 8×8, Inc. announced their partnership with The Stride Center, “A San Francisco-based non-profit organization that empowers individuals and communities to achieve economic self-sufficiency.” With ten percent plus (10+%) unemployment, the Silicon Valley community needs to pull together with community-based partnerships such as what 8×8, Inc. and The Stride Center have done.

The Broadband BBQ- Only in Silicon Valley

Two-thousand and nine (2009) was what I call my summer of winning, as my family won several raffles and contests. The Sandisk 60 Second Summer Mobile Video Contest was especially productive for me. This may have been because I submitted so many videos as compared to the total number of entries. Although I did not win the big prize for FRED, I did win a couple of memory cards. The one video I did not submit, because it was 23 seconds too long, was the one I took during a dinner party, one balmy, perfect California summer evening.

Only in Silicon Valley would one find a BBQ connected to the Internet. In this video, my friend Jon Linthacum provides viewers with a brief tutorial of his electronically controlled BBQ that is connected to the World Wide Web via WiFi. Yes, there is an app for that, as he even figured out how to monitor the BBQ from his iPhone. I wonder if the broadband barbeque could justify a stimulus grant?

Despite my ribbing him about his techno-geekness, I couldn’t say enough good things about the pulled-pork he made that evening. Thanks Jon for showing me another use for broadband (and thanks for the great meal)!  

Note, the above video was shot with a G1 Anroid-powered phone.

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