Surfing the Broad...
Follow
Find
116.1K views | +6 today
 
Scooped by Chuck Sherwood, Senior Associate, TeleDimensions, Inc
onto Surfing the Broadband Bit Stream
Scoop.it!

Should Google be censoring videos just because they are linked to violence? | GigaOM Tech News

Should Google be censoring videos just because they are linked to violence? | GigaOM Tech News | Surfing the Broadband Bit Stream | Scoop.it

After violent attacks on Americans in both Egypt and Libya — including an attack in Libya on Tuesday that killed the American ambassador to that country — Google said on Wednesday that it has restricted access to a controversial YouTube video about the Prophet Muhammad that has been linked to the violence.

 

According to a statement from the company, the video is still available on the YouTube website, but viewers from both Libya and Egypt are unable to see it. While this may be a goodwill gesture by the search giant aimed at helping to douse the flames of anti-American violence in the Middle East, it raises a number of questions about the company’s willingness to censor certain types of content even when it has not been asked to do so by a government or court. What other things might Google decide to block, and from whom?

 

The clip that is being blocked is a 14-minute section of a longer film called “The Innocence of Muslims,” which reportedly shows a fictional attack by Muslims on a Christian family, followed by an account of the origins of the Islamic religion that portrays the prophet Muhammad as a fraud and a womanizer. Other fictional and/or humorous accounts of the prophet’s life have also caused violence in the past, including a fatwa or death sentence issued against author Salman Rushdie in 1989 for his book “The Satanic Verses,” and a series of attacks and deaths linked to offensive cartoons about the prophet that ran in a Danish newspaper in 2005.

 

In this case, the video clip has been connected to the death of U.S. ambassador Christopher Stevens, who was killed on Tuesday in an attack on the embassy in Libya, along with three other members of the ambassador’s diplomatic staff. And in a statement released to the news media, Google made it clear that this is the main reason it decided to block access to the video from viewers in Egypt and Libya (attacks also occurred in Cairo that were linked to the clip). Said the company:

 

Click headline to read more and access hot links--

more...
No comment yet.
Surfing the Broadband Bit Stream
Everything about Broadband Policy, Network Infrastructure, Voice, Video and Data Services, Devices and Applications for Managing our Planet
Your new post is loading...
Your new post is loading...
Scooped by Chuck Sherwood, Senior Associate, TeleDimensions, Inc
Scoop.it!

MN: Gigabit Internet Service Comes to Lake George | Ann Treacy | Blandin on Broadband

Gigabit Internet service has come to Lake George, MN. Paul Bunyan Communications has upgraded the communications network it has in the Lake George area making GigaZone services now available to close to 500 locations in an area that stretches from east of Lake George west to Itasca State Park and south towards Emmaville and Two Inlets.

“The GigaZone provides Internet capabilities unsurpassed by any other rural provider or region in the country. The GigaZone not only provides the capacity to handle current communication technologies quickly and efficiently, it also meets the increasing demands of the next generation of broadband innovations,” said Gary Johnson, Paul Bunyan Communications CEO/General Manager.

“Our cooperative already has the region’s largest all fiber optic network, upgrading it for the GigaZone continues our commitment to keeping our region at the forefront of broadband access.” said Steve Howard, Paul Bunyan Communications IT & Development Manager.


Click headline to read more--

more...
No comment yet.
Scooped by Chuck Sherwood, Senior Associate, TeleDimensions, Inc
Scoop.it!

Comcast Deal Collapse Would Kill Other Mergers in Domino Effect | Gerry Smith & Alex Sherman | Bloomberg

Comcast Deal Collapse Would Kill Other Mergers in Domino Effect | Gerry Smith & Alex Sherman | Bloomberg | Surfing the Broadband Bit Stream | Scoop.it

The potential collapse of Comcast Corp.’s merger with Time Warner Cable Inc. wouldn’t just be a setback for those two companies. It would also unwind other pending deals and have a wide-reaching impact on the cable industry.

Staff attorneys at the Justice Department’s antitrust division are nearing a recommendation to block Comcast.’s plan to buy Time Warner Cable and combine the two largest U.S. cable providers, according to people familiar with the matter.

A rejection would be a blow to Comcast, which would have to give up on valuable cable and broadband assets in major U.S. cities including New York and Los Angeles. The $45.2 billion merger proposal is also a way for Philadelphia-based Comcast to fend off competition from phone companies, satellite providers and Web services like Netflix Inc. that have taken hundreds of thousands of its TV subscribers in recent years.

Another company has a lot at stake: Charter Communications Inc., the No. 4 in the industry. Charter, which counts billionaire John Malone as its largest investor, has agreed to take control of 3.9 million Comcast cable-TV customers to ease approval for the Comcast-Time Warner Cable merger. If that fails, Charter won’t get those customers. Another Charter deal, the recent agreement to purchase of Bright House Networks, would also be in jeopardy.

Charter, which lost out to Comcast a year ago in its effort to buy Time Warner Cable, could get another shot at it. Malone has said he would try again if the deal with Comcast fell apart.


Click headline to read more--

more...
No comment yet.
Scooped by Chuck Sherwood, Senior Associate, TeleDimensions, Inc
Scoop.it!

The FCC Should Fight for Our Right to TV White Space | Robert McDowell Opinion | WIRED.com

The FCC Should Fight for Our Right to TV White Space | Robert McDowell Opinion | WIRED.com | Surfing the Broadband Bit Stream | Scoop.it

“White spaces,” or unused radio frequencies in between TV channels, have long been eyed by technologists as perfect for connecting a sea of countless devices to the internet—everything from heart monitors to your car. A little-known government database is supposed to help prevent America’s newest “white spaces,” or “super Wi-Fi,” wireless devices from interfering with other electronics.

But that database has been invaded by a group of sketchy characters going by the names John Q Public, Sue Q Public, NoneNone and John Doe. Some of them hail from 123 Jump Street. On May 1, the Federal Communications Commission is giving the public a chance to comment on how best to deal with these suspicious characters. What the FCC does about it could affect the evolution of the emerging Internet of Things.

During my seven years as an FCC commissioner, I was a strong proponent of allowing innovators to use white spaces without having to get an FCC license. The TV frequencies are highly coveted because they can carry large amounts of data over long distances while penetrating buildings. Enabling consumers and technologists to take advantage of these radio bands in an unlicensed manner is seen as the epitome of the “permissionless” internet. Innovation could spread quickly without having to wait for government approvals.

Our template for success was the first generation of Wi-Fi: it seemed almost as though no one had heard of it on Friday, but by Monday everyone was using it. Its unlicensed nature unleashed a beautiful explosion of entrepreneurial brilliance. Super Wi-Fi operating in the TV bands would be even better.

Under federal law, however, devices using white spaces cannot cause harmful interference to licensed users, such as TV broadcasters and some theaters and churches using wireless microphones. This requirement makes sense to ensure electronics don’t drown each other out, turning them into junk. But how do you ensure such devices won’t step on each other’s toes?

With a reliable national database of all devices using the TV white spaces, of course.


Click headline to read more--

more...
No comment yet.
Scooped by Chuck Sherwood, Senior Associate, TeleDimensions, Inc
Scoop.it!

What’s going on with broadband at the Minnesota Legislature? | Ann Treacy | Blandin on Broadband

Feels like Friday was a month ago! The sun shone at least half the weekend. It’s a new day but we have some familiar battles.

  • Some good news – broadband is back in the House budget. (Rural objections are credited with sway.)
  • Some bad news – it’s only $8 million.
  • Some detail – There are some changes to define unserved based on the FCC definition (25 Mbps for downloads and 3 Mbps for uploads) and economic growth a priority objective.


Now it’s time to look at the Senate. They have budgeted $17 million for the broadband fund and $250,000 (annual) for the Office of Broadband Development. (Just for comparison the Governor has said $30 million for the fund.) You can see more detail online.

They will go through a similar process as the House working out what proposal they want to bring to the table with the House. As I said last week, it’s good that the House has broadband in the budget, makes for easier negotiation that something that has been entirely removed. It would be nice to see the Senate start out higher than budget number. Letters to policymakers would help.

Some folks have been good enough to share their letters to policymakers with me. I will try to share them this week. (Feel free to send me any letter you’d like me to post.)


Click headline to access hot links--

more...
No comment yet.
Scooped by Chuck Sherwood, Senior Associate, TeleDimensions, Inc
Scoop.it!

Comcast Lowers X1 Upgrade Fee | Jeff Baumgartner | Multichannel.com

Comcast Lowers X1 Upgrade Fee | Jeff Baumgartner | Multichannel.com | Surfing the Broadband Bit Stream | Scoop.it

In another indication that Comcast is trying to accelerate the rollout of its IP-capable X1 platform, Comcast has lowered the “upgrade fee” for X1 in markets such as Philadelphia, New Jersey and Connecticut.

Though it's not clear that the policy is in place across Comcast's footprint yet, customers in those areas have mentioned on the DSL Reports message board that the upgrade fee, which comes into play when video subs on Comcast’s legacy video platform are moved over to X1, has been lowered to $19.99.

Depending on the market, the original one-time X1 upgrade fee ranged from $49.99 to $99, with Comcast noting then that the fees went toward the development and enhancement of X1 features. Customers on X1, a video service that features a cloud-based user interface and access to apps and other new elements such as in-home video streaming on PCs and tablets and acloud DVR, also require new boxes.

A Comcast customer who was alerted to the smaller upgrade fee for X1 noted on the DSL Reports message board that the price drop -- from $49.99 to $19.99 -- became effective on March 3, 2014, with Comcast citing “changes in business costs."


Click headline to read more and access hot links--

more...
No comment yet.
Scooped by Chuck Sherwood, Senior Associate, TeleDimensions, Inc
Scoop.it!

Netizen Report: What if Tech Companies Cave to the Kremlin’s Data Demands? | Global Voices Online

Netizen Report: What if Tech Companies Cave to the Kremlin’s Data Demands? | Global Voices Online | Surfing the Broadband Bit Stream | Scoop.it

Global Voices Advocacy’s Netizen Report offers an international snapshot of challenges, victories, and emerging trends in Internet rights around the world.

Russian state media outlet RBC reported last week that US companies including eBay and Google had begun storing Russian user data on servers located in Russian territory.

Google called the reports “inaccurate” but has said nothing more about the claims. Meanwhile, eBay Russia representative Vladimir Dolgov confirmed the reports and explained that the company has been meeting with Russian regulatory authorities in an effort to come into full compliance with data localization legislation passed last July. The law requires Internet companies to store Russian users’ data in Russia, presumably with the goal of sustaining stronger state control over Internet users and their data. It goes into effect on September 1, 2015.

The policy would mark a big shift for users, creating new vulnerabilities when it comes to personal data sent to and stored using services based outside of the country. For example, right now, if Russian authorities wish to access Google user data, they must present a court order to the United States Department of Justice, which will determine its legitimacy. Google’s Law Enforcement guidelines explain that if the order satisfies US law and Google’s policies, it will be fulfilled—but if not, the user's data will remain undisclosed. The same would be true for a host of other US companies that do business in Russia. But if outside companies should comply with the new policy, there would be a much lower threshold for Russian authorities to obtain user data.

The contradictory claims of Russian media remain unresolved however. Media studies scholar and Global Voices Russian editor Tanya Lokot commented on the matter in a recent post for Global Voices:


Click headline to read more and access hot links--

more...
No comment yet.
Scooped by Chuck Sherwood, Senior Associate, TeleDimensions, Inc
Scoop.it!

FCC votes to proceed with 3.5GHz free access scheme | TeleGeography.com

The US Federal Communications Commission (FCC) on Friday voted to proceed with offering commercial telecoms operators free access to additional wireless frequencies in the 3.5GHz-3.7GHz band by adopting rules for the ‘Citizens Broadband Radio Service’ enabling sharing spectrum currently used by military radars and other government organisations.


Specifically, the decision adds another 100MHz of spectrum in the 3550MHz-3700MHz band to the 50MHz in that range already available for commercial use.


Reuters reports that the spectrum is suitable for high data throughput over relatively short distances and may be used to boost the capacity of existing cellular networks, especially in densely populated locations or indoors, while the frequencies could also be utilised for machine-to-machine (M2M) wireless device connectivity.


Click headline to read more--

more...
No comment yet.
Scooped by Chuck Sherwood, Senior Associate, TeleDimensions, Inc
Scoop.it!

Oregon Changes State Tax Law to Lure Google Fiber | Karl Bode | DSLReports.com

Oregon Changes State Tax Law to Lure Google Fiber | Karl Bode | DSLReports.com | Surfing the Broadband Bit Stream | Scoop.it

Last month we noted how Oregon decided to change its tax law in order to lure new broadband competitors like Google Fiber to the state. However, wording of the law actually managed to have the opposite effect. One, the law only provided tax benefits to companies planning speeds of at least 1 Gbps, while Google offers speeds "up to" 1 Gbps. Google also disliked the odd way Oregon law calculated taxes based on the "intangible" value of a company's brand.

The Oregonian notes that the state has since passed a law changing all of that language to please Google. Of course the piece then sort of runs past the fact that after all of that work the only city likely to see Google Fiber in Oregon is Portland, which was already named a target market:


Click headline to read more and access hot links--

more...
No comment yet.
Scooped by Chuck Sherwood, Senior Associate, TeleDimensions, Inc
Scoop.it!

RSA to feature talk by hacker whose ‘funny’ tweet got him yanked from a plane | Tim Greene | NetworkWorld.com

RSA to feature talk by hacker whose ‘funny’ tweet got him yanked from a plane | Tim Greene | NetworkWorld.com | Surfing the Broadband Bit Stream | Scoop.it

Chris Roberts will have a lot to say next week at RSA Conference 2015 where he is scheduled to present a talk “Security Hopscotch” after his experience this week being hauled in by the FBI, apparently for tweeting about “playing with” the onboard communications systems of the plane he was traveling on.

Roberts, founder, CISO and CTO of One World Labs, a Colorado-based enterprise security assessment and consulting firm, was detained by the FBI after his flight landed in Syracuse, N.Y., and questioned for four hours.

The FBI confiscated his iPad Air, MacBook Pro, three hard drives, seven thumb drives, a Bluetooth USB adapter and a USB cable. All the devices were encrypted, according to a story posted by Forbes.

The incident could make fresh fodder for his RSA talk, which is described in part in the agenda as, “We have been made aware of the [electronic domains within our lives] in the transportation we use and the interactions with the world around us, but now we’re moving into the “Age Of Everything”. And we are vulnerable.”

That could include vulnerabilities he has discovered and discussed publicly before – he says it’s theoretically possible to bring a plane down by hacking its communications systems - as well as his experience yesterday with the FBI.


Click headline to read more--

more...
No comment yet.
Scooped by Chuck Sherwood, Senior Associate, TeleDimensions, Inc
Scoop.it!

MN: State cuts would hamper rural access to Internet | Kathleen Annette Letter to the Editor | StarTribune.com

The world is not backing away from broadband investment, so why would Minnesota?

Opportunity should not be limited by ZIP code. When it comes to broadband access, every community, every person, matters.

Alice Topness matters. At age 77, Alice spends her mornings connected to other seniors via a virtual exercise class in Winona.

Eddie matters. An aspiring coder at age 14, he shares his Ojibwe culture by creating mobile apps to inform and educate others on the Fond du Lac Reservation.

Kristin Fake matters. After overcoming her initial skepticism about how the Internet could help her Akeley home-staging business, Kristin is now connecting with new clients online, boosting her annual sales. She also has helped others in her community tap the power of broadband.

These are everyday examples of how rural Minnesotans — like all Minnesotans — depend on the Internet for their livelihoods and quality of life. But while broadband is now widely acknowledged to be the indispensable infrastructure of the 21st century, too many Minnesotans still lack access, and too many rural communities do not yet have broadband service that meets our state goals. More than ever before, rural communities need access to high-speed Internet in order to survive and thrive.

This is absolutely not the time for state leaders to back down from supporting DEED’s new Office of Broadband Development and its broadband grant fund. The signals from St. Paul recently have been very troubling.

At Blandin Foundation, we believe that broadband access — and the skills to use it — are fundamental to healthy, resilient communities. For 13 years, we have stood with Minnesota leaders as they rallied their communities to design and claim vibrant, broadband-enhanced futures. We have invested more than $4 million dollars of our own resources in support. We share the hope and confidence of the nearly 6,100 homes, 83 community institutions and hundreds of businesses statewide who will benefit from the $19.4 million in grant funding allocated by the Office of Broadband Development to ensure that no Minnesota community will be left behind.


Click headline to read more--

more...
No comment yet.
Scooped by Chuck Sherwood, Senior Associate, TeleDimensions, Inc
Scoop.it!

Be Everywhere, And Be There Fast | Michael Malone | Broadcasting & Cable

Be Everywhere, And Be There Fast | Michael Malone | Broadcasting & Cable | Surfing the Broadband Bit Stream | Scoop.it

Broadcasters from the largest and most prestigious station groups used the NAB’s annual Las Vegas wingding to tout the benefits of a truly mobile TV product—national and local news, and entertainment programming, for users on the go. They spoke of devising the “next generation” of local broadcasting—a transformational 24/7 service that would ensure local TV’s relevance for today, tomorrow and beyond.

All of that happened at the NAB Show—five years ago, when a dozen broadcast groups formed the Pearl Mobile DTV coalition. In subsequent years in Vegas, we heard about the Dyle mobile product and its vast potential.

Jump ahead to NAB 2015, where talk of TV Everywhere was everywhere, and a mention of Dyle was harder to come by than taxis outside the Encore. Live streaming was Topic A at most affiliates meetings in Vegas, yet the urgency to get it to the masses is not readily apparent.


Click headline to read more--

more...
No comment yet.
Scooped by Chuck Sherwood, Senior Associate, TeleDimensions, Inc
Scoop.it!

Feds lay down social media rules; enterprises should, too | Sharon Gaudin | ComputerWorld.com

Feds lay down social media rules; enterprises should, too | Sharon Gaudin | ComputerWorld.com | Surfing the Broadband Bit Stream | Scoop.it

The U.S. government is making it clear to federal employees what they can and cannot post or tweet about on their favorite social networks.

It's an idea that enterprises should note and use to put their own guidelines in place, according to industry analysts.

The U.S. Office of Government Ethics released the guidelines, dubbed Standards of Conduct and Social Media, last week. The rules cover not using social media during work time and on government property, as well as not using their official title, using social media to look for another job and not disclosing "non-public information" to further private interests.

"In light of the ever evolving nature of social media, the foregoing advice is not intended to be comprehensive," the Office of Government Ethics noted in the advisory. "[The office] expects to issue additional guidance in the future, addressing questions outside the scope of this Legal Advisory."

With social networks, like Facebook, Twitter, Instagram and Google+ taking up so much of people's time -- whether their own or work time -- it makes sense for the government to lay out specific rules for federal employees.

That same idea goes for enterprises.

"I would recommend that companies put their own policies in place," said Zeus Kerravala, an analyst with ZK Research. "The positive is that the government appears to understand the value of social media. They just want to ensure it's used for government use cases. I think it helps avoid situations that might be the cause of termination or possibly even bring a lawsuit."

What surprises Kerravala is the number of companies that have not laid out their own guidelines, leaving employees thinking there are no restrictions on what they can post or tweet about their bosses, the company or its products.


Click headline to read more and access hot links--

more...
No comment yet.
Scooped by Chuck Sherwood, Senior Associate, TeleDimensions, Inc
Scoop.it!

Obama’s Trade Agreements are a Gift to Corporations | Robert Kuttner | Common Dreams

Obama’s Trade Agreements are a Gift to Corporations | Robert Kuttner | Common Dreams | Surfing the Broadband Bit Stream | Scoop.it

On Thursday, Congressional legislation moved forward that would give President Obama authority to negotiate two contentious trade deals: the Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP) and the Transatlantic Trade and Investment Partnership (TTIP). But for the most part, these aren’t trade agreements at all. They’re a gift to corporations, here and in partner countries, that claim to be restrained by domestic regulations.

If these deals pass, the pharmaceutical industry could get new leverage to undermine regulations requiring the use of generic drugs. The tobacco industry has used similar “trade” provisions to attack cigarette package warnings.

A provision in both deals, known as Investor State Dispute Settlement, would allow corporations to do end runs around national governments by taking their claims to special tribunals, with none of the due process of normal law. This provision has attracted the most opposition. It’s such a stinker that one of the proposed member nations, Australia, got an exemption for its health and environmental policies.

To get so-called fast-track treatment for these deals, the administration needs special trade promotion authority from Congress. But Obama faces serious opposition in his own party, and he will need lots of Republican votes. He has to hope that Republicans are more eager to help their corporate allies than to embarrass this president by voting down one of his top priorities.

But the real intriguing question is why Obama invests so much political capital in promoting agreements like these. They do little for the American economy, and even less for its workers.


Click headline to read more--

more...
No comment yet.
Scooped by Chuck Sherwood, Senior Associate, TeleDimensions, Inc
Scoop.it!

Franken Calls For Title II-Like Assault On Comcast-TWC | John Eggerton | Multichannel

Franken Calls For Title II-Like Assault On Comcast-TWC | John Eggerton | Multichannel | Surfing the Broadband Bit Stream | Scoop.it

Sen. Al Franken (D-Minn.) has suggested the same activism that helped turn the FCC toward Title II reclassification of the Internet can be used to thwart the proposed Comcast-Time Warner Cable merger.

In a column for TechCrunch, Franken, arguably Congress' most vocal critic of the deal, was responding to a report by Bloomberg that DoJ officials were leaning against approving the deal. Bloomberg has had run-ins with Comcast over its last deal — with NBCU — and the news neighborhooding condition Bloomberg argued Comcast had not adhered to in its channel placement of Bloomberg TV in some markets.

Franken pointed to that issue in his column.

"[T]he FCC's decision on net neutrality has given me new hope that, with a loud enough movement — with enough people like you organizing online, calling your members of Congress, and writing to the FCC and DOJ — we might just be able to win another uphill battle."

Franken says twice in the piece that preventing the deal is an uphill battle.


Click headline to access hot links--

more...
No comment yet.
Scooped by Chuck Sherwood, Senior Associate, TeleDimensions, Inc
Scoop.it!

Comcast-TWC Meeting With DOJ | John Eggerton | Multichannel.com

Comcast-TWC Meeting With DOJ | John Eggerton | Multichannel.com | Surfing the Broadband Bit Stream | Scoop.it

In the wake of news that Comcast-TWC was meeting with the Department of Justice about their proposed deal this week, Bernstein Research analyst Paul De Sa said his team still thinks the deal is more likely to get done than not. De Sa suggests that clients take stories about the deal's progress with a grain or two of salt.

The Wall Street Journal reported first that DoJ staffers were leaning against the deal and that Comcast and Time Warner Cable were having a meeting this week about the deal and potentially talking conditions.

A Comcast source confirmed on background that there was a meeting this week, but said it was one in a series of meetings, which were scheduled before the latest stories suggested DOJ might be leaning away, and could not characterize what the agenda was.

At this stage of the deal vetting, it could well be a meeting talking about conditions and, if so, might suggest DoJ had not made up its mind quite yet.

After all the presentations and deposition and meetings, said the source, DoJ may well have narrowed its issues and potential concerns.

Neither the DoJ nor FCC are likely to be ready to weigh in until a D.C. Federal court weighs in on whether third parties will be allowed to see thousands of pages of program negotiation work. A politically divided FCC said yes, programmers said no and challenged that decision in court. The parties to the deal stayed out of it, not wanting anything to further delay a decision on the deal, which has an August break-up trigger.

De Sa warns against reading too much into the process stories.


Click headline to read more--

more...
No comment yet.
Scooped by Chuck Sherwood, Senior Associate, TeleDimensions, Inc
Scoop.it!

Working Together to Close the Rural Digital Divide | Chairman Tom Wheeler Blog | FCC.gov

Over the last few years, the FCC has made significant progress modernizing its universal service programs to make broadband available to all Americans. Importantly, the FCC in 2011 unanimously voted to transform the USF high-cost program for the large “price cap” carriers into the Connect America program, which supports rural broadband networks. This program is now moving into its second phase, in which $1.8 billion will soon be offered to expand broadband in price cap areas where deployment would not occur absent subsidies.

At the same time, however, another part of the universal service program that provides $2 billion annually in support for smaller rural carriers – called rate-of-return carriers – requires modernization. Senator Thune rightly recognizes this fact, and my colleagues and I recently made a commitment to him to take action on this issue by the end of this year.


Modernization would ensure that this program reflects the realities of today’s marketplace and supports the deployment of broadband networks throughout rural America. We started this process last April when the Commission unanimously adopted a Further Notice that set forth the principles to guide our efforts in modernizing this program.


Yesterday, we took another important step as my staff, Commissioner O’Rielly and his staff, Commissioner Clyburn’s staff, and staff from the Wireline Competition Bureau met with associations and others representing rate-of-return carriers to ask for their creative cooperation in getting this job done for rural consumers. I share Commissioner O’Rielly’s vision that we can get this done if we are prepared to roll up our sleeves and work together.

I look forward to working with the rate-of-return community and my colleagues here at the FCC to fulfill our commitment to Senator Thune. In short, we have to close the rural digital divide so that all Americans, regardless of where they live, can be equal participants in the social and economic life of the 21st century United States. We all share this goal, and modernizing this program is something everyone should be able to get behind.

more...
No comment yet.
Scooped by Chuck Sherwood, Senior Associate, TeleDimensions, Inc
Scoop.it!

AT&T Launches ‘GigaPower' in Chicago | Jeff Baumgartner | Multichannel.com

AT&T Launches ‘GigaPower' in Chicago | Jeff Baumgartner | Multichannel.com | Surfing the Broadband Bit Stream | Scoop.it

AT&T has launched its fiber-based, 1-Gig-capable “GigaPower” service in parts of Chicago, where the telco competes with Comcast and RCN Corp.

AT&T said it will initially offer GigaPower in parts of Elgin, Oswego, Plainfield, Skokie, Yorkville and “surrounding communities located throughout the metro area.” AT&T estimates that it has invested more than $3 billion on its wireless and wired networks in Illinois between 2012 through 2014.

Comcast has identified Atlanta and California as markets that will get its new FTTP-powered “Gigabit Pro,” which will deliver symmetrical 2 Gbps speeds on a targeted basis to residential customers. Comcast plans to make Gigabit Pro available to as many as 18 million homes this year, but has not yet said when it will offered in the Chicago market. Comcast also plans to offer gigabit speeds on its more broadly deployed HFC network using DOCSIS 3.1.

In Chicago, AT&T is selling stand-alone 1-Gig starting at $120 per month, or 100 Mbps starting at $90 per month, under a “Premier” tier that requires customers to participate in the telco’s Internet Preferences targeted Web advertising initiative. The 1-Gig/TV bundle starts at $150 per month, while a triple-play version starts at $180 per month. AT&T has also been applying a monthly data consumption policy to GigaPower that caps usage at 1-terabyte before charging $10 for each additional bucket of 50 Gigabytes, with a maximum monthly overage charge of $30.


Click headline to read more and access hot links--

more...
No comment yet.
Scooped by Chuck Sherwood, Senior Associate, TeleDimensions, Inc
Scoop.it!

S3 Group Lines Up ‘Warning Center’ Trials | Jeff Baumgartner | Multichannel.com

S3 Group Lines Up ‘Warning Center’ Trials | Jeff Baumgartner |  Multichannel.com | Surfing the Broadband Bit Stream | Scoop.it

S3 Group said 12 pay TV operators are testing StormTest Warning Center, a platform that enables them to monitor and test new apps and services after they go live.

On the advice of operators, S3 developed this new DevOps capability to help “bridge the gap” between the end of initial testing and development in the lab to the actual launch of a new offering, John Maguire, S3’s chief strategy officer, said.

S3 Group announced its Warning Center trial update Thursday in tandem with the company’s second annual StormTest North American User Group in Philadelphia.

The need for a live-network testing system has come about as operators become more software-focused and shift from a test-and-launch to a launch-and-test mentality, while also moving away from monolithic systems and services to a model that supports the introduction of more granular “micro-services” that enhance the overall system. The trick is supporting and testing those without impacting all of the other pieces of the platform.

“They [pay TV operators] needed to continue to roll that testing into the live network,” while backing it with a cloud-based system that can run the analytics, he said. “This is a 24/7 activity…We’ve got a product platform that is particularly suited for this transition to continuous delivery.”


Click headline to read more and access hot link--

more...
No comment yet.
Scooped by Chuck Sherwood, Senior Associate, TeleDimensions, Inc
Scoop.it!

Canada: Bell reaches one million IPTV customers | TeleGeography.com

Bell Canada Enterprises (BCE) has announced reaching a combined total of one million IPTV customers at its Bell Canada and Bell Aliant divisions.


Bell’s IPTV coverage has now reached 6.1 million homes, up from 5.1 million at the start of 2014, including Bell Canada’s ‘Fibe TV’ service in Ontario and Quebec, and Bell Aliant’s ‘FibreOP’ TV service across Atlantic Canada and parts of northern Ontario, whilst the group adds that it is increasingly signing up small and medium business customers to IPTV too.


Including its nationwide satellite TV service, Bell is the second-largest pay-TV provider in Canada with more than 2.65 million TV customers.

With services established in major cities across six provinces, Bell is now bringing IPTV to mid-sized and smaller communities with Peterborough (Ontario), Shawinigan (Quebec), Bouctouche (New Brunswick), Liverpool (Nova Scotia) and Bay Roberts (Newfoundland & Labrador) among the ‘many’ new locations to be added in 2015.

more...
No comment yet.
Scooped by Chuck Sherwood, Senior Associate, TeleDimensions, Inc
Scoop.it!

As Moore’s law turns 50, what does the future hold for the transistor? | Mark Walton | Ars Technica

As Moore’s law turns 50, what does the future hold for the transistor? | Mark Walton | Ars Technica | Surfing the Broadband Bit Stream | Scoop.it

"The future of integrated electronics is the future of electronics itself."

When Intel co-founder Gordon Moore began his now-famous 1965 paper (PDF) "Cramming More Components Onto Integrated Circuits" with his bold proclamation about the future of electronics, few would have believed it—especially given the cost of integrated circuits at the time. And yet, 50 years on, Moore's three-page paper has come to define the computing industry. Its most famous prediction, that the number of components on an integrated circuit would double every year (later revised down to two years a decade later) has become a self-fulfilling prophecy for the computing industry, a solid goal for the world's semiconductor manufacturers to reach for.

For the most part, it's a goal that's been ably reached. The rapid pace of technological advancement caused by Moore's law has enabled smartphones and tablets to usurp the desktop PC as the consumer's platform of choice, the likes of the PlayStation Vita to put the graphical horsepower of a PlayStation 2 (and sometimes 3) in the palm of your hand, and for AI like IBM's Watson to wipe the floor with some Jeopardy veterans. When Intel released its 8088 CPU back in 1979, the same CPU used in the original IBM PC, it came packed with 29,000 transistors built on a three-micrometer process to reach its 4.77 MHz clock speed. Today, a modern four-core Haswell processor packs in around 1.4 billion transistors built on a 22-nanometer process to reach 3GHz clock speeds.

This process of cramming more transistors onto increasingly smaller areas of silicon (now commonly referred to as Moore's law), not only exponentially increased computing power, but also—just as significantly—made them cheaper and more energy efficient. It's this combination that makes pulling a phone out of your pocket to wirelessly post pictures of your lunch to Twitter, or laugh at a particularly funny picture of someone's cat on Facebook, not only possible, but also cost-effective for the consumer, the device manufacturer, the social network, and everyone in-between.


Click headline to read more, access hot links and view pix gallery--

more...
No comment yet.
Scooped by Chuck Sherwood, Senior Associate, TeleDimensions, Inc
Scoop.it!

Google's Project Loon close to launching thousands of balloons | Martyn Williams | NetworkWorld.com

Google's Project Loon close to launching thousands of balloons | Martyn Williams | NetworkWorld.com | Surfing the Broadband Bit Stream | Scoop.it

Google says its Project Loon is close to being able to produce and launch thousands of balloons to provide Internet access from the sky.

Such a number would be required to provide reliable Internet access to users in remote areas that are currently unserved by terrestrial networks, said Mike Cassidy, the Google engineer in charge of the project, in a video posted Friday.

The ambitious project has been underway for a couple of years and involves beaming down LTE cellular signals to handsets on the ground from balloons thousands of feet in the air, well above the altitude that passenger jets fly.

“At first it would take us 3 or 4 days to tape together a balloon,” Cassidy says in the video. “Today, through our own manufacturing facility, the automated systems can get a balloon produced in just a few hours. We’re getting close to the point where we can roll out thousands of balloons.”

Trials are currently underway with Telstra in Australia, Telefonica in Latin America and with Vodafone in New Zealand, where the video appears to have been largely shot. Maps tracking the path of balloons over the country are seen at several points in the video.

At a European conference in March, a Google executive said the balloons were staying aloft for up to 6 months at a time.

At some point they do come down, and Cassidy says the company has developed a system to predict where they will land and to retrieve them.

It has also worked on a reliable launching system.

“In the beginning, it was all we could do to launch one balloon a day. Now with our automated crane system, we can launch dozens of balloons a day for every crane we have,” he said.

Google hasn’t provided any details about what a commercial roll-out of the technology might look like.


Click headline to read more--

more...
No comment yet.
Scooped by Chuck Sherwood, Senior Associate, TeleDimensions, Inc
Scoop.it!

Indoor Atlas: Smartphones can navigate inside buildings using magnetic fields | Mark Gibbs | NetworkWorld.com

Indoor Atlas: Smartphones can navigate inside buildings using magnetic fields | Mark Gibbs | NetworkWorld.com | Surfing the Broadband Bit Stream | Scoop.it

Navigating outdoors is easy with GPS and when augmented augmented by WiFi the the accuracy and availability of geolocation increase significantly … until you step inside a building.

Once you’re inside and there’s no GPS signal WiFi geolocation might give you a rough fix though usually you’re effectively “off the grid.” But knowing where you are inside a structure can be crucial in large factories or office buildings. It may also be crucial for others to be able to locate you.

If you want to build an app that’s capable for geolocation within a building you should take a look at Indoor Atlas, an SDK for iOS and Android, which uses magnetometer data from your smartphone and cloud-based mapping data to locate you to within 2 meters or less in real time.

The idea behind Indoor Atlas is that buildings have predictable magnetic fields caused by structural steel, wiring, machinery, ductwork, etc., and by recording the variations and filtering out magnetic noise, you can characterize an entire building and use that data to figure out where the device might be within that environment. WiFi and Bluetooth data can also be used to improve accuracy.


Click headline to read more--

more...
No comment yet.
Scooped by Chuck Sherwood, Senior Associate, TeleDimensions, Inc
Scoop.it!

The Roomba for Lawns Is Really Pissing Off Astronomers | Davey Alba | WIRED.com

The Roomba for Lawns Is Really Pissing Off Astronomers | Davey Alba | WIRED.com | Surfing the Broadband Bit Stream | Scoop.it

Who can hate a Roomba? Astronomers, that’s who.

The robotic vacuums we all know and love ensure we don’t have to clean our own homes ourselves to get them spotless. (God forbid.) Now, the Roomba’s maker, iRobot, wants to do for lawn care what it did for vacuuming. According to filings with the FCC spotted by IEEE Spectrum, iRobot is designing a robotic mower—news that should elate lazy people the world over.

But one group is really, really unhappy about this boon to the slothful: Astronomers. Some of them are so upset, in fact, that their objections might put the kibosh on the whole thing. How could this be? In a scenario that sounds straight out of the Golden Age of sci-fi, it all comes down to robots versus telescopes, and how they all communicate.

The saga started in February, when iRobot filed a waiver request with the FCC seeking approval to use a portion of the radio spectrum to help guide its robomower. The problem with grass-cutting bots, according to iRobot’s filing, is the only way to get them to work is to dig a trench along the perimeter of a lawn and install a wire that creates the electronic fence needed to ensure the automatons don’t wander beyond the property line.

As a less arduous solution, iRobot proposes using stakes, driven into the ground, to act as beacons. The beacons will talk to the lawnbot, helping it map the area and stay within the designated boundaries. A typical user with a typical lawn (a quarter to a third of an acre) might need between four and nine beacons.

But the system requires special permission from the FCC due to its restrictions on fixed outdoor infrastructure. In a nutshell, the FCC doesn’t want people creating ad hoc networks of transmitters, which could interfere with existing authorized services like cellular and GPS systems. In its filings, iRobot says it should be exempt because it doesn’t set out to establish a broad communications network—its lawnbot networks would be tightly contained.

Astronomers say that’s not good enough. The frequency band proposed for the lawnbot (6240-6740 MHz) is the very same one several enormous radio telescopes operate on. Astronomers want the FCC to protect their share of the radio spectrum so their telescopes continue observing methanol, which abounds in regions where celestial bodies are forming.


Click headline to read more and access hot links--

more...
No comment yet.
Scooped by Chuck Sherwood, Senior Associate, TeleDimensions, Inc
Scoop.it!

Cybersecurity, Data Science and Machine Learning: Is All Data Equal? | David Lopes Pegna | ComputerWorld.com

Cybersecurity, Data Science and Machine Learning: Is All Data Equal? | David Lopes Pegna | ComputerWorld.com | Surfing the Broadband Bit Stream | Scoop.it

In big-data discussions, the value of data sometimes refers to the predictive capability of a given data model and other times to the discovery of hidden insights that appear when rigorous analytical methods are applied to the data itself. From a cybersecurity point of view, I believe the value of data refers first to the "nature" of the data itself. Positive data, i.e. malicious network traffic data from malware and cyberattacks, have much more value than some other data science problems. To better understand this, let's start to discuss how a wealth of network traffic data can be used to build network security models through the use of machine learning techniques.

Machine learning, together with data science and big data, is gaining a lot of popularity due to its widespread use in many tech companies around the world. The applications of machine learning range from recommendation systems (e.g., Netflix, Amazon) to spam filtering by popular Web-based email providers to image and voice recognition and many other applications.

From a cybersecurity perspective, data models need to have predictive power to automatically distinguish between normal benign network traffic and abnormal, potentially malicious traffic that can be an indicator of an active cyberattack or malware infection. Machine learning can be used to build classifiers, as the goal of the models is to provide a binary response (e.g., good or bad) to the network traffic being analyzed. This is similar to the problem that spam filters need to address, since they are built to identify normal emails from ads, phishing, Trojan horses and other types of spam.


Click headline to read more and access hot links--

more...
No comment yet.
Scooped by Chuck Sherwood, Senior Associate, TeleDimensions, Inc
Scoop.it!

Google Moves To Offer Cell Service In Vermont | Taylor Dobbs | VPR.net

Google Moves To Offer Cell Service In Vermont | Taylor Dobbs | VPR.net | Surfing the Broadband Bit Stream | Scoop.it

Vermonters may soon have the option to get cell phone service through a new company, though it’s likely one they already use regularly.

Google received a certificate of public good from Vermont’s Public Service Board this week, which allows the company to operate a cellular network in the state. Since cellular carriers are federally regulated, the state’s regulatory body didn’t heavily scrutinize Google’s plans for Vermont, though it does require the company to share its standard user contract and terms of service with the state. It also requires Google to make its financial information available to regulators.

The California-based search giant is new to the cellular business, though Google has already been involved in cell phone software and hardware for years, notably with its Android operating system.

This move, however, shows Google is preparing to enter a new phase in its mobile efforts.

The company’s entry into the cell service market doesn’t necessarily signal new cellular infrastructure in Vermont, however. A Google senior vice president confirmed last month at the Mobile World Congress in Barcelona that the company is planning to be a cell service provider, but not one with its own cell towers.

“We don’t intend to be a network operator at scale,” Google VP Sundar Pichai said, according to the International Business Times. “Carrier partners are the ones who provide services and we are actually working with carrier partners. Our goal here is to drive a set of innovation which we think the eco-system will adopt.”

As opposed to building an entire nationwide cellular network, in other words, Google is planning to use existing infrastructure from established carriers to roll out new features. Those features reportedly include seamless integration of cellular and Wi-Fi data and automatic reconnection of dropped calls.


Click headline to read more and access hot links--

more...
No comment yet.