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MN: Bemidji State to build teleconference system with regional tribal colleges | Bemidji State University

MN: Bemidji State to build teleconference system with regional tribal colleges | Bemidji State University | Surfing the Broadband Bit Stream | Scoop.it
A Bemidji State University-led consortium of higher education institutions has won a $500,000 grant from the U. S. Department of Agriculture to expand distance learning and telemedicine opportunities for rural northern Minnesota residents.


The grant will allow schools in the BSU-led Aazhoogan (Bridge) Consortium, which includes Northwest Technical College, Leech Lake Tribal College, Red Lake Nation College and White Earth Tribal and Community College, to build a network of high-definition video connections linking the five institutions. The Native colleges currently have no existing or functioning interactive distance learning equipment. The network will give students on those campuses access to industry-driven certification training, bachelor’s degrees and specialized associate’s degrees not available at their home colleges.


Dr. Anton Treuer, executive director of Bemidji State’s American Indian Resource Center, says the grant is part of a broader strategic initiative by members of the consortium to increase collaboration across a broad spectrum, including course delivery, sharing of institutional data, recruiting and retention, and improving students’ ability to transfer from the tribal colleges to Bemidji State or Northwest Tech.


“This grant really is designed to build some of the physical capacity for delivering and exchanging information,” Treuer said. “We have had faculty exchanges in person, and now we will be able to do it through this new technological capability. We’re looking for lots of ways to grow our connection and work together. Ultimately, we’re working together to serve the same students.”


The grant is part of a funding package totaling nearly $16 million that provides support for President Obama’s ConnectED initiative. In June 2013, the president announced an effort to connect 99 percent of America’s students to broadband internet by 2018. Since 2009, the U.S. Department of Agriculture has provided support for more than 3,300 educational institutions receiving distance learning services to help rural children get an education that is as good as that of their peers in cities.


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Netflix's 4K Future: 14 New Shows And Films Announced | John Archer | Forbes.com

Netflix's 4K Future: 14 New Shows And Films Announced | John Archer | Forbes.com | Surfing the Broadband Bit Stream | Scoop.it

Netflix has revealed a launch schedule for its upcoming Originals content through to the end of 2016 – and people with 4K UHD TVs will be pleased to hear that a decent number of the new shows are going to be released in the higher-definition format.

It’s interesting to see, too, that Netflix isn’t going to just be focusing on TV shows for its upcoming Originals 4K content; there are a couple of films on the list too.


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Verizon Mobile Video Service Details Uncovered: To Be Called Go90 | Janko Roettgers | Variety.com

Verizon Mobile Video Service Details Uncovered: To Be Called Go90 | Janko Roettgers | Variety.com | Surfing the Broadband Bit Stream | Scoop.it

Verizon is getting ready to launch a new mobile video service called Go90 this summer, Variety has learned. Go90 promises users full episodes of TV shows from select networks as well as music videos and other shortform content, and the company will at least initially offer the service entirely free of charge.

Verizon has talked for some time about plans to launch an online video service, but the company has kept mum on crucial details, including brand and pricing. This week, it accidentally made a pre-launch staging website available online, revealing not only Go90’s name but also many key details about the service. The site was taken offline after the initial publication of this story.


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Both Michael Hayden And Michael Chertoff Surprise Everyone By Saying FBI Is Wrong To Try To Backdoor Encryption | Mike Masnick | Techdirt

Both Michael Hayden And Michael Chertoff Surprise Everyone By Saying FBI Is Wrong To Try To Backdoor Encryption | Mike Masnick | Techdirt | Surfing the Broadband Bit Stream | Scoop.it

Well, here's one we did not see coming at all. Both former Homeland Security boss Michael Chertoff and former NSA and CIA director Michael Hayden have said that they actually disagree with current FBI director Jim Comey about his continued demands to backdoor encryption.


Given everything we've seen in the past from both Chertoff and Hayden, it would have been a lot more expected to see them both toe the standard authoritarian surveillance state line and ask for more powers to spy on people.


At the Aspen Security Forum, however, both surprised people by going the other way. Marcey Wheeler was the first to highlight Chertoff's surprising take:


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Major Flaw In Android Phones Would Let Hackers In With Just A Text | Aarti Shahani | NPR.org

Major Flaw In Android Phones Would Let Hackers In With Just A Text | Aarti Shahani | NPR.org | Surfing the Broadband Bit Stream | Scoop.it

Android is the most popular mobile operating system on Earth: About 80 percent of smartphones run on it. And, according to mobile security experts at the firm Zimperium, there's a gaping hole in the software — one that would let hackers break into someone's phone and take over, just by knowing the phone's number.

In this attack, the target would not need to goof up — open an attachment or download a file that's corrupt. The malicious code would take over instantly, the moment you receive a text message.

"This happens even before the sound that you've received a message has even occurred," says Joshua Drake, security researcher with Zimperium and co-author of Android Hacker's Handbook. "That's what makes it so dangerous. [It] could be absolutely silent. You may not even see anything."

Here's how the attack would work:


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Don't Hold Your Breath For a Standalone ESPN Streaming Service | Karl Bode | DSL Reports

Don't Hold Your Breath For a Standalone ESPN Streaming Service | Karl Bode | DSL Reports | Surfing the Broadband Bit Stream | Scoop.it

With the channel having lost 3.2 million subscribers in the last year and "skinny" bundle Internet video options taking off -- ESPN is understandably nervous about its traditional TV cash cow (large forced channel bundles) going the way of the dodo.


But as we recently mentioned, ESPN contracts with traditional cable operators have the "worldwide leader in sports" in between a rock and a hard place. Violating those contracts would allow cable companies to unbundle ESPN from channel lineups should a standalone ESPN streaming service be launched.

If you recall, ESPN is suing Verizon after the telco started offering skinny TV bundles without ESPN. As such, turning around and offering a streaming service would give Verizon legal advantage and likely only accelerate ESPN's viewer losses.


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Report: Disney's Iger Says ESPN Could Go Direct to Consumer | Mike Farrell | Multichannel.com

Report: Disney's Iger Says ESPN Could Go Direct to Consumer | Mike Farrell | Multichannel.com | Surfing the Broadband Bit Stream | Scoop.it

Walt Disney Co. chairman and CEO Bob Iger told CNBC Monday that its flagship sports channel ESPN could eventually be sold direct to consumers like a growing number of channels, but that it wouldn’t happen in the next five years.

Iger told CNBC’s “Squawk Box” that ESPN could at some point bypass distributors like Home Box Office’s direct-to-consumer HBO Now offering, but said that ESPN would look for much deeper penetration into the marketplace.


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TIS 2015: Small Ops Should Think Customer | Mark Robichaux | Multichannel

TIS 2015: Small Ops Should Think Customer | Mark Robichaux | Multichannel | Surfing the Broadband Bit Stream | Scoop.it

A Harvard Business School professor suggested that cable operators may be thinking about new over-the-top competitors in the wrong way, and that they should focus on the customer, not the product.

Bharat N. Anand, a professor of business administration, spoke to a crowd of several hundred small and midsized cable operators at The Independent Show in Boston, on “Lessons from the Digital Transformation of Media.”

As cable operators look for ways to stem video subscriber losses, amid new competitors and consumer preferences, Anand suggested they dissect why customers were sampling OTT packages. And the answers may not be so obvious.


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FCC's Pai Calls AT&T-DirecTV Conditions 'Forced Tribute' | John Eggerton | Broadcasting & Cable

FCC's Pai Calls AT&T-DirecTV Conditions 'Forced Tribute' | John Eggerton | Broadcasting & Cable | Surfing the Broadband Bit Stream | Scoop.it

FCC Commissioner Ajit Pai outlined his partial dissent from the AT&T-DirecTV merger approval Monday with a lengthy statement. Pai approved the underlying merger, as did all the commissioners. But he dissented from the "17 pages of conditions" put on the deal.

Pai has long argued against "regulating by condition"-- applying conditions that serve a particular regulatory agenda but are not merger-specific--and suggested the FCC's demands on the deal were not supported and constituted a regulator "wish list" that had nothing to do with deal at hand. "These conditions are the forced tribute that the company must offer to mollify the Capitol," he said.

In fact, commissioner Pai said that the deal needed no conditions, and pointed to the Justice Department approval of the deal as not threatening competition. To be fair the Justice Department is only making an antitrust determination while the FCC looks at broader public interest obligations.


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The Gigabit Map | George Winslow | Broadcasting & Cable

The Gigabit Map | George Winslow | Broadcasting & Cable | Surfing the Broadband Bit Stream | Scoop.it

Google Fiber's subscriber counts may be small — MoffettNathanson estimated they were under 30,000 at the end of 2014. But the Mountain View search giant’s push to launch gigabit services and build fiber-to-the-home (FTTH) networks has certainly pushed a wide range of larger telcos and cable operators to boost average broadband speeds and increasingly roll-out 1gig Internet connections.

The extent of that influence can be seen in Next TV’s first ever Gigabit Map. In the following pages, the Gigabit Map project shows existing and upcoming deployments of 1-Gigabit-persecond services by major telcos and cable operators on a map of the U.S. and in listings broken down by company.

While the Gigabit Map highlights the rapid proliferation of these ultrahigh-speed services, it is important to stress that it both understates and overstates the footprint of 1 Gbps services.


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Don't count on getting your stolen idevice back with Apple's Find My iPhone | Mark Gibbs | NetworkWorld.com

Don't count on getting your stolen idevice back with Apple's Find My iPhone | Mark Gibbs | NetworkWorld.com | Surfing the Broadband Bit Stream | Scoop.it

Don’t panic. If one of your Apple devices goes missing, iCloud can help you figure out where it is. Just sign in at iCloud.com or use the Find My iPhone app to see your missing iPhone, iPad, iPod touch, or Mac on a map. And with the Lost Mode feature you don’t just see where your device is, you can track where it’s been. That way you can decide on your best course of action. You can immediately lock your device and send it a message with a contact number. Then whoever finds it can call you from the Lock screen without accessing the rest of the information on your device. - Apple

Ah, yes. “Find my iPhone” is, in theory, a great idea and, in practice, it works great helping locate your errant idevices. The problem is, even if you know where your idevice is, will you actually be able to get it back?


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US Census Bureau says breach didn't expose household data | Jeremy Kirk | NetworkWorld.com

US Census Bureau says breach didn't expose household data | Jeremy Kirk | NetworkWorld.com | Surfing the Broadband Bit Stream | Scoop.it

The U.S. Census Bureau said a data breach early last week did not expose survey data it collects on households and businesses.

The leak came from a database belonging to the Federal Audit Clearinghouse, which collects audit reports from government agencies and other organizations spending federal grants, wrote John H. Thompson, the Census Bureau’s director, on Friday.

The exposed information included the names of people who submitted information, addresses, phone numbers, user names and other data, he wrote.


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Toronto Cab Drivers Sue Uber For Interference With Their Super Profitable Business Model | Mike Masnick | Techdirt

Toronto Cab Drivers Sue Uber For Interference With Their Super Profitable Business Model | Mike Masnick | Techdirt | Surfing the Broadband Bit Stream | Scoop.it

I was last in Toronto a few years back, pre-Uber, and I remember clearly having a long conversation with the cabbie who drove me from the airport to my hotel, about just how ridiculously corrupt the taxicab business is in Toronto. He was telling me how supply was artificially limited, and even things like being allowed to pick up passengers at the airport required under-the-table kickbacks to certain officials. The driver was pissed off about the whole thing.


I'm reminded of that now, as the news comes out that some cabbies in Toronto are suing Uber itself, claiming illegal competition. This is interesting on a few levels. While we know that many cabbies are upset about the competition from Uber drivers, in most cases the direct attacks on Uber have come from the cities and politicians, rather than directly from the cabbies. Yes, there have been riots by cabbies in France, and protests other places, but actual lawsuits have mostly been limited. There are a few exception, such as when Chicago cabbies sued Uber with some nonsensical claims about false advertising.

Here the claims seem equally questionable:


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EARLY ACCESS Q&A: New Cisco CEO Chuck Robbins heads into “hyper-connected” mode | John Gallant | NetworkWorld.com

EARLY ACCESS Q&A: New Cisco CEO Chuck Robbins heads into “hyper-connected” mode | John Gallant | NetworkWorld.com | Surfing the Broadband Bit Stream | Scoop.it

When Cisco Systems employees head into work Monday they’ll encounter something they haven’t seen in two decades: A new boss. Chuck Robbins – formerly senior vice president of worldwide operations – takes over as CEO from John Chambers, one of the most visible and quotable figures in business.

In this early-access interview with John Gallant, chief content officer of IDG US Media, Robbins sets out his priorities for Cisco and his new management team, and talks about the opportunities and challenges facing the network giant.


Robbins dissects the competitive landscape and explains why so-called ‘white box’ data center gear and software-defined networks are not the threats to Cisco that some pundits contend.


He also describes his vision for the “hyper-connected architecture” that will speed customer digitization efforts and help IT capture the value in the Internet of Things. Finally, Robbins talks about life at Cisco under a leader not named John.


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Over-the-top video firms push back against FCC MVPD rule making | Thomas Mocarsky | Katy on the Hill

Over-the-top video firms push back against FCC MVPD rule making | Thomas Mocarsky | Katy on the Hill | Surfing the Broadband Bit Stream | Scoop.it

The nation’s biggest online video distributors would rather the Federal Communications Commission not do them any favors by regulating over the top services like cable.

Representatives from Microsoft, Amazon, and Apple, companies that haven’t been regulated by the FCC, have been increasing their face time at the FCC to keep the agency from advancing a proceeding that would regulate some OTT services like facilities-based multi-channel video distributors.

FCC chairman Tom Wheeler has promised to move on at the order this fall in what is likely to be another divisive proceeding at the agency.


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Don’t Delay the Fiber Future | David Young | Verizon Public Policy Blog

Don’t Delay the Fiber Future | David Young | Verizon Public Policy Blog | Surfing the Broadband Bit Stream | Scoop.it

There is no disputing that fiber is the best wireline broadband communications infrastructure. Fiber provides the fastest speeds, both up and down. Fiber is more resilient than copper. Fiber is better for the environment, using less power than copper-based technologies. Fiber even increases economic development and raises property values where it is deployed.


So it is no surprise that communities across the country are trying to attract fiber deployments in their areas and the President has created a Broadband Opportunity Council to identify ways of removing barriers to new broadband deployment.


And of course, FCC Chairman Wheeler has set 25 Mbps as the new benchmark for broadband, noting that there is little competition at those high speeds except in places where fiber has been deployed. (Verizon’s fiber network – which passes about 70% of the homes in our wireline footprint – provides competition to incumbent cable operators essentially everywhere that it has been deployed.)

That is why it is strange that some parties are asking the FCC to consider rules that, rather than encouraging the move to fiber, would divert investment dollars into the very legacy copper networks that they have already acknowledged cannot provide real competition for cable at the higher speeds. Make no mistake, rules that force companies to invest in copper networks, even where they are already deploying new fiber networks, would significantly delay the fiber future.


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All: In order for this Verizon Public Policy statement to have any credibility at all, then Verizon needs to immediately release its CapEx Plan to buildout the FTTP infrastructure in not just their FiOS franchised service area but thoughout their entire service area. A financial commitment from Verizon needs to back up these words!

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Security researchers hack Roku streaming media player | Ms. Smith | NetworkWorld.com

Security researchers hack Roku streaming media player | Ms. Smith | NetworkWorld.com | Surfing the Broadband Bit Stream | Scoop.it

If you are sick of your ever-increasing cable bill, have you considered becoming a cord cutter? If you spent a bundle on your TVs but they aren't smart TVs, you likely aren't planning to abandon them.


PCMag has a decent cord cutter's guide; for folks without a smart TV, TechHive's media streamer buyers' guide compared Amazon Fire TV, Apple TV, Google Chromecast, Nvidia Shield Android TV, and Roku 3 before recommending Roku 3 "as the best all-around option." TechHive explained:

Roku 3, for instance, has the most complete app selection, but like all other non-Apple devices it can't access iTunes purchases. Meanwhile, Apple TV is missing apps for Amazon Instant Video, Sling TV, and Plex. The Nvidia Shield Android TV covers for its ho-hum app selection through Google Cast support, which lets you launch content from a phone or tablet (marked GC on the chart), but it lacks support for Amazon Instant Video.

While pondering cutting the cord, you have to decide what you want to stream, like Showtime, HBO Now, CBS All Access, or if you are interested in small bundles like Sling TV offers along with a free Roku Streaming Stick.


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Cablevision Follows Comcast Down The Compulsory WiFi Hotspot Rabbit Hole | Tim Geigner | Techdirt

Cablevision Follows Comcast Down The Compulsory WiFi Hotspot Rabbit Hole | Tim Geigner | Techdirt | Surfing the Broadband Bit Stream | Scoop.it

Less than a year ago, Comcast was sued over its WiFi hotspot program, which essentially turned residential customers into hotspots for other Comcast customers or hotspot subscribers. Comcast used this to make a great deal of money off of its own residential customers.


The problem was that Comcast didn't see the need to have customers opt-in to this program and was perfectly happy using customers' electricity and, in some cases, bandwidth to power the service. That and the fact that the opt-out settings on the router controls were given to bouts of amnesia made the company look pretty crappy, but, hey, you know, Comcast.

Well, now it appears that Cablevision will find itself fighting in court over the exact same thing. Paul Jensen, a Cablevision customer, has sued the company on grounds that it violated the CFAA, gained unjust enrichment, and trespassed.


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DOT presses forward on National Address Database | Richard McKinney | CIO Council

DOT presses forward on National Address Database | Richard McKinney | CIO Council | Surfing the Broadband Bit Stream | Scoop.it

When you call 911 in an emergency, you expect responders to be able to find you. That the system might stumble trying to translate your address into the geospatial coordinates doesn’t occur to you for even a moment. Nor should it.

A complete, current, and accurate address list including street number, street name, city –as well as less commonly used information like Latitude/Longitude, GML point geometry, and spatial reference system– with associated metadata is essential for a variety of government and non-government functions, including emergency response, conducting the Census, income tax collection, delivering the mail, planning, routing, and many others.

But currently, many agencies and organizations either collect, purchase, or lease address information in an uncoordinated fashion. To date, there has been no national database of address points in the public domain, and that’s why, last April, DOT hosted the National Address Database Summit[external link].


A National Address Database (NAD) would provide accurate address location information that could be used to save lives, reduce costs, and improve services for public and private interests. And if it’s going to provide the foundation for the 21st century services we expect, like Next Generation 9-1-1, it needs attention from bright minds inside and outside government.


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TIS 2015: Small Ops Get Bleak Financial Forecast | Mark Robichaux | Multichannel

TIS 2015: Small Ops Get Bleak Financial Forecast | Mark Robichaux | Multichannel | Surfing the Broadband Bit Stream | Scoop.it

A favored telecommunications analysts painted a bearish, if not bleak, picture for a loyal following of small and medium cable operators, as he considered new Internet rules and price regulations.

MoffettNathanson principal and senior analyst Craig Moffett, a longtime cable bull, gave the crowd at The Independent Show in Boston a mixed forecast for the next decade.

He reminded the crowd of the painful market forces that have begun to buffet cable operators – and programmers -- of all sizes at this moment in time.

TV ratings are down, and programming costs are up. The biggest programmers are licensing more shows to OTT players.


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8K Looks Sharp, But Questions Remain | Dade Hayes | Broadcasting & Cable

8K Looks Sharp, But Questions Remain | Dade Hayes | Broadcasting & Cable | Surfing the Broadband Bit Stream | Scoop.it

NHK’S Super Hi-Vision system promises nothing less than the future of television. Having seen a couple of demos recently, I can say that the future looks pretty sharp. But as always, the devil will be in the details. The company has been conducting broadcast demos in the U.S. en route to full satellite broadcasts in 2018 and a 2020 Tokyo Olympics push.

One demo in June, during the Women’s World Cup, and another at Yankee Stadium on July 17 left me convinced of the aesthetic potential, but dubious of some practicalities.


First, the positives. The baseball game, a nighttime tilt between the Yanks and the Seattle Mariners, brought a giddy element of science fiction, as if the eye doctor had cranked up the dial to 11. The level of detail, with 8K being 16 times sharper than current HDTV, is extraordinary.


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4K, 8K and Wall Space | Leslie Ellis | Broadcasting & Cable

4K, 8K and Wall Space | Leslie Ellis | Broadcasting & Cable | Surfing the Broadband Bit Stream | Scoop.it

Ultra HD television took center stage at last week’s annual Tech It Out here, an all-day program put on by the Greater Philadelphia chapter of Women in Cable Telecommunications.

“It’s a very important technology,” Comcast chief technology officer Tony Werner, who opened the afternoon portion of the program, said. “Video fidelity is something we continually go after.”

Plus, noted Paulette Pantoja, CEO and founder of BluFocus, which does quality and performance testing on in-home electronics like Blu-ray Disc players, we’ll likely see Ultra HD titles on packaged media as soon as this Christmas season.

“That includes the player and the discs,” she said. (Up until now, one of the many hitches in the supply chain for Ultra HD was that it’s just too big for standard Blu-ray.)


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This Post Was Handwritten by a Neural Network | Matthew Braga | Motherboard

This Post Was Handwritten by a Neural Network | Matthew Braga | Motherboard | Surfing the Broadband Bit Stream | Scoop.it

Except this. This is the only part the neural network did not write. Blame our CMS.


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The Postal Service Is a Civic Institution, Not a Business | Joseph M. Adelman | The Atlantic

The Postal Service Is a Civic Institution, Not a Business | Joseph M. Adelman | The Atlantic | Surfing the Broadband Bit Stream | Scoop.it

This week the U.S. Senate is debating the 21st Century Postal Act of 2011, a proposal to reform the U.S. Postal Service and change the way the USPS does business in order to make it more profitable. In December, the Postal Service proposed to cut Saturday delivery, close half of its 500 processing centers around the country and dozens of local post offices, and lay off thousands of workers. The bill under consideration this week would delay closures and require studies to determine how best to proceed with any reductions in delivery. Although those are laudable goals, they will not solve the fundamental problem: Congress assumes that this vital government service will somehow become profitable.

In the midst of a long decline in the volume of mail, the demise of the Postal Service -- at least as a public institution with universal service throughout the United States -- often seems inevitable. Yet the critiques and suggestions offered as solutions for what ails the Postal Service see the problem only in terms of commercial and financial concerns. The circumstances of the Post Office's founding suggest a far broader and more important mission: guaranteeing the sanctity of civic participation and political debate.


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All: Keep in mind this article was published on April 25, 2012 but I don't really think either we or our Congress has understood the important civil role the USPS serves. We need to have an understanding that it played a similar role to the telecommunications infrastructure does today and it continues to have an important role today as the redundant backup to our new communications networks.

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Tesla, Faraday can be electrifying for Nevada‘s future | Brian Greenspun | Las Vegas Sun

Tesla, Faraday can be electrifying for Nevada‘s future | Brian Greenspun | Las Vegas Sun | Surfing the Broadband Bit Stream | Scoop.it

Tesla, Faraday. There is a pattern coming together, and it looks like Nevada could be the pot into which the future of electric travel and electric power is melded.

We all know about the incredible all-electric car that bears the name of pioneering electrical engineer Nikola Tesla. Nevadans also know about Tesla’s under-construction lithium battery plant near Reno that promises to change the way we think about batteries and how we drive our cars and power our homes and businesses with them.

Nevada, the land of mining, gaming and distribution centers that have powered our economy since the latter half of the 20th century, has been moving slowly but inexorably toward the new world economy — that which will light our way well into and through the 21st century.

Ever since UNLV, through Brookings Mountain West and the Lincy Institute, has been turning out “what if” scenarios — what if Nevada did this, how would it pan out, how many jobs would be created, how much better off everyone who lives here would be — it has become increasingly apparent that we can build our futures in the Silver State on more than just gaming and mining. High tech is the answer. That is why every state is pushing STEM education, because turning out science, technology, engineering and math experts not only helps our states grow but helps our country compete against countries around the world that, frankly, are doing a better job in the STEM education area than we are.


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CBC DEBATE: Is access to high speed internet a right? | Jim Brown's The 180 | CBC Radio

CBC DEBATE: Is access to high speed internet a right? | Jim Brown's The 180 | CBC Radio | Surfing the Broadband Bit Stream | Scoop.it

The CRTC is asking the public a question: what constitutes basic communications service in Canada?

And depending who's talking, the answer varies widely. Citizen activist groups want the definition to include universal and affordable access to high speed broadband. They point out that Canada's broadband is some of the most expensive in the world, and go so far as to declare accessible high speed broadband a "human right."


Others claim the whole human rights angle is a red herring that emotionally charges the issue and ignores the real question: how far should government go to regulate the internet?

This week on The 180, we debate both sides of the argument.


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