(“if we build it, what’s it good for?”).
I learned about Broadband early during the Clinton administration. I used to talk about it when no one knew what it was. I attended years of meetings and demonstrations as a part of the NIIAC.(National Information Infrastructure Advisory Council). I knew about it before I had access to it. These are notes based on research we did for the NIIAC and which are relevant even today. Most schools in the US have access to the Internet, but may not have broadband. The E-rate plan could be modernized and the cap raised to serve the needs of the American public. Now that the pope, Oprah and other naysayers are all on the Internet having accepted the challenge, let’s talk about Broadband.
broad·band [ bráwd bànd ]
1. covering many frequencies: using a wide range of electromagnetic frequencies
2. transferring data fast: able to transfer large amounts of data at high speed
You know whether or not you have broadband. It’s different than the Internet based on telephony. I kept dialup for a very long time based on the geography of travel, but I finally let it go as it was not cost effective and most of the sites I use require fat pipes.
But wait, there is more.and surely there are many more definitions of broadband. Just Bing it!!
What is Broadband?
http://www.fcc.gov/cgb/broadband.html (from the FCC website)
The term broadband commonly refers to high-speed Internet access. The FCC defines broadband service as data transmission speeds exceeding 200 kilobits per second (Kbps), or 200,000 bits per second, in at least one direction: downstream (from the Internet to the user’s computer) or upstream (from the user’s computer to the Internet).
HOW IS BROADBAND DIFFERENT FROM DIAL-UP SERVICE?
Broadband service provides higher speed of data transmission—Allows more content to be carried through the transmission “pipeline.”
Broadband provides access to the highest quality Internet services—streaming media, VoIP (Internet phone), gaming, and interactive services.
Many of these current and newly developing
services require the transfer of large amounts of data which may not be technically feasible with dial-up service.
Therefore, broadband service may be increasingly necessary to access the full range of services and opportunities that the Internet can offer.
Broadband is always on—Does not block phone lines and no need to reconnect to network after logging off.Less delay in transmission of content when using broadband.
WHY IS BROADBAND IMPORTANT?
Broadband can provide you with the technical capability to access a wide range of resources, services, and products that can enhance your life in a variety of ways.
These resources, services, and products include, but are not limited to:
Education, Culture, & Entertainment
Broadband can overcome geographical and financial barriers to provide access to a wide range of educational, cultural, and recreational opportunities and resources.
Telehealth & Telemedicine
Broadband can facilitate provision of medical care to unserved and underserved populations through remote diagnosis, treatment, monitoring, and consultations with specialists.
Broadband can promote economic development and revitalization through electronic commerce (e-commerce) by:Creating new jobs and attracting new industries.
Providing access to regional, national, and worldwide markets.
Electronic Government (E-Government)
Electronic government can help streamline people’s interaction with government agencies, and provide information about government policies, procedures, benefits, and programs.
Public Safety and Homeland Security
Broadband can help protect the public by facilitating and promoting public safety information and procedures, including, but not limited to:
Early warning/public alert systems and disaster preparation programs, remote security monitoring and real time security background checks. Backup systems for public safety communications networks.
Broadband Communications Services
Broadband provides access to new telecommunications technologies such as Voice Over Internet Protocol (VoIP) allowing voice comunication using the Internet.
Communications Services for People With Disabilities
Broadband permits users of Telecommunications Relay Services (TRS) to use
Video Relay Services (VRS) to communicate more easily, quickly, and
expressively with voice telephone users.
TYPES OF BROADBAND CONNECTIONS( on the FCC page these are active links for educational purposes.
Broadband includes several high-speed transmission technologies such as:
• Digital Subscriber Line (DSL)
• Cable Modem
• Broadband over Powerlines (BPL)
The broadband technology you choose will depend on a number of factors. These may include whether you are located in an urban or rural area, how broadband Internet access is packaged with other services (like voice telephone and home entertainment), price, and availability.
Congress has asked the FCC to create a National Broadband Plan
. Within that plan, Congress has called for an examination of the National Purposes of Broadband (“if we build it, what’s it good for?”).
National broadband plan: Congress mandated that the FCC develop and present to Congress a national broadband plan  by Feb. 2010. The commission currently is working through thousands of comments on the issue, and recently held a series of workshops to discuss various aspects of it..
There are Field Hearings and Forums throughout September, October, And November
The goal of the workshops will be to promote an open dialogue between the FCC and key constituents on matters important to the National Broadband Plan. Key constituents will include service providers, equipment providers, applications providers, community groups, and other groups that have a stake in the future of broadband. Workshops will consist of meetings held at the FCC. The public will have the opportunity to suggest meeting topics and questions for the workshops.
Deployment (3 Workshops)
Technology (2 Workshops)
Adoption (3 Workshops)
Individuals with Disabilities
Smart Grid, Broadband, and Climate Change
Public Safety and Homeland Security
Economic Growth, Job Creation, and Private
Applications and Devices
Best Practices/Big Ideas
Broadband Consumer Experience
State and Local Governments (New)
Role of Content (New)•
Civil Rights (New)•
Individuals with Disabilities II (New)
The comments of these speakers and presentations are available on line for your perusal.
Vivek Kundra, CIO of the United States
Norm Ornstein, American Enterprise Institute
Vint Cerf, Google
Craig Moffit, Sanford Bernstein
Milo Medin, M2Z
Yochai Benkler, Harvard Law School
Kareem Dale, Special Assistant to the President for Disability Policy
Margot Dorfman, US Women’s Chamber of Commerce
Daniel Phythyon, FEMA
Barry West, Clearwire
Rosaline Crawford, National Association for the Deaf
Nicol Turner-Lee, Joint Center for Political and Economic Studies
Jim Shelton, Department of Education
Emmanuel Hooper, Ph.D., Harvard University
Bill Gurley, Benchmark Capital
Ed Evans, Stelera Wireless
Yvette Herrera, Communications Workers of America
The FCC would like to solicit you, the public to contribute to this plan, in keeping with the ideas and values embodied with many existing Internet communities: flexibility, transparency, freedom and autonomy.
There are large areas without broadband in the United States. In many poor urban or rural and poor areas there is not much broadband delivery. I do outreach across the country in education, but I know to have a Powerpoint demonstration lesson or other media, because I cannot access many wonderful resources on line everywhere . There are wonderful resources on the web, but you need first the tool and then the method of transmission that will bring it to you quickly. The World Wide Wait. still exists… I have worked in places where I can show beautiful sites, but when people go home, they cannot access the sites. It is hard to be a part of the participatory culture if you don’t have adequate access.I have worked on Indian reservations where the only connection was a faint wireless signal in some places for my IPhone.
BROADBAND IN RURAL AREAS
Because of relatively low population density, topographical barriers, and greater geographical distances, broadband service may be more difficult to obtain in some rural areas. In attempting to address these challenges, some rural communities have found it helpful to develop a strategic plan for broadband deployment that includes creating a comprehensive business proposal to broadband providers. Such a plan, for example, could demonstrate to broadband providers that deployment is a sound business decision that would benefit both the providers and the community. This strategic planning process may include, but is not limited to, the following elements and strategies:
Educating the community about the potential benefits of broadband service.
Creating partnerships among community organizations and institutions that might
benefit from broadband deployment.
Systematic assessment and prioritization of the community’s needs for broadband
Aggregating (consolidating) demand within the community to make service profitable for broadband providers. Participants may include, but are not limited to, individual consumers, businesses, educational institutions, health care facilities, and government agencies.
Identifying an anchor tenant with adequate demand to spur infrastructure investment in broadband.
I had the priviledge of crisscrossing the United States in a demonstration of Broadband and the use of technology for several years on a White House Initiative entitled CyberEd. Ok, it was an eighteen wheeler with six Internet stations and a demonstration platform, and broadband. 1995-96
We demonstrated for communities the impact of new technologies and the use of broadband. Back then, we were the leaders in broadband in the world. Now there is a different story. I have worked in 22 countries in the world. Many of them have great broadband penetration for all. They have a national plan.
US 20th in broadband penetration, trails S. Korea, Estonia
New research finds that on a per-household basis, US broadband usage is 20th in the world. South Korea, a place where 95 percent of households have broadband connections, tops the list.
Have your say!!! In teacher education, in professional development, in pedagogical media
constructions, in the new and emerging use of Supercomputing, what are your needs? How are you thinking about broadband use in the future.
You can participate and give your ideas about how Broadband should be disseminated in the US.
This page is devoted to the questions of the national purposes for the education system in the US and includes education from Pre-Kindergarten through Graduate studies.
There are other pages for input on other services.
You should think about the future and needs that will fit new ways of using technology, in schools, homes and community centers. I attended the education workshop. The information from that workshop is online. Naturally most American citizens did not attend in person.
The FCC would like to solicit the public to contribute to this plan, in keeping with the ideas and values embodied with many existing Internet communities: flexibility, transparency, freedom and autonomy. I am not sure that the people who need broadband the most are a part of the idea factory. That’s here. http://usbroadband4ed.ideascale.com/akira/ideafactory.do?discussionID=6762
Bonnie Bracey Sutton