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What could be more topical? This is not a new role for libraries but it very much ties into the idea that they can not only provide shelter and programming but also internet access and charging stations

Further, if these libraries have deployed remote TVWS enabled hotspots, those same portable AP's might very well be quickly moved closer to areas of intense need to support recovery and various communications needs.

Experience says that helping people connect with family members is numero uno need. Then with others, mostly in same vicinity to give to get help. And then to access sources of aid like online FEMA forms.

TVWS loca area networks with backup power can operate even when the internet is unavailable, when power is down and the cell system out. But only if it's been planned and readied. That is a good idea!

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Spicy headline, but overall pretty good synopsis of the state of affairs. The plan to make at least 3 channels available in every market is gaining ever wider support. Embedded story links point to a letter the House Rural BBCaucus
and one from TechNet, the silicon valley CEO group.

This looks like a truly bi-partisan issue, so rare these days. Ever more conservative rural legislators are feeling constituent pressure to DO SOMETHING about their lousy service, if it's even that.

Here's a strong endorsement at conservative site, TownHall by the Center for Freedom and Prosperity.

TV WhiteSpace represents as easy "yes" for these folks. Lowest possible capital requirements. No troublesome pole attachment issues or other rights of way. No permissions at all. Other, of course, than the main one of finalizing the operating rules.

Looking like this election cycle will include broadband and access as an actual campaign issue. Finally! Every governor wannabe is promising broadband in every pot. TVWS is the only technology than makes that promise credible. If anyone sees any such stories, please post! Let the BB election watch begin!

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"Gravino (NAB) told TV Technology that his intent is 'to make love, not war with the tech companies.'” That's the big news here! And good news for a change!

And from Public Knolwdge's Feld, “It’s time for the FCC to... manage the public airwaves for the benefit of the public.” Could not agree more!

Though we'd add that the most obvious public benefit of utilizing the public airwaves is in the expanded / enhanced delivery of public services: public information, e-gov, education, health, community resilience, etc.

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A major campaign is now underway to get the FCC to come through on its promise to open at least some spectrum for TVWS use in every market (community). 40 something members of the House of Rep's have generated a supporting letter. Another letter from senators is taking shape. There is certainly value in having open public spectrum in every city, but even more so in rural areas already loaded with the stuff. The key factor here is that investments in shrinking the radios to chipset size and cost requires large market potential. So many(not all) of the fabricators have been sitting on the sidelines waiting for the F C C to a c t... zzz

This will in turn benefit rural areas by driving down the costs (the only costs really) of equipment. We'll look for links to the supporting letters and post here.

Interestingly, it's the broadcasters who are putting up the biggest fuss. Carriers, as we've pointed out in the past, don't seem particularly interested. It's open shared spectrum and that doesn't fit their biz models of license and resell. Not to mention fitting into whatever passes for their QOS standards.

Also, of course, is the incredible range of value of the same exact frequencies in different places. A single 6 Mhz channel in the UHF bands might sell for 100's of $millions in say NYC/LA. Yet in rural parts of NY/CA, you can't give it away. The carriers would still have to build towers to use it and those markets won't even justify that in the context of whatever spreadsheets they use to prioritize infrastructure investment.

All good, though. Since towers are not necessary to use TVWS. Usually better if a base station antennae is higher, but all of our library projects are mounting theirs on the tops of buildings. Good enough!

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Now we're starting to see some editorial responses to the MSFT announcement. The image here reminds of the recent Saudi photo with (tiny) hands on a lit globe. Story overall is positive and encourages anyone to take advantage of this powerful new inexpensive resource and move quickly in addressing rural divide. Not as be-all end-all but as catalyst for local responsibility to develop serious solutions as hybrid fiber / wireless systems by whatever business model works.

Still using "super wifi" reference that is both true and not depending on the particular standard used by the specific gear in question. Two standards, both using TVWS, the empty channels and in TV bands, but one based on old Wimax standard 802.22 and another as an actual WiFi variation of 802.11. "Super" is just confusing.

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Have to like his emphasis on comprehensive community (market) building and infrastructure needs. It is challenging to parse the difference between a new technology that can enable ISP's to reach new customers and one that can be used as an in-house network extender like a new remote library hotspot.

Nevertheless, that's what we've got here. Something anyone can use. Hopefully, communities will use as an opportunity to convene new discussions to revise the state of their local "telestructure" and range of services, existing and possible.

Plan or be planned!

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Big time commit from MSFT! Brad Smith nails it that it's time to get serious about rural BB. Enough diddling! Even if TVWS is not be all, end all, it can very well perform many valuable connectivity feats. Perhaps the biggest is to ignite local conversations in rural America as well as in state capitals and in DC, but most importantly in thousands of un/under served communities who must take responsibility for their own markets and infrastructure strategies. Plan or be planned. Or worse, continue to be ignored!

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A surprise(for me anyway) finding from latest Pew study. Hear many millennials congregate in co-working spaces. Yet, on reading it seems to ring true. As a US based study, wonder how applicable elsewhere?

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Check it out! Formerly known as the Global Connect Initiative, this IEEE hosted gathering in DC in April featured Vint Cerf as moderator/interrogator in chief for all the working groups. Of which, GLN is Program Chair for the Public Access group: "dedicated to the proposition that any realistic strategy to meaningfully connect and enable the next billion(s) must have a PA component. Connecting libraries and other PA facilities is the most economical and equitable way to reach the greatest number of people, with potential to add value as training and support for digital literacy.”

Is "access" a human right? Possibly. Is it an essential service? Most definitely!
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