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Arkansas Opportunity Online Broadband Summit gathers leaders to discuss future

On June 11, Arkansas library leaders, community partners, and statewide stakeholders gathered to attend the Arkansas Opportunity Online Broadband Summit. Participants heard from Governor Mike Beebe, Senator Mark Pryor and Arkansas Speaker of the House Robbie Wills as they explored ways to increase connectivity in Arkansas' libraries. Watch speeches from the summit: Read More »

Italy to invest 1.47 billion euros on national broadband

Italy announced a 1.47 billion-euro ($2.06 billion) investment in a national broadband plan that will help overcome the existing digital divide. Italy is currently listed as 22nd in the Organization for Economic Co-Operation and Development's broadband rankings, only slightly behind the United States' 15th ranking. Currently 13% of Italians have no access to the Internet or insufficient bandwidth, and the majority of those without broadband live in rural areas. The Italian Government's undersecretary for telecommunication, Paolo Romani, said the goal is to provide the entire population access to broadband technology, with a speed of between two and twenty megabits per second, by 2012. Read More »

U.S. Broadband Coalition to assess collaborative progress in July

This July, the U.S. Broadband Coalition will evaluate the development of a collaborative national broadband strategy. The coalition, of which Speed Matters is a part, is one of the largest and oldest organizations working to find a resolution for our national broadband inequality. The final report will be presented at a public meeting in Washington, D.C. this September. Read More »

Broadband tools overcome barriers for quality healthcare

We have discussed the impact that broadband access can have on healthcare for some time. With the help of our friends at App-rising.com, we are taking a deeper look into the specific ways expanded and improved broadband access can improve healthcare. App-rising lists ten applications that can improve the quality, speed, and communication of various medical procedures. Speed Matters highlights three of those ten applications. Read More »

U.S. Census Bureau: almost half of U.S. still doesn’t have broadband in the home

The U.S. Census Bureau recently released its latest data on Internet usage by home. Only 50.8 percent of American householders have a broadband Internet connection, which makes up 82 percent of Americans with Internet in the home. The remainder connect through dial-up. These findings are consistent with the results of the Pew Internet and American life surveys. The Census Bureau data also showed that significant age, education and racial gaps still prominently exist for broadband usage in the home. Read More »

Colorado bill will improve broadband mapping

The American Recovery and Reinvestment Act provides funds for states to map broadband infrastructure and create public-private partnerships to create demand for high-speed Internet. A number of states have recently passed legislation to position themselves for stimulus grant funds - Colorado is the latest example. The Colorado legislation mandates a comprehensive inventory and map of the state's broadband service areas. Read More »

Massachusetts and Connecticut prepare for broadband stimulus funds

Although the Broadband Technology Opportunities Program (BTOP) mandated in President Obama's stimulus package has only just completed initial planning stages, states in New England are eagerly planning for projects to make use of the federal dollars. In Massachusetts, over one hundred companies have expressed interest in applying for funds and Gov. Patrick appointed a director of the Massachusetts Broadband Institute. In Connecticut, state officials are aiming to enhance municipal and public safety networks. Read More »

Universal broadband promotes equity across the globe

Many countries across the world have realized long before we did that access to high speed Internet offers significant social and economic advantages, and puts those without it at a severe disadvantage. A South Korean company is using the Internet to deliver videos that helps students prepare for college entrance exams. In the United Kingdom, the government has committed to raising every household's Internet speed to over 2 Mbps by 2012. Read More »

Broadband expansion remains a top priority for Obama administration

Even after passing a stimulus package that invests billions in broadband, President Obama's administration reaffirmed its commitment to expanding high speed Internet access across America. Susan Crawford, Special Assistant to the President for Science, Technology and Innovation Policy recently declared that the United States is "definitely behind" our competitors in broadband adoption and deployment. She continued on to say, "the president cares deeply about broadband." Read More »

Dept. of Energy increases maximum award available for Smart Grid programs

U.S. Commerce Secretary Gary Locke and U.S. Energy Secretary Steven Chu announced a dramatic increase in federal funding for the development of a nationwide "smart" electric power grid. The Department of Energy increased the maximum award available under the Recovery Act's Smart Grid Investment Grant Program from $20 million to $200 million. For Smart Grid Demonstration Projects, maximum funds available were increased from $40 million to $100 million. The Department of Energy added that it would provide funding to a diversity of applications - from small projects to larger projects. Read More »

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