[qi:101] Folks applying online for some of the $4 billion in broadband stimulus funds available in the first round of grants have a little breathing room thanks to the government servers hitting a wall. It’s not clear what department is running the servers, but like any company offering a highly popular download can tell you, getting a ton of hits can slow those processor cycles considerably. Good thing the government is thinking about cloud computing.
The deadline, originally scheduled at 5 p.m. ET tomorrow, has been extended to Aug. 20 for folks trying to submit their applications electronically. Those sending in paper don’t get such a reprieve. From the notice on BroadbandUSA.gov:
Over the last several days, the online application system (Easygrants® System) has experienced service delays due to the volume of activity from potential applicants. The agencies have added additional servers to address these capacity issues. Nevertheless, in an effort to give applicants that have already started the electronic application submission process prior to the application closing deadline an opportunity to complete the submission of those applications, RUS and NTIA announce that an applicant with an application pending in the Easygrants® System as of 5 p.m. ET on August 14, 2009, will be given until 5 p.m. ET on August 20, 2009, to complete the electronic submission of its application.
You can look at this as an example of how ill-prepared the agencies are for the duty of dispensing $7.2 billion for broadband over an 18-month-period, or you can note how flexible they are being in the wake of (presumably) high demand for the money. Readers, I leave it up to you.