Blog Post

The National Science Foundation gets behind gigabit innovation with a new fund

Mozilla and the National Science Foundation have created a $300,000 Gigabit Community Fund, to help support people in Kansas City, Kan. and Chattanooga Tenn. create apps that will showcase novel uses for gigabit networks. The open source software developed under the program will take advantage of the advanced networks in both cities, and hopefully offer up some great use cases for people who ask, why does anyone need a gig. Last summer Mozilla provided some funding for 22 ideas that competed as part of a U.S. Ignite event to showcase gigabit apps. Check ’em out.

One Response to “The National Science Foundation gets behind gigabit innovation with a new fund”

  1. Michael Elling

    Sorry, but is this a joke? Who needed to ask in 1983 what we would do with long-distance voice at 10 cents a minute by 1993 or 10 cent digital wireless by 1996, or mostly free long-distance communications by 2000 (email, 800, bundled LD in flat rate cellphone plans, etc…). It behooves everyone involved with US Ignite to go back the 1980s-90s and understand what happened in the 3 big waves of digitization of voice, data, and wireless as we attempt to digitize the last mile. That’s what this is all about.

    In each wave price has declined by 99% (tracking marginal cost declines) and demand elasticity has exploded such that overall revenue growth in the sector was 6-25% for new entrants and incumbents combined. So the latter still did well, even as they fought the change. Demand elasticity comes about 3 ways: normal, shift from private back to public, and application elasticity. The latter is the most powerful and generative as it is 3rd party applications that few can predict ex ante.

    We don’t need US Ignite and farcical national BB plans (funny, the same author for both TA96 and NBBP2010). We need open access in the lower layers of the last mile; the same policies that promoted competition and digitization of the above 3 waves in the 1980s-90s. We also need to revisit settlement and interconnect policies during the IP Transition trials. Bill and keep is an unfortunate artifact of a “private protocol stack” with a hyper-competitive WAN transport model/market. B&K is not sustainable, does not promote new service creation, and does not clear supply and demand east-west or north-south in the informational stack.