Bringing Fiber To The People

from the it's-all-about-ownership dept

Larry Lessig has an article in Wired Magazine talking about how the city of Burlington, Vermont is working to provide a fiber optic network around the city. He discusses the economics of natural monopolies and explains why having the government supply such a network is not based on socialism, but good old fashioned capitalism - where the benefit of having that network that anyone can use reaches everyone. Here's where it gets more interesting. Instead of regulating the network, Burlington is letting its users own the network - so that they end up keeping the prices low themselves. This is based on the work of economist Alan McAdams from Cornell. Which brings up a side point: professor McAdams was (and, in fact, still is) something of a mentor to me, and has filled my head with much of the economics that we base our ideas on here at Techdirt. He also deserves thanks (and, he never lets me forget this) for giving me class credit my final year of business school to create what would eventually become Techdirt. As such, he was the first person other than myself to see this site. He's been on a crusade lately to get these ideas about fiber optics out to the world, so it's great to see such a piece in Wired.
Hide this

Thank you for reading this Techdirt post. With so many things competing for everyone’s attention these days, we really appreciate you giving us your time. We work hard every day to put quality content out there for our community.

Techdirt is one of the few remaining truly independent media outlets. We do not have a giant corporation behind us, and we rely heavily on our community to support us, in an age when advertisers are increasingly uninterested in sponsoring small, independent sites — especially a site like ours that is unwilling to pull punches in its reporting and analysis.

While other websites have resorted to paywalls, registration requirements, and increasingly annoying/intrusive advertising, we have always kept Techdirt open and available to anyone. But in order to continue doing so, we need your support. We offer a variety of ways for our readers to support us, from direct donations to special subscriptions and cool merchandise — and every little bit helps. Thank you.

–The Techdirt Team

Reader Comments

Subscribe: RSS

View by: Time | Thread

  1. identicon
    Laz Sanchez, 4 Oct 2006 @ 12:55pm


    *** This is a copy of our initial "offer letter" we send out to community leaders through out the United States. ***



    Mission Statement

    To seek a cooperative arrangement from interested communities who desire to partner with Alarius-Net for the purpose of offering the local residents, the business community and the municipal government a 3rd choice for Broadband Internet Access, and the first municipal mesh wireless option that supports and provides a ubiquitous blanket of advanced wireless technologies that serve the entire community foot print.

    Primary Goals:
    To ensure that the communities contacted understand that we are not soliciting them to engage in a wireless endeavor costing the community millions of dollars to build an infrastructure and to then leave them to maintain it themselves. *This is always an option, but not one preferred by most rural or underserved communities with a small and tight budget.
    To ensure that the communities contacted understand that little to NO capital outlay on the part of the town to build or run the proposed service is required for most of our Co-Op options. We finance and build the infrastructure, and run the Co-Op ourselves in most Co-Op scenarios.
    To ensure that the new Co-Op introduces a less costly competitive broadband option for residents and businesses within the community’s foot print.
    To provide wholesale or “Free” use of infrastructure for all Town offices. Depending on what flavor of “Co-Op” is selected by the municipality.
    To provide a wholesale or a “Free” and dedicated network to support Public Safety needs. Depending on what flavor of “Co-Op” is selected by the municipality.

    Primary Objectives:
    Creation of a more competitive market for Internet Access which should drive better price points and value for the town.
    To introduce a reduction in the Town’s operating budget due to cost savings introduced by the cooperative arrangement with the town being a “cornerstone client”.
    To guarantee an increased efficiency of municipal operations with the introduction of “Wi-Fiber” gigabit+ licensed microwave technology.
    To introduce public safety technologies like video surveillance, tag recognition, automatic WiFi “utilities” meter reading, High Speed Mobility for law enforcement, healthcare “Mobility” for telemedicine, Homeland Security WiFi Mesh, video conferencing and streaming and many other technological advances.

    Desired Outcome:
    To successfully gain an audience with your community leaders to review a number of proposed “Co-Op” options.
    Ultimately, if any options qualify as a possible viable project, a movement to make up project plans is brought up at a subsequent town meeting.
    Co-Operative Project Fruition and a satisfied Community.

    Key Notes:
    Alarius-Net partners with Agility Solutions for lease financing and WiFi consultation. Bill McNamara of Agility Solutions can be contacted for reference or questions concerning our infrastructure financing, technical consultation, implementation questions, and any other municipal or WiFi deployment or ongoing operational questions that you may want answered by us or our experienced partners and consultants which are all subject matter experts on WISP. (Wireless Internet =Service Providers)

    Alarius-Net uses the finest carrier grade microwave hardware, towers and installation practices.
    Alarius-Net partners with over 80 carriers for bandwidth and dial-tone “wholesale”.
    Alarius-Net uses open source Linux servers and appliances for all email, file storage, SAN, DNS, IDS, VoIP IPBX, and other core applications.

    Laz Sanchez
    407-756-7109 cell

Add Your Comment

Have a Techdirt Account? Sign in now. Want one? Register here

Subscribe to the Techdirt Daily newsletter

Comment Options:

  • Use markdown. Use plain text.
  • Remember name/email/url (set a cookie)

Follow Techdirt
Special Affiliate Offer

Report this ad  |  Hide Techdirt ads
Essential Reading
Techdirt Deals
Report this ad  |  Hide Techdirt ads
Techdirt Insider Chat
Report this ad  |  Hide Techdirt ads
Recent Stories
Report this ad  |  Hide Techdirt ads

This site, like most other sites on the web, uses cookies. For more information, see our privacy policy. Got it

Email This

This feature is only available to registered users. Register or sign in to use it.