Tuesday, May 17, 2005

Digital Divide Report

Well, as some of you might know, not only did I attend the council meeting last night; I was one of the presenters of the digital divide report. I've spent an unhealthy amount of time trying to help get it right and last night was the culmination of a lot of work.

I have to say that it's a good report. What it isn't is a "plan." What the report attempts to do is put forth a set of principles that will make it easier for almost anyone—but particularly those who have to reach further—to grasp the full value of new technologies for themselves. Those principles are accompanied by some examples of how those principles might be realized – strategies for realizing the principles.

There are some principles that have become staples of community development programs--educational programs and computer rebuilding programs are two in this category. But there are also very innovative elements. An idea promoted there of allowing all citizens equal access to each other in terms of bandwidth is, to my knowledge, unique. And its implementation would have unique impacts, not only in terms of promoting a community of equals but also in terms of promoting a robust internal market for locally produced content.

There is a good bit more that could be said and no doubt I will find occasion to say at least some of it. But for tonight I simply leave you with the link. Take a look; it's dense but, at least in my judgment, worth the effort.

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