November 15, 2013 – Nevada has only two metropolitan areas (Las Vegas and Reno), 80 percent of its land owned by the federal government, and no fiber-optic wires that connect the two cities, said the head of the state’s non-profit broadband initiative.
A deeply rural demography and highly remote geography present some tough obstacles for Connect Nevada, the broadband mapping and planning initiative under the federal government’s broadband initiative.
On Monday, November 18, the group is hosting its third annual broadband summit, with the theme of this year’s event centered around educational uses of technology, said Lindsey Niedzielski, program manager for Connect Nevada.
The summit is being organized around the role of social media in educational settings, the use of tablet and interactive devices in classrooms — often dubbed “1:1 education” for the ideal ration of devices to students — and the broadband capacity needs of higher education.
Headlining the event will be Blair Levin, chief architect of the Federal Communication Commission’s National Broadband Plan in 2010, who has spearheaded the Gig.U initiative.
The Gig.U initiative aims to promote high-speed broadband service the communities around universities. It has seen its first successes through the partnerships between the University of Chicago, and the University of Washington, and Gigabit Squared. Gigabit Squared’s project on the south side of Chicago was also spurred on by funding from Illinois Gov. Pat Quinn’s Gigabit Community Challenge.
Also featured at the Connect Nevada program will be Anne Neville, director of the State Broadband Initiative program of the U.S. Department of Commerce’s National Telecommunications and Information Administration; and Dale Erquiaga, the Nevada state superintendent of public instruction.
Information and registration for the event, to be hosted at the University of Nevada in Reno, is available at http://www.connectnv.org/broadband-summit.