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Council to discuss ultra-fast broadband for city

Original post made on Jul 7, 2008

A 14-year examination of broadband Internet in Palo Alto — stretching from the pre-Google era to the Web 2.0 present — may soon end with ultra-high speed services citywide.

Read the full story here Web Link posted Monday, July 7, 2008, 2:17 PM

Comments (12)

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Posted by Resident
a resident of Another Palo Alto neighborhood
on Jul 7, 2008 at 3:02 pm

Once again, it is looking like a good idea is about to be handled in the Palo Alto Way.

This should be given a "green light" and not a wait and see attitude because we may lose this to some other city if we don't agree. We will never find 100% agreement on anything worthwhile in Palo Alto so there will be some dissent, but we have to prioritize improvements somewhere, somehow.

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Posted by bob
a resident of Barron Park
on Jul 7, 2008 at 4:59 pm

I understand that ATT is running a trial program for broadband in "North" Palo Alto. Does anyone know anything about this? What applications are being offered? Is there a monthly price established yet?

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Posted by qq
a resident of Barron Park
on Jul 7, 2008 at 5:27 pm

Is the ATT and Comcast mentioned in this article the same ones that send a copy of everyone's Internet traffic off to the NSA for analysis and filter the Internet?

If so, I pass...

Web Link

Web Link


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Posted by qq
a resident of Barron Park
on Jul 7, 2008 at 5:33 pm

Also just posted at Slashdot:

Web Link

Telecoms Suing Municipalities That Plan Broadband Access has up a review of ongoing and historical cases of telecoms suing municipalities that plan broadband networks. In many cases those same telecoms have spent years ignoring as potential customers the cities and towns now undertaking Net infrastructure projects, only to turn around and sue them. One lawyer who has defended many municipalities in this position says, "This is similar to electrification a century ago when small towns and rural areas were left behind, so they formed their own authorities." Bob Frankston has been writing for years about the financial model of artificial scarcity that underlies the telecoms business plans. This post gives some of the background to the telecoms' fear of abundance.

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Posted by qq
a resident of Barron Park
on Jul 7, 2008 at 11:03 pm

Also, on Democracy Now! today:

Web Link

AT&T Whistleblower Urges Against Immunity for Telecoms in Bush Spy Program

The Senate is expected to vote on a controversial measure to amend the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act tomorrow. The legislation would rewrite the nation’s surveillance laws and authorize the National Security Agency’s secret program of warrantless wiretapping. We speak with Mark Klein, a technician with AT&T for over twenty-two years. In 2006 Klein leaked internal AT&T documents that revealed the company had set up a secret room in its San Francisco office to give the National Security Agency access to its fiber optic internet cables.

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Posted by Walter E. Wallis
a resident of Midtown
on Jul 8, 2008 at 5:32 am

Again, this silly attitude that one has a right of invisibility of public actions. You want to keep a secret? Keep it home.

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Posted by Mike
a resident of College Terrace
on Jul 8, 2008 at 9:36 am

Walter Wallis "You want to keep a secret? Keep it home."

Is that what Stalin said?

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Posted by qq
a resident of Barron Park
on Jul 8, 2008 at 12:41 pm

Web Link

'I've Got Nothing to Hide' and Other Misunderstandings of Privacy

George Washington University Law School

In this short essay, written for a symposium in the San Diego Law Review, Professor Daniel Solove examines the nothing to hide argument. When asked about government surveillance and data mining, many people respond by declaring: "I've got nothing to hide." According to the nothing to hide argument, there is no threat to privacy unless the government uncovers unlawful activity, in which case a person has no legitimate justification to claim that it remain private. The nothing to hide argument and its variants are quite prevalent, and thus are worth addressing. In this essay, Solove critiques the nothing to hide argument and exposes its faulty underpinnings.

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Posted by bikes2work
a resident of Santa Rita (Los Altos)
on Jul 8, 2008 at 12:50 pm

Jews in 1930's Germany probably thought they had nothing to hide regarding their religion.

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Posted by No-City-Involvement
a resident of Greenmeadow
on Jul 8, 2008 at 3:27 pm

> I understand that ATT is running a trial program for
> broadband in "North" Palo Alto.

The VRAD boxes have been installed in South PA too. A linesman was by over a month ago "conditioning" lines .. and seemed to think that the service would be available soon .. but was non-committal about a date.

Here is a link to the ATT/U-Verse web-site, which has some details about their offerings:

Web Link

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Posted by qq
a resident of Barron Park
on Jul 8, 2008 at 4:07 pm

Wikipedia FTW

AT&T U-verse:

Web Link

Steven Colbert explains AT&T:

Web Link


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Posted by Len Weisberg
a resident of Community Center
on Jul 8, 2008 at 11:44 pm

I have been involved for many years in the effort to bring Fiber
to all of Palo Alto, and was lucky enough to be part of the
Fiber Trial. I just sent this letter to City Council, and urge
you to send one too.
See Web Link for info on how to do that.


Subject: Staff needs to make the FTTP project happen

City Council,

The Fiber to the Premise project that was presented to Council last
Monday, July 7, deserves your whole-hearted support. The technical
aspects not only meet the requirements set forth in the RFP, but they
match exactly the vision put forward from day one by the extremely
tech-savvy Palo Alto community. The financial aspects are nothing
short of miraculous, with astoundingly low risk bourne by the City.

But please understand what it means for your support to be
whole-hearted and effective. You, not staff, must set the direction
to make this vision a reality. Staff's job is to embrace that
direction and work with the Consortium to *make it happen*, not
to set up roadblocks, nor to conjure up far-fetched difficulties.
Please make that understanding explicit in your directives to staff
next Monday, July 14.

The result will be a historic and magnificent achievement for both
Council and Staff, with enourmous benefit to all Palo Altans.

-Len Weisberg
Palo Alto
re FTTP item, Council meeting of July 14

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