Hello Nevada County! My name is Nick Katzman. I’m the new Neighborhood Coordinator for Spiral, and you’ll be hearing from me often here on our blog.
I recently had the pleasure of joining the Spiral management team on a trip to Kansas City where we attended the Gigabit City Summit. It was a 3 day long adventure of exploring the city and learning about current and emerging Gigabit Cities. We also had the opportunity to network with innovative teams like ours that are in various stages of building and implementing fiber optic networks all across the country.
Heavy fog and rain covered the city as people from across the country gathered in the Student Union at the University of Missouri, Kansas City. The top floor of that impressive building was abuzz with introductions as folks exchanged business cards and received conference itineraries.
Welcoming us to the conference were past and current Mayors of Kansas City, Missouri and Kansas City, Kansas who told us of the dramatic changes their communities have experienced since becoming the first Google fiber cities. The economic development of Kansas City was clear to us as we toured the bustling city streets. Tech startups and incubator projects established themselves among the commercial and residential districts; utilizing the tremendous bandwidth of Google Fiber. By the way, if you ever find yourself in Kansas City, you need to eat at Q39. It was hands-down the best barbecue I’ve ever tasted.
At the conference, I bounced between lecture halls and conference rooms searching for strategies on different ways to utilize the effectiveness of a fiber network on a community level. The Spiral team and I listened to a variety of city officials, engineers, lawyers, and project managers describing what it takes to successfully supervise a large scale fiber optic buildout. This information was important to the management team, but I was more intrigued by the presentations regarding how customers could use a gigabit connection and what tools could be made available to them.
One of the highlights for me was hearing from Alan Fitzpatrick, the co-founder of an organization that constructed a fiber optic network in Charlotte, North Carolina called Charlotte Hearts Gigabit. His company hosts regular classes on using electronic devices effectively and how to install and use important apps and software. They even hold hackathons on a regular basis during which computer programmers collaborate intensively on creating new software over a brief period of time.
I would love your feedback on whether Spiral should implement these kinds of classes and events locally. I encourage you to respond to this post and let me know if you think they would be worthwhile in Nevada County and if you would be interested in attending.
I picked up some great ideas from this informative conference which I plan to implement as we move towards initiating the first stages of our network build. If you have not already done so, please register at www.spiral.com/fiber to discover where your residence is located in relation to our coverage maps and also to receive email updates regarding our progress. As always, thank you for your support!