New Orleans - - Free Wireless Internet

The story can be found at cnn.com in the "technology" section.

New Orleans is starting the first free wireless internet network owned and run by a major city. They hope that the internet will boost the city's economy that has been slipping due to the recent hurricanes. The system started in the French Quarter today and will be available to the rest of the city hopefully within one year. Most of the equipment was donated by three major comapnies and was rallied for by Mayor Ray Nagin.

With all of the trgaedy that has occurred in the Gulf Coast, I am glad to see that technology can play a positive role in helping the people of New Orleans. It seems somewhat fitting that in the city where there was a major breakdown in communication (downfall of FEMA), there is going to be the nation's first free wireless internet for a major city.

The article does not mention how the internet will help to boost the economy, but some potential thoughts that I had were:
1. helping to find jobs for those unemployed
2. online shopping in New Orleans based businesses
3. information available concerning aid

My only concern with this was that a lot of the homes of people were completely destroyed. Do people even have computers? Do they have the funding to get them? I know things are slowing evolving in New Orleans and this news is great. We need to keep these people in our hearts and our prayers becuase there is still so much work to do.

This story intrigues me as to the role that the government played in getting this plan implemented. Throughout the course we have talked about the role that government has/should/can play in technology. So, I ask everyone to be on the lookout for any more articles concerning this recent announcement.

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Comments

Even fiscal conservatives are interested in this project. Wi-fi coverage looks like it will develope into a natural monopoly, which suggests that the government could efficiently intervene. The results of this experiment should be interesting. Will coverage be available cheaply or will bureaucracy hamper installation of the most efficient devices?

Even fiscal conservatives are interested in this project. Wi-fi coverage looks like it will develope into a natural monopoly, which suggests that the government could efficiently intervene. The results of this experiment should be interesting. Will coverage be available cheaply or will bureaucracy hamper installation of the most efficient devices?

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