Case Studies

US Ignite Smart Gigabit Community

Case Study

Kansas City,
Kansas State, Missouri

When Google Fiber announced the selection of Kansas City as the site for its first fiber deployment, civic leaders from Kansas City, Kansas State and Missouri and the broader metropolitan region formed the Mayor’s Bi-state Innovation Team (MBIT) to develop a plan for the region to leverage the new network. The Team assembled a plan for the benefit of all the citizens of Kansas City.

The goal of the plan was to outline how the region could take advantage of the network to “spark economic development, advance opportunities and improve daily life in Kansas City.” The MBIT published a plan called the Google Fiber Playbook that offered a series of recommendations for the community in the following areas:

Outfit pilot classrooms for demonstration projects that fully integrate high-speed fiber technology into daily lessons, equipping students with the most innovative educational resources.

Telehealth Pilots:
Work with hospitals and clinics to provide the technology to perform diagnostic services to people at home and at work, potentially increasing the quality of care for some patients while simultaneously reducing ER wait times and hospital re-admissions.

Testbeds for entrepreneurs:
Build a technology incubator that invites entrepreneurs to gather in a fiber-rich environment and work together to enhance their current businesses and develop new apps.

Develop a robust IT workforce:
Work with and train Kansas City residents to become leading IT professionals throughout the US and the world.
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Kansas City Gigabit Apps &
Services Ecosystem

To date a number of gigabit apps projects have been initiated and are at various stages of development.

PlanIT Impact
Sector: Building
Project Milestone: Idea complete
Client groups, civic leaders, and citizens can be immersed in a planned design scenario through 3D navigation and interactive information. By better understanding the impacts of development, communities can make smarter decisions about how and where to invest, scenarios can be modeled and edited quickly in realtime, allowing for engagement with stakeholders on a new level.

Sector: Education
Project Milestone: In development
Gigabots have the capability to communicate with other Gigabots, whether they are local or remote. This provides students the opportunity to explore ideas in autonomy, swarm behaviour, and remote sensing not possible with unconnected devices using a live realtime virtual dashboard.

Sector: Health
Project Milestone: Deployed
Participants at different locations can see and collaborate with each other and manipulate any 2D or 3D graphics superimposed on the screen behind them. The application has wide areas of implementation including education, telemedicine, architectural-engineering, Government, art, business, military, and more.

Chattanooga, Tennessee

When Chattanooga’s municipal electric company, EPB, decided to pass every home and business in its 600 square mile service territory with fiber optics, the primary goal was to transform the community’s electric power system into a Smart Grid.

That same fiber optic network used to reduce the duration of power interruptions, allowed the utility to operate more efficiently, and make new options available for customers is also used to provide state-of-the-art telecommunications services. Whether it’s urban or rural, business or residence, every EPB Electric Power customer has access to TV, phone and one gigabit-per-second Internet speed as a standard offer.

While the lightning fast Internet capability can be directly credited with several business successes, the mere availability of such an asset is playing a role in the community’s bigger-than-ever thinking. A long-time town of entrepreneurs, Chattanooga is now home to a new generation of startups, and just as crucial, successful exits.

With gig speeds available to over 170,000 residents, efforts were heavily focused on driving economic change in a city which was heavily reliant on traditional manufacturing. New industry focus area are:
• smart grid
• additive manufacturing
• health care
• education/ training or “teachpreneurs”

The establishment of a ‘GigTank’ accelerator is now driving development of an entrepreneurial ecosystem and dozens of startups. Established businesses such as Amazon, Volkswagon, Access America and HomeServe USA are now choosing Chattanooga and an innovation district is being established. In the last five years since the establishment of Gigcity, over 4,000 new jobs have been created, with over half attributed to the Gig network.

Chattanooga Gigabit Apps

Digital Tele-Microscopy in Support of Teaching Biology
Sector: Education
Project Milestone: Prototype complete
Chattanooga STEM students gain access to researchers, research-grade microscope, 4K microscopic images, and knowledge from 1,800 miles away. Students are able to learn about and manipulate research-grade microscope in real time.

Analysis of Pacific microorganisms integrated into STEM biology curriculum. Low-latency gigabit networks enable three simultaneous streams: high-resolution images, video conferencing, and microscope manipulation. The Chattanooga GigTank team made software more user friendly and create biology curriculum. Chattanooga is going to build a hub and spoke model for the gigabit networked microscope. Expanding use case to other remote instruments for education.

Engage 3D
Sector: Education
Project Milestone: In development
Users engage with each other through multiple Microsoft Kinect video sensors, similar to a standard video conferencing application, however the major distinction will be that the video stream will be rendered in WebGL. This can later be extended to include advanced projection technologies such as holograms and 3D televisions. Also, it is rumored that a HD Kinect is in the works, which will provide users with much higher resolution images and higher fidelity depth data. This has tremendous implications for the fields of education and health. For example, physicians working remotely could get real-time 3D views of their patients. Educators could record instruction in 3D and allow students to play this data back interactively.


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