Announcement by Bithika Khargharia, Extreme Networks and US Ignite partnership: SDN Innovation Challenge. Remote medical is only one compelling use case, need low latency programmable networks that orchestrates and manages networks at various levels between Platform APIs and Network Infrastructure. Ideas welcome by Sept. 10, Pitch Oct. 20, Finalists announced Oct. 31, Implement starting Dec. 3, Demo and Award Ceremony next June 23.
Announcement by Gabriel Sidhom, Orange Silicon Valley: Orange GigaStudio: create a gigabit testbed in San Francisco for the startup and tech community to explore high bandwidth apps and foster innovation in immersive technology. July 31: Gigabit Spotlight, Fall 2014 Hackathons and other activities.
Alex Wilhelm, TechCrunch interviewer.
Alex: Your experience at the FCC? Gigi: exceeding my expectations. I’m a lawyer, having worked at Public Knowledge (advocacy). This is my first turn, is intense. Mergers, open Internet, broadcaster’s spectrum. I’m enjoying it.
Alex: Net Neutrality? Gigi: last time FCC tried to adopt new rules was 2010, recent work struck down by a court. National attention is because Internet has become central to their lives, they want fast, robust, and affordable Internet. Mergers create anxiety. I’ve talked to the protesters. Lots of anxiety over consolidation. It’s exciting that people care so deeply about what we do.
Alex: John Oliver’s video, calling him a dingo. Mismatch about public perception about Chairman Wheeler. Gigi: superficial look at Wheeler’s resume to say “he was a lobbiest.” He has a wider variety of experience on both sides. He’s a history buff, and knows about disruptive technologies. He’s really independent-minded, didn’t need this job. We share same values. He believes in being open. Want this to be a responsive office.
Alex: tension around the term “net neutrality?” Gigi: what should the scope of this term be? Should only apply to last mile. Comments from the public: we ask if it should include different things. What John Oliver video got wrong: intimated that there were rules in place that Chairman was taking away. We’re proposing rules. Lots of misinformation about process and substance of procedures. Open Internet rules apply to last mile, but should it extend to interconnection points? Traffic exchange points? Peering specifically. People don’t want prioritization of last mile. Title II of Telecom Act, vs Section 706 — this is where the debate is.
Alex: Is it possible for paid prioritization to coexist? Gigi: we don’t know yet. May be some that we like. Heart monitors, sign language data. My feeling is that those are not the kind of things people worry about; they worry about their services. Everything is up for grabs.
Differences of opinion about what our legal authority should be. There are lots of variations of gray. Big questions, comments for no paid prioritization in the commercial sense, lack of competition in last mile.
Alex: Google Fiber, community broadband? Gigi: Chairman believes that communities should decide for themselves. We can’t preempt states, but we have localities that want to build out, including to areas that are unserved by incumbents, who come to us. Community brodadband has been mischaracterized. Lafayette and Chattanooga already had untility companies so it wasn’t a big stretch. But to bring another provider in to build for a community is also often prohibited.
Alex: Challenges on the horizon? Gigi: more visits from localities interested in this. Universal Service Fund, access to services generally, digital divide.
Alex: Chairman proposed $1B to help get kids on the net. Wi-Fi, why now? Gigi: e–rate program started in 1996 to fund schools and libraries. 18 years, no changes. Same should be for e-rate: he wants it to go to broadband, not pagers and email. We visited a classroom where each student had a chromebook. It’s abundantly clear that Wi-Fi is needed. He wants to reform the system to make sure that e-rate funds go further: group funds for better buying, more effective spending. Also make system less burdensome to applicants–make applying online. With these ideas, we can save $1B in next few years. Pushback to raise cap on e-rate funds from $2.4B yearly, but we want to reform the system before putting more funds in. Chairman knows how to read a spreadsheet.
Alex: less comments on spectrum auction? Gigi: tell stories about dropped 911 calls that couldn’t go through because of lack of spectrum. Hasn’t been done in incentive auction process. We need to make sure broadcasters give their spectrum back–bigger carriers have figured out that scarcity is more valuable. Can’t make calls from many buildings.
Alex: Five years, still at FCC? Gigi: no idea.