City of Seattle Community Technology E-Zine
|Vol. 9, No. 7||July, 2010|
The City of Seattle has just submitted a proposal to the National Telecommunications Infrastructure Administration (NTIA) for a next generation (4G) wireless broadband network for public safety. The Broadband Technology Opportunity Program (BTOP) was reopened for a limited time to 21 state and local governments that had obtained authority from the FCC to use spectrum in the 700 MHz band for broadband public safety infrastructure projects. This spectrum was freed up by the transition to digital television. The city’s proposal would also expand a fiber network to connect twenty-three community health clinics and eighteen Seattle Housing Authority low income, disabled and senior housing sites. The Department of Commerce NTIA will make their decisions on these grants by the end of September.cttab b'band
The Citizens’ Telecommunications and Technology Advisory Board (CTTAB) Broadband Committee addresses issues related to the pursuit of municipal broadband by the City of Seattle. Continuing on the work that has already been done over the years by CTTAB and DoIT staff, they are working on specific objectives to complete for the upcoming year and beyond. This work includes writing a clear and formal position, creating an FAQ that identifies and answers citizens’ questions regarding Broadband, and working on conducting outreach with the citizens of Seattle to create support for the Broadband initiative.
In addition to the monthly CTTAB meetings that happen on the second Tuesday of every month from 6:00 p.m.- to 8:00 p.m. in SMT, conference room 2750, CTTAB will hold monthly broadband committee meetings that are open to the public and they encourage anyone with an interest in Broadband to attend. If you would like more information about these meetings, please email Nicole Schultz or call (206) 386-1038.mayor debuts
Mayor McGinn’s administration is committed to a government that empowers the people it serves and in assisting them in all the different ways to get involved with their communities.
The Mayor’s office partnered with the City’s Public Information Officers, Neighborhood District Coordinators, Outreach Coordinators and various city staff to produce the City Public Engagement Calendar. The calendar launched in June and is helping the City work together to do productive and cohesive outreach for the people of Seattle.
The City Public Engagement Calendar shows you opportunities to engage with City representatives in your neighborhood. You can view it in map or list form, subscribe to an RSS feed, and add events to your personal calendar. If you have questions about the calendar, you can email or call the Mayor’s Office Community Engagement Coordinator, Sol Villarreal or call (206) 233-2656.rapid response
Revenue Models in the Changing Media
If you were unable to attend the event, then tune in to watch Rapid Response: Revenue Models in the Changing Media Landscape on the Seattle Channel, Cable 21 on July 8 at 4:00 p.m. or online anytime.opportunities
Opportunity: Youth Grantmaking Board Application
Do you know a high school student in Renton who is interested in helping youth? Does he/she want to make a difference and learn valuable philanthropy skills? If you know someone who fits this profile, please encourage them to consider applying to the Make the Dash Count Foundation's Youth Board of Directors!
Opportunity: Summer Youth Organizing Institute Get paid to participate in an eight-day social justice training camp for youth run by youth. Hosted by the Seattle Young People's Project (SYPP). Applications due July 24. Application link.map your speed
The State of Washington is encouraging community institutions, technology learning centers, businesses and residents to add their broadband speeds to the state database. You can see which providers service your area, and test your Internet speed.free internet hookups
Free cable broadband Internet service is available for organizations providing technology training to community members. The free service is offered within the Seattle city limits, based on the City's cable franchise agreements with Comcast and Broadstripe (Millennium). For more information and to download a short form to make application, go to our tech web. If you have questions, email Derrick Hall or call (206) 233-5061.
Don't miss Ask the Mayor on the Seattle Channel. It's a Q&A show featuring host C.R. Douglas and callers in local issues discussion with Mayor Mike McGinn. Next taping is July 14, 7:00 p.m. Email your questions in advance to email@example.com/unsub
To subscribe or unsubscribe to Brainstorm, please email us, and we'll add you to our email notification list, or subtract you per your request. If you have ideas for future stories, please let us know and we'll try to accommodate them. We encourage you to visit the City of Seattle's Community Tech pages, seattle.gov/tech.archives
Back issues of Brainstorm including techtips and linkage are now available in our online archives. Previous TechTips and Linkage are also available. Click to revisit all previous issues.
west seattle senior center upgrade
The Senior Center of West Seattle is a multi-purpose facility in which older people may come together to fulfill many of their social, physical, and intellectual needs. It can help expand their interests, tap their potential, and develop their talents. The center is also a bridge--a broad, two-way bridge--linking the loose-knit senior community to the community at large.
For many years, the Center has provided a computer lab to the public. The equipment, however, became so outdated that fewer and fewer residents came into the lab. The center applied to the Technology Matching Fund in 2009 to upgrade their eight-year-old computer bank to current technology standards.
With $12,900 in grant funds, volunteers installed new hardware, software, peripherals and wireless capability in the lab and promoted the new space. Over the course of the year, they provided computer training to 970 participants. Seniors who conquered the basics were able to move on to gain word processing, Internet searching, email, database, photography and card making skills. The program rapidly gained momentum, and the number of lab users increased threefold during the grant.
The Senior Center is now hoping to attract computer users of all ages, not just seniors. A few youth from a nearby school used the lab last year, and the Center hopes to serve more next year. Margie Williamson, a West Seattle grandmother wrote, "My granddaughter Kayla attends Hope Lutheran School. On many occasions she needs to do her homework on a computer. Our home computer crashed and we have not been able to purchase one. We appreciate that fact that Kayla was able to use the new computers at the Senior Center. Although the school has computers, the students are not allowed to use them after school."
For more information on technology training at Senior Center of West Seattle, contact Karen Sisson.fifty new computers presented to five labs
City of Seattle and InterConnection worked together to provide 50 computers to the following centers: Neighborhood House at Rainier Vista, Delridge RecTech Center, South Park Community Center, Yesler Community Center and Horn of Africa Services. InterConnection has been instrumental in providing computer training and education to low-income volunteers, low-cost computer euipment to people in need and a way for poeople and businesses to safely and charitably dispose of their used computer equipment.
On May 25, InterConnection was a recipient of the Innovative Recycler of the Year award based upon their unique program of refurbishing donated computer equipment to make technology available to underserved communities locally and around the world. For information on how your computer lab can acquire computers and to learn more about what InterConnection is doing locally and worldwide, visit InterConnection or contact Charles Brennick, Founder and Director.
400 attend state broadband summit
Washington State has posted the presentations from the People, Possibilities and Planning Broadband Summit, held June 15 at Microsoft. Governor Gregoire kicked off the gathering, speaking about economic development and broadband. Mark Berejka, senior policy advisor to Department of Commerce Secretary Locke, updated participants on the federal grants for broadband development and adoption, and the grant provided to Washington to map and plan for expanded broadband. Erik Garr, former general manager in charge of developing the National Broadband Plan at the FCC, spoke of the plan’s intent and plans for implementation. Angela Wu, the state broadband program director, walked through the new interactive state broadband map and access and adoption data pulled from FCC research for the broadband plan. Other presenters discussed the rural broadband program, wireless, and use of broadband for health. Participants were polled to get feedback on state broadband priorities. A series of regional meetings are also being planned. The presentations and a longer summary are available on the state site.
south park lives & yahoo pipes
The South Park Bridge, originally opened in 1931, closed on June 30, with a spirited wake for the bridge celebrating its vital role to the community and to transportation in the region. Until funding is obtained and the bridge replaced, there will be a huge challenge for the small businesses, community and region. The City of Seattle Office of Economic Development is aiding the businesses there and their strategy includes helping market the tasty Mexican restaurants and other businesses online. The City has a South Park Lives web site, which is using Yahoo Pipes to aggregate city South Park blog posts.
ready for windows 7 & office 2010?
Partner organization NPower Seattle recently posted this message from their ED, Alison Carl White, about NPower’s transition to Windows 7 and Office 2010:
"A car is not merely a faster horse. And email is not a faster fax. And online project management is not a bigger whiteboard. And Facebook is not an electronic rolodex. Play a new game, not the older game but faster." - Seth Godin
As the pace of change accelerates, it’s easy to think things are just moving faster, but really we are in the middle of a massive cultural shift. Our old ways of doing things won’t continue to work. It's time for us to reimagine how we solve our most pressing community issues. NPower Seattle is here to partner with you to develop powerful solutions to change our community.
Our office is abuzz about Windows 7 and Office 2010. We’re excited to be upgrading to Windows 7 and Office 2010 ourselves. Admittedly, upgrading to the new shiny tools isn’t always the right answer, but if we are committed to making a consistent investment in our technology, it prepares us to absorb new functionality in our tools. The challenge comes when we’ve neglected to make the investment and to prepare for the future.
We suggest the links on our page to resources to help you determine whether you are ready to upgrade to Office 2010, and, of course, our dedicated consultants are a great resource for you. And we’ll be offering training. Join us for a FREE Windows 7 Overview co-hosted with Microsoft Community Affairs on July 21, and coming this fall are Office 2010 trainings to help maximize the fantastic new features.
Here's to a new game.
world cup fans: beware scams and viruses
Vuvuzelas and hearing problems are not the only issues an excited football fan can encounter at this year’s Football World Cup in South Africa. One month before the opening match between South Africa and Mexico, the bad guys were already busy infecting popular related web sites in anticipation of increased traffic. Compared to the same period last year, Avast! identified a 200 percent increase in the number of infected web pages and successfully prevented 200,000 fans from visiting them and getting infected. The graph below illustrates the dramatic increase in the number of infected web sites. So, for the competition’s final stages, make sure you have not only good earplugs, but also good antivirus protection.
For more security tips, check out the City of Seattle Information Security home page.
If you are a starting lab or nonprofit, you may wonder if you can have some of the technology features of other labs. If would like to share your resources with others on a small network, the Windows operating system offers several options. A computer offering its file storage and print service resources does not have to be a super strong computer, however you would want to ensure that it can get enough good air. If you would like to have your own email domain such as firstname.lastname@example.org, it is better to use a hosting provider for this until you have a tech person with the appropriate equipment.
If you are a tech person and you are looking to grow beyond basic file sharing, I would recommend that you take a look at one of the Linux systems such as Ubuntu Linux if you can’t afford to get Microsoft’s products. Remember that you can also talk to Tech Soup for discounts.
Using windows XP*, Vista*, or 7* you can share a folder on your computer with other people on your network. Click here for a brief explanation on how to do it. [* You may need the professional version of the operating system to use these features.]
Click hereto learn how share your printer.
Agree or disagree with me? Drop me a note: Derrick Hall.
Department of Neighborhoods Small and Simple Projects Fund
Seattle Foundation Grantmaking Program - Important Changes
Walkscore.com creates a measure of how walkable your neighborhood is. They pull the community directory info to create the score from Google maps, so you could enhance your community’s score by saving places you know to Google maps if they’re not there already.
Neighborgoods is a site/service that has just gone national and lets neighbors find stuff to borrow or share items with others. Pretty cool, check it out.
A new Media Constructions of Global Warming media literacy curriculum kit is now available online from Project Look Sharp at Ithaca College. This is their first kit that teaches core science content as well as analyses of media messages about global warming. Thanks to YouthLearn for this announcement.