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Update on fiber-optic broadband connectivity to the Lenox Library

Sharon Hawkes, Executive Director of the Lenox Library, recently offered a status report on the Massachusetts Broadband 123 initiative.

MBI is building over 1,200 miles of fiber-optic cable to connect over 120 communities in western and north central Massachusetts.

When completed, the MassBroadband 123 network will expand high-speed Internet access to improve the lives of residents, close the digital divide and bring new economic opportunities to the region. MassBroadband 123 will:

– Connect over 1,200 public safety entities, community colleges, libraries, medical facilities, and town halls

– Build and maintain a network that will serve 333,500 households and 44,000 businesses over a geographic area covering over one-third of Massachusetts with more than one million residents

–  Provide the necessary broadband infrastructure to foster economic growth, improve health care and education, and strengthen public safety

The library, according to Ms. Hawkes, has two computer cable lines.

The fiber optic lines are now routed into the building and hooked up. Shortly after the fiber optic signal goes live (currently scheduled for December in Lenox), the line, which connects us to the C/W MARS library network, will be transferred to the fiber optic line.

“We hope that will make for fewer outages,” she said.

“Our second line will continue on the Time Warner cable line, for now, as we wait to see that the fiber optic line is working properly.

“We also hope that Internet service providers will become more competitive in their pricing.

“If they do, we will either dedicate our public line to fiber optic, or move our public line to the C/W MARS line, which will also be fiber optic,” Ms. Hawkes said

Fiber optic for the Lenox Library represents future potential. The future of the Internet is in creating and sharing content.

Want to SKYPE with loved ones while on vacation? Perhaps we can create a video station on a public computer.

Want to create a video? Perhaps we can have equipment on hand to create, upload, and share (streamline) our lectures and programs, and those created by our patrons.

Want to make downtown Lenox wireless? Set up a signal from the top of the cupola.

The challenge, as always, will be in paying for it, Ms. Hawkes noted.

Though the cable line is free, the Internet connection is not, and videos and other data uses will increase bandwidth and cost more.

As more and more websites and software are being developed, there will be the need for more bandwidth to operate.

The Lenox Library will be able to respond to the need by purchasing more bandwidth.

“As always, we will be searching for new and efficient ways to find and share information and ideas in our community,” Ms. Hawkes said.



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Posted by on September 19, 2013. Filed under Community News,News. You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0. You can leave a response or trackback to this entry
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