President kicks off U.S. Ignite broadband program

On June 14, President Obama signed an executive order “to make broadband construction along Federal roadways and properties up to 90 percent cheaper and more efficient.” At the same time, and with little fanfare, he also announced the initiation of a new public-private partnership called US Ignite.

US Ignite is an alliance of 25 cities, corporations and non-profits joined with 60 universities aiming vastly to increase the speed and carrying capacity of broadband. Or, as the White House said, “The US Ignite Partnership will create a new wave of services that take advantage of state-of-the-art, programmable broadband networks running up to 100 times faster than today’s Internet.”

US Ignite is not just aiming to increase speeds, but also to create specialized software-defined networks, and to develop applications “for advanced manufacturing, medical monitoring, emergency preparedness, and a host of other services.”

According to US Ignite, the project is linked with Global Environment for Network Innovations (GENI), a project for at-scale networking experimentation. US Ignite will support GENI’s “national testbed network, a platform initially connecting 14 campuses and 6 cities providing symmetrical speeds of at least 100 Mbps.”

We Can’t Wait: President Obama Signs Executive Order to Make Broadband Construction Faster and Cheaper (White House release, Jun. 13, 2012)

What is US Ignite? (website)

About GENI (website)