Friday, 25 January 2013

Breaking the Cell Phone Economic Suck ...

Look at the $s sucked out of local communities through the bundeled services provided by your merged entertainment/communications conduit. There must be a better way - a back2theFuture muni model of local services provided by local businesses (see the St. John Telephone Company). 

Google may show the way ....

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Google’s Private Cell Phone Network - A small cell network over the company’s HQ could herald new competition for established carriers.

ilings made with the U.S. Federal Communications Commission reveal that Google wants to start operating its own, very small cell phone network on its Mountain View campus. It’s the latest in a series of hints in recent years that Google is unsatisfied with the way that mobile networks control the mobile Internet.
Google tells the FCC it wants to install up to 50 mobile base stations in buildings on the Western edge of Google’s Mountain View campus, just a block or so away from its main Android building. Up to 200 mobile devices will be used on that “experimental” network and the area covered will be small, with indoor base stations reaching only up to 200 meters, and any outdoors ones reaching no further than a kilometer. The WSJ reports that the frequencies used belong to ClearWire, and aren’t compatible with any U.S. mobile device. They are in use in China, Brazil, and India, though.
Google might just be experimenting with devices for those parts of the world. Or it might be trying something more radical. The search and ad giant has been rumored to be exploring the idea of working with TV provider Dish to launch a wireless Internet service, has already got into the business of providing broadband (see “Google’s Internet Service Might Bring the U.S. Up to Speed”), and has a history of showing interest in ideas that would loosen the grip of cellular providers on mobile devices and what people can do with them.

Thursday, 24 January 2013

NY City Unveils Winner of Tiny-Apartment Competition


The entry, “My Micro NY,” packs a lot of space and light into less than 370 square feet.

Make it Small - Make it Livable - and if you must, stack them into cities:)



But if you live in the country - or have a big back yard 




Digital Rights - Sandy Pentland

You own your data, and you should only share it when you get something back in return, argues Sandy Pentland.


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Megacities: soulless sprawl or shining future? - Carl Björkman

Full Draft at Davos 2013


Urbanization - Geoffrey West Intro



Whether we like them or not, megacities will increasingly become the future of our planet, writes the World Economic Forum’s Carl Bj√∂rkman.
For the first time in history, more people live in cities than in rural areas. By 2050, the world’s cities will absorb 3 billion people, at which point 70% of the planet will live in urban areas. This represents the biggest shift in human civilization since humankind moved from a lifestyle of hunting and gathering to one of agriculture and settlement.
Yet, some cities are more than cities. Some are megacities. These giant sprawling urban conurbations pack people, communities and businesses across vast spaces. There are now over 20 megacities or metropolises (population centres with more than 10 million people) scattered around the world – from New York, which still captures our imagination with its skyscrapers crammed like dominos onto the finite Manhattan grid, to the bustling, colourful and crime-plagued Mexico City, and from the self-assured Beijing, the meticulously organized technological hive of Tokyo, the melting pot of Istanbul, the booming vibrant Seoul, to the grand old lady of cities, London.
More megacities are sprouting up, although few in the West may have heard of the new emerging metropolises that will play an increasingly dominant global role: Chengdu and Beihei on the north-eastern Chinese coast; Palembang in Indonesia; Ghaziabad, Surat and Faridabad in India; Chittagong in Bangladesh; and Toluca in Mexico. Their cumulative growth is set to usher in a new era of city living, changing the lives of those who move to them – and the face of the planet.


Davos - People are Cities

Davos Designing Smart Cities Session Summary


How can cities be designed for urban resilience and prosperity?
  • Understand the characteristics of smart cities
  • Rethink infrastructure for resilient dynamism
  • Share best practices and partnership models
Key Points
  • Resilience is the capacity of cities to prepare, respond and recover. 
  • Information technology does not make a city smarter or more resilient; rather, the solution lies in keeping the citizen at the centre and providing better, faster and cheaper services.  
  • Planning matters. 
  • Cities share global values, including the primacy of safety and security, and the importance of convenience.  

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