Although access to affordable, fast broadband connections now determines economic, health, and educational opportunities and even public safety, North Carolina ranks dead last.
According to a June 2013 report issued by the FCC Wireline Competition Bureau, North Carolina ranks dead last – superseded even by Mississippi now- with only 17% of its households subscribing to the level of broadband the FCC deems necessary to engage in modern life.
First the industry asked the NC legislature to be deregulated, and they did, terminating local build-out requirements. Then they asked the legislature to stop municipalities from providing broadband, and so they did. And THIS IS WHAT WE GOT. Worst broadband in the country.
Update: June 24, 2013 – I added a link to the FCC pdf that is the source of the data in the table above. -BrianR
Update #2: Added “(in thousands)” to the Households column to more acuartly reflect FCC document.
A few weeks ago I saw a awesome video about Raleigh Denim. They’re a small company in Raleigh, NC who makes high quality jeans. Even though I haven’t tried on their product, yet, I’m sold. Maybe it was the story telling craft of the short documentary. But it’s also my love of products that are handmade and done in small batches.
Of course there are many other factors that sell you on something. But as a social entrepreneur I’m enthralled with a return to quality. Globalization and greed has destroyed the viable economics of making small batch products. North Carolina is one of the hardest hit States in the US in this regard. Our furniture and fiber arts are now a fraction of the state economy it once was. The effect is a loss of thousands of jobs. A serious problem for many many people.
My mother’s father Lester was a huge influence on me. Not just because of his kindness but because of his craftsmanship. He worked most of his adult life making furniture. While he was a manufacturer he had pride in craft.
Granddad helped me learn to love making things. It didn’t hurt he gave me all kinds of tools and showed me how to use them. I expect its because of him I love things like Raleigh Denim. Its fascinating how people, long after their death, can have profound effects on their children. I wonder what lasting effects I will have on my son?
Raleigh Denim isn’t the only example. Here’s a video about Oxxford Clothes, who claim to be, the last hand crafted suit tailor in the United States.
As I work to create new businesses with awesome products and services I will remember these companies. May all the things I sell be as special.
For a few decades now people have been calling Carrboro, NC the “Paris of the Piedmont“. I won’t go into its origins here. Some folks are pretty fed up with the phrase. We never like being pigeonholed it seems.
Here I offer a new phrase to replace the old. One a bit more obscure.
Christiania, also known as Freetown Christiania (Danish: Fristaden Christiania) is a self-proclaimed autonomous neighbourhood of about 850 residents, covering 34 hectares (85 acres) in the borough of Christianshavn in the Danish capital Copenhagen. From an official point of view, Christiania is regarded as a large commune, but its relation to the authorities has a unique status in being regulated by a special law, the Christiania Law of 1989 which transfers parts of the supervision of the area from the municipality of Copenhagen to the state.
One of the biggest reasons this blog has been dormant recently is my work on Carrboro Creative Coworking. You can help workers and entrepreneurs all over the Triangle by filling out this form. Help make more coworking spaces happen. Thanks!
In a report bashing a city-owned broadband utility, the conservative John Locke Foundation reveals a stunning level of ignorance about technology.
â€œWilsonâ€™s Fiber-Optic Boondoggle,â€ written by research director Michael Sanera and intern Katie Bethune, criticizes Wilson, N.C.â€™s $28 million investment in a fiber-optic network that makes high-speed Internet, cable TV and phone service to every resident and business in the city. The utility project, called Greenlight, is funded by bonds which under the cityâ€™s business plan are expected to be repaid through subscription revenue.
JLF leads with the critique that the technology â€œcould be obsolete before itâ€™s paid for.â€
â€œWiMax wireless Internet technology is rapidly leapfrogging fiber-optic cable technology, making it obsolete.â€
To anyone who actually follows Internet technology, that statement is a howler.
Fiber is far and away the most advanced technology available for connecting to the Internet. It offers effectively unlimited capacity and speed. WiMax is the next generation of wireless technology, reaching further and moving data faster than the WiFi most of us use now â€” but nowhere near as fast as fiber. And every wireless system has to connect up to some kind of backbone. WiMax works best if connected to a fiber network.
Yesterday I signed a lease for office space in downtown Carrboro! After almost two years of work its FINALLY starting to happen. But this is only the beginning. So much more to do before we open. So much to do to run the space.
Last night I shared with friends and supporters the news.
Brother and Sister Meat lovers! Dig this educational video by Rhet and Link!
Thanks to Paul Jones, Dave Menconi, and most likely countless others for sharing this meat meme. For the record I love North Carolina style BBQ and prefer hushpuppies and local beer with it. When that’s not around, dry county for example, I’ll take CheerWine.
I’ve just added a few posts to this blog about Green Business. I’m espcially interested in seeing it grow in Orange County, North Carolina. (That includes Chapel Hill and Carrboro.) So you’ll see on the top right of this blog a link to all the posts in the Green Business category. I hope this becomes a resource for others.
I define Green Business as socially and environmentally sustainable economic activity. Wikipedia defines Sustainable Business as:
A business is sustainable if it has adapted its practices for the use of renewable resources and holds itself accountable for the environmental and human rights impacts of its activities. This includes businesses that operate in a socially responsible manner and protect the environment.
I’m really just learning about this and trying to fit my business into this mold as much as I can.
Al Gore calls for “100 percent of our electricity from renewable energy and truly clean carbon-free sources within 10 years.” What are our local governments doing to take this challenge and make it a reality locally?