Thursday, March 31, 2011

Intelligent Use of Broadband

Wireless devices are connected via satellites; wired devices by fiber optics. When communication companies and governments made an all out effort to lay broadband underground and under the oceans, it opened the door for emerging economies, remote communities, and post industrial strong arms “to get busy.” The Intelligent Community Forum (ICF) was birthed 2004 to encourage broadband’s best use for the global community.

ICF spread its message of intelligent use of high capacity voice and data transfer (broadband) far and wide. ICF seeks to push past call center success to deployment that helps the average person and nation to do more and be more. Each year it has a call for nominations, identifies the Smart21, chooses The Top Seven Intelligent Communities from the Smart21, presents the Intelligent Community Visionary of the Year award, and has Building the Broadband Economy Summit wherein the Founders and Intelligent Community of the Year Awards ceremony occur.

“Due to the initial promotion of ICF globally, visibility is established such that new nominations come to ICF rather than ICF making an extensive call for nominations,” states ICF co-founder Louis Zacharilla. Louis Zacharilla’s prior career in advertising has some bearing on this situation.
ICF got media exposure “on China Central TV, CBC/Radio-Canada, and BBC.” ICF staff travel extensively to meet on-the-ground with technologists, governments, businesses, and parastatal organizations to learn how they use or plan to use the broadband to facilitate commercial transactions, effect civil society, and educational advancement. Broadband supports the many local government web portals—example, www.nyc.gov.

Zacharilla cautions, “The awards aren’t a competition, rather recognition to encourage broadband use for educational, governmental, and social development.”
Award categories are “Founders Award, for innovation in technology and wired buildings; Visionary of the Year, selected by ICF; and Intelligent Community, whose selection is done by an external organization.
“ICF’s website receives 900,000 unique visitors [annually]. Its exposure increases from those persons and communities that get nominated for Smart21 Communities, Top Seven Intelligent Communities, and the award winners,” explains Zacharilla. “Those who get them, do their PR for their local media.”

Knowing no person can handle promotion for an organization as far flung as this one, Zacharilla points to Social Media Director and Community Management Tamara Bond. Interns and researchers arrange global media and meeting opportunities.
ICF’s Building the Broadband Economy Summit which includes the Top 7 Community Summit will be held June 1-3, 2011 at Polytechnic Institute of New York University Dibner Auditorium and ICF awards will be at Steiner Studios, June 3. Both are in Brooklyn. The Network Journal subscribers who want to attend the usually closed Top 7 Summit may do so by contacting ICF and stating you read about it in TNJ.

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