A coalition of 29 American universities is throwing its weight behind a plan to build ultra-high-speed computer networks — with Internet service several hundred times faster than what is now commercially available — in the communities surrounding the participating colleges.
The project, which is named Gig.U and will be announced on Wednesday, is meant to draw high-tech startups in fields like health care, energy and telecommunications to the areas near the universities....
The University Community Next Generation Innovation Project, or Gig.U, is a broad-based group of over 30 leading research universities from across the United States. Drawing on America's rich history of community-led innovation in research and entrepreneurship, Gig.U seeks to accelerate the deployment of ultra high-speed networks to leading U.S. universities and their surrounding communities. Improvements to these networks drive economic growth and stimulate a new generationof innovations addressing critical needs, such as health care and education.
Our mission is simple: accelerate the deployment of world-leading, next generation networks in the United States in a way that provides an opportunity to lead in the next generation of ultra high speed network services and applications.
Within 60 days of launch, Gig.U will issue a Request for Information (RFI) to gather comments, conceptual frameworks, and indications of interest to identify private parties interested in providing next generation networks and services in their communities. Following the release of the RFI, Gig.U will host a public workshop for interested private sector entities and others to ask questions and discuss the RFI with Gig.U members. Upon request, Gig.U may also host additional closed-door sessions to allow individual private sector entities to ask questions and engage in an open-dialogue with Gig.U members.
By collaborating on this effort, Gig.U members will lower costs for themselves and for the private sector entities interested in working with the members while enhancing the benefits gained from shared information and experience.
At the conclusion of the RFI process members or consortia of members may seek to rely on information collected through the RFI process or reports generated on the basis of information provided to Gig.U to move forward with negotiations or procurement efforts to deploy next generation networks. All such efforts will be governed by the standard negotiation and procurement practices of the members or member consortia involved.
"Our mission is simple: accelerate the deployment of world-leading, next generation networks in the United States in a way that provides an opportunity to lead in the next generation of ultra high speed network services and applications."