Who recalls the hullabaloo of seven years ago when the City used a bunch of staff time and energy putting together an application for the Google Fiber for Communities city selection? At the time, I noted to several council members that this was way more involved than they understood and really not worth our effort. Fast forward to yesterday's Wall Street Journal with the front page headline: Google's Fiber Plans Stall. The article notes several things for the "I told you so file" including:
In Kansas City, homeowners complained about destroyed lawns and ruptured gas lines. "Wireless connections are 'cheaper than digging up your garden' to lay fiber" (their chairman's words)
In Nashville and Louisville, competing telecom firms are blocking the company from stringing fiber on their utility poles. (Same thing I told at least one council member back then--the technical term is Pole Attachment Rights and they are strict and enforceable).
"If you are in the telecommunications business for 150 years, there are no surprises here," said Jonathan Reichental, chief technology officer of the city of Palo Alto. "But if you're a software company getting into the business for the first time, this is a completely new world."
Google is shifting to a wireless last link possibly using street lamps as the placement option. B'game also spent considerable time and effort pushing back on the neighborhood wireless antenna plans of a much smaller company. I don't recall how that all played out, but in any case, a word to the wise is to "Stick to your knitting". Rule #6 from In Search of Excellence.