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Tuesday, November 09, 2010

Ubiquitous disappointment

The FCC has released details on the Education Deployed Ubiquitously 2011 (EDU2011) grant program. My biggest complaint: the word "ubiquitously" should have been used more, well, ubiquitously. I mean "Education Deployed Ubiquitously" may be the all-time best name for a federal program (or sub-program or whatever you want to call this), and they have acronymed it away. At least EDU2011 isn't a terrible acronym, although for those of us who can remember when there were only 6 top-level domains, edu means higher ed, not K-12.

What, you thought I was going to say something about the actual program? OK, here are the bullet points:
  • Application deadline: 12/17/10
  • Open only to applicants who had implemented (or had complete plans to implement) before 9/23/10
  • Applications must be 20 pages or less
  • There is no application form
  • File a 471 for the project, with "EDU2011" as the Applicant's Form Identifier

This seems like a lot of extra work for the Wireline Competition Bureau, and if the program is successful, it will mean more demand for Priority One funding. What really worries me is that if off-campus wireless Internet access for kids becomes eligible, we'll see a cottage industry created to meet that niche, and the 90% discount will be too close to free, and we'll have schools paying for a lot of underutilized Internet access.

Or maybe I'm just getting curmudgeonly in my old age.

1 comment:

  1. I forgot the most interesting tidbit (for me) in the announcement: the applications will go through the FCC's Electronic Comment Filing System (ECFS), which means we can all read every application.

    I can see a couple of hours wasted looking at those applications.