Let’s Change The World


Google is planning to launch an experiment that we hope will make Internet access better and faster for everyone. We plan to test ultra-high speed broadband networks in one or more trial locations across the country. Our networks will deliver Internet speeds more than 100 times faster than what most Americans have access to today, over 1 gigabit per second, fiber-to-the-home connections. – Google Fiber Initiative

I’ll post the whole thing here at some point, but for now take yourselves over to googleavl to read all about Asheville’s effort to invite Google to town.

“You all heard about the Information Superhighway of the internet back in the day. Compared to a superhighway, this network is like a teleportation device. It’s so far beyond what anyone else is using that it gives Asheville the opportunity to dream big.”


  1. Paul C says:

    What if we helped one of our rural neighbors like Burnsville in next door Yancey Co. secure Google Fiber? All of us have pretty good access to internet. We’ll get upgraded one day soon. But some people out in Burnsville are still dealing with dial up. The schools could use it. The local businesses could use it. The people could use it.

  2. tebbe says:

    Burnsville, Swain, Cherokee, Clay county many folks out that way are dial up. This is the wave of the future lets get on board. sign me up.

  3. It will be interesting to see how much money Google expects from the “winner.” They demanded a vast incentive package for the server base abuilding in NC, one must assume they will expect generous “participation” in this project as well.

  4. Gordon Smith says:


    They’re asking for cities with population b/w 50k and 500k. All of the surrounding communities will benefit from this fiber because the network can accommodate spokes going away from it. I hope to see all the rural hospitals get wired into Mission.


    Google is offering to spend up to $500 million on infrastructure.

  5. shadmarsh says:

    Google is offering to spend up to $500 million on infrastructure

    digital infrastructure or like real actual infrastructure?

  6. Gordon Smith says:

    Real. Actual. Infrastructure. Laying the highest speed fiber cable in the nation to every home in the city.

  7. Topeka, Kansas is changing it’s name:

    What’s Asheville willing to do?

  8. Gordon Smith says:


    I think Asheville is willing to be itself. We’re a great fit for a company like Google, and we’re going to be ourselves rather than touting our willingness to become something else.

    Check out to learn more.

  9. D. Dial says:

    Gordon ..I have a PDX10 with tripod, dolly & Sennheiser wireless mik, you can use. It does take tv ready video. Someone else may have a smaller one.

    I’ll do some editing for you, if needed. I tweeted this message to . #googleavl…but am unsure if I’d tweeting properly.

  10. shadmarsh says:

    Real. Actual. Infrastructure. Laying the highest speed fiber cable in the nation to every home in the city.

    Will it be laid underground? Would Asheville’s geomorphic configuration preclude its consideration? How long would it take to install through out the entire city? What disruptions would it cause?

  11. Gordon Smith says:


    My understanding is it will have to be strung on poles. The EDC, City, and others are getting that data for our municipal application. From poles to homes the fiber will be ‘microtrenched’, meaning it’ll be six inches deep.


    Don’t know.

    If you mean negative disruption, I imagine about as much as stringing power lines.

  12. shadmarsh says:

    If it is going up on poles, then the rest of my questions don’t apply. I do think this effort to bring Google here is a good idea, but there is always a cost, and I am not convinced that this will have a long term positive impact on job growth and wage growth. But I am often wrong.

  13. Jason W Hill says:

    I have read through the Google announcement of the RFI in which Asheville is participating. There is no mention of costs to the city so Google is not requesting or requiring municipal participation in bearing the costs to install or maintain the infrastructure. To do so after the issuance of the RFI would not be in good faith and would have wasted Google’s time and the participant’s time as well. I have both written and responded to many RFIs and it would be fair to assume all the rules for participation are on the table already and that Asheville will bear no direct burden. It is possible that cities will offer up incentives to obtain the network, but it not a requirement.

    Your question on jobs is two-fold – short term and long term. Short term or “one-time “ project job impact would be not be insignificant. The last 10 years of my career has been networks and datacenters, so I know a bit about this. Google will have to contract out the laying of fiber optics putting to work people for as long as it will take based on Google’s timeline. The network routers will be installed in data centers across the region – at least 2 and possibly more. Long term or sustained jobs will be required to hook/unhook homes and businesses, manage the data centers, manage and maintain the network equipment. This may be a small incremental increase in jobs. But long term jobs potential is tremendous and hard to quantity. But consider the applications that are deployed over Cell/Wireless phones vs. land lines, think of the apps that run over current internet speeds vs. when we had 240k baud dial up modems. All of these applications required a leap in technology and no one could have predicted all of the resulting jobs that have been created in the IT would since the invention of the PC, the internet, and broadband. This is just the next step in the process to break down the barriers to innovation. If you want to see what industry insiders think the possibilities are and what is in it for Google check out this article:

    Since the city doesn’t have to pay to play, some short term and long term jobs are created, and the potential for tremendous job growth exists, this is a win-win. Well, except for the current providers or phone, cable, DSL service who will have to increase their game to compete. But perhaps they want to see how it goes for Google in their test market before they stick their foot in the water – it saves them $500 Million. Anyway you slice it the current residents and businesses of the city end up with faster service through competition.

  14. D. Dial says:

    U.S. to roll out major broadband policy

    (Reuters) – U.S. regulators will announce a major Internet policy this week to revolutionize how Americans communicate and play, proposing a dramatic increase in broadband speeds that could let people download a high-definition film in minutes instead of hours.

    Technology | Media

    Dramatically increasing Internet speeds to 25 times the current average is one of the myriad goals to be unveiled in the National Broadband Plan by the the Federal Communications Commission on Tuesday.

    The highly anticipated plan will make a series of recommendations to Congress and is aimed at spurring the ever-changing communications industry to bring more and faster online services to Americans as they increasingly turn to the Internet to communicate, pay monthly bills, make travel plans and be entertained by movies and music.

    “This is a fairly unique event,” said Paul Gallant, an analyst with Concept Capital. “The FCC really has never been asked to design a broad regulatory shift like this. Broadband is important and difficult because it threatens every established communications sector.”

    Some details of the plan have trickled out in the last few weeks including how to find spectrum to meet an anticipated explosion of handset devices capable of playing movies and music in addition to handling emails and voice calls.

    But some carriers like AT&T Inc and Qwest Communications International Inc were irked last month when the agency’s chief, Julius Genachowski, announced that the FCC would propose in the plan a goal of 100 Mbps speeds to be in place at 100 million American homes in 10 years. The current average is less than 4 Mbps.

    In a sign of tension between the FCC and carriers, Qwest called it “a dream” and AT&T reacted by saying the FCC should resist calls for “extreme forms of regulation.”

    Since the FCC announcement, Cisco Systems Inc announced it would introduce a router that can handle Internet traffic up to 12 times faster than rival products. Google Inc has also gotten in on the hype, saying it plans to build a super-fast Internet network to show that it can be done. The FCC has praised both announcements.

    The plans could also touch off tensions with television broadcasters, who will be asked to give up spectrum to wireless carriers who desperately need it for their mobile devices, such as the iPhone and Blackberry.

    The FCC plans to let them share in the profits of auctions structured to redistribute the spectrum.

    “We’ve developed a plan that is a real win-win for everyone involved and we have every expectation that it will work,” Genachowski said in an interview with Reuters.

    “We’ve certainly heard from a number of broadcasters who told us they think this is a promising direction and are getting ready to roll up their sleeves with us,” he said.

    The FCC also wants to make sure that anchor institutions — government buildings, schools, libraries and healthcare facilities — get speeds of about 1 gigabit per second by 2020.

    The full broadband plan is expected to be released at a Tuesday meeting among the FCC’s five members who are expected to discuss the results and recommendations of the roadmap, which was mandated by Congress. Congress may have to pass legislation to enact some portions of the plan.

    FCC officials have said some of the goals are aspirational and should be viewed as a “living, breathing” document for the next decade in hopes of helping 93 million Americans without broadband get connected.


    “It is both aspiration and achievable,” Genachowski said.

    The Obama administration has touted the plan as a way to create jobs and make energy use more efficient.

    “It will be a call to action,” said Blair Levin, who heads the FCC’s broadband task force which has collected data and comments from the industry, academics and the public as well as from three dozen public workshops.

    The FCC has placed most of its attention on broadband policy which Darrell West, director of governance studies at the Brookings Institution, called “the signature issue” since Genachowski took over the helm in late June.

    “It means that broadband is going to drive other types of policy decisions and it really sets the parameters for telecommunications and new applications,” West said.

    FCC officials have said that the plan will not take sides on technology or applications, but they want to lay the groundwork to spur innovation and job creation.

    Officials have said the plan will ask Congress to fund up to $16 billion to build an emergency public safety system.

    It would also tell lawmakers that a one-time injection of $9 billion could accelerate broadband reach to the 4 percent of Americans who do have access. Otherwise they could let the FCC carry out a 10-year plan to realign an $8 billion U.S. subsidy program for universal broadband access instead of universal phone access.

    Experts call the plan ambitious but question if the FCC, which plans to spin off a series of rule-making proposals linked to the plan, can realistically make good on its recommendations.

    “There’s so little progress on this stuff in Washington,” said Rob Atkinson, who heads the Information Technology and Innovation Foundation.

    “I think Chairman Genachowski has a real opportunity to bring different warring interests under 50-75 percent of the plan.”

    (Reporting by John Poirier and Sinead Carew, editing by Matthew Lewis)

  15. Davyne Dial says:

    Google video is up on Youtube
    Just a couple of minor corrections to make.