Internet connectivity in the United States is presently undergoing the transition from disparate, privately held and operated ventures to becoming fundamental infrastructure: that is, a public good. This transition is following the historical paths taken by other aspects of our infrastructure, such as water, gas and the electrical grid. Each of these started out as novel inventions, and over time evolved to be so essential to modern living and the market economy that they became “infrastructure.” The COVID-19 pandemic is showing just how essential the Internet is to all sectors: health care, education, free markets, remote work and even government services.
The Center for Internet As Infrastructure is dedicated to accelerating the transition of Internet connectivity to robust, resilient, affordable infrastructure. Its first project is the Connectivity Explorer, together with the I3 Telegraph.
The I3 Connectivity Explorer was initiated in 2017 after the principal became immersed in internet connectivity issues and open data while serving as a White House Presidential Innovation Fellow. At that time, there were few effective maps and it was hard to bring all the relevant data into focus. The system has matured substantially since then, and the Center is now actively seeking partners to help keep the system running and freely available to the community users who need it most. If you would like to help or know of an agency or nonprofit that would like to be involved, please contact the Center for Internet as Infrastructure, LLC at [email protected] or reply via this topic.