06/11/21 – Viodi View – The Viodi View %
There is nothing like a shutdown to make one appreciate travel, particularly travel by airplane. By entering a portal of sorts, it is possible, in a few short hours, to come out the other side in a completely new environment. And seeing something in person or meeting an old friend face-to-face cannot compare to a broadband-enabled facsimile.
Klyde Warren Park was a bucket list item. This park is an oasis rising over an urban freeway and is a great example of how to reconnect neighborhoods. It has a variety of activities and events that appeal to all ages and groups. The $110M investment has had a reported $2.5B economic impact. That figure probably doesn’t capture the quality of life improvements associated with the dampening of the freeway noise, the 300+ additional trees, or the joy of running through one of its fountains on a hot Dallas day.
Fixed wireless is clearly one way to provide broadband and it has become increasingly popular over the last few years. Quantifying its impact and understanding the role of fiber in helping to create ubiquitous and reliable broadband is what a new report from The Carmel Group does. In the above interview, Jimmy Schaeffler, Chairman & Chief Service Officer (CSO) of the Carmel Group discusses his findings in his new report, Liftoff. Liftoff is part of a continuing study by The Carmel Group that began with the launch of their 2017 report “Ready for Takeoff”
Schaeffler says he was surprised that the wireless broadband industry will get even larger in the next four years. Growth in the availability of spectrum, easier financing, and the realization of federal policymakers in the role of fixed wireless for solving last-mile broadband accessibility are factors in the expansion of the fixed wireless and hybrid fiber wireless sector.
It was an honor to be on the Smart Driving Car podcast with Cade Metz, Fred Fishkin, and Alain Kornhauser for a thoughtful discussion of what makes driverless different than an Internet app. Inspired by Metz’s recent New York Times article, The Costly Pursuit of Self Driving Cars Continues On and On and On, the focus of the discussion was on the challenges of crossing the chasm to mass adoption of driveless. As alluded to in the podcast, driverless is similar to cable television, broadband, or video on demand in the salad days of those markets. All of those technologies had to slog through on a market-by-market basis, learning the nuances of their particular Operational Design Domains (ODD).
Europe is behind the U.S. in terms of driverless deployment, The low speeds of the shuttles, the mandates that require operators, and the regulatory frameworks seem to be bigger barriers than in parts of the U.S. Those were some of the impression from the TU-Delft webinar, Deployment potential of automated minibuses for first/last mile transport. With that said, there are some interesting developments, including self-driving garbage cans and automated ferries. Research from the University of Texas on how Automated Mobility Districts could be a complement to Austin’s commuter rail was also presented.
- Alan Weissberger’s article on Verizon’s private 5G network plans spurred the thought that these private networks may extend beyond the closed environments, such as the factory floor. Verizon has a couple of initiatives, such as Skyward 5G, which offers the potential for high-speed, low-latency communications to drones. Similarly, Verizon’s Hyper Precise Location service improves three-dimensional GPS accuracy from 3-9 meters to 1-2 centimeters. Again, this service would be offered to private entities (e.g. robotaxi providers) operating in a public space.
- Weekend reading – ACA’s report on addressing gaps in broadband infrastructure delineates between the availability and adoption gaps. Adoption appears to be a much larger gap, with availability being a larger issue in rural areas. It will be interesting to see how they have come up with their estimated costs to close the gaps.
- With the rise of electric aviation, flying directly to your destination and avoiding the rental car may become practical. Watch this space for an interview with a leader on how electric aviation promises to connect rural areas in a way that has never been possible.
Moffet Field was a great source of talent for Silicon Valley of the 60s to 80s era. For many people, it was their last Naval post before embarking on a career in a valley that used to be known for its abundant fruit harvests. Dutch Hemler exemplified the great electronics experience that the Navy provided in that timeframe. Dutch could build anything.
Like a mighty oak tree, Dutch was solid, loyal, and wise. More than that, he was a great people person.
Although I didn’t get to Texas often enough to see Dutch in his later years, it was clear that he lives on through his many friends and family. Rest in peace, Dutch.