How To’s

How To's, Strategy

DIY Fiber Route Mapping


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Today I came across an article from Broadband Communities Magazine‘s May/June 2016 issue that provides such a simple and useful technique for obtaining rough cost estimates for fiber extensions that I couldn’t pass up summarizing it! Jason Longenecker, of New Light Technologies (which, full disclosure, is the editor of the Utility LINE blog), has developed a do-it-yourself

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How To's, Product Review

Desktop engineering: Measuring height using your Smart Tools on your smartphone


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Professional architects, engineers, construction workers, and utility field staff have a whole host of tools to take measurements in the field. A simple Amazon.com search for “measurement & layout tools” yields dozens of options, including line lasers, measuring wheels, protractors, levels, scanners & testers, carpentry squares, as well as a bunch of tape measures of

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How To's, Strategy

ROWing Upstream 2: Exemptions for Google Fiber, Reforms elsewhere


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Getting right of way is slow and costly, and local (and even state) governments aren’t always working hard to facilitate the process. Often, city administrators are over-worked, understaffed, and underpaid, and need time to print, read, and respond to all those forms their predecessors imposed and made your organization fill out to get ROW. Then,

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How To's, Lessons from the Field, Strategy

Leveraging Broadband to get new Business: Some insights from the Broadband Communities Summit


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Last week, I attended the annual Broadband Communities Summit in lovely Austin, TX, where I and hundreds of members of the broadband industry were fêted by Google Fiber, Verizon XFinity, and Time Warner Cable. Along the way, I gained insights into the challenges and opportunities facing municipal and community broadband providers – as well as their

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How To's, Strategy

Addressing Demand 4: Track your assets and analyze your customers’ data!


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This month the Utility LINE blog series has been addressing questions related to the exploding demand for broadband in America (and worldwide). On March 3, we identified a few of the leading causes of bandwidth demand growth, and on the 10th we gave some strategies for responding strategically. Last week we talked about information you might want

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