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May 20, 2006


Andrea Arria-Devoe

Um, hello? I finally checked back on my blog after a six month hiatus and I saw your message. So, you turned into a big tech geek?

John Rudkin


Hi. I called your office and was given your address. Can you help me?

I am the eCommunity lead in Blackpool UK, the famous (!) seaside town (Las Vegas of Europe??? - well, not quite).


There is a lot happening here, but my email to you addresses the following:

I'm in San Francisco 11- 14th July at an Apple HE Summit, but would love to meet someone to talk (as briefly as needed) about the SF wireless initiative.


Blackpool: 140,000 population, (I said 5 million visitors per year in my email, but that was wrong) 14.5 million visitors per year and most famous for seaside, cotton candy, entertainment, Blackpool Tower, the No.1 tourist spot in UK - our Pleasure Beach, Blackpool Illuminations 7 miles of lights which extends its 'season' into November.
Currently undergoing a 25 year regeneration plan (see link above)

Wireless Connectivity:

We already have what we believe is the largest metropolitan wireless network in the UK. Lots of places are shouting about what they will do. We did it 18 months ago. We just do not tell anyone. The reason, its a secure network for vulnerable children:
See: http://www.notschool.net and http://www.thecademy.net
We are about to open it up. Its an 80mbs uncontended symmetrical (the important bit) with 70 nodes (each capable of supporting many users). At the moment it serves 70 transient families in the area.

I'm intrigued to pick your brains about the 'free' model and the way you will make it work behind the scenes. We want to beef up the offering and then roll out in a similar way, but we are doing this on a shoestring really. In 2007 we want to put AT LEAST 500 familiies onto the network. The rest is about making the best of what we have, but ideally we'd like ubiquity.
Once Blackpool's regeneration gets underway, however, and if as we expect we get the UKs first and only Super Casino there will be a huge opportunity here. Fancy the chat?

I hope this posting to you is OK? If this ends up appearing on your blog (?) I'll find out, so I guess it'll be an advert for the most switched on town in the UK today - period.


See also:


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