Cleveland Digital Vision
Sunday, September 28, 2003
VIRTUAL CONFERENCE ON "E-GOVERNMENT": Okay, now this is interesting. The Benton Foundation, which runs the Digital Divide Network website and mailing list, is holding a "virtual conference" in November called E-Government for All. From the conference website:
E-Government for All will bring together leaders in government, the private sector, community activists, academia and civil society to discuss the relationship between e-government initiatives and the need for policy strategies to bridge the digital divide. While e-government presents us with powerful opportunities for making government more accessible and efficient, there are still millions of people lacking both Internet access and the skills to use it effectively. The conference, therefore, will explore what can be done to ensure that e-government initiatives lessen the digital divide rather than widen it.
Registration is free and open to anyone. I just registered. Let's get a good Cleveland contingent signed up.
Friday, September 26, 2003
VISIT TO ASHBURY: I spent Wednesday morning at Ashbury Senior Community Computer Center (ASC3), talking with the center's director, Wanda Davis, and Rocky Richardson of Sky Bank about a project that's in the works. Wanda opened ASC3 last Fall, in a storefront she owns, to provide computer training and access for older residents in the southeast corner of Glenville. It's at East 110th and Ashbury, literally a few hundred yards from the north edge of the CWRU campus -- but light-years distant in terms of residents' incomes and education.
Wanda and instructor Tony Tell have graduated over a hundred neighbors from their basic computer skills classes in the past year. It's a shoestring operation like many in this city -- depending on donated used computer systems, free space and small grants to make ends meet -- but it's already got a devoted following in the neighborhood and big ambitions for community impact.
Wanda, who's a member of the Digital Vision board, has been talking with CWRU officials about potential cooperation and support. As we were meeting, it occurred to us that ASC3 is very close to the university's northern dormitory area, which must be bristling with access points for the new world-class campus/community wireless network. If visitors to the Art Museum can get on the new Wi-Fi network, why not ASC3 and its neighbors on Ashbury Avenue?
Needless to say, Wanda's going to have a talk with the networking folks at CWRU. We'll let you know how it goes.
Monday, September 22, 2003
DIGITAL VISION'S PROGRAM: Digital Vision is basically an advocacy coalition of Cleveland organizations who share a belief that closing the "digital divide" is a vital step for both the regional economy and the city's own future. (You can see who's in the coalition here.) But what exactly are we advocating?
Take a look at the almost-final draft of Digital Vision's five-year program to narrow Cleveland's digital opportunity gap. Our member organizations are still discussing some changes, but it's posted here so other folks can see where we're going.
Comments and questions are encouraged... send us an email!
WHAT THIS WEBLOG IS FOR: This weblog is a companion to the main website of Cleveland Digital Vision. It has two purposes:
1) to make it easy for Digital Vision's lone staffer to post updates on our projects and organizational developments -- frequently, if not daily; and
2) to create a place in Cleveland's "blogging" network for information and commentary about the issue of digital inclusion, and the people working to make it happen in Cleveland neighborhoods.
I'm posting this on blogspot.com, a Google affiliate that's one of the biggest free weblog hosting services. Blogspot has an upgrade version that removes the ad you see up there (among other improvements), but the signup process has been "under maintenance" for the last few days, i.e. it isn't working. When it comes back on line the ad will go away. I'll also add a "comments" capablity soon.
For now, though, the main idea is to get this weblog and the newly rebuilt main site up and running. So... here they are!