New Website Encourages 'Gig' Ideas that Could Transform Kansas City into a Technical Hub

Media Contacts:
Barbara Pruitt, (816) 932-1288, bpruitt@kauffman.org
Sarah Brewster, media relations representative, (816) 842-8111, sarah@trozzolo.com

Kauffman Foundation launches KCGigIdeas.com as an online platform for local innovators and the community at large

KANSAS CITY, Mo. (Nov. 2, 2011) – To support innovations and inspire idea sharing in response to the prospect of having Google's high-speed Internet services in the Kansas City area, the Ewing Marion Kauffman Foundation today launched KCGigIdeas.com. The new website educates the community about Google Fiber and creates a dynamic conversation about new ideas, beginning with a video on the home page that illustrates what Google Fiber could mean to Kansas City.

The online platform facilitates discussions around innovations on how to improve existing industries and allows for the creation of entirely new industries. Users can post their own ideas, comment on ideas already posted, and like or dislike ideas. Beyond the "Gig Ideas," users have access to information and resources that will keep them well informed on the Google Fiber project, with service access slated to begin in 2012.  

"We know the success of Google Fiber rests on the involvement of our community, and its visionaries and innovators," said Carl Schramm, Kauffman's president and CEO. "Our hope is that KCGigIdeas.com will create discussions, inspire innovations and educate the community on the limitless possibilities of Google Fiber. Kansas City can bolster its position as the nation's entrepreneurial hub with the innovations that can grow out of having access to this gig."

Other features of the site include a "Community Broadband Perspectives" blog, which debuts with an interview with Google's Kevin Lo, and will contain ongoing commentary by industry analysts about the economic benefits of wired and wireless broadband networks; and, a resources area, linking to news stories and websites about broadband network efforts around the world, as well as explanations about fiber network technology.

Residents connected to the Google fiber-optic network will benefit from its lightning-fast upload and download speeds, video streaming and access to learning for businesses, schools, governments and health care. Google is working closely with the Kansas City, Kan., and Kansas City, Mo., governments throughout the project to connect hundreds of educational and public entities.

To learn more about the online platform, post ideas or become part of the conversation, visit www.kcgigideas.com.