sent on behalf of Jon Gant, research associate professor, GSLIS:


You may have already heard of US Ignite, a public-private partnership that was formed to support scientists and researchers in their work to develop high-impact apps and services that take advantage of ultra-high speed broadband service. The Mozilla Foundation and NSF have partnered to help US Ignite reach its goal to develop 60 advanced, next-generation Internet applications over the next five years. These apps will be in areas such as  manufacturing, education, healthcare, public safety, energy and more.


For the last few years, I have been working on a BTOP grant and have joined representatives of the cities of Champaign and Urbana as well as colleagues in our campus IT department to build the infrastructure that brings high speed broadband to underserved neighborhoods in our town. I’m excited to tell you that that project, UC2B, is a founding member of the US Ignite project and we share their vision in working together to build the next phase of the Internet.


I want to invite you all to participate in a challenge issued by Mozilla, the maker of Firefox, which is partnering with the National Science Foundation and others from US Ignite to run a $500,000 ideation + app development challenge called Mozilla Ignite to do just that:  imagine and build killer apps from the future.


There are things we can do that will have significant impact on peoples’ lives that we cannot do on today’s Internet.  So the question is: how can we tap into the possibilities that the new high-speed connections can offer to best benefit our communities?


We are also hoping to encourage the development of applications that may serve libraries, schools and other community anchors. For example, the Cuyahoga County (Ohio) Public Library is collaborating with Cleveland State University to connect the Warrensville Heights branch to the GENI network for multimedia delivery of online education. In New Jersey, the Rutgers University Library’s Video Mosaic Collaborative (VMC) is an interactive portal to enable teachers, teacher educators and researchers to analyze and utilize the real classroom videos shot over a span of 20-plus years to make new discoveries in math education and transform mathematics research, teaching, and learning.

There will be awards given for the best ideas, and subsequent awards for the best apps. The deadline for ideas is Aug. 23, which is the end of the brainstorming phase; Sept. 1 is the start of the app development phase.


I urge you to check out to learn more. I will also be participating in a webinar where you can learn more on Thurs., Aug. 9 at 11 AM PT / 2 PM ET ( 


If you want to learn about how to get involved in the growing Ignite community, please contact Will Barkis, “Gigabit Developer Evangelist” and project manager for the Mozilla Ignite Challenge, at [log in to unmask].


Dr. Jon Gant

Research Associate Professor
Director for the Center for Digital Inclusion
Director, UC2B Broadband Adoption Program,
University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign
Graduate School of Library and Information Science
501 E. Daniel St., Champaign, IL 61820
(217) 333-5975
[log in to unmask]



Kim Schmidt

Director of Publications and Media Relations

Graduate School of Library and Information Science

501 East Daniel Street

Champaign, IL 61820

(217) 265-6391