I'm not talking about WiFi here. Everyone and their brother has that. I'm talking about the emerging standard of 802.16, embodied in some areas as WiMax, but otherwise providing fast, wireless access to lots of data over quite a large area (about 50km if you have line of sight between antennae).
This is the technology that could keep you from resorting to satellite if you live in the boonies and could give schools and students widespread access to cheap, reasonably high-speed Internet connections. It could also be the answer for more densely populated areas that want to roll out large-scale free Internet access with a fairly small amount of hardware. However, the technology is quite immature and, in fact, many people aren't completely sure what form implementation will take over the next few years.
The National Educational Broadband Services Association would like to know how you expect to make use of this emerging technology through their Wireless Broadband Education Competition. They are starting with the assumption that this technology will come to fruition in the next few years and be looking for applications. Rather than tying the competition to a particular implementation, the competition asks, "What if we had wireless broadband?"
The competition is for U.S. educators (levels Pre-K through 16) interested in exploring and demonstrating the potential of improved wireless broadband technology to enhance learning. The purpose of the competition is to mine the creativity of educators and seek applications of improved and/or innovative learning using expanded wireless broadband as adaptations of existing educational technology practices, or extension of educational opportunities to an un-served audience.
Want to enter? There's some money involved, but mostly an opportunity to drive important discussions about where this technology will take us in the coming years. Enter here...