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1711, 2014

WiscNet’s Rolling Into 2015

Snow happened. The Packers and the Badgers have me in a festive mood. I’ll use these as excuses to shape WiscNet’s holiday news and thank you’s a month early. Merry Thanksmas and Happy New Haunakanza.

First, meet WiscNet’s new logo!


WiscNet Header Image (Retina)


We are excited about these new pixels heading into 2015. You will really enjoy what we have coming May 11th and 12th at the WiscNet Future Technologies Conference. In the meantime, poke around our redesigned website and download our Connecting People, Connecting Networks, and Connecting Strategies pieces along with regionalized WiscNet Member Maps. Southwestern WisconsinSoutheastern WisconsinNorthern WisconsinNortheastern WisconsinEastern Wisconsin

Next, we owe special thanks to WiscNet’s network engineers. They have quietly crammed three years worth of backbone upgrades into the past twelve months. If you see them, give them a hug. Better yet, let them know you appreciate their hard work. They don’t like when we try to hug them.

Finally, we owe thanks to WiscNet’s many partners, public and private, that have stepped forward to support WiscNet. In 2009 we set out with a “build more networks for Wisconsin” philosophy. Community Area Networks continue to grow in number and size. Today we can point to 30+ examples of communities working together to address their needs locally. The diversity of interests and enthusiasm towards cooperation is powerful. Together, we have an underlying infrastructure that is better than ever. In 2015 we look forward to finding new, interesting ways to use it.

It’s a privilege, professionally and personally, to be working with some of the most interesting, passionate people looking to make the Internet big.

1812, 2014

Upcoming Erate Webinars

In light of the major changes to the E-rate program coming up in 2015, the Universal Service Administrative Company (USAC) is offering a series of webinars on various topics over the next six weeks.

The first of these is scheduled for tomorrow. Click through to register.

Tuesday, Dec. 9, 2014, 2:00-3:00pm CST
FCC Form 470 Online Demo Webinar

Tuesday, Dec. 16, 2014, 2:00-3:00pm CST
Eligible Services Webinar

Thursday, Dec. 18, 2014, 2:00-3:00pm CST
Program Compliance Webinar

Tuesday, Jan. 6, 2015, 2:00-3:00pm CST
Category Two Budgets Webinar

Thursday, Jan. 8, 2015, 2:00-3:00pm CST
Discount Calculations Webinar

Thursday, Jan. 13, 2015, 2:00-3:00pm CST
Urban/Rural Tool Webinar

Please note that the presenters will not accept live questions during the webinars.

If you cannot attend, all webinars will be recorded and will be available the following day in the Schools and Libraries Program’s Online Learning Library and via links from the DPI E-rate web page at

412, 2014

Discontinuing WiscNet’s Central Filtering Service as of 7/1/2015

WiscNet plans on discontinuing the WiscNet Central Filtering service effective July 1, 2015. Last summer, most WiscNet members moved to the WiscNet Local Filtering service (iBOSS), allowing much more flexibility, improved support, and many added features over our previous solutions.

WiscNet’s license for the previous Trustwave product expires 7/1/2015. We will be decommissioning the server at that point. In the meantime, we are here to help you with options, including moving to our WiscNet Local Filtering service. Please contact our technical support folks at your convenience and let us know if you have questions.
608-442-6761 extension 2

112, 2014

Chris Lehmann – McGraw Prize in Education Winner

In 2010, Chris Lehmann, Principal of the Science Leadership Academy in Philadelphia, PA,  visited Wisconsin as a keynote speaker at WiscNet’s Future Technology conference. In October, Chris was awarded the McGraw Prize in Education. I highly recommend you not only watch this acceptance speech, but also take the opportunity to visit SLA in January 2015 at EduCon 2.7.

112, 2014

You Have Been Warned – Will Richardson

You Have Been Warned:

We cannot think critically and make great decisions about ed tech for our students if we don’t make learning the starting point. And we can’t make learning the starting point in a relevant way if we have no evolving, articulated belief around what learning looks like in a modern context.

The fight begins with knowledge and context. Read Audrey’s keynotes. Read The Children’s Machine by Seymour Papert. Read And What Do You Mean by Learning? by Seymour Sarason. Read How Children Learn by John Holt. Read and discuss and figure out what you believe about learning and the role school now plays in that. And state that belief aloud.

And then talk about ed tech.

Will Richardson.

2311, 2014

Google Fiber to Offer Free Internet to Austin Public Housing Residents

Google Fiber to offer free Internet to Austin public housing residents – CultureMap Austin

“For the 4,300 Austinites who live in public housing, Google will waive the $300 construction fee and offer free access to Fiber’s Basic Internet Service for at least 10 years…In addition to Internet connections, the program offers digital literacy programs and STEM training for all ages as well as access to digital devices.”

1811, 2014

Morgridges give $100 million to invest in UW-Madison faculty

Morgridges give $100 million to invest in UW-Madison faculty:

“The University of Wisconsin-Madison has received a landmark gift of $100 million from John and Tashia Morgridge, representing the largest single contribution from individual donors in the history of the institution.”

While the Morgridges are well-known in the UW community, they are also the ones that sponsor the Wisconsin Technology Initiative, an $8 million donation to provide funding to K-12 schools to advance the use of technology in learning throughout Wisconsin. John Morgridge is the former CEO of Cisco Systems and Tashia is a retired special-education teacher.