US Ignite Demonstrates Next-Generation Internet Applications in Inaugural Showcase

WASHINGTON, DC--(Marketwired - Jun 24, 2013) - One year after its White House launch, the public-private partnership US Ignite is delivering on its promise to showcase next-generation Internet applications that provide transformative public benefit in areas like healthcare, energy, transportation, and education. These game-changing applications, which run over ultra-fast, programmable networks, will be demonstrated at this week's "Next Generation Application Summit," taking place at the University of Illinois-Chicago on June 25 in Chicago, IL, in partnership with the National Science Foundation and Smart Chicago Collaborative. As part of the program, winners of the year-long Mozilla Ignite Applications Challenge will be announced.

Ethernet Inventor and US Ignite board member Bob Metcalfe notes, "In the 1970s, many doubted there were uses for even 50-kilobit-per-second Internet. But soon application explorers came up with remote login, file transfer, and email. Pioneers have since found new worlds in telephony, television, publishing, commerce and social interactivity. At the US Ignite Application Summit, we are demonstrating that along with investment in gigabit generations of Internet, application explorers are once again pushing the envelope of possibility in ways that will transform how Americans experience work, education, healthcare, public safety -- even their morning commute." 

US Ignite is an independent 501(c)(3) nonprofit, funded through its member organizations, with original inspiration from the National Science Foundation and Office of Science and Technology Policy in response to the Administration's call to ensure all Americans have access to the information and tools necessary to thrive in a 21st-century economy.

The primary goal of US Ignite is to stimulate the creation and deployment of 60 transformative, next-generation applications over the next five years in six areas of national priority: education and workforce development, advanced manufacturing, health, transportation, public safety, and clean energy. Responsibilities of US Ignite include connecting, convening, and supporting startups, local and state governments, universities, industry leaders, federal agencies, foundations, communities and carriers as they imagine and build new applications. Successful "hack-a-thons," "barcamp"-style gatherings and the Mozilla Ignite Challenge have been at the heart of delivering on this mission in cities as diverse as Lafayette, LA, Kansas City, MO and KS, Chattanooga, TN, and San Leandro, CA. The resulting new applications from this US Ignite community of developers are poised to have significant impact on the U.S. economy, including providing a broad range of job and investment opportunities.

In total, over 25 communities, including small, medium and large municipalities have joined US Ignite in its first year. Additionally, there are 15 commercial partners, including telecommunications and network powerhouses alongside local single-community efforts.

"Today, in Cleveland, Ohio, there are seniors receiving innovative patient care through advanced telemedicine capabilities built on a new, ultra-fast network. In Chattanooga, TN, dozens of new startups are building new applications for everything from improved transportation to disaster response, and smart energy management by taking advantage of the city's gigabit-to-the-home fiber optic network," says US Ignite Executive Director Bill Wallace. "The future of the Internet is here today. And through US Ignite, we're helping deploy advanced applications that can change the way Americans everywhere work, live, learn and play."

The advanced technologies that power US Ignite have been developed through research funded by the National Science Foundation and by US Ignite's commercial partners. Flexibility and programmability are provided through the use of Software-Defined Networking and Network Function Virtualization. Responsiveness and capacity are provided through symmetric, ultra-fast connections. And local compute and storage racks power low-latency, programmable, "local cloud" capabilities. "The combination of these factors provides a whole new palette for applications developers," said US Ignite Chief Technology Officer Glenn Ricart. 

"Juniper Networks, a charter member of US Ignite, has a powerful mission: connect everything and empower everyone. End users, entrepreneurs, practitioners and developers are looking for agility and programmability in their networks, and US Ignite's test beds across the country give them the ability to collaborate and innovate at unprecedented rates. Juniper is proud to share our expertise in Software-Defined Networking to help enable the collaboration that will drive the next wave of digital solutions to address the country's most pressing challenges in healthcare, energy, education and more," said Mike Marcellin, senior vice president of strategy and marketing for Juniper Networks.

"We trust that as we succeed in demonstrating just how game-changing the next-generation of flexible, ultra-fast networks and the applications they enable can be, hundreds of new companies and communities will join us," concluded Wallace.

About US Ignite

US Ignite fosters the creation of next-generation Internet applications that provide transformative public benefit. By engaging diverse public and private leaders we "ignite" the development and deployment of new applications with profound impact on how Americans work, live, learn and play. To learn more visit www.us-ignite.org.