Telehub 1.0

The original mission of the W.E.B. DuBois Learning Center's "Telecommunications Hub (Telehub)" was to establish "Satellite Centers" throughout the community to enable students, and other residents, to have access to current Information Age technology. This enabled students to have the use of current software, within walking distance from their homes, assisting them in writing papers, Internet research, and educational tutoring. Other community residents had the same access.

That was the mission of the Telehub established in 1999. It was founded on the premise of maximizing scares technical talents of our community. It delivered platform (PAS), infrastructure (IAS), and software (SAS) services to the community over point to point wireless network connections. Dumb Terminal were utilized as the endpoint solution and the Telehub team maintained the network and backend servers. Access was incented by reading proficiency measured through software testing of students. Results awarded through capability enabled for students on the provided endpoint.

The network popularity, lead to a waiting list of interested community organizations. Challenges associated with implementing infrastructure to support line of sight requirements was identified. Sprint through our partnership, offered to solve this challenge by utilizing Telehub as their test bed for WiMAX solutions testing in 2006. Agreement was constructed that Sprint would supply the tower space and the equipment to eliminate the waiting list. Once testing was concluded the infrastructure would become property of the Telehub. Caveat was the Telehub had to provide $100K as earnest money on equipment being purchased.

Several lessons learned from this iterations. Dumb terminals was sound solutions as they continues to outperform PC cost of ownership. Recurring cost of virtualization with COTS solutions has budget impact; prevent ability to live off the land through bare funding cycles. Failure to utilize licensed frequency spectrums lead to link failures. Urban neighbor hoods have mature trees that complicates network path creations. Technical people struggle with marketing skills required to attract funding.

Provide is Leon Dixon's memoir of what is possible when like minded individuals come together for a common cause.

"All-in-All, I hope to show how the Telehub evolved (as did the DuBois Learning Center itself) from the desires of African Americans "who knew themselves" and were comfortable and confident enough in their abilities, skills and talents to initiate the actions that could possibly help lead to the World of Our Dreams.