Science & Technology
Get 100 MPG and spend $500 a year on Fuel PDF Print E-mail
News Releases - Science & Technology
Written by Sierra Club   
Thursday, 18 October 2012 07:48
Electric Vehicles Buyer's Guide

How much camping gear can you cart around in a Toyota Prius? What's the annual fuel cost for the Chevy Volt? Will the Tesla Model S be around in 10 years?

We compared six all-electric vehicles and three plug-in hybrids currently on the market for our fall buyer's guide. Three of them get upwards of 100 mpg, three more get 95 mpg or better, and nearly all have an estimated annual fuel cost of less than $1,000 if you average 15,000 miles per year. Find out who won the EV race.

 
Governor Quinn Announces Second Illinois Gigabit Communities Challenge Winner PDF Print E-mail
News Releases - Science & Technology
Written by Ryan C. Woods   
Tuesday, 16 October 2012 13:51

State’s $1 Million Seed Investment Will Connect Education, Business, Healthcare Communities to Aurora’s Fiber Optic Network; Help Create 2,500 Jobs Over Five Years

 

AURORA – October 16, 2012. Governor Pat Quinn today announced that OnLight Aurora is a recipient of an Illinois Gigabit Communities Challenge award, a statewide competition to establish ultra-high speed broadband networks across Illinois. The state is awarding $1 million in Illinois Jobs Now! capital funding to OnLight Aurora to help connect the city of Aurora’s fiber optic network to its education, business, and healthcare communities and accelerate economic growth and job creation.

Announced during Governor Quinn’s 2012 State of the State Address, the Illinois Gigabit Communities Challenge advances the governor’s efforts to encourage world-class broadband infrastructure in every area of Illinois.

“Smart communities will foster the job engines of the future," Governor Quinn said. “To win in the information economy, we need information infrastructure that is second to none. Through the Gigabit Communities Challenge, Illinois will build stronger, smarter communities with Internet connections more than 100 times faster than they are today."

OnLight Aurora is among the first in a series of Challenge award recipients that will be announced in the coming weeks. The state’s investment will help connect Aurora’s robust, state-of-the-art fiber network to more than 12,000 end users, including students, nurses, business men and women, and residents.

Administered by the Illinois Department of Commerce and Economic Opportunity (DCEO), the $1 million award represents a seed investment for OnLight Aurora’s pilot project and will help leverage an additional $1 million in public and private matching funds and create 2,500 jobs over the next five years. The state’s investment will help provide connectivity to Aurora’s public and private K-12 schools, higher education and healthcare institutions, commercial corridors and community anchors in underserved areas, and major non-profit organizations across the city.

“This grant will help OnLight Aurora continue to close the digital divide within our city by capitalizing on our Fiber Optic Network,” said Aurora Mayor Tom Weisner. “We know that technology has the potential to revolutionize our educational system and it is an absolute must for successful companies of all sizes. By developing the infrastructure of the future, we drive economic development, strengthen our tax base, and address our community’s most fundamental needs: jobs, quality of life and global competitiveness.”

OnLight Aurora is an independent, not-for-profit organization that was formed out of a technology task force organized by Aurora Mayor Tom Weisner in 2011 that included public and private sector volunteers. The mission of OnLight Aurora is to leverage the world-class connectivity of Aurora’s Fiber Optic Network for non-municipal use.

“One of the major factors in companies locating to a city is the access to technology,” said Joseph Henning, President and CEO of the Aurora Regional Chamber of Commerce. “This grant will make it more cost effective to provide current businesses and those looking to make Aurora home, with the technology they need to succeed in today’s global business environment while creating thousands of jobs over the next five years.”

As part of the comprehensive, multi-year Illinois Jobs Now! economic development program, the Illinois Gigabit Communities Challenge sought proposals from private and public organizations to encourage promising ultra high-speed broadband deployment projects throughout Illinois. Applicants were required to provide a viable plan to connect at least 1,000 end users to an ultra high-speed broadband network. Award recipients will receive seed funding to help build or expand world-class broadband networks in Illinois.

Earlier today, Governor Quinn awarded the first Gigabit Communities Challenge grant to Gigabit Squared during an awards ceremony held in Chicago’s Woodlawn neighborhood. For more information on the Illinois Gigabit Communities Challenge, visit Gigabit.Illinois.gov.

A longtime advocate for improving our technology infrastructure, Governor Quinn has been a strong voice for broadband deployment in all areas of Illinois. As part of the Illinois Jobs Now! capital construction program, the Broadband Deployment Fund was used in 2010 and 2011 to jumpstart more than 4,000 miles of new fiber optic cable construction and more than $300 million in private and federal investment in Illinois.

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Ribbon Cutting for Electric Vehicle (“EV”) Charging Stations at Quad City International Airport on Wednesday October 17, 2012 PDF Print E-mail
News Releases - Science & Technology
Written by Cathie Rochau   
Tuesday, 16 October 2012 08:56

What:             Ribbon Cutting for Electric Vehicle (“EV”) Charging Stations at the Quad City International Airport

When:            Wednesday, October 17th at 11:00 a.m.
Introduction by Bruce Carter, followed by brief comments from the Chamber, followed by “Green” Ribbon Cutting by the Chamber and Ambassadors, and the “plugging in” of an electronic vehicle.

Where:           Short-term parking, at EV charging stations/stalls, across from Exit 6.
(Media and guests may pull in to the short term lot in order to park near the ribbon cutting area.)

Who:              Bruce Carter, Dir. Of Aviation, Tara Barney, Quad Cities Chamber of Commerce,
and various other parties involved in making this effort grow in the QC area such as: Genesis Health, Lujacks, and more.

 
Soy Checkoff Partners with Goodyear to Develop New Tire PDF Print E-mail
News Releases - Science & Technology
Written by United Soybean Board   
Wednesday, 10 October 2012 13:34
The United Soybean Board (USB) continues to drive demand for U.S. soy, thanks to a partnership with Goodyear Tire & Rubber Co. Goodyear recently announced field tests for a new tire featuring U.S. soy that the company says may offer consumers increased tread life and a greener alternative to those manufactured solely with petrochemicals.“The soy checkoff welcomes the opportunity to partner with Goodyear in bringing this tire to the market,” says Russ Carpenter, a soybean farmer from Trumansburg, N.Y. and chair of the USB New Uses program.

Click here to watch.

 
Jason Smith of Midland Communications Explains Evergreen Contracts PDF Print E-mail
News Releases - Science & Technology
Written by Janet Dufour   
Friday, 05 October 2012 09:18
Industry Leader to Lend His Expertise and Years of Experience to Help SMBs Avoid Getting Locked Into Telecom Contracts

DAVENPORT, IA - October 4, 2012 - A vicious trend has developed among prominent carrier service providers called auto-renewals also known as "evergreen" clauses. Evergreen clauses are essentially an agreement between two parties that is automatically renewed or after each contract term, until canceled by the either party. For businesses, this means that you can easily become locked into contracts with poor service providers. Imagine attempting to cancel your services with a current provider, only to find out that you are contractually obligated to continue paying another year for a service you're completely unhappy with.
Hidden in your carrier service contract is language that automatically renews your services, preventing any opportunity to explore options to optimize or reduce cost on your carrier services. Be wary of auto-renewal verbiage sent by the carrier along the lines of: "Unless notified within 90 days of contract expiration date of intent to cancel services, contract will automatically renew for the same term at the same time." Locating the auto-renewal clause can be like searching for a needle in a haystack. One way find this verbiage is to call the customer service line of your carrier service provider to obtain the termination date of your contract and request this in writing. This simple process alone can save you thousands of dollars.
Ironically enough, these contract restrictions are often avoidable. In the case of "evergreen" clauses businesses have two options. On the one hand, you can avoid being locked into contract by making sure that you notify your carrier that you'd like to cancel services in writing, prior to the expiration of the specified term. These can vary from one contract to the next. On the other hand, you can consult with a Unified Communications provider, like Midland Communications, who has been helping businesses deal with "evergreen" contracts for several years. Whichever approach you take, it's vital that you periodically review your carrier service contract and acknowledge the termination date.
"Small to mid-sized businesses are the backbone of our economy and they need all of the help they can get to continue fueling our nation's economic growth," states Jason Smith, Vice President of Midland Communications. "We get a great deal of satisfaction when we can help our customers get out of these contracts and get back on the fastrack to profitability." Midland Communications is a leading unified communications provider that specializes in:
*       Examining current connectivity (phone lines and internet) to analyze cost/effectiveness in order to make recommendations. If you're paying a long distance phone bill, we can eliminate it.
*       Evaluating specific business needs, as they relate to Voice and IT services, and customize solutions accordingly.
*       Most likely if your phone system is more than 3 years old we can cost justify a new system while eliminating the two risks of technology: Cost and Obsolescence.
*       Educating our clients on the advantages of new technology and partner with them to increase their profitability and give them a competitive advantage.
Midland Communications has earned its position as the market leader by educating its customers on technology solutions that either create competitive advantages for them or increase overall profitability.

ABOUT MIDLAND COMMUNICATIONS

Midland Communications began more than 60 years ago in 1946 as the Worldwide Marketing Arm of Victor-Animagraph Projectors. In 1977 a communications division was formed due to a partnership with NEC America. Today, As a distributor of NEC America, for 33 years, Midland Communications has a customer base of more than 3,000 satisfied customers that include general businesses, government agencies, Universities, colleges, hospitals, and hotels.
Midland provides a wide range of communication services including VOIP, PBX and key systems, Wide Area and Local Area networking, computers, Computer integration, voice mail, CCIS, and video conferencing and paging systems. Our philosophy is simple, provide quality products at a fair price, backed by an average emergency response time of twenty minutes, and the best service in the industry. For more information on Midland Communications, call (563) 326-1237 or visit www.midlandcom.com.

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