This is the transcript for episode 351 of the Community Broadband Bits podcast. In this episode, Chris is at the Broadband Communities Summit in Austin speaking with Isfandiyar Shaheen, who also goes by Asfi. They discuss how Asfi wants to finance fiber deployment in unconnected communities worldwide by reducing waste in agriculture, energy, and other fields. They also touch on the importance of connectivity and what it enables. Listen to the episode, or read the transcript below.
Isfandiyar Shaheen: We want to level the playing field for all human aspiration. Bridging the digital divide is step one to achieve that. And of all the things that we could make abundant in our life, I think making connectivity abundant is the easiest of the problems.
Lisa Gonzalez: Welcome to episode 351 of the Community Broadband Bits podcast from the Institute for Local Self-Reliance. I'm Lisa Gonzalez. It's that time of year again, spring, and Chris is off at the Broadband Communities Summit in Austin, Texas. In addition to heading up panel discussions and sharing information about publicly owned broadband, he's interviewing people like this week's guest, entrepreneur Isfandiyar Shaheen, also known as Asfi. The title of the summit this year is "Fiber: Putting Your Gigs to Work," and Asfi is an expert on how fiber in a community perpetuates spillover benefits. One of his goals is to step out of the box to use those benefits as a method to bring affordable connectivity to people all over the globe. Asfi discusses some of the ways he plans to do that, which include, in his words, putting fiber to better use. Asfi has become a wiz at discovering and documenting methods in which communities use fiber and finding a way to focus on those unexpected benefits for expanded use. His visionary outlook to connectivity is the type of approach that we need to get everyone online, regardless of income level. We want to thank Asfi for using his birthday to promote ILSR and hold a Facebook fundraiser. We'll have a link in the show notes. Happy Birthday, Asfi! Now on with the interview.
Christopher Mitchell: Welcome to another episode of the Community Broadband Bits podcast. I'm Christopher Mitchell with the Institute for Local Self-Reliance. This time of year, I...Read more