Who's connected to Internet2? Maybe your kids

Internet2 isn't just for hardcore researchers anymore. A survey by the not-for-profit consortium shows that 46,000-plus K-12 schools, libraries, museums and others are also exploiting the Internet2 backbone.

Under a program called the K20 Initiative that has been running for just under five years, Internet2 has broadened its users widely beyond the 200-plus U.S. universities that lead it.

According to the survey, more than a third of U.S. K-12 schools are connected, as are one in five libraries. More than half of community and four-year universities and colleges in the U.S. also are connected.

Users are taking advantage of advanced network applications, including DVD-quality videoconferencing and access to tools such as remotely-controlled electron microscopes. Some schools are doing virtual field trips, such as through a program commemorating Lewis and Clark's expeditions 200 years ago.

Increasingly, those connecting to Internet2 are doing so at higher speeds, too. The survey found that the number of organizations connected to Internet2 under the K20 program at more than 10Gbps has tripled over the past 2 years.

Separately last week, Internet2 announced that Alaska will soon become the 35th state whose education network is linked to the advanced research network.

Internet2 has been busy of late, announcing that international teams led by the University of Tokyo have broken the records for highest-bandwidth, end-to-end IP network and participated in funding the recently completed National LambdaRail high-speed research network.

For results from the new Internet2 survey, look here: http://k20.internet2.edu/survey/survey_index.php

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