KINBER, Velocity Network connect public media studios via PennREN

The State College-based Keystone Initiative for Network Based Education and Research (KINBER) says that Velocity Network has connected the Pennsylvania Research and Education Network (PennREN) to the WQLN Public Media studios in Erie, PA., and successfully transmitted data to WPSU in State College, PA.

The State College-based Keystone Initiative for Network Based Education and Research (KINBER) says that Velocity Network has connected the Pennsylvania Research and Education Network (PennREN) to the WQLN Public Media studios in Erie, PA., and successfully transmitted data to WPSU in State College, PA.

The connection is a milestone for KINBER and represents the first time a last mile provider has linked organizations that are not connected directly to the PennREN network. “KINBER will now use this model as a template to recreate this type of connectivity with other members and last-mile providers across the state,” said Jeff Reel, KINBER’s executive director.

According to Dwight Miller, the former president of WQLN, “This connection will allow WQLN to do things they haven’t previously been able to do. They will be more efficient while using fewer resources. For instance, WPSU produces Penn State sports programs. To get that HD file to WQLN, they had to put it on a thumb drive and drop it in the mail.”

The fiber-optic network connection between WQLN and WPSU will provide each organization with new opportunities, they say. “WPSU is eager to collaborate on this technology partnership with PennREN,” said Kate Domico, interim general manager of Penn State Public Media/WPSU. “This direct connection to WQLN will enable us to provide viewers in Northwest Pennsylvania better access to Penn State programming as soon as this fall.”

Velocity Network and other last mile providers connect KINBER’s member organizations and other interested non-profit organizations directly to PennREN to provide access to services and solutions provided by KINBER.

The recently completed PennREN is managed by KINBER, a non-profit organization devoted to fostering collaboration through technology for higher education and research, K – 12 education, healthcare, libraries and public media (see “Bucknell University benefits from 1600-mile Pennsylvania R&E network”). According to KINBER, Pennsylvania was the 38th state to create such a network.

The availability of PennREN fiber-optic connections in Erie area means other local non-profit organizations such as universities and hospitals can collaborate with facilities across the commonwealth and take advantage of the opportunities that fiber-optic service brings to an organization. For example, a medical facility can share data with a remote office or a professor can lecture to students at another facility hundreds of miles away.

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