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Rapid Response: Building public safety apps in 24 hours

By Mark Reddish If you’d seen the empty case of Red Bull, you’d believe me when I say that writing code can be extreme.  On May 2-3, I experienced my first app hackathon, an event that was hosted by AT&T and held at 1776 in Washington, D.C.  The 24 hour-long competition drew over one hundred…

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Innovative Ideas from the Boston Emerging Technology Forum

By Mark Reddish On December 3-4, APCO held an Emerging Technology Forum (ETF) in Boston, MA.  We were honored to have several officials join us, including FCC Commissioner Jessica Rosenworcel, FirstNet Board Member Kevin McGinnis, and representatives from Boston police, fire, and EMS.  And, it being an APCO event, the audience was full of public safety professionals. …

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Data Jamming for Public Safety

Dateline October 2013 Public safety is clearly immersed in a new era of communications technology.  FirstNet continues to make progress, including the related planning efforts at the state and local levels.  The APCO 2013 exhibit floor featured more broadband and advanced communications tools, gear (some wearable), networks, and devices than ever before.  At APCO 2013…

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Happy Anniversary

Today marks the one-year anniversary of enactment of landmark legislation that created FirstNet and will lead to the deployment of an advanced, nationwide, interoperable public safety broadband network.  From the printed words of the law, we are witnessing tangible evidence of what public safety successfully fought for, including a dedicated FirstNet board, armed with spectrum…

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The Spectrum Alphabet

For folks unfamiliar with the concept of “radiofrequency spectrum,” it wasn’t easy to comprehend what the heck the “D block” was and why it was so important for public safety.  Think of spectrum like highways – some are wider than others, some are better paved, some have more traffic, some are more direct, etc.  But…

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Sandy

Unfortunately, Sandy, the Hurricane turned Superstorm, has become yet another large-scale disaster, with ongoing effects for the foreseeable future. During my tenure at the FCC, I had the opportunity to serve a role in the federal National Response Framework (specifically, Emergency Support Function #2 – Communications).  Throughout my career, including my current position with APCO, I…

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Time to Innovate

Public safety communications technology is advancing in ways that will completely transform emergency response.  The decades-old networks first responders and PSAPs now use – land mobile radio, 9-1-1, and emergency alert systems – are catching up to the modern, IP-based technologies that we as consumers enjoy every day.  The consumer marketplace is flooded with smart…

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A Great Start

In another milestone on our way to achieving an advanced, nationwide interoperable, wireless public safety broadband network, the newly constituted FirstNet Board held its inaugural meeting last week in Washington, DC.  To see the four public safety representatives assembled with the rest of the highly qualified board members, further joined by the U.S. Acting Secretary…

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Time to Roll Up Our Sleeves

Coming off a spectacular annual conference that included a Cabinet member, Acting Secretary of Commerce Dr. Rebecca Blank, announcing at our opening general session the public safety, state and local government, and private sector appointments to the FirstNet board, we all now need to get to work. Let me emphasize the talent of this board.…

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A terrific line-up for conference

While I’ve been a guest at APCO’s Annual Conferences in the past, this is the first year I’m on the “inside” and it’s been a terrific experience thus far.  I’m especially excited with the sessions that our Government Relations team has set up.  Not only do we have a number of highly esteemed government officials…

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