digital

Esther Honig / KCUR

Libraries have long been a place where new technologies can be seen and interacted with for the first time. In the 1980s, it was the personal computer. In the 1990s, the World Wide Web. Now, 3-D printers are becoming increasingly available in libraries across the country, and they are part of the transformation of the role of the institution. 

Laura Spencer / KCUR

Walt Disney opened his first animation studio, Laugh-O-Gram, on the second floor of a red-brick building near 31st and Troost in Kansas City, Mo. The business folded in 1923, and the building, due to deteriorating conditions, was almost torn down about a decade ago.

But now, plans are underway for the site to return as a center for animation, but one for the 21st century. This includes digital storytelling, experimental animation training labs, and a theater to showcase new work – as well as an upgrade, so the building is sustainable.

You can post just about anything you want on the internet, but when it comes to e-commerce, the online world is dominated by a few major players.

On Wednesday's Up to Date, we examine the corporate giants that control the online marketplace and discuss how consumers might revolt against their monopolies.

Guest: 

You know you’re a Kansas City techie when “@KCUR wants to know.”

That’s how Kansas City Startup Village (Twitter: @KCSV) filled in the blank on Twitter when we asked our listeners and followers on social media to complete this sentence: You know you’re a Kansas City techie when …

Courtesy / EyeVerify

The Kansas City metro area has become home to numerous tech startups over the last few years, in part because of  Google Fiber, but also because low rental prices and large cutting-edge tech companies that call the city home.

Out of his single floor office space in Kansas City's startup village on 45th and Stateline, in Kansas City, Kan., Toby Rush gives a demo of the mobile phone application he’s developing, and it is like something out of a spy movie.

Courtesy / Connecting for Good

While Google has cast a spotlight on Kansas City that has the country excited about high speed internet, like most cities around the country, access is not equally available.

Internet activists believe that the arrival of Google Fiber has highlighted the so-called digital divide. But Google says it wants to work with the communities and organizations involved in bridging the gap.

Digital training, a life necessity 

Sylvia Maria Gross / KCUR

Long before Google Fiber arrived in 2011, Kansas City has had a thriving technology sector, with cutting-edge companies like Cerner, Garmin and Sprint (whose roots go back to 1899 in Abilene, Kan.). Many of these companies have spawned other technology startups, which you can see on this impressive KC tech genealogy map.

Laura Ziegler

One Million Cups, a weekly showcase and get-together for Kansas City's startup community, a has become the place to be and be seen. Every Wednesday morning at 9 a.m., the Ewing Marion Kauffman Foundation opens its doors, puts on coffee, and some weeks, welcomes as many as 400.

Last week, a few of the regular entrepreneurs, Brendan Reilly, Jonny Kot and George Brooks, join others hovering around the Kauffman Foundation’s long coffee bar before presentations begin. Engrossed in excited conversations, they trade twitter handles and the occasional business card.

The Greater Kansas City Community Foundation Wednesday afternoon announced it would manage a fund aimed at bridging the digital divide in Kansas City.

Recent studies of digital literacy in Kansas City have shown a quarter of our residents don’t have broadband at home.  Seventeen percent don’t use the internet at all.

Wednesday’s announcement of the Kansas City Digital Inclusion Fund is aimed at raising those percentages.

Chris Samuel / Flickr -- Creative Commons

Right now our government is mining data about your conversations--who you called, when you called them, how long you talked, and who you’ve emailed. It’s all technically approved by law, but for many it’s deeply unsettling.

On this Central Standard we take a step backward and inward from the controversy surrounding domestic surveillance and look at the psychology of secrets and privacy with psychologist Bruce Liese.

Sylvia Maria Gross / KCUR

Google announced yesterday that it’s building a new high-speed fiber-optic network -- this time in Austin, Texas. It’s been two years since the company announced it would build its first fiber-optic network here in Kansas City, and many residents hoped it would be everywhere by now.

Planning for the network has Kansas Citians rethinking the future of many aspects of life and business here.

Ground Zero for Google Fiber

jimmywayne / Flickr

Republican leaders in the Missouri House are promising to fast track legislation that would forbid the state from scanning and storing documents of residents who apply for conceal-carry endorsements. 

Some GOP lawmakers have accused the state agency of forwarding copies of conceal-carry applications and other documents to the federal Homeland Security department. 

House Speaker Tim Jones says he’s disturbed by the allegations.

Google

The deadline to pre-register for Google Fiber, what Google is calling their new super-fast internet service, came to a close September 9th.

Suzanne Hogan / KCUR

Studies from Google indicated that 42 percent of lower income areas in Kansas City don’t have access to internet.

Kansas City leaders were thrilled when they beat out 11,000 other cities for something called Google Fiber.  Now residents are competing to bring the blazing fast internet service to their neighborhood first. 

bigstock.com

Updated June 27, 2012 12:00pm:  Google has rejected Connecting for Good's wifi plan for Rosedale, according to Michael Liimatta.  He was told the idea is "not in their current licensing agreements."  Liimatta says he's still moving forward with the plan for an e-community center.

Google has promised Kansas City speed-of-light internet. The potential for residents, businesses, schools and hospitals, we've been told, is enormous.