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TOP's FY2002 Grantees Off to a Great Start
TOP's Fiscal Year 2002 grantees have hit the ground running. Here are some examples:
Community Technology Centers Grants
The Community Technology Centers (CTC) grant program of the United States Department of Education promotes the development of model programs demonstrating the educational effectiveness of technology in urban and rural areas. The program assists eligible applicants in creating or expanding community technology centers that will provide disadvantaged residents of economically distressed urban and rural communities with access to information technology and related training.
This year, the program is emphasizing accountability and outcomes. Grantees will be expected to establish measurable outcomes, use research-based "what works" approaches to program services, supply data on the extent to which outcomes were met, and provide evidence of immediate and long-term impact of program services.
Approximately $15 million in grant awards will be awarded by September 30, 2002. Individual grant awards will range from $75,000 to $300,000. Anyone interested in applying to this program should review section 5511 of the Elementary and Secondary Education Act, as amended by the No Child Left Behind Act of 2001 for more details about the CTC program.
Further information on the upcoming competition is available from the CTC Team at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Portland Launches "Housing Connections"
On May 2, 2002, the City of Portland (a TOP grantee in Fiscal Year 2000) announced the launch of Housing Connections, Portland's state-of-the-art web-based housing system. The project involves a partnership of the City, regional governmental agencies, the housing industry, and advocates for fair and affordable housing.
The website makes current housing information available to anyone with Internet access; in the future, Housing Connections will help develop special community access stations through a partnership with the Housing Authority of Portland. The site is free for landlords who wish to list their units and for anyone to use to search for housing.
Housing Connections brings the concept of one-stop-shopping via the Internet to Portland's complex housing market. The project creates a single access point for the region's numerous housing opportunities, including over 10,000 rental units offered by four County housing authorities, dozens of property management firms, and hundreds of private landlords, in addition to affordable homes for sale.
The City of Portland provided web architecture and site design for the project. The May 2nd launch of Housing Connections is the first phase of the project, the Housing Locator, which provides a custom search engine and web platform hosting the region's inventory of affordable housing. Phases 2 and 3 will go online within a year and will add a Housing Problem Solver to help people find needed services and shelters and a Housing Connector, which will enable users to apply for housing and services online.
The East Palo Alto Community Network
The East Palo Alto Digital Village, PluggedIn, and key sponsors Hewlett-Packard, Microsoft Corporation, and the Technology Opportunties Program, inaugurated the East Palo Alto Community Network. The Community Network consists of an online community resource center and a number of conveniently located Technology Access Points (TAPs), where residents can use technology to further their individual and community goals.
The Mother of All Online Glossaries
Incorporating terms and definitions from telephony, National Security/Emergency Preparedness, National Information Infrastructure, radio communications, television, "intelligent networks," and data
processing, among others, the glossary provides "a uniform,
up-to-date set of definitions for the general terminology used in telecommunications."
Online Tech Glossary in Spanish
WorldCom's Tecnoguía website is an online, searchable Spanish and English glossary featuring more than 1,000 frequently-used high-tech and Internet-related terms.
Developed in cooperation with the Tomás Rivera Policy Institute, this web-based resource will help users to overcome existing language barriers with easy to understand definitions and translations of terms frequently used in the Information Age.
The Tecnoguía, which literally means "techno-guide," makes it easier and more enjoyable to navegar por la red (surf the Internet), conversar por la red (chat online), descargar archivos (download files), or enviar un mensaje electrónico (send e-mail).Return to Top
Digital Village Grant Program
Hewlett-Packard has announced a new grant program! Digital Village will help underserved communities across the United States fulfill their aspirations for participation in the digital age. Three U.S. communities will be selected to work with Hewlett-Packard to develop a three year community technology partnership plan.
H-P's Digital Village program will give five million dollars to each of the three communities to pay for equipment and technical assistance, including planning and staff support, over a three year period. The community of East Palo Alto, California (home to TOP's grantee Plugged In) will be the first participant in the Digital Village Program.
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Fill in Government Forms Electronically
Surfer software allows you to take selected government form files and
fill them out immediately, right on your computer. The filled form
can then be printed or emailed, and can also be saved with the data
To download the software, go to the
GSA Fillform website. Once you have downloaded Surfer, close your
browser and run the installation file. Installation takes about a minute.
Now, whenever you want to fill in one of those pesky SF-424As or generate a new SF-424, simply go to the Fillform website, log in, and open the form. Surfer will automatically load itself and then open the form for you. From here, you can immediately start filling in data. What you see onscreen looks exactly like a closeup of the form, but works pretty much like a spreadsheet; totals are computed automatically.
For TOP grantees wishing to amend their project budgets, this means
that you can fill out an amended SF-424A and email it to your program
officer and get feedback right away.
The process of downloading the software, installing it, and generating your first form takes about 10 minutes. Check it out. Not every form used by TOP is available, but the list will probably expand as more users take advantage of the service. Surfer is a product of Intercon Associates Inc.
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