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Joan and Irwin Jacobs provide support for expanding public wireless access in Balboa Park

The Joan and Irwin Jacobs Fund of the Jewish Community Foundation has contributed $100,000 to the Balboa Park On- line Collaborative (BPOC) for its wireless network infrastructure project in Balboa Park.

The funds will be used for the

hardware and labor cost involved with building a pervasive public wireless network throughout the central Balboa Park campus, where the vast majority of the Park’s museums and other cul- tural institutions are located. WiFi access will be free for San Diego residents and tourists, enriching their Park experience and con- necting them to the Park’s cultural institutions, visitor resources, and each other. “We see this as a strategic investment to significantly enhance the visitor experience in Balboa Park,” said Dr. Irwin Jacobs, co-founder of Qualcomm Incorpo- rated, pioneer and world leader of Code Division Multiple Access digital wireless technology. Since Qualcomm’s founding just over 25 years ago, the mobile phone first used only for voice communications has become an extraordinarily powerful mobile computer supported by wireless broadband communications—the


in the park, and users can also search area restaurants. “The portal

is already attracting more than 6,000 visits per month from people using iPhones, iPods, and iPads. We expect that this

largest information platform in the history of humankind,” Dr. Jacobs said. “It’s exciting to think about the applications of mobile technol- ogy that can now take place in Balboa Park, our city’s jewel.” BPOC currently provides public

wireless Internet access in six locations in Balboa Park. With the support from the Jacobs Fund, BPOC will continue to build public wireless hot spots throughout 2011 and 2012, with the intent of hav- ing more than 250 access points deployed by fall of 2012. This initia- tive complements BPOC’s recently completed project to connect 14 buildings in the Park through high- speed fiber optic cable. “This generous donation from the Jacobs family is an important component to our effort to make Balboa Park a relevant and excit- ing destination for 21st century visitors,” said Rich Cherry, BPOC director. “Dr. Jacobs’ example as an

entrepreneur, innovator and phi- lanthropist adds tremendous value to the San Diego region. I am so grateful for Joan and Irwin’s sup- port of the local arts community, and particularly in Balboa Park, as we strive to meet the changing expectations of our audiences,” Cherry said.u

number will continue to rise,” said Rich Cherry, BPOC’s direc- tor. “The app makes it easier for people to not only find what they’re looking for, but also to find related events in the park that they might not have found otherwise.”

The app is available from Apple’s App Store on iPhone, iPod touch, and iPad.u

San Diego Uptown News | April 29–May 12, 2011


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