Article by Jacques Latour on how an IX is changing the lives of the residents of a remote town in Northern Canada.
Building, not just bringing, the internet in Iqaluit
The improvements to internet speed, quality and security in Iqaluit could be greater, and more concrete to the general population, than in any other community where we’ve worked on IXPs before.
Chief Technology Officer, CIRA
Over the last few years, I have been involved in setting up Internet Exchange Points in cities from Vancouver to Charlottetown. In each case, I’ve worked with stakeholders – ISPs, content providers, local technical experts – who were looking to make their local internet more resilient and better performing. But none of those initiatives prepared me for my recent visit to Iqaluit to kick off discussions about an IXP in that community.
I think it’s fair to say that complaining about your internet provider is practically a national sport in Canada. But Nunavut residents have truly earned that right.
As I wrote about last week, the speed and performance of the internet in Iqaluit is incomprehensible for most Canadians. As a result, the improvements to internet speed, quality and security here could be greater, and more concrete to the general population, than in any other community where we’ve worked on IXPs before.
Given all this, it was no real surprise that our first information session and subsequent meetings with stakeholders in the community were a huge success.
So why is the internet so bad in Iqaluit?
In the spring, I blogged about how an IXP could work in a satellite-only community, and I received some good feedback from readers. Since then, we’ve refined the technical implementation, and after some discussions with stakeholders last week, we’re well on our way to what the solution can look like.
Read the full article at cira.ca