NMU Internet & TV Technology Boosts

It’s an important day for high-tech improvements at Northern Michigan University.

Federal officials have just given NMU a license for what’s called Educational Broadband Service.

It’s a frequency of Internet signal set aside only for learning purposes, and NMU’s will support next-generation WiMAX high-speed Internet connections.

NMU president Dr. Les Wong says that’ll allow the school to reach students who can’t physically get to the campus, a big help considering some areas of the U.P. still don’t have broadband Internet service available yet.

WNMU-TV, Public TV 13, has also received a nearly $650,000 grant. It’ll finish their effort to convert their TV signal to digital.

That should save money for the station.

Digital signals don’t require as much energy to transmit as analog ones.

due to energy efficiency.

The conversion will also give the station the ability to send 3 channels of TV to viewers rather than just 1.

More picture and sound can be compressed into a digital channel than an analog channel.

It’s not clear yet what those 2 extra digital channels will carry, but Public TV 13 general manager Eric Smith says they’ll likely involve NMU course materials in some way.