that new technologies tend to flow first to urban areas.

"As governor, I want the education, economic development and health-care opportunities to be as equally apportioned as possible," he said. "Not every community is going to be the same. It rides on local leadership and local effort, but we do want to give people incentives for their own communities because we find a lot of pride in rural areas as well as in cities."

Perdue believes rural areas have a bounty of benefits that urban areas with their airports, nightlife and major league baseball teams can't match. If they have broadband access, wireless or not, he said, they will hold their own in the 21st-century economy. "The future demands that we are all connected to the world through a wireless or wired portal."

With this initiative, Georgia could become one of the first states to discover what happens to its economy, education and government when urban and rural communities link up to the world.

Tod Newcombe  |  Contributing Editor