Alaska

The FCC approved Alaska's plan to connect rural communities to the Internet through local schools or libraries. Communities will use a fairly inexpensive system to allow home telephone lines to connect to a school or library's Internet system, giving people Internet connections at home. -- The Fairbanks Daily News-Miner

Arizona

The University of Arizona Library has begun work the on the "Arizona Electronic Atlas," a Web-based, interactive state atlas that will allow visitors to create GIS maps using a variety of state and federal information, including roads, county boundaries, cities, rivers, etc. Additional information, including data on population and housing, economic statistics, vital statistics, vegetation, land ownership, geology, environment, voting, education and crime will be available to users in the future.

Hawaii

The Hawaii Department of Transportation planned to begin a Photo Enforcement Demonstration Project in December. The project issues citations for red light runners at intersections and speeding vehicles on Hawaii's highways. PhotoLaser speed detection and high-speed digital cameras will electronically capture images of vehicles that violate the law.

Illinois

The Illinois Department of Human Services was awarded $2.25 million from the U.S. Department of Education to establish the TechConnect Low Interest Loan Program. The program will help Illinois residents with disabilities who are not eligible for traditional loans to purchase assistive technologies. Assistive technologies include wheelchairs, ramps, magnifiers, specialized computers, etc.

Kentucky

Patients in rural Kentucky can now see doctors miles away at major medical centers using the Kentucky Telehealth Network. The network, which was demonstrated in November, combines the resources of the medical centers at the universities of Kentucky and Louisville and top medical facilities throughout the state. -- Lexington Herald-Leader

Maryland

Public safety officials in Maryland will soon be able to quickly access and share critical information en route to and at the scene of incidents using Aether's handheld mobile law enforcement product, PocketBlue. The device uses wireless messaging and interfaces to the state criminal justice information system.

North Dakota

High-risk sex offenders are easier to keep track of in North Dakota using its new Web site . The site lists information about the most dangerous registered sex offenders in the state, including last known addresses, descriptions of their crimes and mug shots. -- The Forum

Ohio

Butler County, Ohio, will install a fiber optic network connecting businesses and government within the county. The network will include a 96-strand fiber backbone linking the cities of Hamilton, Middletown, Fairfield and West Chester. A secondary 24-strand fiber loop will follow Ohio State Route 4 connecting Hamilton and Middletown.

Texas

The Texas Center for Policy Studies and Environmental Defense, a national organization, launched a Web site in December that draws an environmental profile of each Texas county and ranks them according to the pollution they generate. The Texas Environmental Profiles Web site includes information such as local air pollution sources and levels, water usage, water quality, etc. -- Houston Chronicle

Virginia

State agencies in Virginia are having an easier time dealing with viruses now that the state is using Vigilinx' IntelliSHIELD security intelligence service. Virus alerts are customized to user hardware and software platforms, and are available via e-mail and/or pager. Alert content can be tailored to IT staff, security managers or executives.