3 Jun 1999
DALLAS - Media Fusion, a new high-tech company in Dallas, promises to be the last-mile solution sought by the federal government by delivering premium-quality Internet, voice and video data to schools, households and businesses via the most extensive technological platform in existence - the electrical power grid.
The privately held company, founded in 1998 by acclaimed scientist William “Luke” Stewart and Dallas entrepreneur Edwin G. Blair, is poised to offer the last-mile solution mandated by Section 706 of the U.S. Telecommunications Act of 1996 at incredible savings to American taxpayers and other end-users. Media Fusion's proprietary technology uses the vast electrical power grid to transmit communications signals at near-light speed, eliminating the need for huge public funding to equip schools and other underserved areas with expensive infrastructure.
Anyone with a simple electrical outlet will be able to plug into unlimited telephone, television and Internet services.
“Their plans include a mere, small device that plugs into every socket,” U.S. Congressman Billy Tauzin, chairman of the House Commerce Telecommunications Subcommittee, told a crowd of the nation's most influential telecom, Internet and electronic commerce companies and investors during a March 11 speech in Washington, D.C. “You can simply connect your television, your telephone, your PC to them, and immediately get those services under this system.”
In recent weeks, Media Fusion has met with Congressman Tauzin and others on Capitol Hill who are interested in the company's potential to deliver instant, low-cost access to advanced communications via the electrical grid. In fact, Congressman Tauzin has invited Media Fusion to testify before his Telecommunications Subcommittee during hearings tentatively scheduled for early fall.
“This kind of technology could dramatically affect the kind of policy we make on broadband and how we deal with critical information in the future,” Congressman Tauzin said during the May 11 meeting of his telecommunications subcommittee, referring to regulation of broadband communications.
Mr. Blair, Media Fusion's president and chief executive officer, said his company's technology is the long-sought answer to solving power line communications.
“Because the electrical grid is the world's most extensive and well-maintained technological network, it is the perfect global communications platform,” said Mr. Blair, whose business background includes building innovative petroleum, aviation and advanced service companies.
The company's technology is the brainchild of Mr. Stewart, whose expertise with signal processing, microwave technologies, supercomputing and neural networks has contributed to numerous U.S. military defense projects and advanced private sector innovations. Mr. Stewart was one of the original independent software developers on the Microsoft team that designed many software applications and innovations, including tools for expert systems and advanced data sorting.
The implications of Media Fusion's technology for computers, computing and communications are staggering, he said.
“We are developing a system with near-limitless capacity that will increase data transfer rates to the exobit region,” Mr. Stewart said. “With these incredible transmission capabilities, you'll also see dramatic advances in hardware and software products that will further facilitate operating speeds for computers and computing - including the way computers talk to each other and share work with each other.”
Unlike prior power line communications efforts, Media Fusion's proprietary technology solves the problems of line noise, electrical load imbalances and transformer interference by embedding signals on the electrical current's magnetic wave. This process, Advanced Sub-Carrier Modulation,™ writes data within the electrical magnetic wave using proprietary software and hardware, empowering the electrical grid to carry phone, radio, video, Internet and satellite data at near light speed.
Media Fusion is developing user-friendly, portable outlet connectors that will enable phones, televisions and computers to communicate on the electrical grid as a single, low-cost source of premium-quality voice, video and computer data. The total package for an average household is expected to retail for under $60.
In addition to Mr. Blair and Mr. Stewart, the Media Fusion team includes Ret. U.S. Navy Rear Admiral James J. Carey, who serves as the company's director of government relations in Washington, D.C. Adml. Carey, one-time commander of the nation's largest Naval Readiness Command and former CEO of the U.S. Federal Maritime Commission, has dealt with some of the world's most sophisticated communications technologies during his career.
“Media Fusion's technology will revolutionize the computing and computer industries and set the standard for the next century,” Adml. Carey said.
Ret. U.S. Air Force Major General Edward J. Philbin recently joined Media Fusion as executive director of Media Fusion Technologies, the company's facility at NASA's Stennis Space Center in Mississippi. He has served in various Defense Department roles, with three presidential appointments requiring Senate confirmation.
Tom Brunner, former vice president of SBC (Southwestern Bell Corp.) in Texas, is Media Fusion's vice president of business development. At SBC, Mr. Brunner initiated highly successful custom-calling, line-marketing and sales campaigns. He also was heavily involved with rate and regulatory activity in Texas and Missouri. More recently, he was CEO of Intelihome Inc., which he successfully merged with Global Converging Technologies.
Katherine C. Scoggins, a former international infrastructure development consultant for the Texas Information Development Commission, is Media Fusion's vice president of corporate communications. At the World Bank from 1994 to 1997, she was responsible for coordinating seminars for officials in developing nations on subjects ranging from spectrum auctions to regulatory reform following utility privatization.