Progress to date in its implementation.

Submitted by Norm Roulet on Mon, 10/11/2004 - 03:24.

7) Progress to date in its implementation.

We've made great progress at all levels required for success. We've conducted deep research at many levels. We've assembled the world's best team to get the job done. We've leveraged global resources and begun deploying solutions. We've begun introducing the solutions into the community. And we are assembling champions to adopt the solutions and succeed here with them.


<>Specifically, for over a decade, I’ve been involved in economic development and entrepreneurial enterprises in numerous cities across America. I’ve attended 100s of economic development and entrepreneurship meetings in Northeast Ohio and elsewhere and I’ve analyzed the physical and Internet effectiveness of each of these events, their hosting organizations, and many other economic development organizations (CWRU puts the number in NEO at over 600). Other local team members are expert in these issues, with different important insight.

Over the past three years, I’ve conducted comparative analyses of economic development information technology effectiveness in the 50 largest cities in America, including Cleveland (and, 2nd tier, Akron and Toledo), Columbus and Cincinnati, in Ohio, to determine there is a need for REALNEO capabilities in all these regions. I’ve found there are best practices in some regions that should be embraced here and integrated into the REALNEO implementation strategy, which is occurring.

To develop solutions here, over the past year, I have explored dozens of social networks and various content management systems (CMS) worldwide. I’ve identified global experts in these technologies, and I’ve developed relationships with the leaders and brought them on board the REALNEO development team.

Over the past ten months, I’ve discussed with a range of NEO community and business leaders the need for REALNEO, and implementation strategies, and I have identified a core set of interested regional leaders prepared to champion the initiative, and other leaders prepared to embrace this and help implement.

Over the past three months, I’ve analyzed various closed and open code/source technology solutions supporting social network development, content management, rich Internet applications, media management, and pursued “suites� supporting all these needs. I’ve concluded the closed source world does not fit with these need, nor does it provide compelling strategies and solutions – I’ve identified dominant solutions in the open code world and have built the team to build a suite meeting the range of needs to be met with REALNEO forever.

I have identified world-leading experts in these technologies who, when integrated together, provide an optimal suite solution… using open source code. I am working with PeopleAggregator social network project champion Marc Canter (San Francisco, CA), and Drupal CMS project champion Boris Mann (Vancouver, BC),

We're also working with and exploring FOAFnet (open source Friend of a friend standard), Open Media (open source rich media management), ID Commons (open source personal information standard), Creative Commons (open source copy right standards) and Laszlo Systems (open source rich Internet application pioneers) to build this optimal solution first and foremost in and for Regional Economics Action Links for North East Ohio – REALNEO. Everyone in the IT world who are involved with developing REALNEO are very excited by this project, which brings world-class to our world.

With the support of this team and local champions, and the remarkably talented Bryght team, we’ve launched a REALNEO Drupal development site at, where we are working through taxonomies, tools, configurations, processes, user interfaces, and overall integration and implementation. This Drupal site is already functional and populated, and will be best-in-class in every way within a month. Feel free to register and further the dialogue of the future.

It will take continuous improvement to complete the optimal suite implementation, at which point it will be the state of the art in every way. Throughout TQI, the site will enhance the regional economic development community and its value in the region every day along the way.

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