Connect Philly: tool to locate free wireless hotspots in Philadelphia launched by Technically Philly

Find the nearest free wireless internet hotspot in Philadelphia by using Connect Philly, a new mapping and text message tool we at Technically Philly released last week.

The tool, which can also be reached by ph.ly/connect,

The tool, which is meant to be a part of the digital access conversation, was unveiled formally with an event in City Hall, featuring Mayor Nutter and a panel discussion I moderated on improving access and literacy online for low-income Philadelphians.

Conceived by my colleague Brian James Kirk, who was helped by developer Jim Smiley, Connect Philly followed coverage sponsored by JLab and was sponsored by the Knight Foundation, in addition to data partnerships with Freedom Rings, PlanPhilly, the Free Library and others.

The Inquirer, KYW and others covered the tool’s launch.

It should be added that I was particularly proud of my colleague Brian James Kirk, who conceived of the project, brought together a data set despite push back from multiple sources and put together the event. He’s a star, what a journalist should look like today.