LoneEagleLogosmall.jpg (2622 bytes)

 Click Home


 Creating People-Centered Community Knowledge Networks


To survive in a world of accelerating change, all rural communities must quickly learn how to effectively create community learning programs to keep as many citizens as possible up-to-date on that new knowledge which creates new opportunities - on an ongoing basis. Community learning programs can start with something as simple as "live" online presentations of the best replicable innovations from other communities. As more new knowledge is put online for convenient access by the community, common sense use of appropriate knowledge sharing tools can have a dramatic impact by providing a means for everyone to contribute to keeping the whole community informed. In the knowledge age, fueled by an innovation economy, the quality of our community knowledge networks will determine the adaptability and survivability of our rural communities.


Inexpensive community knowledge networks are one easy way that everyone can work together to gather and share that new knowledge which creates new opportunities.  Below are recommended first steps that do not require outside funding. As citizens and community leaders become aware of the replicable innovations already working in other communities, as included in the self-quiz and web tour below, the benefits for supporting ongoing community learning will become clearer. At issue is nothing less than preservation of our cherished rural lifestyle.


The following very short non-technical self-quiz on community "smartness" is recommended as a first group activity for community leaders. Consider "What’s the best your rural community can do for itself based on new knowledge of the best successful innovations already working for other communities?"  As you review the suggested innovations below, make a list of which innovations make sense for your community and consider the potential benefits of routinely gathering and sharing the best innovations from other communities as they emerge, on an ongoing basis. At the very least your community can save hundreds of hours by simply borrowing the gathered links from other community sites.

Following the quiz is a short web tour of examples of great community knowledge networking innovations, and a recommended reading list to better understand what your community can create, even without grant funds. You'll find extensive community planning resources such as community action plans written as grant templates, K12 community service projects, and many more useful resources. Lone Eagle Consulting provides all the following resources for unrestricted use to support creation of more lone eagles and sustainable rural communities.

Creating community learning programs is everyone's responsibility and our challenge is that we have so many diverse communities within each community that could, and should, be players: K12, Higher Education, elected community leaders, unofficial community leaders, business leaders, parents, youth, disabled, faith-based organizations, non-profit organizations, etc. Each "community within the community" has their own agenda and typically none of them are yet focused on Internet empowerment or community learning. Each such community needs to understand how they will benefit by supporting a community knowledge network that integrates knowledge sharing across our "community of communities."  

See the Additional Resources at: http://lone-eagles.com/future-proofing.htm 


Just How Smart IS Your Rural Community?

Here’s a Self-Quiz:


1. ___Y/N    Do You Already Have Local Web Business Directories online? If not, create one!

Are all local business web sites listed on one web page to support local online shopping and to generate awareness as to which local businesses are now doing business on the Internet?

Dillon, Montana

http://lone-eagles.com/dillon.htm  A 2001 article appeared on the front page of the San Jose Mercury News on the future potential of broadband for Dillon. A simple web directory of Dillon's businesses with a web presence is included along with articles and other resources on the potential that has yet to be realized in 2012.

Caithness, Scotland

An exceptional model of a community web site that is well maintained. This community makes sure all local businesses receive help establishing an ecommerce web page and that new information appears daily. A review of the diverse array of information reveals that this community truly "owns" the responsibility to make this site a true reflection of the community's spirit and citizenry.  See the Scottish Telework success story video at http://youtube.com/fodasz 


Joseph, Oregon business directory


A database is one way of presenting a business directory but this model doesn't lend itself to convenient browsing and it can be tedious to shop around town.

2.  ___Y/N   Do You Already Have Local Events and the Local Media Engaged Raising Ecommerce

  Does your local media regularly celebrate local Ecommerce success stories,
            - or are they ignored

Post online videos of local entrepreneurs, ecommerce successes,
Examples from Idaho, Alaska, etc.: http://youtube.com/fodasz


Create a mentors roster online to help match those with skills with those eager to learn.
Example from McGrath, AK: http://lone-eagles.com/mentorsurvey.htm

Host frequent local, web-raising events where all participants will create a sustainable
free ecommerce website in less than one hour.

   Web Raisings: 30 second videos 

    Citizen and youth created Ecommerce sites:

    Short Awareness-Raising Event Models


     Rural Grant Templates

3. ___Y/N   Do You Already Have Local Peer Mentoring Programs?

Are local experts and community mentors celebrated for the value they bring to the community and engaged in local peer mentoring programs?

A simple model for a local mentors roster. While this national mentors site is dedicated to K12 students and educators, this serves as a simple mentoring model any community could easily use to connect those with specific skills with those needing friendly mentorship to attain new skills. Mentors should be listed both by topic and by name, and by free mentoring offered and/or for-profit mentoring services. Mentoring resources http://lone-eagles.com/mentoring.htm  A community mentoring program is described at http://lone-eagles.com/miramodel.htm  http://lone-eagles.com/mentoring-mission.htm

Models for peer to peer mentoring are popping up all over: See http://diyubook.com and http://p2pu.org

4. ___Y/N   Do You Have a Local Innovations Incubator?

                    A Model for a Montana Innovations Incubator


Broadband Adoption and Digital Inclusion Services

Montana Center for Sustainable Families

5.___Y/N  Do You Already Provide Accessible Ecommerce Training?  

Are entry-level Ecommerce education training opportunities (such as eBay) and peer mentoring programs readily available online in your community?


A Beginner's Guide to Profiting from the Internet

A train-the-trainers program to support local peer mentoring programs with ten two-hour hands-on lessons to raise awareness on "what's working for others like you." Lesson one includes an overview listing of many other Ecommerce online courses and resources. Provided through the Idaho State University College of Technology Workforce Training Office, this course is being used in Idaho and for the "Montana Choice" project described at http://lone-eagles.com/montana-choice.htm

NEW 2011: 21st Century Workforce Readiness Academy http://lone-eagles.com/workforce101.htm

Lone Eagle Online Curriculums 


6. ___Y/N  Do You Already Have Ongoing Access to the Best Innovations as They

          Are successful innovations from other rural communities readily gathered and
          shared regionally by any means?   If not, inquire on newest social media solutions.

Community Networking Resources Clearinghouse


Community Network Models - A Short Web Tour

The following short web tour begins with an article describing the most common four types of community networking and  leads you to a limited number of excellent examples of innovations to consider for your community.


The Four Levels of Community Networking

A short article detailing successively more elaborate community networking models from simple informational pages to fully integrated use of diverse content creation and collaboration tools.


Joseph, Oregon

A very nice basic informational web site. While nicely designed and rich with community information, this site might be maintained by one person, leaving in question whether citizens are using their community network for collaboration beyond these general postings.


Joseph, Oregon business directory


A database is one way of presenting a business directory but this model doesn't lend itself to convenient browsing and it can be tedious to shop around town.


Joseph, Oregon panoramas


A wonderful example of an innovation to promote the local beauty.

Free software is available to create panoramas and they are easy to make.


Bethel, Alaska

Citizens regularly share their news on this regional community network. One can quickly see than many citizens are directly involved in regularly generating local news for this community information site. Bethel is the hub community for 28 small Alaskan Native villages. All have high speed Internet and 2-way video capabilities.


Caithness, Scotland

An exceptional model of a community web site that is well maintained. This site is based on open source content management software and shows lots of regularly updated content. This community makes sure all local businesses receive help establishing an ecommerce web page and that new information appears daily. A review of the diverse array of information reveals that this community truly "owns" the responsibility to make this site a true reflection of the community's spirit and citizenry.


Outer Hebrides Islands, Scotland Telework Success Story

Donnie Morrison, a grassroots champion of the Outer Hebrides Islands in Northern Scotland, saw dwindling populations in his regional communities. Young people were moving away, schools were losing students, the local economies were dying. Donnie was successful bringing high speed Internet to his communities and high-paying telework jobs, and today the communities are once again healthy and growing. By Donnie's own report, his most successful innovation and key to his success was his creation of a community skills registry database.


Sustainable Ecommerce Entrepreneurship Development Strategies (SEEDS)
A major community grant template model which can be conducted without outside funding.

Within a three-six month period, this intergenerational initiative will create the most significant measurable outcomes possible regarding new skills imparted to a specific number of citizens, new self-employment businesses, new web sites for existing business, and a community co-marketing initiative of all businesses plus a rapidly growing skills registry of the citizen’s new skills to be co-marketed regarding telework jobs.


Community Networking Self-Study Reading List: 

The following recommended readings are for those who wish to better understand the tangible benefits and measurable outcomes from community knowledge networks.

What is Community Networking; And Why You Should Care
Many related links are listed in Community Technology Review

The Power of All of Us
Published in the Community Technology Review, January 2005. A primer on the potential of community knowledge networks.

The Four Levels of Community Networking
Includes collected resources from the Dec. '03 National Community Networking Conference  held in Austin, Texas is recommended reading. 

Community Networking Primer
A good first article on the practical function and applications of community networks.
Written for AT&T's 1996 Community Guide. This is chapter one from

The Good Neighbor's Guide to Community Networking
http://lone-eagles.com/cnguide.htm  Eleven chapters, including a bibliography of guides.

Reinventing Community Networks as Economic Development Solutions

The Future of Community Development;
Making the Living You Want, Living Wherever You Want
Written for a book on rural community development to be published
by TechnoPress "Future Courses; A Compendium of Thought about Education,
Technology and the Future.

The New Gold Rush; Are You Ready?
http://lone-eagles.com/mining.htm   Part II: http://lone-eagles.com/goldrush.htm
Themes from the Frontier of Rural Community Development, written for the
Journal of Municipal Telecommunication Policy, March 2001

Making the Missing Connections…
A Wake-up Call Regarding True Community Internet Empowerment

A realistic view of issues to be considered when implementing community projects.

An Executive Overview for Project Planners on the Hard Questions
for Community Internet Empowerment

A hard look at what's not obvious for planning a successful community project.

Community Networking Best Practices and Global Citizenship:
A Knowledge Management Trend Report


Spring 2006 CTC VISTA Digest http://www.cpcs.umb.edu/vista/digest/

Peer-to-Peer Social Networking; The Next Big Thing

Empowering Americans: CTC VISTAs in Community Networking

Past article: What is Community Networking; And Why You Should Care
http://www.comtechreview.org/fall-2005/000347.html  Many related links are listed in the overall publication.

The Power of All of Us? — The eBay Lesson for Community Development


Nationally Published Rural Broadband Articles by Frank Odasz


The Rural Broadband Challenge: Use IT!



Wanted: Broadband and Broader Minds  (See the Navajo Youth Chocolate Success Story)



What's Broadband Done for You, Lately? A Primer on What IS Broadband.



Health I.T, Rural Broadband, and Common Sense


Combining connectivity and caring with common sense to produce the authenticity of widespread citizen engagement is where the promise of broadband best meets rural needs.

          Native Broadband Training Best Practices

        The FCC Lone Eagle Broadband Training Best Practices Web Site

        U.S. Federal Communications Commission's Native American Division has posted broadband training
        best practices
http://lone-eagles.com/best.htm on their www.fcc.gov/indians site
        (listed as Examples of Broadband Training Best Practices) in their Internet Resources


National and International Community Networking Resources

Community Technology Review magazine: See the Community Networking section
the article "What is Community Networking and Why You Should Care!"


Community Networking Clearinghouse

You can continue your tour of community knowledge network innovations indefinitely through this extensive listing of international community networks and related resources.


Association for Community Networking

Expertise and resources on community networking.


The Community Inquiry Lab

An easy-to-use, free, community network incubator. A good place to start for those who are unfamiliar with how a community network actually functions using collaborative tools to gather and share new knowledge. A youth project based on use of these community networking tools to create a working model for the community to consider is at http://lone-eagles.com/inquiry.htm   (See also http://inquiry.uiuc.edu  for an educational approach to the use of these "Inquiry Lab" systems.)

Canadian Tribal Community Sites 


A profoundly interesting indigenous community network initiative using open source content management software.


Deer Lake Tribal Site

A model tribal community web site based on open source content management system software, created www.knet.ca

Costs are $300 for installation and a small amount per month.

Community Action Plans

The Bootstrap Academy
Do it yourself! A primer listing of many specific short-term youth-driven community Internet awareness activities.
Includes three online mini-courses for citizens, and models for conducting local web-raisings.

Community Grant Templates

 Lone Eagle Ecommerce Entrepreneurship Grants:

SEEDS - Sustainable Ecommerce Entrepreneurship Development Strategies
A Rural Community Future-Proofing Program
http://lone-eagles.com/seeds.htm   A youth leadership community project written Jan. 2004.


Rural Ecommerce and Telework Incubator Centers

AMIGO - Awareness Mentoring Integrating Group Outcomes

Ecommerce and Telework Incubator Centers
Actual grant written January 2003.
Here's the longer most readable version http://lone-eagles.com/top-expanded.htm
Shorter 9 page submitted version  http://lone-eagles.com/top.htm

Community Bootstrap Project -
Learning to Do for Ourselves; Together!

Please feel free to use in your grants: without restriction.
Boilerplate text for YOUR community networking grant!!

Alpine, Texas Grant Template

Grantwriting Tutorials

Community Network Funding Sources and Grantwriting Tips
http://lone-eagles.com/granthelp.htm Specifically for rural community development.

A Simple Proposal-writing Tutorial http://lone-eagles.com/mira2.htm and an online lesson on grantwriting at http://lone-eagles.com/asdnl8.htm 

Addressing the Ecommerce Equation

Rural Ecommerce and Telework Strategies

A 200 page leadership guide for rural communities with online lessons, community grant templates, and more. This was written January 2002, the new shorter version of the online course suitable for youth is immediately below.


A Beginner's Guide to Profiting from the Internet

Ten two-hour hands-on lessons to see what's working for others like you. Lesson one includes a list of many other Ecommerce online courses and resources. Provided through the Idaho State University College of Technology Workforce Training Office, this course is being used in Idaho and Montana. See also a new course on Essential Internet Ecommerce Skills at

Homesteading the Ecommerce Frontier 
http://lone-eagles.com/ecommerce-homestead.htm  A short article on the real and profound opportunities.

The Idaho Ecommerce Homesteaders' Cooperative
http://lone-eagles.com/montpelier.htm Big possibilities for the small community of Montpelier, Idaho. A story in progress defining how to seed and grow community involvement and capability building by focusing on replicable successes and measurable outcomes. Montpelier successes detailed at  http://lone-eagles.com/montpelier-story.htm

Ecommerce Successes from Idaho
Funded by USDA, this listing of genuine success stories will inspire anyone to reconsider their opportunities.

Alaskan Native and Native American Community Grant Templates

Realizing Cultural and Community Sustainability Through Internet Innovations
in Alaskan Native Villages
A detailed review of strategies for community involvement to produce measurable outcomes.
Many grant templates and online self-directed resources are included in the appendix.


An Alaskan Village Bootstrap Academy


A grant for a six-month intensive community Internet awareness raising program.

An Alaskan Native Model Village Pilot Project
A short term community learning initiative showcasing satellite Internet and wireless for education and Ecommerce.


Alaskan Native Youth Cultural Community-building

http://lone-eagles.com/bartsgrant.htm  A grant template for a comprehensive three-year community Internet empowerment program.


Seventh Generation Community Initiative
 A concept paper for a Native American Community Building Initiative

Culture Club

A youth-driven instructional entrepreneurship program where youth learn-to-earn by demonstrating effective online mentoring and multimedia skills instruction to youth in other cultures. (Native Alaskan, Maori, Hawaiian, and select Native Americans.)

K12 Community Learning Resources

        The following resources are the result of teaching teachers online courses for over 15 years.

Echoes in the Electronic Wind: A Native American Cross-cultural Internet Guide
      http://lone-eagles.com/nativeguide.htm   Same resources as Common Ground,
      (above) but with the addition of over 20 pages of carefully reviewed Native
      American web resources listed by topic.      

Common Ground: A Cross-Cultural Self-Directed Learner's Internet Guide

        http://lone-eagles.com/guide.htm   Created for USAID, AT&T and the ERIC
        clearinghouse. An instructional brokerage resource with emphasis on pointing
        to the best online tutorials, and educational resources, on the Internet for self-
        directed learning. This is the text for the online course below "Making the Best
        Use of Internet for K-12 Instruction."


The Good Neighbor's Guide to Community Networking

http://lone-eagles.com/cnguide.htm Contains 11 Chapters on Ecommerce, youth-based community development, model sites and URLs,

plus a bibliography listing the best community networking guides and resources. 

Online Graduate Courses for Educators

These guides support the following two graduate credit online classes:

       1.  ED 597 4L - Making the Best Use of Internet for K-12

                     Alaska Pacific University Three Semester Credit Version

                      http://lone-eagles.com/asdn1.htm  A hands-on course on
                      how to broker the best resources for your classroom.

       2.   ED A597 6L - Designing K-12 Internet Instruction

                     Alaska Pacific University 3 Semester Credit Version


                      A hands-on course on how to easily create Internet hotlists, web-tours,

                      lessonplans, project-based learning activities (Webquest, Cyberfair,

                      Thinkquest) and complete online courses using online web tools.  


Alaskan Native and Native American Internet Empowerment Resources 

Alaskan K12 Web Innovations http://lone-eagles.com/alaskan.htm 
and Empowerment Resources http://lone-eagles.com/alaskan-resources.htm


Community Internet Empowerment Resources for Alaskan Natives and Native Americans

Alaskan Native and Native American Empowerment Guide

A tribal leadership guide.

Examples of Native American Web Innovations

Twenty pages of exceptional cultural models

Major U.S. Native American Internet Projects


Native American/Alaskan/Hawaiian K12 Innovations Report and Clearinghouse http://lone-eagles.com/native.htm 1999

Lone Eagle Master Listings of Resources for Building Learning Communities

Big Skies and Lone Eagles:
Lending Wings to Others, Online - A Rural Perspective
A 20 page history of Frank Odasz written for an upcoming book as a history of online learning from a rural perspective.  http://lone-eagles.com/history.htm  

An Updated Master listing of articles related to Community Internet Empowerment
The first article is a Authenticating Rural Internet and Broadband Benefits - A Reality Check Written for the Australian Government for national empowerment of all their communities.

An Updated Master Listing of articles related to Indigenous Empowerment

The first article is a chapter which has not yet been published

An Updated Master Listing of articles related to Rural Ecommerce Success Stories
http://lone-eagles.com/connect-idaho.htm  The first article is Rural Ecommerce Successes in Idaho An ongoing collection funded by the USDA through the Rural Development Council of Idaho. See also Two Years of
Montpelier Events Awareness-raising events and ecommerce success stories from the two-year effort to create Idaho’s first community success story - in Montpelier, Idaho.

International Community Networking Clearinghouse

Extensive resources to support further exploration, internationally.


Internet Satellite and Wireless Solutions

Dropping costs and rapidly improving technology advancement puts these options within reach of just about any home and any rural community.

The Big Picture and Key Global Issues

Authenticating Rural Internet and Broadband Benefits - A Reality Check
http://lone-eagles.com/wings.htm Required reading for rural citizens and leaders.
Written for the Australian Government for national empowerment of all their communities.
The trip report after visiting a dozen communities, including many Aboriginal communities is
at http://lone-eagles.com/sparks.htm

Big Skies and Lone Eagles:Lending Wings to Others, online - A Rural Perspective
A 20 page history of Frank Odasz written for an upcoming book as a history
of online learning from a rural perspective.