Google is giving the small Oregon town $100,000 to fund a Wi-Fi network downtown: Why? Because Google has a massive data center in the city, which is close to hydroelectric sources, and where Google has contracted (like many major firms with data centers) for vast amounts of energy at low, low rates. The center reportedly employees under 100 people to run a large number of servers and other equipment
Interestingly, one of the requirements of the grant, which the city council just voted this week to accept, is that the city may not filter content.
Google also operates a network in Mountain View, Calif., its headquarter town, and still sponsors a few park and city square networks. The company at one point was poised to underwrite free Wi-Fi in San Francisco and apparently in other cities, but the collapse of city-wide Wi-Fi paid by private firms for public access erased that possibility.