EXCLUSIVE: A lot of in-the-know media folks have their eyes on Layer3 TV, even though they can’t really describe the maddeningly opaque firm that calls itself a “next-generation cable provider.” But here’s something new: It will launch next year – and it just hired former Fox Networks President of Affiliate Sales and Marketing Lindsay Gardner to chair its Content Advisory Board. Prior to joining Fox he was executive director of programming for Cox Communications, and lately has been a senior advisor to global asset management firm Oaktree Capital Management.

“Lindsay’s a phenomenally well respected individual in the programming universe,” Layer3 CEO Jeff Binder, to whom Gardner will report, tells me. “He’s been behind a lot of the innovation around revenue generation from the programming side and certainly intimately understands the needs and wants and desires of the programming systems.” Gardner adds that the company expects dealings with content companies to be “collaborative and to be partnerships in the truest sense of the word.”

So what, exactly, will Layer3 do? Well, it’s expected to be an alternative to cable or satellite, with other forward-looking services thrown in. “We’re the only ones taking the approach of thinking about making the TV a place to organize your digital and social life,” Binder says. Got that? Me neither.

But a lot of smart people like what they see at the Denver-based company co-founded by Binder, who also founded Broadbus Technologies, and Comcast’s former Chief Technology Officer Dave Fellows. Among the backers are gold-plated names including TPG, North Bridge Venture Partners, and Creative Artists Agency.