Wi-Fi

Wi-Fi is good in Minnesota

There is some interesting Wi-Fi news from the still frozen northland of Minnesota. St. Paul—sister city of Minneapolis—is grudgingly conceding that the Wi-Fi rollout in Minneapolis is looking like a huge success.

There is some interesting Wi-Fi news from the still frozen northland of Minnesota. St. Paul—sister city of Minneapolis—is grudgingly conceding that the Wi-Fi rollout in Minneapolis is looking like a huge success. The St. Paul Pioneer Press article “Minneapolis looks like a Wi-Fi winner” describes how the partnership between the city and US Internet is beating the odds when compared to numerous other major Wi-Fi rollouts. US Internet, the locally owned ISP doing the actual Wi-Fi network rollout and contracted to maintain the network is fast becoming a model of “how to do it right.” This past summer I posted the article “Wi-Fi network eases rescue operations in Minneapolis bridge collapse,” which outlined how US Internet offered invaluable help during the 35W bridge collapse by opening up their Wi-Fi network to the rescuers as well as the public.

In other good news, the University of Minnesota and Trapeze Networks just announced an agreement that will allow the University of Minnesota bragging rights on having the “world’s largest 802.11n deployment.” The press release from Trapeze Networks outlines the proposed task:

“The University of Minnesota plans to deploy the Trapeze Smart Mobile™ 802.11n wireless network product suite campus-wide, marking the largest ever 802.11n deployment to date. Beginning in May and continuing over the next five years, approximately 9,500 access points (APs) will be deployed to serve more than 80,000 people across the university’s two campuses. Students, faculty and staff will have fast and secure wireless access wherever and whenever they want it.”

Pretty exciting

As a wireless addict, this is all great news to me and will be interesting to follow as the rollouts continue to progress. My son,  a student at U. of Minn., is nodding in agreement as his generation expects -- well almost demands --  that there be “everywhere access without wires.”

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Information is my field...Writing is my passion...Coupling the two is my mission.

9 comments
catseverywhere
catseverywhere

Here's a tip for you, something I used to tell my students back in the day; Imagine the absolute worst that could be done with a given technology. Now if you can imagine it, you can bet the farm somebody is already out there doing it. Unfortunately, for all this wireless stuff to lead us to a "better place" there has to be a huge shift in the base human nature. Rather I'm afraid this is the beginning of the end for privacy and individualism. We pay for the infrastructure, and we like our browsing, texting and all, but do we really need it? Is it essential to life? No. Conversely, we are paying for the technological yoke that one day will be a total lock-down on humanity, a command and control grid where your every move is monitored, in the name of fighting bogus "terrorism" of course. Look at our illustrious governor here in New York, he got caught because, they now tell us, EVERY LAST BANKING TRANSACTION, bar none, is run through goobermint statistical analysis. Even the 5 bucks you spent on coffee and a donut this morning, if you swiped the debit card for it that is. I wrote a short sci fi story a number of years back, which today looks like the front page of the New York Times. The last step is shutting down someone's "credit" completely for whatever political whim of the system that runs this grid, what I called "wrong thinking" in the title. I have to say I actually despise wifi, cell phones and all. Nobody seems to realize what it's really for, and gleefully pay to build the system, and for what? Everything people do with all this mobile capacity is trivial silliness in the grand scheme of things. Where's the capacity to see the scheme anymore? Don't get me wrong, the internet is a tremendous positive for the masses, it is empowering certain cross sections of humanity that otherwise have no potential whatsoever to be heard. It's the control-freak oligarchs at the top of the pyramid I don't trust. And I can imagine they're up to a lot of no good with this technology.

BALTHOR
BALTHOR

Because of digital conversion your Television station just may be going out of business.If your station doesn't have a listing in the Digital channels then you're out.Is radio soon to follow?

Michael Kassner
Michael Kassner

Being totally addicted, it is very important to me. I acknowledge that and wonder what the rest of you think about "everywhere access" ?

Michael Kassner
Michael Kassner

As a fellow writer and science fiction buff, is your story available? I would like very much to read it if possible. To play the devil's advocate now, I agree with many of your thoughts, but I then would ask as to what can be done to change or improve the situation? All through history the technology of the times was used to obtain power entitlement or for nefarious reasons.

Michael Kassner
Michael Kassner

I sometimes wonder where all this technology is taking us, I'd like to think it's to a better place.

seanferd
seanferd

but good wireless internet, especially if provided by newer companies or even municipalities, would definitely increase competition for the better, and possibly offer options to those who don't have access to wired internet. On a simpler level, "Hey, that's pretty cool!"

catseverywhere
catseverywhere

I wrote about 2 dozen stories around 10-12 years ago, all on paper. I eventually went through all the labor to type them into word perfect. I have saved the files through many changes of hardware and software, and even obtained a tool for converting them from .wpd to .doc, which I've left sitting in the same directory as the stories. I went to open up "wrong thinking" one day, it converted fine, but came up with the first 2-3 lines and 28 or so totally blank pages. It obviously accounted for the whole thing, but something prevented it from rendering the text. ~erg. I randomly picked another story and it was fine. Wrong thinking had chip-readers everywhere, measuring chemicals in people as they walk through doors, etc. (the chips were little chemical analysis devices) The protagonist has just returned from vacation and sets off a reader. It's been years since this has happened, so it's a bit of a bungling process that eventually lets the hero escape, after they have removed his chip for further analysis as the manuals mandate. The man is supposed to be executed for his crime. His crime was having harbored a patented thought without having obtained permission. The thought? He had felt a bit of sexual desire upon observing the beautiful women on the beach out in the Bahamas or wherever he had vacationed. Thoughts of procreation are patented by a company that has the right to decide whether or not anyone can engage in sexual activity or have children. As a result of his escape, a rash of women are now setting off readers and have to be destroyed. I still have early drafts on paper. For some reason I can't find any of my finalized versions of the stories. I submitted a few but never had any published. One editor described my writing as "accessible," a polite euphemism for "simple." My point was to try to get the visions of the future I had across to everybody I could, so I wrote in the proverbial "6th grade level." Publishers are more interested in the word craft than the message. A good message is bonus, but the likes of Analog and similar are looking for the clever.

Tech Warrior
Tech Warrior

As the world expends and spends more time on networks I forsee the whole world being networked in much the same way as a sci-fi. My Techs and I spend much time getting small business and homes on networks. Wireless and wired. I have also works with many people using the Minneapolis WiFi and so far it looks to be running very well. It's still missing parts of Minneapolis but it getting there.

Michael Kassner
Michael Kassner

Being a field engineer gives one a totally different outlook, I guess. Before I had the data card, I was constantly searching for a hotspot or asking the client if they had a guest network. Just like even earlier when there was very limited cell phone access. So I had to use the customer phone sets and they never reached the rack I was working on. Now I am not dependent on anyone for voice and data access and I like it.

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