wireless for town - why?

Archived from groups: alt.internet.wireless (More info?)

A question came up recently for our town
which is located just west of Chicago
and has a population of about 20,000 -
Why not put up WiFi access around town.

About 2 years ago we didn't have any broadband access
and enticed a wireless ISP to come and put up access
on the local water towers....
About the same time, AT&T cable sold to Comcast,
and Comcast started deploying cable access.
At the same time, SBC started turning up
their remote terminals in our area to support DSL.
So - we have DSL, Cable, and Motorola Canopy wireless.

Anyway - some of the village gov think we should have WiFi
in public places, like the sports complex, swimming pool, etc...
I can't see any real use for WiFi outside,
as a laptop is not readible in sunlight,
and I can't see any other general use for village-sponsored WiFi access.
The schools & library already have computers for access...

Wonder what other towns, villages have done with WiFi access ?
4 answers Last reply
More about wireless town
  1. Archived from groups: alt.internet.wireless (More info?)

    Phil Schuman wrote:
    > A question came up recently for our town
    > which is located just west of Chicago
    > and has a population of about 20,000 -
    > Why not put up WiFi access around town.
    > About 2 years ago we didn't have any broadband access
    > and enticed a wireless ISP to come and put up access
    > on the local water towers....
    > About the same time, AT&T cable sold to Comcast,
    > and Comcast started deploying cable access.
    > At the same time, SBC started turning up
    > their remote terminals in our area to support DSL.
    > So - we have DSL, Cable, and Motorola Canopy wireless.
    > Anyway - some of the village gov think we should have WiFi
    > in public places, like the sports complex, swimming pool, etc...
    > I can't see any real use for WiFi outside,
    > as a laptop is not readible in sunlight,
    > and I can't see any other general use for village-sponsored WiFi
    > access. The schools & library already have computers for access...
    > Wonder what other towns, villages have done with WiFi access ?

    The wireless access would not be restricted to outside locations.
    Philadelphia is proposing, for a mere $10M initial cost, to make the entire
    city (135 square miles) within range of wireless Internet.
    http://www.technewsworld.com/story/philadelphia-wireless-36364.html
    What a forward-looking idea!
  2. Archived from groups: alt.internet.wireless (More info?)

    On Sun, 26 Sep 2004 06:53:40 GMT, "Phil Schuman"
    <pschuman_NO_SPAM_ME@interserv.com> wrote:

    >A question came up recently for our town
    >which is located just west of Chicago
    >and has a population of about 20,000 -
    >Why not put up WiFi access around town.
    >
    >About 2 years ago we didn't have any broadband access
    >and enticed a wireless ISP to come and put up access
    >on the local water towers....
    >About the same time, AT&T cable sold to Comcast,
    >and Comcast started deploying cable access.
    >At the same time, SBC started turning up
    >their remote terminals in our area to support DSL.
    >So - we have DSL, Cable, and Motorola Canopy wireless.

    Congrats. You have it all. Perhaps municipal fiber would be next?
    http://www.gcpud.org/zipp.htm

    >Anyway - some of the village gov think we should have WiFi
    >in public places, like the sports complex, swimming pool, etc...
    >I can't see any real use for WiFi outside,
    >as a laptop is not readible in sunlight,

    A laptop is not. A reflective back PDA or reflective front lighted
    Tablet PC are quite readable in sunlight. PDA's put a different
    picture on portable wireless. They're not as bulky as laptops and are
    much more adaptable to portable use. With the impending deluge of
    802.11 wireless VoIP enabled PDA's and VoIP phones, you'll find that
    wireless really means telephony in addition to the usual messaging.
    http://www.skype.com/company/news/2004/skype_pocketpc_version1.html

    >and I can't see any other general use for village-sponsored WiFi access.

    You might ask your local police and fire department if they want
    remote data access. They're probably on some proprietary 4800 baud
    data clunker, or soon to be dead CDPD system. They want to be able to
    get hazmat data on scene, check records, file reports, and get/send
    photos on the road. The public works people want to be able to check
    plans, determine customer status, and order parts in the field. The
    local FD has what amounts to a wireless 802.11b garage door opener.
    What's nice is that there's federal anti-terrorism money available for
    funding it.

    I'm not sure what the attraction is at ball games, but the wireless
    network sponsored by the SF Giants has 120 access points and is
    heavily subscribed by spectators and the news media.
    http://sanfrancisco.giants.mlb.com/NASApp/mlb/sf/ballpark/wifi.jsp

    >The schools & library already have computers for access...
    >
    >Wonder what other towns, villages have done with WiFi access ?

    Well the official buzzword is "municipal wireless".
    http://www.muniwireless.com
    Lots of case stories on that site.

    There's also a new buzzword in "event-based network" where wireless
    networks are deployed temporarily for events and then disassembled.
    There has been free portable wireless internet at Burning Man for the
    last 5 years. This year, Brad Templeton brought a free VoIP phone
    booth.
    http://www.templetons.com/pq/

    Please note that I'm opposed to mesh networks but that does not
    prevent implimentation of a hot spot or cental access point model of
    municipal wireless.


    --
    Jeff Liebermann jeffl@comix.santa-cruz.ca.us
    150 Felker St #D http://www.LearnByDestroying.com
    Santa Cruz CA 95060 AE6KS 831-336-2558
  3. Archived from groups: alt.internet.wireless (More info?)

    "Jeff Liebermann" <jeffl@comix.santa-cruz.ca.us> wrote in message
    > Congrats. You have it all. Perhaps municipal fiber would be next?
    > http://www.gcpud.org/zipp.htm
    >
    The village areas are linked by an internal network laid down
    when the cable plant was put into the ground.
    This is called an Institutional Network or INET,
    and can't be used for "subscribers" as dictated
    in the Cable Act 1984 regulations else we would have had WiFi
    running on it back before the WISP was deployed.

    > >Anyway - some of the village gov think we should have WiFi
    > >in public places, like the sports complex, swimming pool, etc...
    > >I can't see any real use for WiFi outside,
    > >as a laptop is not readible in sunlight,
    >
    > A laptop is not. A reflective back PDA or reflective front lighted
    > Tablet PC are quite readable in sunlight. PDA's put a different
    > picture on portable wireless. They're not as bulky as laptops and are
    > much more adaptable to portable use. With the impending deluge of
    > 802.11 wireless VoIP enabled PDA's and VoIP phones, you'll find that
    > wireless really means telephony in addition to the usual messaging.
    > http://www.skype.com/company/news/2004/skype_pocketpc_version1.html
    >
    > >and I can't see any other general use for village-sponsored WiFi
    access.
    >
    > You might ask your local police and fire department if they want
    > remote data access. They're probably on some proprietary 4800 baud
    > data clunker, or soon to be dead CDPD system. They want to be able to
    > get hazmat data on scene, check records, file reports, and get/send
    > photos on the road. The public works people want to be able to check
    > plans, determine customer status, and order parts in the field. The
    > local FD has what amounts to a wireless 802.11b garage door opener.
    > What's nice is that there's federal anti-terrorism money available for
    > funding it.

    I really wonder about the signal integrity for public safety
    departments...
    I'll have to find out what the local coalition is using for data.

    > I'm not sure what the attraction is at ball games, but the wireless
    > network sponsored by the SF Giants has 120 access points and is
    > heavily subscribed by spectators and the news media.
    > http://sanfrancisco.giants.mlb.com/NASApp/mlb/sf/ballpark/wifi.jsp
    >
    > >The schools & library already have computers for access...
    > >
    > >Wonder what other towns, villages have done with WiFi access ?
    >
    > Well the official buzzword is "municipal wireless".
    > http://www.muniwireless.com
    > Lots of case stories on that site.

    I think most of these efforts are about
    offering WiFi access as a WISP..
    dah dit dah :)

    > There's also a new buzzword in "event-based network" where wireless
    > networks are deployed temporarily for events and then disassembled.
    > There has been free portable wireless internet at Burning Man for the
    > last 5 years. This year, Brad Templeton brought a free VoIP phone
    > booth.
    > http://www.templetons.com/pq/
    >
    > Please note that I'm opposed to mesh networks but that does not
    > prevent implimentation of a hot spot or cental access point model of
    > municipal wireless.
    >
    >
    > --
    > Jeff Liebermann jeffl@comix.santa-cruz.ca.us
    > 150 Felker St #D http://www.LearnByDestroying.com
    > Santa Cruz CA 95060 AE6KS 831-336-2558
  4. Archived from groups: alt.internet.wireless (More info?)

    On Sun, 26 Sep 2004 21:44:06 GMT, "Phil Schuman"
    <pschuman_NO_SPAM_ME@interserv.com> wrote:

    >The village areas are linked by an internal network laid down
    >when the cable plant was put into the ground.
    >This is called an Institutional Network or INET,
    >and can't be used for "subscribers" as dictated
    >in the Cable Act 1984 regulations else we would have had WiFi
    >running on it back before the WISP was deployed.

    We have something similar. It's for police and fire only. They use
    it to discribute training material and training videos. Never mind
    that the same exact stuff arrives via DBS TV. I don't think you want
    to hear my opinions on why the FCC should stick to simply allocating
    bandwidth and not micromanage the use of said bandwidth. Let me just
    point out that the most successful FCC actions have been in areas of
    the LEAST regulatory involvement.

    >I really wonder about the signal integrity for public safety
    >departments...

    All of them (that are reasonably sane) use VPN (virtual private
    networks) with multiple levels of authorization and authentication.
    It can be cracked given enough time and horsepower, but not easily and
    certainly not casually.

    >I'll have to find out what the local coalition is using for data.

    Coalition? We have a conglomeration of local agencies in one central
    dispatch center (PSAP):
    http://www.sccecc.org
    Cheaper and generally better. Data is delivered through multiple
    systems (MDT-4800, SecureNet, CDPD, 4800 baud modems, packet radio,
    2way paging, Blackberry/RIM, and others). They're playing with VPN
    over 802.11b using Tropos Networks hardware:
    http://www.tropos.com
    I don't approve, but nobody listens to me.

    >> Well the official buzzword is "municipal wireless".
    >> http://www.muniwireless.com
    >> Lots of case stories on that site.

    >I think most of these efforts are about
    >offering WiFi access as a WISP..
    > dah dit dah :)

    I beg to differ. The municipal networks invariable offer priority
    services to the served agencies. I vaguely recall some legal
    wrangling over public agencies competeing with commerical service
    providers. If the GUM (great unwashed masses) get involved, it's
    usually for political or electioneering reasons.

    Also, don't forget that no technology is considered mature until it's
    been abused and polluted. 802.11 has the abuse part down. Pollution
    will surely follow. If you provide 802.11 for the masses, the
    applications and uses will surely follow.


    --
    Jeff Liebermann jeffl@comix.santa-cruz.ca.us
    150 Felker St #D http://www.LearnByDestroying.com
    Santa Cruz CA 95060 AE6KS 831-336-2558
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