Friday, March 17, 2006

Metro WiFi

There are some things you love as a concept, but just don’t see how they can work in reality. For me, Metro WiFi is one of those concepts. I absolutely think that cities should provide cheap (or free) wireless access for people to access on their PDAs and other hand-held devices. As someone who gets lost walking to the corner store, the time I save wondering aimlessly through streets and back-alleys alone is worth my tax dollars. Plus it would be a boon for local retailers and other local small businesses that could target and attract customers in the neighborhood.

But considering how complex these networks are, I just don’t see how a city can properly manage them. These networks are finicky devices and the technology is improving so rapidly, you will need a committed and highly trained SP to ensure the municipal network is properly maintained and upgraded, and I’m not convinced that a city has the resources to be that sort of SP.

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