NY Times Discovers Free WiFi
from the it's-everywhere dept
On Friday I spent the day working out of the apartment of some friends of mine (who all decided to “work from home” – along with several other friends of ours). I had been pushing for them to set up a WiFi network in the house before we all got there to make life easier for working. It turned out that their neighbor has a nice, totally open access point that was accessible from most places in their apartment – making life easier for anyone with a good WiFi card to hop onto their neighbor’s DSL connection (my WiFi card sucks, and thus I was forced to use good old reliable ethernet). The NY Times has now written an article about people accidentally finding such “free” wireless internet access providers. The article goes on to talk about the various local groups promoting such efforts (and the broadband ISPs who grumble about it) as well as the various commercial efforts to establish WiFi access points (for pay). Speaking of such things, does anyone know of any open access points in the Washington DC, Northern Virginia area? They might be useful for an upcoming trip. Update: The latest Simson Garfinkel article talks about how everyone should set up an open wireless network today to encourage “IP Tone” (the equivalent of a dialtone wherever you go). He makes one mistake however. He says that most hotels these days offer at least wired internet access… which appears not to be true after I spent about half a day on the phone with hotels in the DC area asking each one “do you have high speed internet access?”. Marriotts and Hiltons seem to be the only ones who regularly do have it.
Comments on “NY Times Discovers Free WiFi”
Wi-Fi vs. 2.5/3G
There is another very interesting article in today’s NYT titled “The Corner Internet Network vs. the Cellular Giants“. As the title suggests its about Wi-Fi’s threat to the wireless carrier’s 2.5/3G plans. I’ve always been a sceptic on this issue believing that the two technologies are more complimentry than competitive, especially given that Wi-Fi by its very definition is a LAN technology. But what’s interesting is the number of projects attempting to combine loose affiliates of Wi-Fi access points into a cohesive network with decent metro coverage. I’m still not convinced that these networks will ultimately be able to provide the same coverage and access that the cellular carriers are working towards. But, its a great short term solution and a glimse at what the future may hold.
old news, nice pictures
they did have some neat pics in the dead-tree version — 3D-esque graphs of bandwidth along routes driven last fall and recently in SF and NYC