Wi-Fi, Li-Fi And Mi-Fi

Michael Schrage over at MIT has written up an article wondering what’s next for the WiFi world. He’s wondering if we’re heading to a point where instead of using specific access points, more mesh-like WiFi systems become standard, where everyone’s laptop is also an access point. These ideas have been discussed before, and usually don’t get very far before people point out all sorts of problems with the idea. Still, he breaks it down into two possibilities: Li-Fi and Mi-Fi. Li-Fi (for Linux) would be an open source mesh system. Mi-Fi, however, would be set up by Microsoft and included in every version of Windows (of course). He points out that, in doing so, Microsoft could immediately become “the biggest player in data networking”. This is a stretch, and for a variety of reasons, such mesh systems are unlikely to catch on widely anytime soon. However, it seems to be getting a lot more attention lately.

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