Thursday, September 13, 2007

Free Wi-Fi!

It seems like everyone has internet access. You can take your laptop to coffee shops, fast food restaurants and anyone else displaying the “Free Wi-Fi” sign in their window and check your email or whatever else you do.

As you may not know, some cities are planning on developing a city wide, public Wi-Fi so that residents can use the internet anywhere. It would also help the less fortunate of us use the internet to further their education. But some places are finding that this is a bit more difficult that they had originally thought.

It seems Earthlink, one of the major supporters of city wide Wi-Fi, is having trouble with how much it will cost. Thanks Public Radio! After a financially slow half a year, they can’t afford to foot the bill of city wide Wi-Fi on their own.

But don’t lose hope just yet. On Muniwireless, the self declared “Voice of Public Broadband,” there are reports that the cities that had their internet service provider pull out are not giving up.

I really think that this idea is awesome. It could change the lives of those less well off children who need internet to do school work. A while ago, a friend of mine did a study on grades and internet access at home. It was found that there was a small trend showing that internet access at home helped with grades. And those children could take all the help they can get.

Downfalls of this plan would probably be the over all cost to the internet service providers and the city. But if they are willing to foot it, I’m not too worried about it.

All in all, this plan has my seal of approval.

Thanks East Central Georgia Regional Library for the picture!


Mr. Ramen said...

Yes, I agree that we should be working continuously to make the world a "wired" place, but there will always be those against it.

For example, the great city of San Francisco was one step away from making the entire city wireless! Sounds pretty amazing, but then city hall stepped in and shut the whole operation down. The problem with this whole idea is the bureaucracy behind such a movement. For all we know, the government might consider granting free wi-fi a way for terrorists to communicate or google how to build a bomb. Yes, it would benefit our way of life to always know that there is an internet connection wherever we stop. Asking for directions would become a thing of the past, and never being able to contact someone would also become outdated.

However, there will always be those few who wish to hack teh syst3mz and bring down the whole operation just for fun. That or download a lot of illegal music...

There needs to be precedent and protocol established before the United States can make such a drastic move. I hope that I will get to see that day.

skeetshooter15 said...

It is a good thought and I believe it would help grades but I don't think that it will be free. I think that if it does happen the internet provider will bill the city and the city in turn will raise taxes.