Independent | Innovative | Inspiring

OVERVIEW
NEWSLETTER
ELUMINATE
ENRICHING PROGRAMS
JOB DIRECTORY
TOPICS OF INTEREST
STUDENT SURVEY
RELATED LINKS
TIPS FOR ENTREPRENEURS
CENTERS & INSTITUTES
NEW MEDIA RIGHTS AND TRADEMARK LAW CLINICS
STUDENT APPLICATION

 

Wireless: Technology Student Papers: Wirth - California Western
Wireless: Technology Student Papers: Wirth

The Worldwide Wireless Internet Cloud

by Anke B. Wirth*

Description of the Wireless Internet Cloud

The idea of the Worldwide Wireless Internet Cloud is based on the wireless experiment completed by the Wireless Athens Group (WAG)[1] in August 2002.

The WAG has recently built a cloud[2] over a 24-block area of downtown Athens, Georgia, where everyone with the right equipment can have free Internet access wherever he is. To use the cloud one needs an 802.11b card, also known as Wireless Fidelity (Wi-Fi)[3], which can be bought for about $ 100 in most every day electronic stores. Once integrated into a laptop or a personal digital assistant(PDA), the user has Internet access at broadband speeds which transmit data up to 11 megabits per second (Mbps). Today’s version of this wireless Internet has only small monochrome screens displaying the text[4]. With using the cloud, it is possible to have multimedia while not being wired to the Internet. Thus, multimedia is available when in a café, when in the middle of a meadow, and even when in motion.

To make the cloud work, the WAG installed 3G (third generation) boxes[5] around Athens. “The 3G boxes can be compared with hubs which send signals from computers back to a head end, back to the headquarter of the WAG group, where they can stream people out to the Internet”[6].

The Next Step: The Worldwide Wireless Internet Cloud

Based on the wireless Internet cloud the next step is to build a Worldwide Wireless Internet Cloud, where the user, who has already bought and installed the Wi-Fi equipment, is not limited by buildings, cities, states, or country borders. In the future the wireless Internet will travel with the user without limitations. Ideally, the user will be able to buy the necessary hard- and software in his home country, where he will also pay all his monthly connection fees. Thus equipped, the user will be able to travel, for example from Germany to the United States, and upon his arrival will have the opportunity to go online without any kind of connection cable or problems with country specific standards. This technology will be helpful for both the private and the business traveller.

Expected Problems and Advantages

The biggest problem confronting of the Worldwide Wireless Internet Cloud is that today every movement into a new wireless cloud (or network) characteristically requires the user to reconfigure his hard- and software (devices)[7]. Therefore, the urgent need exists for innovation and cooperation between cloud-operators. There must be either one common cloud-standard or an inter-system compatibility between the different networks. A second problem is the need to install worldwide an adequate number of 3G boxes. Moreover, even if there were enough 3G boxes, the signals from today’s  boxes are currently too low to penetrate buildings[8]. Finally, the line of site[9] issue might have a negative effect of this technology.

The advantages of the Wireless Internet Cloud technology are that this technology is not yet controlled by big corporations[10], that it is not regulated by the government[11], and that the information can travel everywhere. This free information flow offers perhaps the greatest possibilities because it enables connections to places in the world where no basic infrastructure exists. All one needs is to set up strong 3G boxes. Moreover, the security risks are manageable and the costs should not be higher than the costs of normal dial-up cell phones.

Conclusion

All in all, the World Wide Wireless Internet Cloud will be very useful to a world community which lives on fast information like ours. It will eliminate any limitations in communication caused by country borders, time delays, and speed. The World Wide Internet cloud technology will be easy to use because the consumer has his own equipment and will not need to learn how to handle new devices. In brief, the World Wide Wireless Internet Cloud will be helpful for both the business and the private sector.

Bibliography

1. Ann Kellan, Town has head in wireless cloud, (last visited Oct. 7, 2002), at http://www.cnn.com/2002/TECH/internet/07/25/wireless.cloud/index.html

2. Scott Shamp, The WAGZone, (last visited Oct. 5, 2002), at
http://216.239.51.100/search?q=cache:mhRLvMKwfJAC:www.nmi.uga.edu/resources/WAG/wag.html+Internet+cloud&hl=de&ie=UTF-8

3. Lee Shearer, Dogs' WAG tale, (last visited Oct. 7, 2002),at

http://www.onlineathens.com/stories/071402/tec_20020714068.shtml

4. Marsha Walton, Wireless 'cloud' may offer silver lining, (last visited Oct. 7, 2002), at http://www.cnn.com/2002/TECH/science/07/31/coolsc.wireless.cloud/index.html

5. Fundamental concepts for Computer Networks, (last visited Oct. 7, 2002), at http://www.cs.uga.edu/~dme/csx76/chapter1.

html

6. The Webopedia Webpage - The online dictionary for computer and internet technology, (last visited Oct. 7, 2002), at

http://www.webopedia.com


* This paper was possible because of me being fortunate in the financial support of the German Zempelin-Stiftung.

[1] The University of Georgia and the local government have joined up to create WAG, the Wireless Athens Group.

[2] The Webopedia Webpage - The online dictionary for computer and internet technology, (last visited Oct. 7, 2002), at http://www.webopedia.com/TERM/

C/cloud.html;

Fundamental concepts for Computer Networks, (last visited Oct. 7, 2002), at http://www.cs.uga.edu/~dme/csx76/chapter1.html

[3] The Webopedia Webpage - The online dictionary for computer and internet technology, (last visited Oct. 7, 2002), at http://www.webopedia.com/TERM/

W/Wi_Fi.html

[4]Scott Shamp, The WAGZone, (last visited Oct. 5, 2002), at http://216.239.

51.100/search?q=cache:mhRLvMKwfJAC:www.nmi.uga.edu/resources/WAG/wag.html+Internet+cloud&hl=de&ie=UTF-8

[5] The Webopedia Webpage - The online dictionary for computer and internet technology,  (last visited Oct. 7, 2002), at http://www.webopedia.com/

TERM/3/3G.html

[6] Ann Kellan, Town has head in wireless cloud, (last visited October 7, 2002), at http://www.cnn.com/2002/TECH/internet/07/25/wireless. cloud/index.html

[7]Scott Shamp, The WAGZone, (last visited Oct. 5, 2002), at http://216.239.

51.100/search?q=cache:mhRLvMKwfJAC:www.nmi.uga.edu/resources/WAG/wag.html+Internet+cloud&hl=de&ie=UTF-8

[8] Marsha Walton, Wireless 'cloud' may offer silver lining, (last visited Oct. 7, 2002), at http://www.cnn.com/2002/TECH/science/07/31/coolsc.wireless.

cloud/index.html

[9] Certain areas may not have access to satellite services.

[10] Lee Shearer, Dogs' WAG tale, (last visited Oct. 7, 2002),at http://www.

onlineathens.com/stories/071402/tec_20020714068.shtml

[11] Lee Shearer, Dogs' WAG tale, (last visited Oct. 7, 2002),at http://www.

onlineathens.com/stories/071402/tec_20020714068.shtml