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Rolling DSL and Wireless Access Out In One Swoop 198

B1ackFa1c0n writes: "Finally those of us in telecom valley (Petaluma/Santa Rosa, CA) are getting DSL with a twist... Vista Broadband is beginning to roll out DSL to those of us beyond the SBC limit. Rumours have it that every home that installs gets a wireless router and an antenna on the roof - effectively expanding Vista's wireless network at the same time. If enough people sign up, this would allow seamless wireless coverage for the whole area *at a profit* to Vista."
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Rolling DSL and Wireless Access Out In One Swoop

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  • Shared bandwidth (Score:4, Insightful)

    by crow ( 16139 ) on Thursday February 07, 2002 @04:21PM (#2970063) Homepage Journal
    One of the great things about DSL is that you have your own connection to the ISP, as opposed to cable modems, which share bandwidth within each neighborhood. With this scheme, it looks like they are using each subscriber as a relay, so your bandwitch is shared with anyone upstream from you. This can be good for business, but not so great for consumers.
    • by RC514 ( 546181 )
      Yes, but typically a DSL connection is not using the maximum possible bandwith. They probably use a fixed part of the bandwith for the paying customer and any excess bandwith is allocated to the wireless access point.
      • A local ISP in the "telecom valley", sonic.net, is offering another type of weireless broadband called "rooftop [sonic.net]". Afaik, it doesn't piggyback other user's connections on top of yours. It sure is nice to see so many local broadband options in my area.
        • oops. I was mistaken. Further reading revealed it does actually get access from other users. Oh well. ;-(
        • This is the same thing. I was misled by the "Rolling DSL and Wireless Access Out In One Swoop" headline. Nevertheless, I think that using otherwise unused bandwith from customer DSL lines (the difference between what the customer is paying for and what the DSL-modem is capable of) to provide wireless access to an area is quite an intriguing idea.
          • does anyone have EXTRA bandwidth ? is kind of like extra money. I know I use every kbps on my sdsl line. 768 seems like a big amount but goes really fast.
            • Re:Shared bandwidth (Score:2, Informative)

              by RC514 ( 546181 )
              DSL is capable of several MBits/s. There are different types of DSL, but for ADSL, an FAQ [adsl.com] mentions up to 8 MBit downstream and 1 MBit upstream. Since residential customers usually pay for and get less than that, there is extra bandwith which could be used for providing wireless access.
    • I may be showing my ignorance here, but does this mean that each subscriber is going to be broadcasting WiFi to the neighborhood?

      Doesn't this make the whole network more susceptible to wireless attackes by AirSnort and WEPcrack technologies?

      Or am I on crack?
      • by RC514 ( 546181 )
        If they do it in a responsible way, they split the bandwith (x MBit for the customer, rest for the WAP), but without sharing the broadcast domain. DSL modems usually have an ATM mode which could be used to create separate channels, guaranteeing QOS to the customer and keeping the wireless traffic away from his network socket.
        • The QoS may be there - while I was under the impression that current traffic maxxed out the DSL pipe, I'll just assume I'm mistaken - but that still doesn't explain how Vista is going to protect their own wireless traffic nodes (forget the end-user) from mobile attacks.

          Wouldn't they have to deploy high-end security for each router that gets an antenna to prevent every deadbeat with an 802.11b device and some sniffing technology from surfing for free?
          • by RC514 ( 546181 )
            Sorry, now I get it. I had thought they wanted to provide a wireless network as a bonus to normal DSL. Stupid me. I guess I'll watch the demonstration [nokia.com] from Nokia before I continue commenting.
          • by RC514 ( 546181 ) on Thursday February 07, 2002 @05:05PM (#2970413) Homepage
            Ok, looks like the article is a little misleading. "Wireless coverage" is not really the goal of this approach, but merely the means to provide residential broadband internet access. It makes connecting distant customers feasible because up to 40 subscribers can be connected to one one "airhead", which is a special box connected to an uplink, which in turn can be either wired or wireless (but not through other airheads). The cost of installing an uplink can therefore be split among 40 customers, and because the "airhead" is so small, renting an office for hub hardware isn't necessary. This whole concept doesn't appear to be based on 802.11b at all.
      • Don't assume 802.11 (Score:4, Informative)

        by Wesley Felter ( 138342 ) <wesley@felter.org> on Thursday February 07, 2002 @04:48PM (#2970295) Homepage
        There are non-802.11 wireless systems out there that have different security properties [nokia.com].
    • That's also what it seemed like to me when I read stuff. But I don't think it's that simple. With the cable modem you send your packets thru a neighborhood hub, which then goes to the company and out onto the web. With this system I don't understand how they could coordinate that, and it doesn't seem right to me anyhow. Would the system keep a listing of all people connected and then go thru the fastest route? Would it only use systems that are not sending or recieving data? For some reason I doubt that this setup would fly, especially due to the capacity for security problems. What if you were able to configure your system to catch all queries relayed thru your box? Personally, I can't wait to inform my buddy about this. He's 220 feet outside of the area that he might be able to get DSL to, and Pac Bell sucks. This has the potential to be great for a great many people. - DaftShadow
    • Re:Shared bandwidth (Score:4, Informative)

      by Anonymous Coward on Thursday February 07, 2002 @04:37PM (#2970208)
      Yes with DSL it is true you have your own dedicated connection, but that usually only goes as far as a local collection point - it certainly is not a dedicated amount of bandwidth right to the ISP, nor to the Internet.

      The only difference with cable is the proximity to the individual customer at which the sharing begins. Peak usage times on DSL introduce just as much slowdown to the user with his "dedicated" pipe as they would to the Cable user with his "shared" pipe.

      I understand that your point relates to the sharing forced up on the user by the reselling of the wireless access which is sure to come, but the shared/dedicated differentiation between DSL and Cable is already misunderstood enough by Joe Sixpack without this added complexity.
      • Another point to make-- my local loop of cable is fed by fiber. Who's more likely to get fiber to my curb, the cable company or the phone company?
      • Re:Shared bandwidth (Score:3, Informative)

        by Anonymous Coward
        I disagree with your point about DSL and cable being lagged at the same points.

        I have both DSL and cable connections at home. I'm 3k feet from my CO, wire-distance. My DSL is set to 5mbit down / 1mbit up. Cable is 2mbit down, 384k up.

        In my neighborhood, there is a very high concentration of customers terminating on the local cable node. When I last spoke to a contact I have at the cable company, he said that there were over 4 thousand connections from residences to the node. That node is connected via a single 45 mbit ATM DS3 to a regional ATM concentrator, then to the main office, which connects to the net over a singe 45mbit DS3.

        As for the DSL connections at the serving Central Office, mine currently has about 1100 DSL lines connected to the DSLAMs located there. Each DSLAM is connected to the local SONET ring by an individual 45mbit ATM DS3, which each then connect into an ATM concentrator, and from there to the main office, and out to the Net via dual 155mbit links.

        Raw performance in off-peak times isn't applicable, due to the speed of both connections. But during peak times, I'm lucky to get 20k/sec on the cable link while downloading a test file from the cable company's FTP server. The same test on the DSL network yields about 450k/sec duting peak times. Accessing the internet yields similar results.
      • quote: "Peak usage times on DSL introduce just as much slowdown to the user with his "dedicated" pipe as they would to the Cable user with his "shared" pipe. "

        That isn't very accurate. Every DSL customer has a guaranteed amount of bandwidth to the CO, which starts getting shared from that point on. Depending on how the telco has set up their network, the CO may have more than enough bandwidth to be non-blocking all the way back to their core. From there if the customer is accessing stuff that is on the telco's network, or that the telco has direct high speed links to, there will be very little slowdown even at peak times. Access to the Internet will probably be slow due to oversubscription of their PoP links, but that is pretty much to be expected.

        This differs from cable in that everyone in a neighborhood node shares their bandwidth right from the start. That means that at peak times, the customer could experience slow connections even to something on the cable companies local network.

        Granted most people probably don't do much of anything that is on the local companies network, so the essence of what you said is true. On the other hand, if people use the companies caching proxy server to access web pages and are just looking at the standard static content for the most part, DSL subscribers are likely to be much happier than cable users.
    • That thing about having your own connection with DSL is much overrated. DSL hits wire limitations so unless you live right next to the CO, your bandwith will be quite limited. Now coax cable can carry a much bigger amount of data than twisted pair, I think Docsys standard says something about a max of around 30Mbps. It's up to the cable company to make sure they don't oversubscribe the nodes. So it happens that my cable connection goes 3000-4000 kbps down and 950 up, and I'm talking peak time. Compare this to the 600/90 DSL line that's available in my area.

      I guess it all depends on the company and how much they value customer satisfaction. The only DSL ISPs still standing are the big telcos and we all know how customer friendly they are.
    • Re:Shared bandwidth (Score:4, Informative)

      by cdrudge ( 68377 ) on Thursday February 07, 2002 @04:51PM (#2970324) Homepage
      It's all shared bandwidth if you look at the larger picture. With DSL, each person has a dedicated line to there house....but only from the CO. Once the line gets to the CO, then it is combined with many other subscribers and passed on to the fatter pipes. Several DSL subscribers can still suck most of the bandwidth. So what if you are guaranteed a 768/128 or whatever to the CO...it's beyond the CO that matters.

      Cable does share the bandwith among the neighborhood, but it usually (or at least is suppose to be) partitioned off into smaller neighborhoods once one gets beyond the capacity.

      See here [cox.com] for more of an explanation and other DSL/Cable myths. Yes it is from Cox cable, and yes the do have a vested interest in trying to get you to subscribe to cable service, so take it with a grain of salt. But for the most part it is true.
    • "One of the great things about DSL is that you have your own connection to the ISP, as opposed to cable modems, which share bandwidth within each neighborhood."

      Uh-huh, and does this make your DSL line any faster than a comparable cable modem? Take a look at the results of the DSLReports speed tests [dslreports.com] -- nearly all of the top speeds belong to cable modem networks.

      I had DSL from Speakeasy -- 1.5MBps down/384K up. Great service, but it was $100/month. My $35/month cable modem has the same download speed. I get 1.5MBps down, period. It's not dependent on how far I am from the cable company, either.

      You have a point, but the fact that your bandwidth isn't shared doesn't make a difference in your overall speed. This is just something the DSL companies came up with to try to differentiate their more expensive service from the cable modem crowd.
    • Who said they are using YOUR bandwidth? Isn't it possible that they run two lines to your house, one is yours and the other belongs to the AP. I wouldn't trust my connection if anyone with netstumbler could get to my internal network and I'm sure that they wouldn't trust letting you have the ability to monitor all subscribers that connect through your AP.
    • Someone else mentioned this, but it wasn't obviously stated. The ISP could give you a 1.5Mbps/384kbps bandwidth to your dsl instead of the 384kbps/128kbps that they are claim. Using bandwidth throttling they could keep you in line and you could support a few more people coming in on wireless.
    • This is technically true, and one of the reasons I always preferred DSL. But in practice, a Cable Modem is a pretty phat pipe, at least here on the Palos Verdes Peninsula (California / Cox). I regularly get 300 K-bytes per second downloads (yes, that's 2.4 megabits/sec). Nothing like getting 1/4 10Base-T Ethernet speeds.

      That's compared to the 384kb DSL that I used to pay twice as much for at my old pad.

    • One of the great things about DSL is that you have your own connection to the ISP, as opposed to cable modems, which share bandwidth within each neighborhood.

      Everybody (most notably DSL providers) is quoting this as a downside of Cable, and an advantage of DSL.

      I share something like 2Mbps with my neighborhood. From the central office of my cable company I still share the link with the rest of the customers of my ISP. My cable provider caps me at 512mbps.

      ADSL customers have their private 6mbps (but capped to the same 512mbps) link to the ISP, and then share a similar link with the other customers to the "rest of the internet".

      No provider will tell you what the capacity of those links are. And they won't tell you when and how much they are congested.

      What I do know is that on average, I get (slightly) better download speeds than my friends with ADSL.

      I deduct from this that at the moment, my Cable provider has a better internet link than hte averate ADSL provider out here, and that my local segment isn't very crowded.

      Roger.

  • by Anonymous Coward
    When was Santa Rose ever referred to as "telecom valley"???

    Not that telecom isn't one big valley - look at WorldCom and Global Crossing stock.

  • unsubscription (Score:4, Insightful)

    by n3r0.m4dski11z ( 447312 ) on Thursday February 07, 2002 @04:23PM (#2970080) Homepage Journal
    So do they like not let you unsubscribe because you'll be taking out a portion of their network?

    or is there a claus that says that once the transmission tower is welded to your house/trailer it cant be taken down. ever.

  • Not a bad deal (Score:3, Interesting)

    by Restil ( 31903 ) on Thursday February 07, 2002 @04:23PM (#2970084) Homepage
    It also kinda puts a sock in the mouth of those that complain about people "reselling" their bandwidth by offering up wireless access points. Now Vista does it themselves, its endorsed and they can maintain some control over it while still providing the same level of advantage to the customers that desire it.

    Makes sense to me anyways.

    -Restil
  • by Anonymous Coward
    So is this wrong because someone is making a profit, or is it cool because everyone gets service?
  • Not too shabby (Score:2, Interesting)

    by slakdrgn ( 531347 )
    Seems like a kewl idea, I wish they had something like this in orlando.. The only thing I see (tho I dunno how cali laws/rules are) is problems with people who rent.. down in florida, your reqiured to have permission to setup any type of attenna.. It'll be interesting to see how this works out.. I wonder what protocol they will use. :)

    Also how strong the signal is without an atenna.. be kinda like wirless internet for thoes laptop people, when the infastructure gets big enuff, from soo many residental users. I hope this works out :)

    • In Orlando, eh?

      *shameless plug*My employer [meshnetworks.com], based in Orlando, is developing a wireless product somewhat similar, that solves a lot of these problems. It is interesting in that the more users join the network, the better the connectivity for everyone (i.e. more potential routes). We have a test network set up near our headquarters, and I can go out anywhere within it and get high-speed internet access (limited only by the T1 backhaul).
  • Security? (Score:2, Interesting)

    by glh ( 14273 )
    What about security... This seems like it could really be a privacy issue. I would think anyone driving around with a portable could sniff your network (assuming they had the right wireless adapater)! Anyone know more about the technology that is used here?
    • Re:Security? (Score:1, Informative)

      by Anonymous Coward
      I talked with a vista market type about that. He claimed they use 128-bit encryption in the wifi modems, so everything broadcasted is encrypted. The encryption is flash-upgradeable, as well.
      • Encryption flash upgradeable?

        Says who? Cisco's sure isn't, and I don't know anyone else that is.

        There are some solutions possible, by have fast changing keys via Radius with Cisco and others, but this only gets you part way there.

        I don't trust the current 802.x wep at all. I might consider trusting the "new" standard when it arrives, and gets some serious peer review. Until then, I don't assume that ANY 802.x wep is secure, even trivially so. I assume that I might as well be packet capturing all traffic (in the clear) over said wireless net and handing it off to any anonymous person who requests it.

        Cheers!
  • by yonnage ( 131665 ) on Thursday February 07, 2002 @04:29PM (#2970141) Journal
    Wireless DSL... Hmmmm, I wonder how soon until drive by cracking is a problem.
  • DSL? (Score:1, Informative)

    by Phroggy ( 441 )
    Wireless access on the roof? That's not DSL, that's probably microwave or something. DSL only works over copper phone lines; any other form of broadband is not DSL. What's the deal here?
    • And what's up with the fact that I can't find anything about this service on their crappy web page? Is this for real?
    • Re:DSL? (Score:2, Informative)

      by asv108 ( 141455 )
      I think your a little confused here. Each house that gets the DSL service will also get a wireless 802.11b router installed so your house will also serve as an 802.11b access point for users on their network. This way they kill 2 birds with one stone, this is a clever idea if they can get through all the usage and security problems. I don't know how people will if there DSL connection slows down to a snail's pace to due eccessive wireless usage.
      • Actually, it is you who are confused. From http://www.vistabroadband.com/residential_info.htm [vistabroadband.com] :

        Additionally, our wireless connections mean no busy signals, no missed calls, and no tying up your regular phone lines. (emphasis mine)

        The network is, in fact, entirely wireless according to the information they provide. You can find a slightly more technical description here [vistabroadband.com].

        I have to agree with the parent, this is not DSL. DSL is based on copper wire. If there is even an inch of fiber between you and the CO, you can't get DSL. DirectTV's "DSL" is similarly misleading. These are certainly broadband technologies, and they're definately cool, but they are not DSL.

        These companies are inapropriately using the term DSL for marketing purposes, likely because DSL and DSL providors enjoy a much more favorable reputation than other consumer broadband options, and totally ignoring the fact that DSL is a very specific technology. It's unfortunate, perhaps, but the fact is that everyone who's going to be interested in this has heard of DSL, whereas calling it MMDS, for example, would lead to some headscratching and a lot of questions asked of "knowledgable friends" at cocktail parties.

    • Re:DSL? (Score:1, Informative)

      by Anonymous Coward
      Yea, I don't know if it is EXACTLY the same, but we've got something similar to this here in the Hartford, CT area. Here, it is offered by MCI WorldCom. They call it MMDS, and its only been around for a month or so.

      http://www1.worldcom.com/us/products/access/broa db and/wireless/

      We're using it at my office, and it works very well. DSL speeds (up to 1.0 MBits), as long as you have a direct line of site and are within a 35 mile radius of a central tower. Works well for us!
  • Trading files between, if the system gets huge, would be what I would do.
  • Hmmm... (Score:2, Insightful)

    by stressky ( 218896 )
    Sounds like a good idea. There's a group over here in Australia that are looking at doing the same thing as these guys. They're called the "commpunity broadband project"...It's not so much a commercial venture as a group of knowledgeable members of the broadband community (read : users) whom are trying to get together a more affordable broadband solution for Australians.

    Still, these vista guys seem somewhat further advanced in their endeavor - they've actually launched!
  • by KenSentMe ( 528496 ) on Thursday February 07, 2002 @04:32PM (#2970168)
    Interestingly enough, the technique they are using to "expand" their coverage area is remarkably similar to the distributed nature of peer-to-peer sharing networks, such as Gnutella.
    I wonder how well it will scale. Will users' bandwidth drop as more and more customers in their area sign on, due to the heavy relaying of traffic?
  • This is not DSL (Score:5, Informative)

    by jspayne ( 98716 ) <jeff@@@paynesplace...com> on Thursday February 07, 2002 @04:37PM (#2970197) Homepage
    This is not DSL, it is wireless broadband - probably not unlike the Nokia Rooftop [nokia.com] system that Cringely mentioned [pbs.org] not too long ago...

    Jeff
    • Re:This is not DSL (Score:1, Informative)

      by Anonymous Coward
      It is Nokia Rooftop! They have partnered with Nokia and are using their Rooftop equipment.
  • by Anonymous Coward
    Stupid editors.

    They are calling their fixed wireless service "DSL" to market it. It's no more DSL than a tin can and string.

    "Beyond the SBC limit" should have given that away anyway. You simply can't have DSL service past a certain cable run length. Who the hell do you think runs the CO's? SBC! Some copanies sell IDSL in locations where SBC won't, thereby increasing their customer base to "beyond bell," but this is not one of those cases.

    Honestly.

    -=AnonyMoose=-
  • It sounds like service will be initially offered in Novato, Santa Rosa, and Rohnert Park. I see no mention of Petaluma, but since we get Pac Ball DSL and AT&T cable modem here, we may not qualify as one of the "Broadband-starved areas" that they appear to be targetting.
  • by Em Emalb ( 452530 ) <ememalb@nOSpaM.gmail.com> on Thursday February 07, 2002 @04:38PM (#2970217) Homepage Journal
    linking their URL to slashdot. If they can't handle it, then maybe this won't be a good thing :)
  • Earlier I mentioned a group of australians getting together a project like this one that Vista is doing. Here is the homepage for those guys :

    http://www.bvc.com.au/online/

    looks like it's broken at the moment tho...:-(
  • by GoRK ( 10018 ) on Thursday February 07, 2002 @04:42PM (#2970248) Homepage Journal
    This has absolutely nothing to do with DSL. A Tin can and string is closer to DSL than this.

    A lot of fixed wireless companies (not just broadband data) call their services the wireless equivalent of the wireline alternative. Ie: Wireless Cable -- what a misnomer!

    Some company says "Wireless DSL" and some stupid person posts it to slashdot as some sort of breakthrough idea. It's simply fixed wireless.

    You can't sell DSL service "beyond SBC" unless you want to run your own CO's, which is not turning out to be very profitable for small companies to do. DSL only goes over copper wires and it only goes so far.

    ~GoRK
    • It's obvious they run a Digital Subscriber Line out as far as it will reach and then put a wireless access point on the end of it. In actuality using both wireless and DSL technology to obtain a larger service area.

      Why can't you call a combination of DSL and wireless Wireless DSL?
  • Wireless Broadband (Score:2, Informative)

    by CyberHippy ( 541868 )
    Sounds like what my company signed up for three years ago from Broadlink [broadlink.com] which worked really well at first, but they figured out after the first year that the more people they had on the same antennae, the shorter the effective range.

    According to the techs I worked with it's not DSL, it's just an implementation of 802.11 wireless with directional antennae.

    We recently had to switch over to DSL because the wireless got too flaky over time.

  • If it's wireless, then it's not a Digital Subscriber Line.

    Does anyone know what hardware they're using? I would guess Nokia Rooftop [nokia.com] because that's the only equipment of this type I've heard of.
    • I would guess Nokia Rooftop [nokia.com] because that's the only equipment of this type I've heard of.

      Rightttttttt, cuz if you haven't heard of it, it can't exist, right?
      • He was asking genuinely if anyone knew what hardware would be used, and made a guess based upon all of his knowledge (admitting that his knowledge was limited).

        And all he got was a smart ass remark.

        only on slashdot...
  • reading their web page (which is admittedly very short on detail) I suspect they're rolling out a broadcast broadband service (not a DSL service - a connect to the net via radio service via transmitters on local hills - there have been several abortive attempts to do this elsewhere). This may explain why it sounds like they're giving you 802.11 and DSL - in reality they are probably giving you DSL-like speeds via a wireless medium
  • This is NOT DSL! (Score:5, Informative)

    by SlashChick ( 544252 ) <erica@eri[ ]biz ['ca.' in gap]> on Thursday February 07, 2002 @04:46PM (#2970279) Homepage Journal
    This is residential wireless of the same type that Sprint/Earthlink rolled out to several major cities. Check out their services page. [vistabroadband.com]

    Residential wireless is neat, but only if you can't get DSL or a cable modem. The latency makes it problematic for fast-paced online games, but the download speed makes it ideal for web surfing. Also, wireless usually has a transfer limit -- in this company's case, it's 3GB-6GB a month (3GB for the lower-priced connections.) You have to watch your downloads.

    It's a great idea if your only choice is dialup, and I'm glad to finally see a company recognize that this is a great service to those in flat areas that DSL/cable are not covering.
  • This is simply a wireless ISP using the Nokia Rooftop system [nokia.com] that was created by Rooftop Networks three years ago (and acquired by Nokia). It's a mesh 802.11b network on steriods with a routing protocol. If your only way back to the ISP's POP is through your neighbor's unit, and he deactivates his service or trips over the power cord, your service is down.

    Nothing to see here, people. Move along...
  • by Goldenhawk ( 242867 ) on Thursday February 07, 2002 @05:14PM (#2970476) Homepage
    If you're really concerned about sharing your new DSL line's bandwidth with a roof-top antenna, or you worry about security, but you don't want to (or cannot) cut the power cord, a coffee can over the antenna, or some tinfoil, would probably block enough of the signal to prevent any useful connections to YOUR rooftop, and divert those connections to a neighbor.
    • "If you're really concerned about sharing your new DSL line's bandwidth with a roof-top antenna, or you worry about security, but you don't want to (or cannot) cut the power cord, a coffee can over the antenna, or some tinfoil, would probably block enough of the signal to prevent any useful connections to YOUR rooftop, and divert those connections to a neighbor."

      ...and at the very least you'd give the neighbors something to talk about (as if your "rm -rf /bin/laden" T-Shirt wasn't enough).

  • I don't really see why they are doing both at once...

    Why not just cut out the dsl and give everyone wireless
  • Hmm.. that's great to hear, but I wonder when those of us living in the ever-primative Silicon Valley will be able to get broadband. I live in Campbell (which basically borders Santa Clara to the south and San Jose to the west), and I still can't get DSL or cable modem service here. In fact, a friend of mine who lives in central Santa Clara was able to get DSL only a year ago or so. When I first arrived a couple years ago, Pac Bell babbled something about "Project Pronto" which was supposed to be finished by Summer 2000 (of course, it wasn't). Has anyone heard any information about this?

    I'm having a race with my parents in rural Ohio to see who will get broadband first..
  • Very nice, typically Petaluma/Rohnert Park/Cotati/Santa Rosa are considered tier 3 markets. IMO, having been one of the engineers for NorthPoint and now AT&T, it is refreshing to see a company address these markets with a topology that has the potential to turn a profit for them, as opposed to the standard approach of rolling out services at a loss to satisfy availability claims.

    ./bot
  • Amateur usage. (Score:5, Insightful)

    by bobdole369 ( 267463 ) <bobdole369@nOSPAm.gmail.com> on Thursday February 07, 2002 @05:30PM (#2970579) Homepage
    Does anybody have an definitive answer as to how these wireless devices stand on the FCC's "totem pole". I was under the impression that us ham radio operators (at least for the part of the spectrum we share with 802.11b, about 1/2 - 2/3 of the channels) were given a higher priority than the ISM unlicensed users. In fact my license gives me the ability to jam out 1500 watts with no limitation of ERP. So my spread spectrum 5 watt signal at 2.406 mhz sent through a 15db vertical is going to cause them at least a hiccup if they ever make it down to Florida. (my signal is audible enough to digipeat at 23 miles from my house. (yikes, too bad I can't make money off of it...)) What would happen if say a company wanted to use the same frequency my station is set to? In the past hams have usually been trod upon, as the primary users have priority. Does this actually mean they have to work around me for once?!
  • Feb 7, 2003 -- In other news, the mean air temperature around Petaluma/Santa Rosa has risen 2 degrees in the past year, scientists say. This has absolutely nothing to do with the widespread deployment of microwave towers throughout the area, according to a Vista Broadband spokesman. He added, "It's also completely unrelated to the purely coincidental increased cancer rate in many of our subscribers houses."

    :)
  • I live in a sub division that has, untill recently, been way to far out of reach of broadband. Even if it would be shared bandwidth, as has been pointed out, it would be VASTLY better than the 24.6kbps modem speeds we get here. Plus my subdivision is full of multi million dollar homes: ie people with MONEY TO BURN. They would make a perfect test market. In a place like this, most everyone has a computer, and so you could test the system very well. It is a market like this where they will be able to make REAL money. But for us it's too late. We got cable modems about 10 months ago, and we should have DLS within about 6.

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