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Subject: [IP] more on S.F. stalling Wi-Fi plans, Google executive charges (why are they surprised djf)

  • From: David Farber <dave@farber.net>
  • To: ip@v2.listbox.com
  • Date: Fri, 22 Sep 2006 15:06:41 +0200



Begin forwarded message:

From: Bob Frankston <Bob2-19-0501@bobf.frankston.com>
Date: September 21, 2006 10:52:37 PM GMT+02:00
To: dave@farber.net, ip@v2.listbox.com
Cc: dewayne@warpspeed.com
Subject: RE: [IP] S.F. stalling Wi-Fi plans, Google executive charges (why are they surprised djf)


There is a fundamental problem in all of these efforts to provide Internet connectivity. It’s considered to have no value to the city so it isn’t funded directly and transparently.

It’s like being unwilling to pay for highways and instead asking MacDonald’s or other concession owner to pay for the roads in return for getting some traffic to their restaurants.

We see the same problem with wired connectivity – the triple play funding model treats connectivity with disdain. It’s just something you get if you watch enough TV and you don’t get any if you aren’t at home unless someone can make a profit off by controlling each wireless bit.

If I’m less charitable I compare it privateers who looted enemy commerce. It was self-funded out of the loot they could take.

It may take a generation to understand that connectivity is fundamental so I’m shifting to looking at the edge. We’ll get more incentive when companies making products and services, such as alarms and monitoring, see the value in using shared connectivity rather than creating their own special solutions and negotiating new relationships each time. If that effort went into extending IP connectivity we’d start to get benefit.

I’m taking about modest IP connectivity – the most valuable services such as medical monitoring or supporting infrastructure is akin to a slow modem and can be deployed over any path – no need for DSL or all that. Just put a simple packet transceiver at both ends of a copper line and you have a 24x7 data path for devices and services without a large footprint deployment.

Imagine if we waited for broadband before we’d use the web – it wouldn’t have happened. The problem was not in the technology, After all, DSL is a 1980’s technology. We wouldn’t have experienced the Internet so wouldn’t have known what to ask for.

Today we don’t have many applications that take advantage of ubiquitous connectivity so it’s hard to get people to see the value. If we start to take advantage of what I call modest connectivity then people will start to understand that concept of connectivity in itself.

Even something as simple as getting current traffic information on a map in your car is a miracle now. But why not a small PC with a screen and an Internet connection? Just mash-in a GPS signal and web traffic feed and it’s down. Just like when someone first put a camera in a kindergarten class – the day before the idea was high end fiction and the next day it was mundane. Applications such as medical monitoring may have a higher perceive value and justify deployments out of savings in money and lives.

Until people see enough value in the connectivity itself we’ll continue to settling for the gleanings left over after all the important entertainment traffic has passed.





-----Original Message-----
From: David Farber [mailto:dave@farber.net]
Sent: Thursday, September 21, 2006 10:34
To: ip@v2.listbox.com
Subject: [IP] S.F. stalling Wi-Fi plans, Google executive charges (why are they surprised djf)








Begin forwarded message:

From:   Dewayne Hendricks <dewayne@warpspeed.com>

Date:    September 16, 2006 2:52:47 PM GMT+02:00

To:       Dewayne-Net Technology List <dewayne-net@warpspeed.com>

Subject: [Dewayne-Net] S.F. stalling Wi-Fi plans, Google executive

            charges

Reply-To:          dewayne@warpspeed.com



S.F. stalling Wi-Fi plans, Google executive charges

·         Verne Kopytoff, Chronicle Staff Writer

Saturday, September 16, 2006



An executive for Google Inc. says San Francisco’s plan to offer free wireless Internet access to residents is being delayed by a slow- moving city bureaucracy five months after the company won a high- profile contract for the project alongside partner EarthLink Inc. In an interview with The Chronicle, Chris Sacca, who leads Google’s special projects, voiced frustration with what he called the city’s slow negotiating style. Sacca said that talks to come up with a final contract have advanced little since they started and that officials have made unreasonable demands, including a request for free computers and a share in revenues.

“Every meeting is like the first,” he said.

Sacca’s criticisms are the first by Google about the city’s oversight. Initially, officials said the wireless Internet network would be built by the end of the year, but the city now says the service will be delayed at least until 2007.

Ron Vinson, chief administrator for San Francisco’s technology department, declined to address Google’s complaints other than to say that “the city is pleased where the negotiations are heading, and we look forward to concluding this process.”

He added that “we want to make sure that we are getting the best deal for the city, and we’re working diligently to do just that.”

The idea of free Internet access throughout the city was first championed by Mayor Gavin Newsom, who is a friend of Google founders Sergey Brin and Larry Page.

San Francisco chose Google and EarthLink’s joint bid from among six bids to blanket the city with so-called Wi-Fi as part of a plan to provide Internet access to nearly all the city’s residents. Virtually anyone with a Wi-Fi-enabled computer would be able to get online, whether at home, in a park or at work.

Google would offer free Internet access at speeds faster than dial- up, though slower than broadband. The company hopes to use the service, subsidized at least in part by online advertising, to test new products for wireless Internet users.

EarthLink, an Internet service provider, would own the Wi-Fi network and be responsible for maintenance. The company plans to offer users a faster connection than Google for a fee to be determined.

[snip]

Page A - 1

URL: <http://sfgate.com/cgi-bin/article.cgi?file=/c/a/2006/09/16/

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