Thursday, August 16, 2007

Meraki wireless mesh may win in San francisco where Google, Earthlink and Mayor Newsom are struggling

About eight months ago I thought that Meraki may come to San Francisco;
VOIP IP Telephony: Meraki wireless mesh may come to San francisco
Now I read that it in the city now according to an article on Technology Review. Meraki a commercialized the ideas born out of MIT's RoofNET, have come to San Francisco by distributing some 200 wireless routers to city residents in the past couple of months; the routers have been accessed by more than 6,000 city residents who can pick up the Wi-Fi signal. Meraki is now offering to expand the program to give away a few thousand routers, thereby building a free Wi-Fi mesh-network system from the rooftops, balconies, and windows of anyone who wants to participate. The program is called "Free the Net."
Looks like Google is still behind the deal, (Google is an investor in Meraki), according to the same article, Michael McCarthy, a technical consultant at the Booker T. Washington Community Services Center, took up Meraki's offer in order to connect a housing development called Westside Courts in San Francisco's Western Addition after he priced Cisco mesh-network routers at several thousand dollars apiece. Meraki and Google volunteers helped McCarthy decide where to install 22 routers in the center's two buildings. Now about 60 residents are online, and on any given evening, some 40 of them (mostly teenagers) download up to five gigabytes of data. What's more, anyone in the area with a Wi-Fi-enabled laptop can tap into the network and get connected for free.
So by the time Mayor Newsom brings the Wireless project to ballot and get support we may be surfing, somewhat, on the same network, he has been working so hard to bring about. Good luck Mr. Mayor! I need that wireless connection.

Technology Review:A Free Mesh Network for San Francisco

Geemodo: San Francisco Google Free Wireless gets a Blow, almost literally
Meraki Networks
MIT Roofnet


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