Tuesday, November 30, 2004

WiFi as a Public Utitlity

As much as I like the idea of city-wide wireless internet, I have to stick by my guns and say that I don't like the idea of city or state governments doing the installations. Anytime you see numbers in a story like this, with respect to the project in Philadelphia:

The projected cost for installing antennas across the city's 135 square miles would be $10 million and another $1.5 million annually to maintain it, Neff said.

you will then know that if you double it, you will get a decent estimate of half the final cost.

Of course, this is a funny part:

Plus, the service could help make Philadelphia "hip" enough to stem the outward flow of college graduates, she [Barbara Grant, a spokeswoman for Philadelphia Mayor John F. Street] said.

First, getting widespread wireless coverage will be a temporary edge at best as other cities get networks online. Second, anyone who still uses "hip" has other problems in the cool department.

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