Brighton experiment: Let's put out a newspaper via Wi-Fi: The article has the obligatory "pier-to-pier" networking joke -- which made me laugh -- and turns the group into wireless dowsers: several of us are destined to spend much of the day experimentally walking around the beach, holding our computers at strange angles to try to get reception, and reflecting that this feels more like trying to get a picture out of an old television set than life at the cutting edge of communications technology.
Some of the less savory aspects of public computing rear their head, as in the comment on the Paris Metro Wi-Fi article a few days ago, although jokingly and in passing. In the end, the major risk to our equipment turns out to come from aggressive drunks, who threaten less devious forms of interference. and "That," she points out sagely, "is where the winos hang around. You want to watch those computers. They'll grow legs."
By the time drunks threaten their equipment, the writer has found another problem with wireless working in public spaces, it seems, is that it's frequently far too noisy to actually do anything.
I don't think I've ever read anything before in which a group of people tries to accomplish a specific work goal of any scale at a remote location. Sure, this happens at conferences in press rooms all the time with Web-based publications, but that's not the same as showing up at a beach and creating a professional print publication. [via Smart Mobs]