Email Delivery

Receive new posts as email.

Email address

Syndicate this site

RSS | Atom


About This Site
Contact Us
Privacy Policy


November 2010
Sun Mon Tues Wed Thurs Fri Sat
  1 2 3 4 5 6
7 8 9 10 11 12 13
14 15 16 17 18 19 20
21 22 23 24 25 26 27
28 29 30        

Stories by Category

Basics :: Basics
Casting :: Casting Listen In Podcasts Videocasts
Culture :: Culture Hacking
Deals :: Deals
Future :: Future
Hardware :: Hardware Adapters Appliances Chips Consumer Electronics Gaming Home Entertainment Music Photography Video Gadgets Mesh Monitoring and Testing PDAs Phones Smartphones
Industry :: Industry Conferences Financial Free Health Legal Research Vendor analysis
International :: International
Media :: Media Locally cached Streaming
Metro-Scale Networks :: Metro-Scale Networks Community Networking Municipal
Network Types :: Network Types Broadband Wireless Cellular 2.5G and 3G 4G Power Line Satellite
News :: News Mainstream Media
Politics :: Politics Regulation Sock Puppets
Schedules :: Schedules
Security :: Security 802.1X
Site Specific :: Site Specific Administrative Detail April Fool's Blogging Book review Cluelessness Guest Commentary History Humor Self-Promotion Unique Wee-Fi Who's Hot Today?
Software :: Software Open Source
Spectrum :: Spectrum 60 GHz
Standards :: Standards 802.11a 802.11ac 802.11ad 802.11e 802.11g 802.11n 802.20 Bluetooth MIMO UWB WiGig WiMAX ZigBee
Transportation and Lodging :: Transportation and Lodging Air Travel Aquatic Commuting Hotels Rails
Unclassified :: Unclassified
Vertical Markets :: Vertical Markets Academia Enterprise WLAN Switches Home Hot Spot Aggregators Hot Spot Advertising Road Warrior Roaming Libraries Location Medical Public Safety Residential Rural SOHO Small-Medium Sized Business Universities Utilities wISP
Voice :: Voice


November 2010 | October 2010 | September 2010 | August 2010 | July 2010 | June 2010 | May 2010 | April 2010 | March 2010 | February 2010 | January 2010 | December 2009 | November 2009 | October 2009 | September 2009 | August 2009 | July 2009 | June 2009 | May 2009 | April 2009 | March 2009 | February 2009 | January 2009 | December 2008 | November 2008 | October 2008 | September 2008 | August 2008 | July 2008 | June 2008 | May 2008 | April 2008 | March 2008 | February 2008 | January 2008 | December 2007 | November 2007 | October 2007 | September 2007 | August 2007 | July 2007 | June 2007 | May 2007 | April 2007 | March 2007 | February 2007 | January 2007 | December 2006 | November 2006 | October 2006 | September 2006 | August 2006 | July 2006 | June 2006 | May 2006 | April 2006 | March 2006 | February 2006 | January 2006 | December 2005 | November 2005 | October 2005 | September 2005 | August 2005 | July 2005 | June 2005 | May 2005 | April 2005 | March 2005 | February 2005 | January 2005 | December 2004 | November 2004 | October 2004 | September 2004 | August 2004 | July 2004 | June 2004 | May 2004 | April 2004 | March 2004 | February 2004 | January 2004 | December 2003 | November 2003 | October 2003 | September 2003 | August 2003 | July 2003 | June 2003 | May 2003 | April 2003 | March 2003 | February 2003 | January 2003 | December 2002 | November 2002 | October 2002 | September 2002 | August 2002 | July 2002 | June 2002 | May 2002 | April 2002 | March 2002 | February 2002 | January 2002 | December 2001 | November 2001 | October 2001 | September 2001 | August 2001 | July 2001 | June 2001 | May 2001 | April 2001 |

Recent Entries

In-Flight Wi-Fi and In-Flight Bombs
Can WPA Protect against Firesheep on Same Network?
Southwest Sets In-Flight Wi-Fi at $5
Eye-Fi Adds a View for Web Access
Firesheep Makes Sidejacking Easy
Wi-Fi Direct Certification Starts
Decaf on the Starbucks Digital Network
Google Did Snag Passwords
WiMax and LTE Not Technically 4G by ITU Standards
AT&T Wi-Fi Connections Keep High Growth with Free Service

Site Philosophy

This site operates as an independent editorial operation. Advertising, sponsorships, and other non-editorial materials represent the opinions and messages of their respective origins, and not of the site operator. Part of the FM Tech advertising network.


Entire site and all contents except otherwise noted © Copyright 2001-2010 by Glenn Fleishman. Some images ©2006 Jupiterimages Corporation. All rights reserved. Please contact us for reprint rights. Linking is, of course, free and encouraged.

Powered by
Movable Type

« Linksys Latest Models: Your Experience? | Main | On the Go: Coach, Car, and Wi-Fi; Spanish Trains »

December 22, 2005

SF Releases RFP

San Francisco's request for proposal for its citywide network is out: The city published a PDF of the RFP today; responses are due Feb. 21, 2006.


The problem I have with all Citywdie WiFi projects is the so-called "Digital Divide". The projects assume all people have access to a wirless laptop. I believe that San Francisco's WiFi project should have hybrid BPL layer as part of the project. I just got a job at Motorola this year and they have an excellent backhaul solution that works with their hybrid BPL solution. The backhaul works with any 802.11 point of presence. The best combo is a multiple layer of wirless backhaul + hybrid wireless BPL + WiFi hotspot. The majority of stuggling residents in poorer neighborhoods certainly don't have wireless laptops but some do have personal desktop computers. Just visit the local S.F. libraries or Kinkos and you'll get a better idea of who needs real access. WiFi is part of the answer. My idea of the Backhaul + Hybrid BPL + WiFi is the better approach.
Felix Lopez
Bay Area Resident

[Editor's note: I don't disagree with the need for wired backhaul of some kind (whether BPL or otherwise), but I think you're falling into the trap of reading the reporting on SF's plan. All the municipal wireless plans that I've read include the requirement or option for CPEs (consumer premises equipment) that would be a Wi-Fi to Ethernet adapter. A DSL or cable modem is a CPE, for instance, and a Wi-Fi CPE can work just the same way, perhaps with a high-gain or directional external antenna. For residential use, there is no requirement or expectation of wireless laptops. For outdoor mobile use, naturally there is. --gf]

Editor, Tks for reply. Yes, Part c, Page 4 of RFP discusses Customer Premise Equipment (CPE). The only challenge is this requires a lot of footwork to each premise or residence to set up the antennae or interface. The wireless hybrid BPL platform uses an Access Point that can broadcast a signal to up to 10 homes at one time. If you have multiple Access Points then you can blanket a whole neighborhood and combine with the WiFi hotspot for denser areas. In my hybrid approach, its is full flavor. With hybrid BPL, The resident needs to only plub in a HomePlug alliance compatible modem that has an Ethernet connection and "wa la". The infrasture is more robust and less maintenence over time.

Here is what the text says from the RFP:
"Indoor, Perimeter Room coverage for the ground and second floors of a building shall be
provided for Basic and Premium Services for a minimum of 90% of all residential and
commercial buildings throughout the City. A building is assumed covered under this
Specification if a device located in each Perimeter Room on the ground and second floor of the building can access the Network at the provisioned service level. This coverage requirement may be met by using a Wi-Fi interface built into a user�s device, a signal amplifier, a high-gain antenna and/or a dedicated Wi-Fi bridge or other type of CPE." (that is a lot of walking around and pushes up the cost)

[Editor's note: CPEs will generally be self-install -- no walking around on the part of the service provider. If SF pursues a vendor-neutral approach similar to that in Philadelphia in which a wholesale model is encouraged, than service providers can differentiate themselves in how they offer CPEs ad what kind.

BPL isn't a bad idea, it's just poorly tested at this point since power companies appear reluctant to enter the business. The hybrid model you describe exists, but there are no extensive deployments of it, so it's unclear whether it would work better or worse than SF's RFP. It would almost certainly deliver much higher rates of speed, but it would also almost certainly involve much more expense and be owned by the power utility, which might choose to not offer wholesale access to other providers. It would also lack the mobility component that a citywide Wi-Fi network will have, although that could be built out in other ways.--gf]

Tks for reply. Once again, my thought ws to compliment the City WIFI and the CPE could be a hybrid BPL flavor along with other CPE technologies. In response to your point that "the power company would own" Not true. I know of thrid party ISPs that can install an provision a hybrid system such as WIFI plus hybrid BPL. The power companies have joint pole agreement process in place to allow third parties access to the poles. They do this all the time. Regarding your comment about testing. Not true. The ARRL (I'm a member) has already worked with hybrid BPL systems to insure works ok and FCC on this too. Also the local CPUC seeking more activity with hybrid systems. The Philadelphia WiFi project actually uses the Backhaul technology that I'm discussing. But you are correct that the CPE technology should be of customer choice. Once again the assumption is tha everyone has access to a Desktop PC or a wireless laptop. Spend time at a local SF Library or Kinkos and you will see differently.

[Editor's note: We're working from different assumptions here, but I appreciate your response on all this. I'm not referring to the ARRL (amateur radio) concerns. The fact that third parties exist doesn't mean power companies won't and don't own and control; they're sometimes partnering with third parties (as in Texas). The Philly project doesn't use BPL; it's going to use Motorola Canopy in unlicensed frequencies for point-to-multipoint. If you're being told they're using BPL, it's incorrect. EarthLink, Tropos, and Motorola all explained the Canopy decision to me. --gf]