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Mobile Wifi Backpack

michael posted more than 10 years ago | from the share-the-love dept.

Wireless Networking 278

ruzel writes "Julian Bleecker's web site TechKwonDo describes a project that is a wifi base station in a backpack. 'WiFi.Bedouin is a wearable, mobile 802.11b node disconnected from the global Internet. It forms a WiFi "island Internet" challenging conventional assumptions about WiFi and suggesting new architectures for digital networks that are based on physical proximity rather than solely connectivity.' The motivation is essentially subversive but what other uses are there for a device like this?"

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Does it come with a prosthetic vagina? (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#8683364)

Cause I don't think you'll be getting any real vag wearing this thing.

LOL - MOD PARENT UP (-1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#8683424)

n/t

Re:Does it come with a prosthetic vagina? (0, Flamebait)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#8683439)

Well you might get looks from some ugly goth chicks.

first post? (-1, Offtopic)

genner (694963) | more than 10 years ago | (#8683365)

I for one welcome our first post overlords.

Out for a run? (4, Funny)

baudilus (665036) | more than 10 years ago | (#8683369)

So instead of war driving will there be war running?

Re:Out for a run? (5, Funny)

ComradeX13 (226926) | more than 10 years ago | (#8683418)

Gotta... keep... going... ISO... almost... finished...

Re:Out for a run? (2, Funny)

minus_273 (174041) | more than 10 years ago | (#8683556)

hey at least geeks wont have a reputation for being out of shape

Re:Out for a run? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#8683777)

I heard something similar watching William Shatner use Kazaa.

Re:Out for a run? (3, Funny)

ZigiSamblak (745960) | more than 10 years ago | (#8683576)

Yeah, we'll all be runnin' round trying to crash each others backpacks. In the end the person with the most updated, most secure OS and software on his backpack will be the winner. It will be so much fun, the nerds ultimate wet dream!

Re:Out for a run? (1)

Short Circuit (52384) | more than 10 years ago | (#8683605)

Hey...that really might get me out excercising. That's a neat idea!

And when I get tired, I'll sit down and play a little more single-player RTCW.

Try War Panting. (2, Interesting)

b0r0din (304712) | more than 10 years ago | (#8683622)

Bah. I hate exercise.

Seriously, though, I don't really see a great advantage of having a singular wifi-spot and no internet connectivity. If you had, say, a satellite uplink, you could then provide wifi to a group in an area, but it's not like I could post on slashdot if all I had was an intranet island, particularly one with minimal range.

I can see some interesting social environments that could crop up as a result of wireless in general, though I think it'd happen along the PDA or bluetooth front. Information trading, for instance - social groups could share info like MP3s without fear of reprisal from the big bad media companies. I hear text messaging is really huge in places like hong kong, where you can pick someone up in a bar using your cell phone. I imagine if you were in a wilderness or military setting, it could be pretty nice, but they already have things like GPS and secure satellite uplinks. But base station backpacking?

Here's an ideal situation. Have a LAN party in the middle of the Ozarks by linking your backpacks together in a chain. Sure, you can play Quake now until your laptop dies. This, of course, that defeats the WHOLE PURPOSE of being in the woods, which is to get away from technology.

Re:Out for a run? (1)

theM_xl (760570) | more than 10 years ago | (#8683685)

Yes indeed. We're currently looking into getting the 100 meter war dash into the Olympic program. We were originally going for a war marathon but were advised that most of our target population wouldn't make it that far in a reasonable time.

That looks horrible (0, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#8683375)

And imagine the radiation you absorb while wearing it.

Re:That looks horrible (1)

cshark (673578) | more than 10 years ago | (#8683433)

Sounds like fun. I don't glow a bright enough shade of green as it is. Radiation is just the thing we need more of in our lives.

Re:That looks horrible (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#8683561)

radio emissions != radioactivity. Geez....

If you wanna make funny, refer to microwaving your 'nads or something....

Other uses.. (2, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#8683380)



I dunno... Looking stupid, maybe?

Re:Other uses.. (1)

mad mad ninja (610973) | more than 10 years ago | (#8683416)

nah, looks like fun, wireless LAN, anywhere, anytime. now if a bunch of these could interlink to each other by proximity (i dont know much about wi-fi) you could in theory make a large network on the back of wi-fi geeks.

They got something like that already... (2, Insightful)

Penguinisto (415985) | more than 10 years ago | (#8683533)

...it's called ad-hoc

(waitaminute - did an April 1 story just get out of the barn a wee bit early?)

Re:Other uses.. (1)

Short Circuit (52384) | more than 10 years ago | (#8683649)

Imagine a mobile laser tag setup that worked like that. Laser tag in any environment you could want. People joining and quitting whenever.

Just make sure it's obvious your guns are fake...I could certainly see social and police issues involved.

Frist Prost (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#8683406)

Twice in one day!

What the fuck? (4, Insightful)

James A. M. Joyce (764379) | more than 10 years ago | (#8683408)

"WiFi.Bedouin is a wearable, mobile 802.11b node disconnected from the global Internet. It forms a WiFi "island Internet" challenging conventional assumptions about WiFi and suggesting new architectures for digital networks that are based on physical proximity rather than solely connectivity."

What the hell does this mean? Sounds like a bunch of buzzwords thrown together about a project nobody wants that solves a problem that doesn't exist.

Re:What the fuck? (1, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#8683470)

Save the postmodernist bullshit for English class. This doesn't challenge anything. Ever heard of ad-hoc mode?

Re:What the fuck? (3, Insightful)

Doesn't_Comment_Code (692510) | more than 10 years ago | (#8683471)

What the hell does this mean? Sounds like a bunch of buzzwords thrown together about a project nobody wants that solves a problem that doesn't exist.

No kidding. I was stumped at the
'WiFi.Bedouin is a wearable, mobile 802.11b node disconnected from the global Internet. It forms a WiFi "island Internet" challenging conventional assumptions about WiFi
part.

Disconnected from the global internet!? So you can communicate with a computer, say, 20 yards away? If I were in that situation, I would walk the 20 yards and login there.

Seriously, there might be a few applications out there, but none that I can think of off the top of my head. Unless you're a backyard commando. Then you might be able to come up with some use for it.

Re:What the fuck? (5, Interesting)

sporty (27564) | more than 10 years ago | (#8683559)

Lemme break it down for you.

WiFi.Bedouin is a wearable, mobile 802.11b node disconnected from the global Internet.


It's a wifi station that's not plugged into a broaddband connection.


It forms a WiFi "island Internet"


It has no uplink.


challenging conventional assumptions about WiFi and suggesting new architectures for digital networks


Usually, there's an uplink, right?


that are based on physical proximity rather than solely connectivity.


Think of it like Gnutella. Anyone can become a hub, and if two people connect to it, you are part of the same network. Now imagine gnutella over something like, CB radio. It's all proximity based.


All inventions aren't about solving an existing problem. Sometimes, it's about enhancing life.

Re:What the fsck? (2, Insightful)

Matt1313 (165628) | more than 10 years ago | (#8683568)

What the hell does this mean? Sounds like a bunch of buzzwords thrown together about a project nobody wants that solves a problem that doesn't exist.

I guess you could also say the same thing about the Television or the Radio... there wasn't really a problem to be solved but someone designed a "machine" that would allow for the dissemination of information to a vast number of the populace. Granted TV/Radio hardly ever disseminates true information anymore...

Point being, just because there isn't a "problem to be solved" does not mean that the new technology will not be used by millions of people one day.

Re:What the fuck? (1)

nodwick (716348) | more than 10 years ago | (#8683589)

What the hell does this mean? Sounds like a bunch of buzzwords thrown together about a project nobody wants that solves a problem that doesn't exist.
Heh, I thought the same thing when I read this but couldn't think up a polite way to mention it.

The phrase "island Internet" is already a bit of an oxymoron because most of my use of the internet relies on its sheer size and ubiquity. I use Google to look up things I don't know about, which works because someone somewhere around the world is likely to have an informative page on just about any topic. I use email and IM to connect with people because they don't rely on physical proximity. Google News (and Slashdot!) keep me up to date on news wherever I go. I'm sure others could come up with more examples, but the common theme is that each of these applications relies on the connectedness and size of the net today (Metcalfe's Law, anyone?). The internet, to me, boils down to content and reach -- who'll provide that on your "island"?

That's not to say that there won't be new applications for this sort of device -- I can envision something akin to the iPod jacking phenomenon [wired.com] -- but comparing it to the internet is a misleading metaphor.

Re:What the fuck? (4, Insightful)

xenocyst (618913) | more than 10 years ago | (#8683686)

its pure pr bullshit, all they did was put a low power access point in a backpack with some batteries and a powerbook playing server
heh, i wouldn't mind stealing one... but other than that, not very interesting
(-1 Marketing Bullshit)

Re:What the fuck? (1)

ch-chuck (9622) | more than 10 years ago | (#8683689)

Mayhaps Michael was inspired by the Wearable stuff Fashion Show a few articles back.

Can you imagine... (0, Funny)

Patrick Bateman (175284) | more than 10 years ago | (#8683410)

... a Beowulf cluster of these?

fp (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#8683413)

It's a trap!

Setting up workgroups in remote areas (5, Insightful)

raider_red (156642) | more than 10 years ago | (#8683417)

There are some military, missionary, and humanitarian groups who could use this set up work group networks in a remote location. True, you could do the same with ad-hoc networking, but this gives a one-click-connect option.

Re:Setting up workgroups in remote areas (1)

Short Circuit (52384) | more than 10 years ago | (#8683692)

It does sound similar to that email setup they've got in remote areas of India. A rather neat extension, if you ask me.

Re:Setting up workgroups in remote areas (1)

Matt1313 (165628) | more than 10 years ago | (#8683706)

I can see this being used extensively in the military, given a good amount of range it would allow for the exchange of real-time video (w/ added wearable cam), so in combination to the new Microdrone Spy Planes [slashdot.org] that would give you a bird's eye view you would also have a soldier's eye view... which in my opinion adds a much needed dimension to the REMF commander's decision making process.

I have always preferred the FPS to the top down RTS when killing the natives. /sarcasm

Other uses? (4, Insightful)

mahdi13 (660205) | more than 10 years ago | (#8683420)

The motivation is essentially subversive but what other uses are there for a device like this?
LAN party
Anytime...anywhere

Re:Other uses? (1)

baudilus (665036) | more than 10 years ago | (#8683489)

Unless you plan on playing chess wirelessly, it's not really good for LAN parties. It's 802.11b for goodness sake. I don't even surf the real internet that slow, let alone network.

It may be good for truly local personal ads though. Once connected, you could see the bios of potentials in your immediate area, then you go meet someone for real.

Re:Other uses? (1)

mahdi13 (660205) | more than 10 years ago | (#8683594)

Unless you plan on playing chess wirelessly, it's not really good for LAN parties. It's 802.11b for goodness sake.
Some people are truely spoiled...I play ET over my wireless all the time and it is just fine
But you do have a point as more people join on the AP, 802.11b does have a 11 Mbps limit (which is still enough for a decent 10 player game)...so just upgrade it to 802.11g and you can get ~5x more out of it

Re:Other uses? (1)

SuiteSisterMary (123932) | more than 10 years ago | (#8683784)

Some people are truely spoiled...I play ET over my wireless all the time and it is just fine

Playing an Atari 2600 game over .11b is one thing....

Re:Other uses? (1)

starm_ (573321) | more than 10 years ago | (#8683666)

whats slow about 802.11b I can download at 300kB/s on my machine no prob.

Re:Other uses? (1)

Lev13than (581686) | more than 10 years ago | (#8683638)

An immediate use that springs to mind is a bunch of students gathering at a campus cafeteria to trade musc, video etc... without anyone (University IT, RIIA, FBI, Egg Council) tracking what you trade.

Re:Other uses? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#8683662)

Right. Unless they bring in their little kit to join the network.

Re:Other uses? (1)

Short Circuit (52384) | more than 10 years ago | (#8683730)

A laser tag LAN party.

Play in and around a building on your property. Just remember you're in reality, and you can't jump down onto that chainlink fence...

A WiFi Fidonet/Freenet, on the run (4, Insightful)

silentbozo (542534) | more than 10 years ago | (#8683731)

Actually, if you had enough traffic density, this could act as a supplement to wired WiFi access. Consider FidoNet - nothing but nodes that talked to other nodes when able (ie, during the middle of the night for a few minutes when long distance charges were the least). You could send non-time-critical (encrypted) mail via a local node, and hopefully, if it ever linked up to the main network, your mail would make it. You'd probably want to keep broadcasting this mail for delivery until it was accepted by a minimum number of unwired nodes, or until you got confirmation that it had been sent.

This would also be an interesting application for a freenet-like network. A mobile, distributed collection of nodes could contain a lot of information, possibly distributed backups, local caches of streaming media, etc. AND, you wouldn't necessarily have to tote around backpacks either - stick one of these in the trunk of your car, and you can have a mobile node in traffic.

Lastly, if you give these nodes the capability to smart-mesh traffic if there are enough of them nearby, you could introduce wired endpoints that would turn a collection of semi-isolated nodes into a full interconnected wired network.

Go-anywhere wireless internet node (1)

Squorch (21295) | more than 10 years ago | (#8683423)

Hook up a phone, especially one of the ones with faster access (ATT's EDGE or Verizon's new network) and you instantly have shareable access anywhere.

Imagine a guy assigned as part of the press entourage of the President. His job is to maintain the wireless connectivity while the rest of the press corps connect to his node over 802.11b and VPN or what-have-you to transmit their stories/pictures back to the home office. An agreement of such a nature could significantly reduce costs for journalists.

Re:Go-anywhere wireless internet node (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#8683465)

An agreement of such a nature could significantly reduce costs for journalists.

Good reason to not implement it in the bush whitehouse. Like they want unbiased information to get to the public. heh.

A little full of itself? (4, Insightful)

bc90021 (43730) | more than 10 years ago | (#8683425)

Yes, it's cool, but this seems a little over the top:

"WiFi.Bedouin is designed to be functional as well as provocative, expanding the possible meaning and metaphors about access, proximity, wireless and WiFi. This access point is not the web without wires. Instead, it is its own web , an apparatus that forces one to reconsider and question notions of virtuality, materiality, displacement, proximity and community. " (Emphasis theirs.)

I can't imagine it will be long before this gets combined with WiMax [wimaxforum.org] , and then none of that "not web without wires" will apply anymore.

Re:A little full of itself? (1)

afidel (530433) | more than 10 years ago | (#8683587)

That definitly sounds like it was coined by a marketing droid who was a failed philosohpy major!

Don't lose it (2, Insightful)

thebra (707939) | more than 10 years ago | (#8683428)

"...a small backpack containing an adapted 802.11b access point, RF amplifier, custom power supply and a PowerBook G4..."
It seems kind of risky to carry all of that in a backpack. Not only if you drop it, water spill, but for some one to steal.

War Packing? (1, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#8683430)

Now we have another "war {something}" to add to our list so teens can feel cool lugging a bunch of electronics around on their backs/in their cars/on their heads.

Re:War Packing? (1)

NotHomeRightNow (765466) | more than 10 years ago | (#8683699)

Now we have another "war {something}" to add to our list so teens can feel cool lugging a bunch of electronics around on their backs/in their cars/on their heads.

Sorry, I'm NotHomeRightNow, I'm walking in this battle, so leave a message after the tone and I'll call you back.

A likely story, but leave a message after the tone and I'll call you back.

Re:War Packing? (1)

TheTone (765463) | more than 10 years ago | (#8683712)

"island internet" (5, Insightful)

Roger Keith Barrett (712843) | more than 10 years ago | (#8683437)

What idiot marketing person came up with the term "island internet". The words are mutually exclusive.

It's a mobile WAN! This is a tech website, people, not cnn.com tech news!

Its all about "spin" (2, Funny)

Chris_Stankowitz (612232) | more than 10 years ago | (#8683580)

"What idiot marketing person came up with the term "island internet". The words are mutually exclusive.

The person that is trying to get Internet gambling on US soil. You see this way, he calls him self an "Island", puts a Hawiian shirt, some shorts and Sandals with black socks pulled up to his knees and voilla..... Instant offshore-onshore Gambling!!

Re:"island internet" (4, Funny)

DR SoB (749180) | more than 10 years ago | (#8683627)

Actually it's a mobile LAN.

Not a marketing person ... (1)

pavon (30274) | more than 10 years ago | (#8683702)

... a professor in technology and culture. shudder. You know, a subset of those liberal arts people who all spend their entire lives studying "culture" but still manage to be more out of touch with the people they are studying than anyone else on the planet.

/.ed? (4, Funny)

ComradeX13 (226926) | more than 10 years ago | (#8683460)

Quick, someone build one and run out to their server... I think we need a mirror.

the past and future (2, Insightful)

oogoody (302342) | more than 10 years ago | (#8683462)

The internet used to be a bunch
of us connecting via slooow dialup modems.
The real internet is an idea. It's not
the privately controlled backbone that
the government can tap. The internet is
anyone who wants to set up a network and
connect.

Re:the past and future (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#8683617)

n : worldwide network of computer computer networks that use the TCP/IP network protocols to facilitate data transmission and exchange

Re:the past and future (1)

KevinKnSC (744603) | more than 10 years ago | (#8683779)

How high were you when you wrote this?

Mobile pr0n! (3, Funny)

mao che minh (611166) | more than 10 years ago | (#8683463)

YES!

Re:Mobile pr0n! (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#8683546)

It's called a girlfriend. Look into it.

Re:Mobile pr0n! (4, Funny)

RobertB-DC (622190) | more than 10 years ago | (#8683681)

It's called a girlfriend. Look into it.

Unfortunately, the "girlfriend" protocol requires direct connectivity before remote image download can occur. In fact, users of this protocol often find themselves purchasing the packet wrapper for the sole purpose of removing it when the packet is received.

Mobile pr0n with a 20-ft radius has the advantage of getting you ping access to a server that normally would not allow the receiver within 10-ft (distance measured with a device called a "pole").

Mirror (1)

Novanix (656269) | more than 10 years ago | (#8683475)

Here is a mhtml mirror: http://reseller-mage.com/mirror.mhtml

Google Cache (5, Informative)

sndtech (738958) | more than 10 years ago | (#8683477)

google cache [google.com] since its already slashdotted

Re:Google Cache (4, Funny)

HiredMan (5546) | more than 10 years ago | (#8683641)

I dunno, maybe the person wearing their webserver went for coffee and is just out of range right now.

=tkk

It could be useful... (1)

erick99 (743982) | more than 10 years ago | (#8683486)

I can think of many good uses for a product like this but I wasn't able to find price information or some technical info such as the expected range of the access point when carried in a backpack, etc. I can't tell if they are marketing this or just doing a computer-Zen circle jerk. Still, it's a cool idea.

Happy Trails!

Erick

hmm (1)

minus_273 (174041) | more than 10 years ago | (#8683500)

i can see very cool battlefield networks.. wait thats already been done.

Mr. Garrison (-1, Flamebait)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#8683505)

Why don't you SUCK my balls!?, Mr Garrison.

So what's the usefulness? (5, Insightful)

ramk13 (570633) | more than 10 years ago | (#8683508)

It seems to me you'd need a critical mass of people who are interested in joining a random floating network for it to be of any use at all.

Most people use their wireless to connect to the real internet, so what do they gain over the conventional internet. Some of the ideas listed on the website (which is getting thrashed at the moment) are redirecting conventional .com websites and streaming music. Might be nice in a place where people are already motivated to get together, i.e. a convention.

As per the website (Posted Prematurley) (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#8683723)

Scenario #2 Creation of Mobile WiFi Network for communication during Protest & Emergency Situations. I think thats actually a *very* good use for it. Maybe even haev IP phones on this network?

Here I am, wanting to RTFA, (4, Insightful)

idontgno (624372) | more than 10 years ago | (#8683519)

and the site isn't answering.

Anyway, I wondered (and I have to continue wondering, since the article is /.ed): what's the point? Portable LAN party? One-man mobile tentacle-pr0n provider? Geek chic?

Seriously, without internet connectivity, what's it got? Or are we operating under the delusion that a clutch of wifi afficianados clustering around a self-contained hotspot will spontaneously generate useful, amusing, or at least non-trivial content?

I don't get it.

Re:Here I am, wanting to RTFA, (1)

Like2Byte (542992) | more than 10 years ago | (#8683653)

The point? There doesn't seem to *be* a point.

I RTFA and all it is (according to one of the diagrams on the page) is a Powerbook G4 in a small backpack with two 802.11b antenna's stickout out of the back. The cartoon person holding a PDA isn't even looking at the PDA. There is some text touting the use of the PDA for GPS directions and such but bug deal! Garmin already makes a PDA with GPS unit w/ mapping software built in for ~$700.00 (US) and you don't have to radiate yourself to use it.

As someone already stated above, they seem to be trying to solve a non-existant problem which no one needs resolved.

I wanted to say something originally after RTFA but I was hit with a such a lack of interest that I just clicked away.

Re:Here I am, wanting to RTFA, (1)

NotHomeRightNow (765466) | more than 10 years ago | (#8683757)

and the site isn't answering.

Sorry, I'm NotHomeRightNow, but leave a message after the tone, and I'll call you right back.

Re:Here I am, wanting to RTFA, (1)

TheTone (765463) | more than 10 years ago | (#8683772)

Motorola/General Dynamics (1)

CmdrWass (570427) | more than 10 years ago | (#8683523)

Motorola/General Dynamics has been doing similar things for years. OpenWings [openwings.org] This is more for millitary use, but it's still the same concept.

Re:Motorola/General Dynamics (2, Interesting)

linwoes (608943) | more than 10 years ago | (#8683773)

Isn't this just a bigger verion of bluetooth.
Really, it's backpack sized with more range and more bw, but in effect it is looking a lot like the dream of bluetooth to me. I could be wrong though.

this was on theregister like yesterday (-1, Offtopic)

unix mutant (765746) | more than 10 years ago | (#8683532)

or maybe even the day before i dont remember.

Cool tool (3, Informative)

metlin (258108) | more than 10 years ago | (#8683534)

Would be quite cool to try and study swarm/group behaviour of things like soliders on the warfront. The team squadron leader could have this on his/her back, and we could see how they spread out.

Reminds me of some of the experiments that get performed at the BORG Lab [gatech.edu] here at GTech.

Look at this guy's work [gatech.edu] on predicting user behaviour through GPS tracking and the like. Combine that with this kinda queen bee kinda behaviour, am sure we would get something really cool.

Is this some kind of new paradigm in networking? :)

Re:Cool tool (1)

baudilus (665036) | more than 10 years ago | (#8683603)

Would be a waste of the team leader's energy (to have to carry this along with his other gear), and it doesn't take into account a person's distance from the access point, so some third-party triangulation would be necessary. It would be much easier to employ a per-soldier type of tracking (ankle bracelet?) which would be much smaller and monitorable from a satellite.

WiFi Pacman (2, Interesting)

manganese4 (726568) | more than 10 years ago | (#8683540)

Personally I think if you mounted these on a bunch of Vespas, you could make good use of a City grid network for a game of Pacman or some other monster around the corner game. You will only be able to interact with other people when your Wifi signals overlap.

Re:WiFi Pacman (2, Informative)

metlin (258108) | more than 10 years ago | (#8683628)

Wasn't something like this done before for Quake?

Different, yes - it used GPS positioning with VR for playing within a University Campus in Australia.

Ah, here you go [infosatellite.com] .

Gamers, criminals, and subversives. (5, Insightful)

LeeRagans (457865) | more than 10 years ago | (#8683560)

I can see a mobile gaming. Imagine having you own little private gaming world. It follows you and people can log on when you are near. Play with people on the train, bus, in the mall.

Change the paradigm, find the game, not find access.

The possibilities for private networks amongst friends that synchronize data when they pass seems pretty high as well. Can you say organized crime?

Re:Gamers, criminals, and subversives. (2, Funny)

DR SoB (749180) | more than 10 years ago | (#8683657)

I plan on beating the shit out of the first moron I see playing a FPS on a bus.

Besides, where is the uplink??

Error 404 (5, Funny)

Doesn't_Comment_Code (692510) | more than 10 years ago | (#8683563)

Error 404

The page you requested was not found on the server. Perhaps you should try taking several steps in the geographic direction of the server you are requesting the document from.

Could we have .... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#8683577)

...a mesh network of these? Including some base stations that would tie the entire mobil mesh into the real Internet?

While your at it, if we could just have every car that is running take part as well. Then we'd never run out of bandwidth or access points except in rural areas.

Buzzword Bingo! (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#8683585)

"It forms a WiFi "island Internet" challenging conventional assumptions about WiFi"

Such as the conventional assumption that it should be useful? What use is this?

Island Internet (1, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#8683596)

Gilligan's Island with the coconut battery pack.

LAN party in the park (1)

RichMan (8097) | more than 10 years ago | (#8683598)

This could be the end of pasty white geeks everywhere. LAN parties in the park.

Ingredients:
1) WiFi backpack
2) laptops/palmtops
3) Power Gloves
4) VR glasses

great idea! (5, Funny)

Roger Keith Barrett (712843) | more than 10 years ago | (#8683671)

Playing games with power gloves and VR glasses in a park would cause a bigger panic than the War of the Worlds broadcast!

Re:LAN party in the park (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#8683693)

Ya, now we have pasty white geeks with uber-geek tan lines from the portable devices they refuse to take off

Re:LAN party in the park (1)

DrMrLordX (559371) | more than 10 years ago | (#8683742)

Highly unlikely. The geeks will gather after the sun goes down. After all, 20 minutes of exposure causes burns.

Sounds interesting (1)

Sexual Ass Gerbil (728400) | more than 10 years ago | (#8683601)

You could set this up kind of like Packet Radio.. where you can relay your packets through other servers. Back in the days of data radio communication, you relied on the mercy of the servers you relayed through. If one went down or lost contact with its relay partner stations, you lost your connection. There are insane latency issues involved, but it was pretty exciting to communicate long distances jumping through multiple stations. Ahh, the days before the internet..

This is a cool idea for small scale networks (1)

Fluidic Binary (554336) | more than 10 years ago | (#8683632)

I dont see what the big problem is or why people think this is so lame. It seems like a cool way to setup a little wifi network whenever and wherever one might like.

OK I will admit the backpack part is mostly marketing and perhaps somewhat lame, but the technology inside is still somewhat novel (if not truly 'new') and I applaud any effort to give amateurs new tools.

This grants us all an additional technological freedom. Sure it seems odd and useless to some at the moment, but uses will pop up; that is what clever people do for us. Much like rumba in the realm of robots, I don't personally see an immediate use, but I wont shoot it down for that; Someone is going to make me proud with that little pack of wifi.

Maybe Im wrong, but better to be optimistic when discussing technophiles.

Add a GPS and metal detector... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#8683651)

...and you might just be able to find what little dignity you have left.

It's got a few bells, but... (4, Interesting)

SandSpider (60727) | more than 10 years ago | (#8683672)

By and large, this is what we call a "Powerbook." Okay, it does some stuff like translating URLs to arbitrary local pages, but that is of limited use. At least for OS X users.

To understand what I mean, go to a Macworld Expo Keynote with your Airport card. You'll see dozens of different Airport networks pop up. Because everyone has Rendezvous, you can use iChat to chat with any of them, and you can use Rendezvous to share your locally available web pages automatically. They'll even show up in Safari's bookmarks. The best part is, you could see what pages you're going to, rather than being redirected at random.

When I go to the AdHoc Conference this year (used to be MacHack), I'm going to have my powerbook set up with a Wiki so that, if I collaborate on my Hack again, it'll be an easy way to share the information. Also, during the Hack contest, anyone who wanted to could open a copy of SubEthaEdit and record their notes from the show. It allowed a quick collaboration between several to dozens of people on covering the show.

So, in general, it just doesn't seem to do much for you, aside from pranks. I suppose it's good for people who don't have Rendezvous enabled throughout their operating system.

This is a new idea? (1)

Mose250 (724946) | more than 10 years ago | (#8683673)

I've had a Toshiba e740 for a while... what's the difference between this and hypothetically getting a bunch of wifi PDAs together and ad-hoc networking them (aside from the obvious bonus of having a huge nerdpack on your back)?

Multi-cell wifi (4, Insightful)

G4from128k (686170) | more than 10 years ago | (#8683714)

It seems that the ultimate system would use at least two wifi cards with a search and load-balancer. One card would provide a connection while the other card searches other bands for the next connection. If both cards find an AP, the load balancer would provide twice thee bandwidth. When the first connection weakens, the system would do a hand-off to the second card. It may disrupt continuity of some internet services, that assume IP continuity, but it would let a user be ultra mobile -- skipping from wifi cell to wifi cell with little perceived break in connectivity.

Future of the Net... (5, Insightful)

dekashizl (663505) | more than 10 years ago | (#8683725)

Think back to around 1994/95... It wasn't unusual to have an unfirewalled computer with a static IP address sitting on the net. We used to ping-flood people we didn't like while playing Quake. Maybe even throw a WinNuke their way if they got nasty. Whatever, it was the Wild West, no laws, no morality, everything was free and fun. Looking back on that behavior, it was pretty immature and irresponsible, but we were just playing with the new technology.

Fast forward almost a decade to now, and computers sit behind hardware firewalls with dynamic IP addresses, are assigned rotating NAT internal addresses, run virus protection and spyware removal softwares, must be constantly patched to fix security holes, and people are innundated with corporate media and SPAM.

OK who could have predicted all this back then? Sure some had the ideas that it was coming, but not like this. We lost what was the Original Internet, a thing of innocence and freedom. Much of what bound it together was trust. That's gone.

So this brings up an interesting concept. Rather than having "an internet", we may have our own mini-internets. Companies do this to some extent with intRAnets. But this idea now takes it to the next level. A completely isolated network with strict content and connectivity controls to the outside world. I get the feeling that this is our future, the best way to deal with all the problems that an international connected web of distrust that is the Internat brings: Set up a local web of trust and establish relations with other webs of trust. This is the model adopted by nations in how they interact with each other (in terms of laws, immigration, trade, etc.). Neighborhoods and tribes operate like this as well. And the interesting part of it in this new domain, is that physical proximity and characteristics are even less relevant than before, opening up many more opportunities for multiple memberships and diversification.

Sorry this is a bit rambling (-1 Rambling), but just wanted to float the idea out there that this or something like it may solve a lot of our problems (as well as introducing its own, of course).

How is this different... (1)

beattie (594287) | more than 10 years ago | (#8683735)

How is this any different than any other ad-hoc wireless network?

Other Uses... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 10 years ago | (#8683736)

How about, Mobile Cancer Machine!
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