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RE: Laptop (Follow Up)

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I agree that WiFi is incredible technology, but personally I can’t visualize how it will benefit me. You have to be in close proximity (1,500 ft?) to a server like a Starbucks, airport or hotel. At home, it would be just a “gadget”. Now, if I were in a large office, I can see the advantage. But, like I said, for me, I don’t get it.


Having a wireless connection to the ‘Net is another story. It’s hard to follow your point, but I got the impression that’s what you ended up with. I would have access to e-mail with the GSM card and I wouldn’t be limited to where a server might (or might not) be. Just need a cell site. So, I will be getting everything you’re talking about.


With regards to being at a jobsite, I’ve made it a practice to only take notes when I’m at a jobsite, not to sit there and solve a problem. This goes back to way before computers. I offer caution to those who are compelled (even if involuntarily) to provide a decision on the spot without having the time to digest all the implications of what the contractor is trying to do. So, even if I have my laptop with me, and I have all the project files and the question is simple, I always tell them I’ll give a final answer once I get back to the office. It’s amazing how many times I’ve changed my mind on the drive back to the office because I’ve had a chance to think about the problem a little further.


T. William (Bill) Allen, S.E. (CA #2607)

San Juan Capistrano, CA

-----Original Message-----
From: Bill Polhemus [mailto:bill(--nospam--at)]
Sent: Monday, June 07, 2004 4:32 PM
Subject: RE: Laptop (Follow Up)


From: Bill Allen [mailto:T.W.Allen(--nospam--at)]
Sent: Monday, June 07, 2004 5:02 PM
To: seaint(--nospam--at)
Subject: RE: Laptop (Follow Up)



Ø      The unit has wireless capability but I really can’t see the benefit of WiFi for me.

That’s because you’ve never had occasion to use it. Around the house it is very nice. Out in public, using a “hot-spot” (which are becoming rather ubiquitous), WiFi is “killer technology.”

Ø      I wouldn’t want to replace my existing router just to be able to surf the net from another part of my home and then expose my system to yet

Ø      another venue for hackers.

With respect, spoken like someone who isn’t up on things. In the first place, WiFi security is so easy it’s ridiculous. Second, the reason you hear all the “horror stories” is that people are stupid, and don’t take the few seconds it takes to set up security (the same class of people who never back up their computer’s hard drive).

Ø      I can’t see paying $40/month (T-Mobile) just to be able to sit at Starbucks and surf the net.

To each his own. For me, it isn’t about “sitting at Starbuck’s and surfing the net.” It’s about having access to email and indeed my home network server at any time, and practically any place (I no longer use WiFi “in public,” however, because I need 100% access, so I use a wireless service from Earthlink—a wireless modem). It has been immensely useful for me, like on a field project I had where we were sitting in an office trailer on the back side of a rural airport.

I think people still have the wrong idea about the ‘net. It isn’t about entertainment, if you choose to look at it the right way. It’s about information.

Ø      I seldom fly or stay in hotels. However, I _do_ want Internet capability and my cell phone provider (AT&T) has a pretty logical solution. They offer

Ø      a GSM card (about $300) which will allow me to reach the ‘Net anywhere my cell phone works.

That’s pretty much what I have. Mine is from Earthlink and uses the Cingular Wireless network.

Ø      T. William (Bill) Allen, S.E. (CA #2607)