Meraki proposes free Wi-Fi network for S.F.


MERAKI PROPOSES FREE WI-FI NETWORK FOR SF
[SOURCE: San Francisco Chronicle, AUTHOR: Ryan Kim]
San Francisco's plan to provide citywide wireless Internet access, which foundered last summer when EarthLink pulled out, is being revived by a Mountain View (CA) company that wants to turn the city into a test site for its vision of a low-cost, community-powered system. For what would be the country's largest so-called mesh network, a system that uses a constellation of "repeater antennas" to spread signals, Meraki says it will donate enough equipment and Internet access to provide free wireless service to all residents. The network would use as many as 15,000 wireless antennas to relay signals from home to home in a type of digital daisy-chain. San Francisco is the only city offered free service from Meraki, which plans to use the city as a showroom of sorts to sell its products to other municipalities and communities around the world. Whether the plan works will be up to residents, who the company hopes will volunteer to erect thousands of devices on their rooftops, balconies or in windows. Since the venture will use private property, it does not require city approval. Instead, Meraki is betting on San Franciscans' innovative spirit.
http://www.sfgate.com/cgi-bin/article.cgi?f=/c/a/2008/01/03/MNCDU8UKU.DTL&tsp=1

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