Cruising for Hot Spots

The internet broadband connection went away again. For nearly two full days we battled connecting to the internet. They both needed to check things online, so last night Doris and Chris grabbed their wireless capable laptops and off we went into the great sprawling metropolis of Waverly in search of wireless hot spots. A year ago anyone attempting this would have been on a wild goose chase. My how the world of technology is changing–even here in this sleepy little town. Doris read that our public library had gone wireless. I read that a local motel had a hot spot. We figured it was worth a try.

We encountered more than just a few wide open wireless internet hot spots. Some signals were a little weak, and the wireless configuration on Doris’ laptop is a little kludgey (that is a technical term for the “special” software Dell and Microsoft use), but we found a usable connection and both Doris and Chris were able to get a few minutes of necessary internet connectivity.

I am more convinced now than ever that wireless is the future of communication as long as the government does not legislate in favor of big outdated telcom corporations.

Imagine this: You have in your hand a wireless device that serves not only as a PDA, but a VOIP (Voice over Internet Protocol) telephone. As long as you have a valid account, you can use the phone anywhere there is a wireless hot spot. Free of any charges beyond the initial VOIP provider charges.

It is not a big stretch. Just last night Chris and Doris used a hot spot connected to who knows what ISP. We didn’t care, we just rode the bandwidth–free of charge.

I may borrow Doris’ laptop and go out cruising for more hot spots, just to see where they are. Hotels, libraries, restaurants, schools, taverns and even private citizens are setting up hot spots. Most are wide open and free to the general public. I knew things were like this in the big cities, but it never occurred to me until last night that wireless was so pervasive here in my little hometown.