"When Xerox completed the Ethernet project in the early 1970's,
the face of computing was changed forever. Now users could share
and access resources at fairly high speeds. And the costs of these
new networks are fairly low. The hardware costs were low, the
wiring costs were low, and the necessary cabling skills where
already in place with telco technicians."
"But there are limitations to this wonderful new technology. For
one, you are tethered to the network by a wire. That takes all
mobility out of the picture. Also, you have to rip into your walls
to run the cabling. And in many instances this is not an option in
older buildings because of asbestos cleanup and removal. It just
wouldn't be very economical."
"Then some genius came up with the idea of using wireless
technology. We have seen it most of our lives; cordless phones,
cellular phones, pagers. "Well," they thought, "let's do it for a
LAN." And they started to develop, and develop, and develop. After
many of years of developing they still have yet to come up with a
"really good" product. But the products that they have now are
useable. The problem now is the choice of protocols. And most
of them aren't compatible with each other. We will take a quick
look at the more popular protocols and the cards that use them, at
their advantages and disadvantages, and at how cross platform they
are, i.e. will the work in other non-Redmond OSes."
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