Personal Tech Pipeline | Wireless In Its Youth

White Papers

Sponsor Resources

Free Newsletter GlossaryContact UsAbout Us
Players & CamsPhones & PDAsHome & AutoOnline

November 11, 2004

Wireless In Its Youth

Courtesy of Mobile Pipeline

Gabriel Garcia Marquez' remarkable novel, One Hundred Years of Solitude, begins with the elderly hero recalling his childhood as a time that was so new, "many things lacked names, and in order to indicate them, it was necessary to point." We seem to be in that same place now in the wireless world.

The current situation with wireless technology brings to mind the late 80s, when pundits bandied about two big questions: Would Ethernet or Token Ring prevail and could anybody push Novell off its throne as network royalty? There has long since been nearly ubiquitous deployment of Ethernet in the enterprise and Microsoft easily dethroned Novell, so it's hard to imagine a time in which such seemingly elemental questions were at the front of our minds.

But here we are, almost twenty years later, wondering whether mobile employees will end up using Wi-Fi, WiMAX, 3G cellular data or some combination. Nor do we know what type of devices we'll be carrying in five years or how our voice calls will be routed. Instead, we just point and say that, some day, we'll have fast, ubiquitous mobile voice and data service on tiny devices that do everything.

I'm not complaining, mind you. It's a blast to be paid to observe and sometimes comment on this situation. And, best of all, I get to play with lots of this technology. When I'm done playing, I fire up Word and write about it. Of course, it's not quite so simple or fun for those who must buy, manage and support all this new technology. We're at that awkward stage in which the benefits of wireless technology are obvious but the technology itself is in constant flux. It's hard to know which technology an enterprise should invest in.

But what I'm really thinking about is ubiquity. In the late 80s, it was hard to believe that networks would ever be ubiquitous in enterprises. Now, with the plethora of overlapping wireless technologies, it's hard to believe that, someday, we'll have a fast wireless connection, no matter where we are. But I believe more than ever that it will happen, at least to the level that cellular voice service is ubiquitous.

It was the dream of ubiquity that launched the ill-fated wireless boomlet at the end of the millennium. But it was a good dream then and behind all the bluster and wonderment, it remains a good -- and achievable -- dream now. I may not be able to put words to exactly what it will look like when it manifests but, like Marquez' hero, I can point to it in the distance.

E-mail This Story
Print This Story
Reprint This Story

Get the latest Personal Tech news, product info, and trends every week.

Related Content

  Right-click and choose Copy to extract RSS Feed URL  Personal Tech Pipeline's Main RSS Feed
  Right-click and choose Copy to extract RSS Feed URL  Personal Tech Pipeline's Blog RSS Feed

Keeping Up To Date On Enterprise Server Tech?
Review our compilation of columns on server security, database software, and Linux issues.
How to Achieve High Performance Through IT
Learn to achieve high performance by aligning IT to
strategic objectives and solutions to unlock that value.
Using Current Performance to Shape
Future Results

Hear new strategies for improving business
performance and results.

Editor's Picks

Well, Microsoft has "unfolded" its "Origami" ultra-mobile PC platform Thursday. It turned out to be a full-featured PC smaller than a tablet but bigger than a PDA. Are you impressed?
Yes! I want one!
Sort of. We'll see.
No! It's too big for a pocket and too small for real computing. What's the point?

In search of personal tech products? See our new Product Finder, where you'll find personal computing devices, communications solutions, security products, and more.

Transform your IT infrastructure with IBM
Successful CIOs see IT as a prime stimulus for business innovation-and themselves as key participants in a process that develops business and IT strategies in concert. Read an executive summary and register to download the full IBM paper.

Symantec Backup Solutions
Desktop to Data Center Protection. Explore the Official Symantec Site.

EMC SAN helps El Camino deliver superior service
EMC CLARiiON and Centera systems are helping El Camino Hospital provide better patient care. The hospital can quickly and effortlessly monitor, modify, and protect the availability of its entire storage environment while saving money ($150,000)

SEC & HIPAA IM Compliance
Satisfy regulatory and compliance requirements for instant messaging.

Secure & Easy Console Management with Digi CM
The Digi CM console server provides secure, intelligent & easy access to network devices with a serial console port. With Digi CM, you can securely monitor & control servers, routers, switches & other devices even when your network is down.

Buy a Link Now

Top ten search terms from the TechWeb TechEncyclopedia
Stellent eSeminar "Approaches to Metadata Design" on March 23
Mobilized Solutions Guide: Find and compare solutions for your business
Top Requested White Paper Categories from TechWeb White paper Library
Top ten search terms from the TechWeb TechEncyclopedia