There is a new generation of college students out there, I would know as I recently was one of them. Information being at your fingertips is no longer a luxury, it is a necessity. Professors’ expectations of their students have increased dramatically due to the wealth of information on mobile devices. Every class I attended leveraged some form of wireless access to the web. Instant message in response to real-time questions and online submissions are just two of many examples of how network access has been integrated into the education system. Professors would consistently use online tools such as online drop boxes for projects and web conferencing tools. According to MarketWire 92% of college students feel a laptop is a necessity, this indicates that the requirement of mobile access at a university is a given and the college experience is defined by the ease of that access.
Professors are on tight schedules and are generally available only at certain times of the day. Imagine- wanting to contact a professor during open hours only to fall short because your laptop had difficulty getting any kind of connection. I remember the frustrations of wanting to revisit PowerPoint presentations on a class website in the library, only to realize that I was sitting by the one window notorious for being a wireless dead zone. Dorms were infamous for spotty coverage. Having the dorm room located closest to the access point for best access was purely by luck of the draw. I was not so lucky. In my dorm, you would not get any wireless access unless you were sitting right next to the hallway. That’s why I am especially envious of the students of Colorado University, whose alma mater upgraded to enterprise-class coverage.
We released our latest in the Fundamentals series earlier this month and it is trending quite well. The 802.11ac standard sounds like a step backwards alphabetically…but it will soon be an incredible step forward forward for WiFi once it is ratified by the IEEE. Watch this latest fundamentals to get comfortable with the truth. 802.11n is still your best bet for 2012 and into 2013 as we continue to partner on the standards process but the future is bright indeed!
The digital and print versions talk about the trends going on right now -- lack of expertise, reticence of the ‘millennium generation’ to study subjects and gain skills that manufacturers need, and how all sorts of devices are coming onto the plant floor and carpeted areas to help workers do their jobs more efficiently. Read More »
With all that has recently been written about BYOD, it’s clear that enterprise IT managers need to consider performance requirements on the wireless access point. With more clients accessing the network, the performance demands in terms of coverage and client density will increase. Furthermore, consumer devices such as smartphones and tablets may have difficulty connecting to an AP compared to a laptop. This could be attributed to the fact that most of these devices either do not support 802.11n or they support legacy 802.11g/a. If the devices support 802.11n is sometimes limited to 1x1 MIMO. An access point that has superior performance will be needed to address the growing needs of these new clients.
Nine tips help enable an industrial wireless mobile workforce, including standards, self-healing technologies, and the right blend of hardware and software.
The latest copy of Control Engineering has some useful Tips and Tricks that point towards the kinds of solutions and offerings Cisco provides, to make our customer’s lives easier. In a later post I’ll elucidate on the tips and explain how Cisco is able to make for a Smarter Wireless Industrial Workforce. For now, here are the tips:
#1) Standards-based solutions: Ensure suppliers provide open standards based solutions—this is particularly important when choosing wireless mobility systems.
#2) Self-healing wireless: System integrators can provide good interference detection and mitigation wireless solutions that can automatically change channels to maintain continuity, which reduces operating expenses.
#3) Hardware vs. software: It is better to use wireless systems with specialized hardware and software implementation rather than the older software implementations when analyzing interference. Read More »