Gary Ozanich mentioned that he is toying with the idea of engaging the MI students in a group warchalking project for downtown Buffalo in the Spring–though I hope the product looks something more like this. I am increasingly interested in the opportunities for wireless networking, and particularly Ultra Wide Band applications. (See this whitepaper [pdf] for some ideas). We are still in that phase of enthusiast and entrepreneurial control, a phase that has traditionally been ended quickly by big business in concert with government regulation.
The need now, as Sarah Lai Stirland explains in a recent Seattle Times article, is to free up regulation of spectrum for such experimentation to flourish. This is an area in which academics can and should make an impact on the regulatory process. This is net-gain social and economic policy: there are no losers except for the “opportunity” of the telecom giants. “Too bad,” I say. Am I the only one?