Columbia Needs Municipal Wireless

Tuesday March 11, 2008

•  Columbia •  Columbia Association •  technology policy • 

The Columbia Association ought to consider establishing a Columbia-wide free wireless service for residents and visitors. Newer wireless technology, such as wireless mesh networking, allows a wireless blanket to cover a large area with fewer ground interchange points. Network traffic hopes from wireless node to wireless node until it reaches an interchange point and is passed off from the cloud to a local carrier (likely a DSL or cable Internet service) for delivery to a local destination. However, the network is robust by creating multiple paths from each wireless node to the next, increasing redundancy. The technology can provide a viable Internet service for anyone in town.

The Columbia Association has a significant amount of the necessary physical infrastructure in place, with CA-owned buildings and other facilities throughout Columbia, with electrical and communications service already in place. Such as service would make Columbia more attractive to residents, businesses, and most importantly, business travelers, who require reliable Internet access as little cost. Residents would be able to work while sitting next to the pool during a child’s swim practice.