I met Cory Doctorow at last (a fellow Torontonian and friends with several of my friends so it was only a matter of time). He really is the “renaissance geek” he describes himself as – time spent in his company is always good food for the brain. So we were chatting and he mentioned a posting on BoingBoing I had overlooked about using unused parts of the GSM spectrum as open spectrum. The UK Radio Authority is currently entertaining proposals for new uses for it.
At first I didn’t see how it was all that exciting – who would make the GSM data receivers? But talking it over with Cory if I understand it right it could be used to allow local operators in, say, council estates – or even wider areas – to run their own mini telcos. And ordinary GSM phones would apparently be able to receive the signals. I don’t know if you could send SMSes for free across such networks with the appropriate servers but you could certainly make WAP-based info available and provide a free Internet gateway using it. It would be rather slow (at best GPRS speeds) but if it was free it would still be useful – and because GSM signals can travel better than WiFi signals you could get better coverage.
Sounds pretty good to me – Julian Priest co-founder of consume.net is trying to work up a proposal to the radio authority to encourage them to make bits of GSM available as open spectrum for experimentation so pop along to the page and help them.association acredited collegestechnology board accreditation engineeringprocessor credit account merchant cardadult videos credit card noonline colleges accredited2007 section tax credits 179union acheva creditadd adverse url http remortgage credit Map