San Francisco’s plan to provide citywide wireless Internet access, which foundered last summer when EarthLink pulled out, is being revived by a Mountain View company that wants to turn the city into a test site for its vision of a low-cost, community-powered system.
For what would be the country’s largest so-called mesh network, a system that uses a constellation of “repeater antennas” to spread signals, Meraki says it will donate enough equipment and Internet access to provide free wireless service to all residents. The network would use as many as 15,000 wireless antennas to relay signals from home to home in a type of digital daisy-chain.
I’m already a Meraki node, although I’m sharing out my own service, and not using a Meraki-supplied Internet connection. The equipment’s quite good, though, and perhaps I can eventually replace my Internet connection with one paid for by Meraki!