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new library wi-fi?

The next meeting of the library board will deal with the architectural details of the new library. I am hoping that I can persuade the other board members to spring for network wiring instead of the seeming convenience of wireless network.

Wireless networking is not secure, unless you at least hard-wire the MAC addresses of the library workstations into the wireless router, which would effectively exclude outside computers with wireless receivers. That will not go over well with the town public, who will assume that wireless for the public library will be wireless for them, too.

But the other alternative, opening the wireless network to the public, creates its own cesspit of legal problems, parts of which are exemplified by the current CP-80 controversy in Utah [link] and the incident [link] of the priest harassed by the cops for using a library's wireless network outside the building. And we would be held responsible for any abuse of our network, even though there is no way Linda can monitor outside computer use.

No, I do not want the library to get into trouble for something that involves our network but which is beyond our control. It is better to use a wired network, which Linda can monitor; and let the public wait for the hypothetical day that WiMax becomes available in this area.

Posted on the Dysmey Blog on 6 February 2008.