Wireless Networking

We are pleased to announce the latest addition to the ICESS computing environment: wireless networking in the main ICESS conference room. This consists of two parts: a wireless "base station" in the conference room, and a laptop with a wireless network card. What this means is if you have, for example, a PowerPoint presentation on a shared drive (from either your own computer or sarek) you can use the laptop and LCD projector to show it in the conference room without worrying about a network connection. The laptop also has a 100 MB zip drive that reads both Mac and PC formatted zip disks and a DVD/CD drive so you or your student/visitor/whoever can show their presentation that way.

All the above is the good news. The caveats follow.

1) If you haven't used this before don't assume it will work in 2 minutes without a hitch. As with everything else (with computers at least) the single best thing you can do is plan ahead and try it before the audience gets there. With this in mind, for now, the laptop will live in James and Darla's office (6704) and can be checked out via request so we can be there to help/supervise/whatever. Once we get more experience the laptop will move to the front office with the projector and can be checked out via Corporate Time.

2) The laptop runs Windows 2000 and Office XP. Office XP should be backwards compatible with other versions of Office, at least Office 97 and 2000, but see 1 above.

3) The ICESS LCD projector works at 800x600 resolution. The laptop looks best at 1024x768 but must be set to 800x600 to work with the projector. The long term solution will be for ICESS to get a higher res projector, until then see 1 above.

4) The wireless pretty much only works in the main conference room. We had hoped it would cover both the conference room and the library, but it doesn't. We can move the base station into the library, and if this becomes popular we will get more base stations.

5) We don't know for sure if your student/visitor/whomever's wireless card will work at ICESS. If it is a Dell TrueMobile 1150 Series it can probably be made to work. Anything else and I wouldn't bet on it. We can try the ICESS card in their laptop, but see 1 above.

6) Wireless networking is less secure than the ethernet cable in your office. Our wireless is more secure than some because the card must be programmed to talk to our particular base station (see 5) but if you are inclined to paranoia this is one more thing to worry about. More info can be found at:

http://news.cnet.com/news/0-1004-200-6853688.html?tag=mn_hd

7) The laptop's name is Bogart. The Systems Group has another, Bergman, that is mostly for SysGroup stuff but is also an emergency backup for Bogart.

Please send email to request with questions, comments or to use the laptop.