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In this podcast, Alex Howard, Assistant Editor at WhatIs.com, provides a brief overview of wireless mesh networks. Wireless mesh networks are created through the connection of wireless access points installed at multiple network users' locales. Each network user is also a provider, forwarding data to the next node. The networking infrastructure is decentralized and simplified because each node need only transmit as far as the next node. Wireless mesh networking could allow people living in remote areas and small businesses operating in rural neighborhoods to connect their networks together for affordable Internet connections. Potential advantages of wireless mesh networks include:

  • Decreased need for Internet gateways
  • Collaborative redundant backup technology, which insures data security in the event of disk failure
  • The ability to configure routes dynamically
  • Lower power requirements, which could potentially be met by low-cost or renewable energy sources
  • Increased reliability: Each node is connected to several other nodes and if one drops out of the network, its neighbors simply find another route


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