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Comments on news posted 2007-08-30 11:05:13: While AT&T just scrapped plans to install citywide Wi-Fi in Springfield, Illinois, the company is moving forward with plans to install the service in downtown St.Louis. ..

page: 1 · 2
CMoore2004
Premium
join:2003-02-06
Jonesville, MI

Solar panels

Solar panels? Last I checked, these didn't require much power. However, with that many AP's it'd be pretty damn expensive. Perhaps they could set the banks to run a low enough voltage that it wouldn't turn on the actual lights?
--
Charter 5M | Windows XP MCE SP2 | Mobile AMD Athlon 64 4000+ | 1.5GB RAM | ATI Mobile Radeon X600 128MB | 120GB HDD

KrK
Heavy Artillery For The Little Guy
Premium
join:2000-01-17
Tulsa, OK

Re: Solar panels

said by CMoore2004:

Solar panels? Last I checked, these didn't require much power. However, with that many AP's it'd be pretty damn expensive. Perhaps they could set the banks to run a low enough voltage that it wouldn't turn on the actual lights?
Interesting idea. Or what about sending some sort of signal down the line that the AP can use to create power without effecting the lights operation at all.
--
"Regulatory capitalism is when companies invest in lawyers, lobbyists, and politicians, instead of plant, people, and customer service." - former FCC Chairman William Kennard (A real FCC Chairman, unlike the current Corporate Spokesperson in the job!)
DMWCincy

join:2004-04-27
Fairfield, OH

1 recommendation

Hey Boss...where do I plug in at?

What I want to know is who the @#$@# approved this plan and missed such an important part of the project.

FFH5
Premium
join:2002-03-03
Tavistock NJ
kudos:5

Re: Hey Boss...where do I plug in at?

said by DMWCincy:

What I want to know is who the @#$@# approved this plan and missed such an important part of the project.
Hey, a WiFi system that only works at night is better than nothing.
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tshirt
Premium
join:2004-07-11
Snohomish, WA
kudos:5
Reviews:
·Comcast
said by DMWCincy:

What I want to know is who the @#$@# approved this plan and missed such an important part of the project.
Planning?....We don't need no stinkin' planning !

n2jtx

join:2001-01-13
Glen Head, NY

3 edits
said by DMWCincy:

What I want to know is who the @#$@# approved this plan and missed such an important part of the project.
If you read the last paragraph:

quote:
AT&T didn't go through the traditional bidding and RFP process for the St. Louis deal like most WISPs or other ISPs have to. They instead lobbied a city Alderman to propose a bill that legalized the deal, under which AT&T didn't have to pay St. Louis to affix transmitters atop of city-owned light poles.
you see that AT&T decided to do an end run in order to grab the almighty dollar. Not only that but the city got nothing for the use of the poles. Now they are getting bitten in the a$$ for it and I hope the city holds them to the contract. Let them figure out how to get power to the transmitters without requiring the city to rewire the entire grid.

Serves them right for trying to do an end run. They were probably so concerned about how they could lock out every other vendor and get an exclusive contract without having to bid that they did not bother to do an engineering review and see what they were getting into. Maybe they will learn on the next city they try to hook up (or is that screw over?).
--
I support the right to keep and arm bears.
sancraig

join:2003-11-05
Saint Louis, MO

Re: Hey Boss...where do I plug in at?

LOL thats just how things are in the city of St Louis Corrupt as all get out.

Toadman
Hypnotoad

join:2001-11-28
Ex Ohioan
kudos:1

Lights have Photo sensors

Look at the picture shown, the mercury vapor light does have a photo sensor on it. Why in the world are they then shutting off the power somewhere else. Am I missing something here?

Kibbles
Premium
join:1999-07-31
Mission Viejo, CA

Re: Lights have Photo sensors

"a single bank might control 90 of them — and there's no way to get electricity to transmitters on them without leaving the lights on all day."

Should the engineer thought of a power solution first before mounting them ?

The city maybe turning the power on at a specific time to prevent just the lights that are in the shadows of the buildings turning on before the other lights.
slcpd6469

join:2003-09-25
Saint Louis, MO
I live in STL and that photo is definitely not from here. The building in the background is to nice looking.

bakalao2k
Premium
join:2001-03-20
Chicago, IL

Re: Lights have Photo sensors

said by slcpd6469:

I live in STL and that photo is definitely not from here. The building in the background is to nice looking.
LOL!

sprintusrrrrrr

@spcsdns.net

WiMAX

Really sad to see cities get suckered into a technology never intended for broad coverage when WiMAX is just a year or two away.
Sammer

join:2005-12-22
Canonsburg, PA

Re: WiMAX

said by sprintusrrrrrr :

Really sad to see cities get suckered into a technology never intended for broad coverage when WiMAX is just a year or two away.
WiMAX isn't a cheap technology and it will only succeed if people are willing to pay for it. IMHO WiMAX will compete with cellular internet but it remains doubtful that it will compete with the low cost of WiFi for less than broad coverage. You are right about some cities being suckered, especially if the WiFi units aren't upgradeable.
FAQFixer
Premium
join:2004-06-28
Powder Springs, GA
kudos:1

Fire Them!

I say find the engineers, product managers, project managers, and deployment techs and FIRE THEM IMMEDIATELY! It is another case of people that have no real world knowledge and think of "cool" stuff in a lab or office that doesn't function in the real world. Idiots!
GeekBigboy

join:2007-07-21
Moreno Valley, CA

Even Earthlink got it right in Anahiem

Earthlink got it right with wifi all over city of Anaheim. not to mention they look better then ATT solution and I have not heard of a power issue ever.
MontyMan
Premium
join:2004-08-16
Sumter, SC

Simple Solution

Just rename the project, "Wi-By-Night".

batageek
Slave To The Duopoly
Premium
join:2003-01-25

Re: Simple Solution

Perhaps this is part of their "Lightspeed" plans???

doh...
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»www.tricitybroadband.com

ninjatutle
Premium

join:2006-01-02
San Ramon, CA

.

Lol. This is how they do things in the Middle West
bassnguitar

join:2003-09-11
Imperial, MO

Why

am I not surprised by this?

Anonymous_
Anonymous
Premium
join:2004-06-21
127.0.0.1
kudos:2

1 edit

AVC

the Jr collage out here has there wifi they use "B" networks 11mbps lolllllllllllllllllllllllllllllllll

it kind of pointless cause there is computers that can be used for free and they have an nice 45mbps stream 15mbps up
truocchio

join:2004-07-05
Miami Beach, FL

Re: AVC

This is probably due to the fact that 802.11b has less potential for interference than 802.11g and especially 11.n. This is because b uses smaller channel bandwidth than the faster technologies. Also b has a higher max transmit power that helps in campus and hotel networks to get better coverage with less access points.
aparis99

join:2006-10-24
Owensboro, KY
said by Anonymous_:

its kind of pointless
dont assume always

MacThrasher
Premium
join:2002-04-26
Chagrin Falls, OH

Brilliant

How could they miss a little thing like power? Reminds me of the tried and true saying... "Measure twice. Cut once"
dualsub2006

join:2007-07-18
Newport, KY

Re: Brilliant

Cut to fit. Paint to match.

morbo
Complete Your Transaction

join:2002-01-22
00000
i thought it was measure once, cut immediately

mph300
Two Thirds The Way There

join:2000-11-09

planning, c'mon

with being a business owner within the city of st louis, i can tell you that the planning for this project was equal to almost every project within the city limits that is in control of the incompetents at city hall....non existent or incomplete planning!

this does not surprise me at all.


--
CH3NO2-Fuel me UP-Let's race!

DaSneaky1D
what's up
Premium,MVM
join:2001-03-29
The Lou

Re: planning, c'mon

Bet the State will take over the wifi network here as well.
scottb8888

join:2001-03-08
Dublin, OH
In our little midwest suburb of Dublin, Ohio we have these mounted (and working) on many light poles. I second the motion that whoeever planned this ought to work for a utility... oh woops... they do...

KrK
Heavy Artillery For The Little Guy
Premium
join:2000-01-17
Tulsa, OK

2 edits

Uh... Photo switches ?

Ok uh excuse me if this seems so obvious as to be silly, but they make "Light detection" or "Photo" switches that automatically turn lights on and off based on the level of light conditions.

IE the lights come on at Dusk, or during a heavy thunderstorm, etc, and turn off at daybreak. They are very small, very cheap, and easily wired.

SO: Why not set the bank switches to ON 24/7 for the poles and have AT&T install the photo switches @ the poles to automatically turn the light off and on locally. Take all of 5 mins of wiring, too. You could even have a local throw switch to cut power completely (override) in case technicians need to do emergency service at night or something.

Is there something I'm missing? This seems awfully easy problem to resolve!

jack b
Gone Fishing
Premium,MVM
join:2000-09-08
Cape Cod
kudos:1

1 edit

Re: Uh... Photo switches ?

Exactly.
Those 3 prong photo-sensors cost like 12 bucks each, retail. Throw in a few bucks more for a receptacle, a half hour labor to install and, voila. Problem solved.
Give me all the materials and a hundred bucks a pole, and I'll do the work.
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KrK
Heavy Artillery For The Little Guy
Premium
join:2000-01-17
Tulsa, OK

Re: Uh... Photo switches ?

That's retail price to the public, too. You can get em in industrial lots or in bulk for much less.

alanhdsl
Premium
join:1999-10-09
Phoenix, AZ
The main problem with installing photo sensors is that they have to install one for every light in the bank, not just the one where the access point it. I'm wondering if the bank switches are close enough together so that the APs could be installed at them.
wispagod

join:2001-06-28
House Springs, MO

Re: Uh... Photo switches ?

and then multiply that by 1000's of poles, and ATT cringes at the thought!

Food4thought

@bls.com
Someone please correct me if I am wrong but I believe the mercury vapor lights used in most metro areas operate off of 440v and sometimes higher. I believe that most all AP's operate at the 48vdc level and some have direct 120v input. Seems to me that the project engineer failed to ask the right questions about power if at all. At this point, I believe someone mentioned SOLAR.

Bassistguy
Alrighty Then
Premium
join:2001-07-14
Ballwin, MO
said by KrK:

Ok uh excuse me if this seems so obvious as to be silly, but they make "Light detection" or "Photo" switches that automatically turn lights on and off based on the level of light conditions.

IE the lights come on at Dusk, or during a heavy thunderstorm, etc, and turn off at daybreak. They are very small, very cheap, and easily wired.

SO: Why not set the bank switches to ON 24/7 for the poles and have AT&T install the photo switches @ the poles to automatically turn the light off and on locally. Take all of 5 mins of wiring, too. You could even have a local throw switch to cut power completely (override) in case technicians need to do emergency service at night or something.

Is there something I'm missing? This seems awfully easy problem to resolve!
All of the street lights already come on based on the amount of light present (even coming on during heavy overcast). To make your suggestion work, the city would have to change the power banks to constant power, and then install light detection on each street light coming off of that particular power bank. Street lights are, at my best guess, placed about every 150 to 250 feet from each other in a lot of the neighborhoods here, so that could get expensive. So, it just depends on how much money AT&T and/or the city wants to spend to make these modifications.

KrK
Heavy Artillery For The Little Guy
Premium
join:2000-01-17
Tulsa, OK

Re: Uh... Photo switches ?

Also, maybe they could consider for many areas using Stop-Lights for power. They're on 24/7. The street lights would be more pervasive into neighborhoods tho.

Also, maybe they could mount them on other structures like Billboards, Water Towers, and Electric poles?

Just options I guess. Find what is cheapest/easiest and do it.
--
"Regulatory capitalism is when companies invest in lawyers, lobbyists, and politicians, instead of plant, people, and customer service." - former FCC Chairman William Kennard (A real FCC Chairman, unlike the current Corporate Spokesperson in the job!)

KrK
Heavy Artillery For The Little Guy
Premium
join:2000-01-17
Tulsa, OK
The more I think about this, the more I picture the scene from The HitchHiker's Guide to the Galaxy when the Vogons are are attacking at Dent's house, and while chasing Ford around he closes the small garden gate in front of them....

Vogon: Oh No! He's closed the gate from the inside! We'll have to go round!

LOL If you haven't seen the movie, you won't understand why this is so funny but imagine some big huge guys being stopped by a 2ft tall small wooden gate. LOL
--
"Regulatory capitalism is when companies invest in lawyers, lobbyists, and politicians, instead of plant, people, and customer service." - former FCC Chairman William Kennard (A real FCC Chairman, unlike the current Corporate Spokesperson in the job!)
Kearnstd
Space Elf
Premium
join:2002-01-22
Mullica Hill, NJ
kudos:1
what about hooking up to the grid lines? each building must have a 220v off the transformer(which can be stepped to 12/24/48 whatever the wifi needs). id imagine the street lights also serve as the electric poles.
--
[65 Arcanist]Filan(High Elf) Zone: Broadband Reports

Bassistguy
Alrighty Then
Premium
join:2001-07-14
Ballwin, MO

Re: Uh... Photo switches ?

said by Kearnstd:

id imagine the street lights also serve as the electric poles.
The "Alley Lights" are mounted on electric poles. The street lights that are pictured in this article only serve as the street light. I have seen street lights mounted to electric poles, but can't recall any in the St. Louis city area, other than the "alley lights" (I don't know what else to call them other than alley lights...lol).
--
If you miss 1 day, you notice; you miss 2 days, your band notices; 3 days, the crowd notices....

Bassistguy
Alrighty Then
Premium
join:2001-07-14
Ballwin, MO

This is just too funny!

This is the funniest news article I have read in a long time. I'm from St. Louis as well. I'm sure that they investigated every aspect of this project, making sure they had an easy/good/stable source of electricity, and that they probably test ran at least 1 AP for a few days. Don't you see? This is what happened.....

The tech is on the phone with the main office.... "Hey Henry! I got this AP installed, but I can't get it to stay powered up. I think there's a short in the wiring or something, 'cause when this street light I'm at turned on just now, the AP powered back up. The extra jolt of electricity that turned on the street light must have "jump started" the AP. Yeah, that has to be it! Let's tell the boss that! We'll just install the rest of the AP's. They can't all be bad!"
--
If you miss 1 day, you notice; you miss 2 days, your band notices; 3 days, the crowd notices....

keyboard5684
Sam

join:2001-08-01
Pittsburgh, PA

Are they already on the poles?

I read the article, maybe I missed it, but are the APs already mounted on the poles? "Engineers" working on a solution for months does not sound good.

Does not sound right.
Install the APs on electric poles.
Install photo voltaic sensors.
It does not sound too hard.

This just sounds to weird.
Maybe this is a way for ATT to get out of it? Hmmm?
wispagod

join:2001-06-28
House Springs, MO

Sollar

we power our rule towers off solar panels and a small batery!

•••

Old School

@sbc.com

wi-fi

Why not just install batteries for all locations? Could charge at night when power is on and be availible in case of power outage. Just a thought.
FAQFixer
Premium
join:2004-06-28
Powder Springs, GA
kudos:1

Engineers are funny people

Every time I hear some yahoo engineer talk about how great they are I remind them of the movie Apollo 13. If you remember they had two different types of CO2 scubbers. Each engineering team thought they were the greatest ever and built the perfect device. However, one team built a square scrubber and the other team built a round scrubber and this lack of forethought and planning combined to make equipment that was incompatible and nearly killed the astronauts. Thank God there were some Operations folks to fix the problem and come up with a remedy. The WiFi engineers probably said something memorable like, "We have never had a power issue when it was tested in the lab."

joako
Premium
join:2000-09-07
/dev/null
kudos:6

Is it that hard

Put a photo sensor on the light post and leave it on!

Or does AT&T not want to pay for that.
--
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Air WAV

join:2000-09-16
Saint Louis, MO

Shame on St. Louis

I think it is really sad that St. Louis did not offer an RFP on this project.

Our WISP is based in the St. Louis metro area and we certainly would have responded. We have been serving St. Louis since 2003 and have extensive WiFi experinece.

Over looking the power supply is simply outrageous!

Shame on St. Louis
--
»www.StLBroadband.com