Skip to main content

View Post [edit]

Poster: Ralf Muehlen Date: Aug 17, 2005 4:42am
Forum: sflan Subject: Re: New(som) Initiative: SF wants wireless for ENTIRE City.

We are in on-going talks with the City and County of San Francisco and community groups regarding this initiative. And I am preparing a response to the Request for Information and Comment ("RFI/C").


Reply [edit]

Poster: Kimo C Date: Sep 1, 2005 11:45pm
Forum: sflan Subject: SF WiFi Backroom deal with Google?? which provided the SF Union SQ HotSpot and which google is apparently behind - have now linked to this Business 2.0 article on their website about possible google wifi plans cause it mentions feeva - can't imagine feeva would do this if the 2.0 article was way off.

And the 8/31 San Francisco's wifi RFI initiative meeting was embarassingly unorganized - seems like they are just going through the motions for cover - that they probably already know about a backroom deal. At the meeting they made a point to say that they had the option to go right into negotiation after the RFI rather than do a RFP round. And so far (9/2) their efforts to provide information to RFI parties including a promised transcript of this 8/31 pre-RFI meeting have been nonexistent.

No map of fiber facilities, no list of city light pole inventory etc - here's writeup of the meeting:

(no transcript posted of this 8/31 meeting or list of attendees as was promised)

This is sad because real input could improve the proposal they set out - for example they should promote better disaster recovery by getting at least two networks and have access points that can run on alternate electricity sources for the inevitable earthquake. Seeing the New Orleans disaster with lack of communication - one would think SF would take this more seriously.

Reply [edit]

Poster: Diana Hamilton Date: Sep 20, 2005 3:29am
Forum: sflan Subject: Re: SF WiFi Backroom deal with Google??

FYI, news of the day:

Reply [edit]

Poster: Kimo C Date: Nov 2, 2005 9:09pm
Forum: sflan Subject: Re: SF WiFi Backroom deal with Google??

hey folks here's the SF Muni WiFi site

if you read the Answers to Written Questions submitted by Sept 7th doc, you'll see that the city is not really interested in using wifi to it's full potential.

"52. Q. Does the City plan to use TechConnect as a primary infrastructure for Emergency/Disaster Service?

A. The City anticipates using TechConnect as one network to provide service in an emergency situation. The City does not plan to rely on a single technology, network or service for emergency/disaster service.

They have no SLA's that require the network to last after a disaster with redundancy, batteries, alternative power etc It seems, they narrowly changed the question and gave an elogated answer because they want free wifi from Google rather than holding out for a better overall city solution.

We need to find ways to allow real public participation in the creation of the wifi network for the city. Particularly one that works right after our inevitable earthquake.

Right now the city is taking Comments, but it is starting to seem they have already decided to go with whatever Google offer.

The SF approach to public comment is pretty lame - blind email only - please encourage them to get into the 21st century with e-rulemaking technologies to help create the best SF Muni RFP. Also encourage the committee to post electronically all the RFI/RFC submittals - since some groups may try to avoid publicity by submitting them only on paper.

A sample wonderful e-rulemaking site:

Here's some great ways we could use technology and smartmobs ideas to improve the city response

Send your email comments requesting more open public participation and real support for disaster recovery wifi to the following:

TechConnect Information Line: (415) 554-5008
Email: techconnectsfgovorg

Board of Supervisors:

tom.ammianosfgovorg who as been an advocate of SF Wifi and

Telephone: (415) 554-6141
Email: gavin.newsomsfgovorg

SF Office of Emergency Services
ANN.STANGBYSFGOVORG Disaster planning Chief

Kimo Crossman

[other party's email munged- mod]

This post was modified by Diana Hamilton on 2005-11-03 05:09:00

Reply [edit]

Poster: Kimo C Date: Sep 26, 2005 6:55pm
Forum: sflan Subject: Re: SF WiFi Backroom deal with Google??


The New York Times has a lengthy piece on Google, its desktop search efforts and what it might do with $4 billion and change it plans to raise in a secondary offering. The article, is an interesting look into Google’s plans, but here is how it intersects with my piece in Business 2.0, the GoogleNet. As I had reported earlier, the company has been in close contact with San Francisco city officials about a WiFi network. The Times confirmed that, though giving Business 2.0 credit would be a bit too much to expect.

Recently the company has discussed public Wi-Fi networks with Mayor Gavin Newsom of San Francisco, who is leading an effort to develop a city-backed wireless data network infrastructure. The idea that Google might try to build an independent national Wi-Fi network has been discussed, but network industry specialists say that such an idea is far-fetched. “Why would they want to get into the customer service business?” said Michael J. Kleeman, a telecommunications industry expert who was chief technology officer for Cometa Networks, which undertook an earlier national Wi-Fi network effort. He noted that two-thirds of the costs involved in such retail businesses are in customer acquisition and support. “When was the last time you called Google with a problem?” he said.

Mr. Kleeman hasn’t read my story. He thinks Google is building a retail WiFi business. That is Times/Kleeman’s interpertation. My story talks about a free WiFi service, not a retail operation. In a situation where you are giving away WiFi for free, the customer service business aspect doesn’t even come into play. When you pay, that’s when you expect customer service. That’s just obvious!

Reply [edit]

Poster: Michael McCarthy Date: Sep 20, 2005 5:23am
Forum: sflan Subject: Give public comment tonight

Come to a meeting this Tuesday September 20 at the San Francisco Public Utilities Commission (PUC) to learn more about this project and to tell us what you want.
When: Sept. 20, 7-8.30 pm
Where: SF PUC, 1155 Market St. (across from UN Plaza), 6th floor

Reply [edit]

Poster: Kimo C Date: Sep 22, 2005 8:21am
Forum: sflan Subject: Re: Give public comment tonight

for those of us unable to attend this last minute announcement - are there minutes, audio or video of this meeting? Will there be a followup one?