TECH: Little Black Boxes

my inner geek (
Thu, 1 Jul 1999 17:54:16 -0700

Today I ate lunch in Marlene's, our local health food store.

One one side of the store there is a juice bar, complete with fresh wheatgrass, and on the other side, an expresso bar.

As I drank my Jerimiah's Julep (a carob/spirulina/yogurt shake), I mentioned in jest to the guy behind the expresso bar that I was a CIA android created as a spoiler for the 2000 Presidential election. He just twitched a smile and said he knew that a month ago.

In any case, one of the female attendants mentioned that some customers were asking about converting the place to an internet cafe. All Marlene could do was shake her head: "No. I have no interest in the internet. It's too complicated. It's not for me."

It's her customers I'm thinking about. How to get reasonable internet access from a table in Marlene's cafe? Flashbacks: NT Server with DSL connection: Proxy Server: DHCP Server: RJ-45 jacks.

An then, some common sense.

How about something simple? For Marlene, and the whole vertical market she represents...

For now, at the end of the copper era, maybe a transition strategy:

DSL in one end: wireless DHCP within 50 feet of the expresso machine. Get a PCMCIA card for your laptop, come in and enjoy the wheatgrass!

Can this be done? And please don't give me any bullshit about proxy/firewall software and billable outlets! Marlene wants simplicity or nothing at all.