“Will there come a day when you walk into any place of business and you look for the 'Wi-Fi Ready' logo just like you see the 'Visa/Mastercard accepted here' logo today? For all I know that is the case out west already, but not here in the midwest. I look forward to that day.” [Soapbox (April 30)]
I'm posting Michael Woodruff's comment about an article titled Cell phones, PDAs catch Wi-Fi fever – Tech News – CNET.com, rather than the article itself, because I like the idea of a “Wi-Fi Ready” logo. As I've noted in the past, public libraries are not ready to display that logo. We should be moving towards this goal, but we're not. Why? Resources: time, money, staff, techies, and knowledge.
Eric Snowdeal and I have been meaning to jumpstart that debate again, so maybe this is a good time to do it. How do we get public libraries to recognize the benefits of public access Wi-Fi and then help them achieve it? Personally, I think the first step is an education campaign. The overwhelming majority of library administrations don't have the slightest clue what Wi-Fi is and why they might want it.
The Wireless Librarian is a great place to start, but I think even TWL is a bit daunting for a public library administrator. We need a one-page who, what, where, when, how, and why for dummies. Does one already exist or should we create one? If we educate, and in the process note community enthusiasm and desire for Wi-Fi first-hand to the directors, then maybe the Minneapolis Public Library would at least call Dave back.
I know Eric has some concerns about systematic deployment, consistency, and framework, so maybe we can build these things in from the beginning. Let's not talk about the integration or security issues yet, because we know they can be overcome. I'm open to other ideas about how to get started, but this seems like a good one to me. [The Shifted Librarian]