SHCC WYSIWYG Article from April 2007

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This article was written by Don VanSyckel, the club president, as a part of "The President's Pen".  This article appeared in the April 2007 WYSIWYG newsletter.

On the Go Wireless Access, Free to Very Pricey

by Don VanSyckel

We're planning a vacation and I have an observation about hotels: the price of internet access at a hotel is inversely related to the price of the hotel. In other words, the more you pay for a room the more they will stick you for internet access and if you pay less for a room you'll get internet access for free or a low one price per stay fee. We found rates from $15 a day which is $105 for a week stay to $5 one shot fee to free. Now, we're going on vacation to get away from it all but that doesn't mean I want to be in cave. I might hit the net for five minutes every day to check email and depending on what's happening a few minutes to get info on some local attraction or other local info needed for the next day.

I suppose if you can afford the hotel that's three or four times as much per day, you can afford to be nickel and dimed to squeeze a few more bucks a day out of you. Anyway, we need to watch the budget so that some decade we can retire, so needless to say we're getting free internet, er, we're patronizing an all inclusive hotel that provides their customers with a broader range on guest services.

Over the last few years when I traveled by air I noted most airports I went through have wireless available. Those that do all charge. It seems that the airport doesn't actual have the wireless network but have contracted to allow a third party to have a wireless network and then get a kick back from the third party.

Actually the things that's more important in airports than wireless is AC outlets. You know to plug in your laptop. Now with all the security at airports people are arriving earlier to get through the check points and have time on their hands at the gate waiting to broad. Laptops are great for games, DVD movies, music, writing letters, work on some hobby project, or email and other surfing if you buy access. So when I walk to the gate area I sit by the AC outlet. Here's a tip, carry a short extension cord suitable to plug a couple of laptop power adapters into. Sometimes others are already huddled around the AC outlets and an extension is needed. Also all the outlets might be used so you have to ask one of the current users to give you their outlet and share your extension cord. Remember many laptops have an AC cord on their power adapter and these cords usually have three prong plugs some choose your extension cord accordingly.

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