Using all wireless networks around me


Hi, I’m KK. There is a common perception
that wireless capacity is scarce and in short supply. But this is *not* true. We are surrounded
by *plenty* of capacity. In most locations, our cell phone could have coverage from 5
or more service providers, and 10 or more WiFi networks. Yet most of these are off-limits
to us. My team and I are aspiring to change this.
Therefore, we designed a network architecture that allows us to use all the wireless networks
around us. To demonstrate the feasibility of our approach and to allow you to experience
the potential improvement, we streamed video from a moving vehicle. In this demonstration, TY will drive around
a building, streaming video from her golf cart. In this experiment, we have access to
two wireless networks—a WiFi network consisting of seven access points; and a WiMAX network
located on the roof of the adjacent building. You will see the difference in user experience
first-hand. In this first round, we are using a plain
old WiFi network, streaming the video using one access point at a time. A visual aid on
the right shows you the access point being used. As you can see, there are glitches in
the video during each handover. Sometimes, there is even a huge interruption. This is
the typical quality we get today. So, how can we improve the user experience? Now, TY will drive a second time around the
building. This time, we will exploit all the wireless networks around us, including both
OpenFlow-enabled WiFi and WiMAX. As you can see in the visual aid on the right, we are
using up to three connections at one time. You see a significant improvement in video
quality, without any interruption. You can now see stretches of the tour that were missing
in the previous round. This is what we want as users—technology
that delivers. We do not really care which network is being used. We hope our demonstration
has shown you why we should aspire to use all the networks around us, and possibly a
hint on how this can be done. In this demonstration, we have done this using OpenFlow Wireless.

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