Wireless Networking: Is the Future of Computing
Do the benefits of mobility and convenience outweigh the issues associated with a wireless network? In order to answer this question we must first understand what wireless networking entails. Therefore, within this paper we will discuss the use of wireless technology in everyday life, explain the benefits associated with this type of network, and describe the short comings of a wireless network. However, these short comings are virtually eliminated by the ongoing updates in technology. Also it will be shown that the benefits of wireless networking far outweigh the disadvantages, therefore causing wireless networking to become the standard in society. 2.
Explanation of Wireless Networking
A wireless network allows a user to connect to a network through the use of radio signals. This enables devices to connect to the internet without the use of wires. We use wireless networks continuously throughout the day. Some examples of wireless technologies include cell phones, laptops, tablets, Bluetooth headsets, and much more. Even home security and temperature controls can be controlled wirelessly through the use of applications on cell phones. “Analysis of a Local-Area Wireless Network” is an article that addresses the increasing number of wireless networks. “More companies and schools are installing wireless networks to support a growing population of mobile laptop and PDA users” (Tang et al). 2.1
All wireless technology is backward compatible with previous versions of this technology. This is enforced by IEEE (Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers) because they control the wireless networking standards. IEEE insures that advancing technology within the spectrum of wireless networking will not outdate previous versions and therefore render them useless. An example of this that we can all associate with would be cellular data technology. “There used to be 1G now there are 4G cellular data connections in use today, however 1G can still operate properly within a 4G network” (Hart). 2.2
Types of Networks
There are many types of wireless networks in use today. “These networks range from intricate high speed banking networks all the way to your favorite radio station” (Hart). Most homes utilize a wireless router for home networking demands and therefore create a wireless network. Also the use of Bluetooth in your car for hands free calling or listening to music is a form of wireless. Another example of wireless technology that we take for granted is the ability to unlock, lock, or even start your car by pressing a button on your vehicle’s factory remote. 3.
Now that we have a better understanding of what wireless technology is and how it is used every day, lets discuss some of the disadvantages of this technology. The disadvantages of wireless include security issues, limits on the amount of users, lower quality of service, and slower speeds. 3.1
With the use of wireless networks comes an increase in the vulnerability of the data held within this network. Attackers to a network can use various methods of intercepting data. Some of these methods include but are not limited to war driving, hacking, and line of sight interception. War driving is the act of driving around with the purpose of discovering and temporarily associating with wireless networks. Hacking of a wireless network’s access point allows the attacker with virtually unlimited access to all of the data on the network. This could be accomplished by sitting in the parking lot while still in range of the wireless signal emitted by the access point. Line of sight interception is achieved when the laser emitted from one transmitter is either blocked or intercepted from the receiver. These security issues are continuously becoming less and less problematic due to increased technology. Advanced encryption and other forms of security software...
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