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Advantages and Disadvantages of Wireless Networks

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Advantages and Disadvantages of Wireless Networks

Advantages and Disadvantages of Wireless Networks

Albert Einstein stated, “It has become appallingly obvious that our technology has exceeded our humanity.” Einstein stated the previous quote after discovering the deadly effects of the atomic boom. If not implemented correctly, new technologies have the potential to become counterproductive for society. The wireless technology is no exception. Many advantages and disadvantages come along with the wireless technology.

The term wireless network is a straightforward term describing communication from one device to Advantages and Disadvantages of Wireless Networksanother device without a wire connecting the two devices—thus though the air waves. According to the Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers’ (IEEE) website (2008), “The IEEE leads the way in developing open, leading-edge consensus standards for Wireless Local Area Networks (Wireless LANs), Wireless Personal Area Networks (Wireless PANs), and Wireless Metropolitan Area Networks (Wireless MANs).” The IEEE standardizes the wireless communication for the world. By doing so most of the guesswork is taken out of the setup for wireless networking.

Wireless networks have many advantages and two of the great advantages include portability and cost. Susana M. Sotillo stated (2003), “It is now routine for business travelers and educators to carry mobile computers, mobile phones, and personal data assistants that allow them to collect data anywhere—whether in a conference room, a classroom, or a car.” People are becoming more and more mobile with the wireless technology. Being portable is one of the biggest benefits to wireless devices. The mobility of laptops and cell phones is enabling people to work from wherever there is a hot-spot (wireless connection); therefore, employees have the option to become billable and mobile. Making employees billable in conference rooms and airports is one way wireless networks are becoming cost effective. For example, if a company gets a wireless service, such as airportwireless.com, then the company can pay an employee to work in the airport instead of the employee sitting and waiting for the plane. Not running cables is another way wireless networks are cost effective. Companies such as T-mobile and AT&T have saved millions of dollars by not cabling their networks.

Wireless technology is not always beneficial; some disadvantages to this new technology exist. According to the National Cyber Alert System (2008), “Because wireless networks do not require a wire between a computer and the Internet connection, it is possible for attackers who are within range to hijack or intercept an unprotected connection. “ If a wireless network is not secured properly, the network is an easy target for the next hacker or the next store neighbor to do as they wish. Even when the wireless network has been encrypted and secure, the installer needs to be aware of the encryption that is used because some encryption types are week and can be broken by a skilled hacker. For example with certain types of security tools, such as Cane&Able and NetStumbler, a Wired Equivalent Privacy (WEP) encrypted network can be broken into within a matter of minutes. Wireless networks are great, but people need to be intelligent about the installation of the network.

To conclude, wireless networking is an innovative technology that will bring and has brought many changes to the digital world. The advantages to wireless networks are portability and cost. However, the disadvantage is a week security architecture. The disadvantages can be countered with encryption; therefore, the advantages that come with wireless networks are superior and outweigh the disadvantages. As a result, wireless networks will help develop and shape the digital world of tomorrow.

 

References

IEEE Wireless Standard Zone. (2008). Retrieved October 6, 2008, from

http://standards.ieee.org/wireless/

Laptop Wireless Networking kit. (2008). Retrieved October 6, 2008, from

http://www.bixnet.com/3inwirkit.html

Pedagogical Advantages of Ubiquitous Computing in a Wireless Environment. (2008). Retrieved October 5, 2003, from

http://www.technologysource.org/article/pedagogical_advantages_of_ubiquitous_com/puting_in-a_wireless_environment

Quotation about Technology. (2008). Retrieved October 5, 2008, form

http://www.quotegarden.com/technology.html

Security Wireless Network. (2008). Retrieved October 5, 2008, from

http://www.us-cert.gov

 

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