[wsfii-discuss] worries and list membership
arunlists at gmail.com
Tue Mar 22 05:13:14 PST 2005
> Arun, interesting ideas about disability/wifi! But check out these wikipedia
> pages: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Medical_model_of_disability
the latter says:"The social model sees disabled people as having
similar wants, needs and aspirations to non-disabled people, and
seeking equal treatment." I have no quarrel with that. If WiFi is a
way for spastic kids to participate in the normal educational
process, where is the contradiction? We're just helping them see the
"blackboard" , answer exam questions, and speak such that others can
> of course wifi is useful for all kinds of people - but having worked with
> disabled peoples international, I found that civil-rights campaigning disabled
> people's groups are always quite suspicious of technological solutions or
> 'fixes' (aka. bionic leg syndrome).
Technology, as I see it, is all about creating new abilities -- the
human being couldn't fly, after aeroplanes, he can. The crutch and the
wheelchair are technologies too, aren't they? Where do you draw the
line? Reminds me of the woman who refused to fly in an aeroplane,
calling it the devil's machine: "I'll just stay home and watch TV,
like the good Lord intended I should!"
I know plenty of disabled persons, whose views on technology are very
open, see for instance http://www.dawn.com/weekly/science/science3.htm
-- we could seek those out.
Maybe this is a diversion, and not suitable for London, I'm happy to
go along with what has been proposed. I think, though, that we would
do well to reach out to other interest groups, in whose lives we see
the possibility of significant improvement through wireless
networking. The disabled seemed like a good example, but there may be
better ones. We could return to disability and WiFi when we discuss
the agenda for 2006, if you prefer.
Do we agree that we should try to bring other groups in? One of the
things I really liked about Djursland, was the large number of
non-techies who landed up, listening intently to the sort of stuff we
slept through at engineering college!
There are a couple of sessions I would like to see in the agenda, when
you start to flesh it out: one would be smart antennas: if, in mesh
networks, we could focus our beams better, we would get greater range
and less electromagnetic noise, so also greater bandwidth. Can we
bring in the expertise to make this a practical session -- so we
actually learn how to make them?
A session on the politics of wireless would also be very useful: so
much is happening in the
regulatory space globally, we might discuss how best to target our efforts.
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