TS Wireless TS Wireless

Smith Street Wireless

19 May 2005 by tsdev

A freely accessible wireless network along the historical and culturally significant streets of Smith and Gertrude, Fitzroy/Collingwood, Melbourne, Australia.

Toy Satellite proposes to establish, with community consultation, Smith Street Wireless, a not-for-profit 802.11 network for the Smith & Gertrude Street precinct, Fitzroy.

Wireless networking is an in-expensive technology enabling computers to network to each other without the use of common communications infrastructures such as telephone networks and the Internet.

Community consultation will determine the viability of the project, including how it would be used and by whom. It will also determine “hotspot” locations, technical requirements, costs and finally, a deployment timetable.

Smith Street Wireless grew out of a prototype wireless streaming network, TS Wireless, within a 3 kilometre radius of the Remy Lane/Queens Parade Precinct, Fitzroy North, Melbourne, Australia. It provided royalty free ambient music, 24 hours a day, for a period of six months.

The project identified interest in an alternative means of distributing local music, local content and convenient access to these resources. TS Wireless did not provide free, nor fee-for-service access to the internet. It was a stand-alone content specific service that would be syndicated across the emerging Melbourne Wireless network.

The projects objectives are to:

  • provide access to local and independent music;
  • access to scheduled documentary style, radiophonic works either commissioned or available from community radio station archives;
  • technical infrastructure for projects that make use of, for example, WiFi networking protocols and open source web server applications;
  • a communications medium for communities that collaborate with like initiatives in the area (eg. SmithStreet.org, community radio);
  • the provision of WiFi accessible hotspots for free access to the Internet from any location within a reasonable proximity of the network;
  • formulation of a WiFi content specific networking model that can be replicated within other communities;
  • ensure sustainability of the network, including maintenance, support and ongoing development.

Smith Street Wireless is currently on hold pending the outcome of a survey we are conducting within the precinct towards the development of the community weblog, SmithStreet.org. A second survey would determine the interest, extent of local participation and commitment towards the establishment of a wireless network for the precinct.