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Wi-Fi and the Bad Boys of Radio: A Wi-Fi Expert's Story of the Beginning of Broadband Wireless Network Technology or A Beginner Can Set Up and Create a New Wi-Fi or Bluetooth System Paperback – August 15, 2011
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Dr. Hills has now written a book, Wi-Fi and the Bad Boys of Radio, that supplies an engaging look at a key moment..in the history of wireless..there's a little technology here, but that's delightfully mixed with personal anecdotes, an interesting cast of characters, and, again, some history we really don't want to lose.-Craig Mathias,Network World
This fascinating and little known story is the subject of a new book, Wi-Fi and the Bad Boys of Radio...it's the account of how Hills, with the help of his team and overseas colleagues, overcame major obstacles to create the world's first wireless campus at CMU, an unfathomable idea in 1993. - Deb Smit, Innovation
This fine book, the memoir of a pioneer in the development of Wi-Fi, will interest a wide variety of readers, technogeeks...and anyone in search of a good read. Alex Hills...writes beautifully, with an appealing style of clarity and authority. He is also humble, eschewing the title of inventor of Wi-Fi that some have given him.--Bill Klykylo, CQ
In the mid-1990s Alex Hills built a huge wireless network at Carnegie Mellon University that became the prototype for modern Wi-Fi networks--a story he tells in his book Wi-Fi and the Bad Boys of Radio. - David Pogue, Scientific American
From the Inside Flap
Dr. Alex Hills continued on to make great contributions in the
world of wireless technology. Dr. Hills is a fine writer and teacher,
so I have no doubt that his book will be both fascinating and entertaining."
-- Walter J. Hickel, (1919-2010),
former United States Secretary of Interior
"I know of no one so capable of telling the Wi-Fi story and explaining
so clearly how the technology works. Alex Hills is certain to
capture the public imagination with this new book."
-- Jim Geier, Principal Consultant, Wireless-Nets, Ltd. and Wi-Fi author
"Alex Hills has contributed to the developing world and to developing
advanced wireless technology at one of the world's most techsavvy
universities. Working on both frontiers, Dr. Hills pioneered
wireless Internet and launched a revolution in the way the world
communicates. His story of how we "cut the cord" begins in a place
where there were no cords to begin with -- remote Alaska."
-- Mead Treadwell, Lieutenant Governor of Alaska and
former Chair, United States Arctic Research Commission
"Being from Alaska, I am aware of the great contributions Dr Alex
Hills made to my state in building its communication systems.
Later, I discovered the importance of his Wi-Fi work through an
article about him in The Economist. Alex's work has raised the
quality of a lot of people's lives, including mine."
-- Steve Cowper, former Governor of Alaska
Top Customer Reviews
One review is entitled "This is how WiFi happened..."
Sounds tempting, but if you want the answer to these issues this is not the right book. However, it is a good book about the author's career excitement with wireless technology in both a rural area and an urban university as well as in amateur radio.
But the Wi-Fi part is really about how the author engineered the first wide area Wi-Fi system (named Andrew) at the Carnegie Mellon University campus. The author did not develop Wi-Fi and does not claim he did so. This book references The Innovation Journey of Wi-Fi: The Road to Global Success by Wolter Lemstra, Vic Hayes, and John Groenewegen in which Prof. Hills is credited for his innovations in the engineering of wide area networks. If you want a duller description but more detailed description of where Wi-Fi came from and its adoption, go to the Lemstra, Hayes & Groenewegen book.
But this book is a lot more readable and is quite interesting about what it actually discusses. Unfortunately the back cover information, Amazon description, and some of the reviews are misleading about what exactly is covered.
This book will be a Christmas gift for many of my lower 48 friends and relatives. Interspersed with the history of radio in the NW Alaskan bush is an excellent description of what most of Alaska is all about and why we are so different from the other 49 states. The easy to understand, non-technical description of the development of Wi-Fi will help all my email, computer friends and relatives understand how we got to where we are. The development of Wi-Fi owes much to Dr. Hills and Carneige-Mellon University.
Dr. Hills continues to share his ability to stimulate the creativity of students and help many countries throughout the world.
Alex gives you a good view of how things are developed. I like the descriptions of university life and interactions with companies. He talks about what makes the process work - the people that drive it because they get excited about seeing their ideas become real.
Alex's ham radio stories were great. I connected with them because as a kid, I built a ham radio receiver and listened to those guys clicking out Morse code - but voice was a lot more understandable to me. My uncle was a ham before WWII and I had played with his gear up in my grandmother's attic. When Alex described the difference between a key and a bug - I was right there with him.
I'm sending a copy to my uncle who now lives in England and, at age 90, still has a 'wireless' rig that he uses to chat with other hams.
Most Recent Customer Reviews
A vivid, candid account of the evolution of what is now taken for granted... only until the bad boys of radio prove you may be wrong. Read morePublished 4 months ago by Adolfo Lopez
This is a funny very personal book about a pioneer in broadcasting and computer technology who was an early adopter in Alaska. Read morePublished on November 15, 2012 by Jo
As a former high school physics teacher, I found this review to be both engaging and informative. I've used Wi-Fi for years, but never thought about what it takes to set up a... Read morePublished on September 2, 2012 by Cary
Way back in the late 1990's, I remember going to a spring Home Show in a small midwestern community. There I was exposed to a new and amazing technology. Read morePublished on August 23, 2012 by Mrskeeter
For a user and enjoyer of this now taken for granted modern daily part of American society, the opportunity to learn how it came about is what intrigued me to read this book. Read morePublished on June 27, 2012 by LaMarr Anderson
Dr. Hills brings to life what could be a dry subject for non-engineering types in a compelling story that capitalizes on his interests in ham radio from boyhood. Read morePublished on January 15, 2012 by AlaskaJudith
This is a light and easily readable trip thru the airwaves. We travel with the author as he describes his journey as a young ham radio operator in suburban New Jersey, then thru... Read morePublished on November 30, 2011 by Jenkintown Dude