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Thursday, July 12, 2007 

Regina Launches FREE Wireless Internet Service!

Wireless users in Regina's Downtown, 'Old Warehouse' area and 13th Avenue business districts can now access the Internet free-of-charge using the Saskatchewan! Connected wireless network.

Saskatchewan! Connected means wireless users will no longer have to switch from service to service as they roam around the coverage area. It will also help to bridge the ‘digital divide' by providing no-cost

Internet access to residents living in close proximity to Regina's downtown core who may be unable to afford monthly rates for Internet services. Any existing desktop or laptop computer can be configured with a Wi-Fi adaptor for under $100 and then connected quickly and conveniently to the free service.

Provincial NDP Cabinet Minister Warren McCall made the announcement today in Regina.

CBC

There was a time when libraries were paid for by annual fee or subscription. Now most libraries are free. That step democratised knowledge.

Making the internet free is the 21st century's democratisation of knowledge.

It figures. Saskatchewan gave us universal health care and now is giving their people this. It seems the government of Saskatchewan has a good grasp of the concept "commonweal".

Portland OR in the US has free public Wi-Fi downtown too. It's slow and spotty, but for those who can't pay for broadband, it's wonderful.

Tom I really would love to see much more free or inexpensive access to the web for citizens everywhere. I think is the one thing that is going to help us keep right wing authoritarianism at bay in North America.

I didn't know about Portland but I hope that this is the beginning of a broader trend!

Its definitely the beginning of a trend and deserves to be encouraged and supported. Fredericton, NB has had free public wireless Internet access downtown and the UNB campus for some years now. Here the Vancouver Public Library has started providing wireless access within most of their branches, but the city is standing pat waiting, they say, for a 'private provider' to step up. (We wouldn't want to cut into anyone's profits now would we?) Problem is no such provider is stepping up...

When you hear broadband providers or your colleagues and friends talking about "wireless" they could actually be talking about two separate things:Wireless Networking, having a wire free computer in the house connected to a broadband connection.Wireless Broadband, this is a special kind of broadband package where you can use it at home, but also in certain places when you are away from home. All you need is your phone number or pastcode to see if either of these broadband connections are available and you can check it at broadband.co.uk.

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