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News: Revenge Of The Geeks

Fall Line
posted: 11/20/2000

Some people ski to tune out the world. Others can't stand to be out of touch. This season the Resort at Squaw Creek at Squaw Valley, Calif., accommodates both by offering a wireless connection to the Internet throughout its property. Your laptop can have instant, high-speed Internet access-without hassling with a cord or phone connection. Resort guests can surf the Web while in the resort's restaurants and bars, conference rooms, lobby and sundecks. The system uses eight ceiling antennas, each with a range of about 85 yards, that are linked to the hotel's T1 server. The catch is that your PC will need to be equipped with a special wireless Ethernet card (now standard with some high-end laptops). And if you don't have one, the hotel rents them out. Guests are billed about $10 per wireless connection. This system shortly will be in airports, libraries and other public places, according to Davide Barnes, director of rooms, but the resort is among the first hotels nationwide to roll it out. Squaw Creek regularly hosts conferences for Silicon Valley companies, including, Red Herring and Palm computing. "These are people who carry two or three cell phones and walk around with a few laptops," Barnes says. "They want to be able to connect whenever and wherever they need to."

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