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Letters To The Editor

Overcoming Wi-Fi Woes
You have the same issue trying to make a cell call today in busy places at peak periods ("Wi-Fi On The Road Leaves A Lot To Be Desired," July 20, 2005). And cell phones have been around for how long compared to wireless? It's getting better, but still ...

There are really two issues. Wireless at many of the Intel-approved hotels I stay at works quite well in the rooms or lobbies. If it doesn't, it's poor design or poor implementation, and there's really no excuse for that. The issue of supporting whole conference rooms full of people is a different story, but that, too, works with the appropriate designs and implementation.

Either way, it ought to work. If it doesn't, find a more reliable hotel, or frequent Starbucks or FedEx Kinko's for your wireless and connectivity fix.

Todd Butler
Network Security Capabilities Manager, Intel, Hillsboro, Ore.

Free Internet Access
More than Wi-Fi, which is admittedly nice, I expect free Internet access. It's the "premium" hotels that typically don't offer free Internet access.

The remark about watching people try to log on during a conference talk says a great deal--little of it positive, in my view--about how we interact and communicate in modern society.

Dumont Jones
Principal, Proximate Technologies, Columbus, Ohio

Real-World Reasons
This comes a day after Hewlett-Packard announces cuts of 14,000 jobs ("Gates Puzzled Why Students Shun Computer Science," July 20, 2005)! It's obvious why people don't want a career in IT.

The best proponents for any career field should be the people who work in the field. I've had a 38-year career in IT. At first, it was interesting and challenging. Then came mergers, job cuts, etc. I wouldn't (and don't) recommend this field to anyone!

Bruce Butler
Micro-Comp Technician, URM Stores, Spokane, Wash.

IT Instability
Gee, could it be 60-hour workweeks, no job security, hundreds of thousands of layoffs since 2000, or the omnipresent threat of outsourcing? I'm sure that the demographic majority of kids in or going to college today has been profoundly influenced by the experience of their parents, relatives, or friends' families.

Who doesn't want a reasonable level of job security and a life? Computer science is high risk with long hours. Corporate America doesn't help with wholesale shipping of jobs overseas. Accountants and stockholders have yet to learn the value of human intelligence, ingenuity, and loyalty.

John Arechavala
Waukesha, Wis.

A Public Service
The idea for commercial weather services should be to add value to that data already available via the National Weather Service, not to demand that it become private, so that they can sell it ("Rough Weather," July 18, 2005)!

Gone are the days when commercial weather services were the sole distributors of National Weather Service radar data. While running errands around town, when a tornado later hit the periphery of my town, I was happy to be watching the National Weather Service real-time radar via my laptop with my cell phone as a faster-than-dial-up modem. A branch of the government was doing its job, informing and protecting the populace from destructive weather. What better public service is there?

Craig Paul
Technical Support Programmer III, Kansas University Computer Center, Lawrence, Kan.

Weather Bulletin
Your article states that it's only recently that the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration has started making weather information available to the general public, but this is wrong.

Since Hurricane Andrew passed close enough for us to get the effects of a direct Category 1 Hurricane strike (1992), I've subscribed to the E-mail alerts and updates from the National Hurricane Center, a division of NOAA, and have maintained bookmarks to their Web sites (www.nhc.noaa.gov/index.shtml).

I get all forecast and public advisories; probability tables and discussions on all tropical depressions, storms, and hurricanes in the Atlantic and Caribbean; and a daily tropical outlook E-mail.

Kenneth E. Mullenix
President, Ethicare, Fort Lauderdale, Fla.

The "Trip To The Cafeteria--With The CFO!" column Bob Evans wrote was very entertaining and included some great insights into the corporate blame game (June 27, 2005). I must also commend him on writing the longest run-on sentence I've ever read.

Brad Hay
Vancouver, British Columbia

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