Things are rolling along great in getting ready for Mobile 2.0, the one part we haven’t taken of is the network coverage at the event. And as Niall rightly points out, conferences with shitty wifi can ruin the whole experience. Since we have some people from AdMob out at ad:tech NY during the day on Nov 6th, if something goes wrong I know I need connectivity. I’m assuming others will as well. For myself I can tether to my phone. At a group of mobile folks is it safe to assume that others will be able to as well if they cared about such things? What does that do to the backchannel and the ability of the audience to challenge new knowledge immediately if they don’t have access to their online resources? I’m assuming overall it would be uncool.
We’re still looking for someone, something, or a group of someones or somethings to sponsor the wifi. Please let us know if you’re interested in sponsoring the wifi (email mike at thisismobility dot com). If that doesn’t pan out, what other options are there? Can we mob a swarm of dual EV-DO or HSDPA and 802.11 equipped laptops serving as wifi access point and rig up some kind of public network? Not a traditional solution, but I’m hardly a traditional kind of guy. The hotel itself has a T-Mobile network, so we’re also probing to see if we can get access to that instead of getting the venue to provide a different conference-specific network. My assumption is that will not go well, but if anyone knows something that could help make that work please also let me know.
Just goes to show exactly how far away we are from the full promise of mobility that I’m still casting around for a way to get network access at an event called “Mobile 2.0″. Kinda sad, kinda funny, definitely fuel for discussion and debate when the day comes… which we will hopefully be able to do at least in part over IRC from the conference floor, the way God intended.