What is DiDo?

By John Nixon 25/08/2011

jrjagbrdsmA recent white paper describes an invention in the USA which is touted to increase greatly the bandwidth availability of wireless internet access.
DiDo stands for “distributed input, distributed output”. The news was immediately grabbed by the media here in Australia, saying that it made the NBN (National Broadband Network) project redundant and a waste of taxpayer money.
I have always defended the “mainly” fibre optic networks in both Australia and New Zealand, as no other solution provides anywhere near the current and future bandwidth of fibre.
The whitepaper itself can be found at: http://www.rearden.com/DIDO/DIDO_White_Paper_110727.pdf

Reading the paper is pretty tough going, but I found a very interesting summary and comments at: http://www.theregister.co.uk/2011/08/01/dido_snake_oil_or_saviour/

There is a pretty well-proven theorem of physics called the Shannon-Hartly Theorem. and in my own field of work, the amount of binary data one can impinge in a given available bandwidth is around 6 to 8 bits per Hertz. This gradually improves with the development of modulation techniques, but nobody sees a radical leap possible.

What does emerge is that the system relies on a network of “relay” stations which would process the wireless data requests and responses. I found it a fascinating subject to study, but is it maybe “snake oil” as is suggested?

Telstra to shut down internet over cable.

Australia does have an extensive cable TV network, which has obviously offered fast internet access packaged with the Foxtel Pay TV programs. A good friend of mine lives close by me in a high-rise apartment building. He has been very happy with his service, often seeing download speeds of 20Mbps. It seems almost a shame and a waste of good infrastructure to shut down this service, but as the linked article above explains, it’s all part of the NBN legislation between the Australian Government and the huge local telco Telstra.

Australian Photonics Research

Most people think of Australia as a huge vast land of cattle farms and the mining industry. However there is a lot of very unique research going on in the medical and other fields. This development from Sydney University could have major ramifications. Few people know that the CSIRO (Commonwealth Scientific & Industrial Research Organisation) invented WiFi. They were originally pretty slack in following through on their patents, but I believe now that they have a steady income from this now quite ubiquitous invention.

Municipal Councils now marketing NBN

As the NBN gradually spreads around Australia, there is a need to encourage people to develop applications and take a closer interest in the new broadband network. I live on the Gold Coast when in Australia and three surrounding Municipal Councils have joined forces to produce and distribute the publication “Broadband Today”.  It is a good initiative, since each area of Australia has its unique character and lifestyle.

Crossing the Tasman

I will be back in New Zealand next week, and am always pleased to have any contacts or comments from my readers. The best contact initially is my email: john.nixon@onefibre.com

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