[Cu-wireless] architecture proposal

David Young dyoung at onthejob.net
Fri May 3 10:56:32 CDT 2002

I want to point out that while it is true that our group is just
getting organized, we are not just getting started. We've been working
on this for a few months.  Most the things in my proposals, including
the self-configuring aspect, the disklessness of the stations, the
inobtrusive of the stations, etc., are based on my experience that
it IS a problem that stations are configured independently by a human
operator, that they run different versions of the software, that they
are built from irregular equipment, that they make distracting noises,
and that people object to the computers' location, size, appearance,
or the location, size, and appearance of their accoutrements.

We do plan to change our software every few weeks. It's going to come
on CD-ROM, though, so that nobody has to let us in their home to do
an upgrade. "Stick this in the CD-ROM and press the reset button," we
will tell them. The CD-ROM drive is unmistakable; the reset button we
will label.  =)

We will use fixed IP addresses in the link from IMC to ISEN. But two
nodes a community network does not make, and we will add a third node
to that network with as much labor as the first two.


On Fri, May 03, 2002 at 07:43:37AM -0500, Ralph Johnson wrote:
> In your first proposal, you said you were looking for something
> simple so that you could get a network up quickly.  That seemed
> to me to be an admirable goal.  So, why are you so concerned
> about making a system that is so expandable?  Use fixed IP
> addresses.  Once the network is working, you can keep upgrading
> it.  You should plan to change your software every few weeks.
> It should be easy to make a single CD that can boot on a bunch
> of machines and assign an IP address to each.  The CD has a
> database that maps MAC addresses to IP addresses.  The boot
> process uses the MAC address to look up the IP address for
> the machine.  You can hook up new machines to the net by
> manually assigning them an IP address.  The next version of
> the CD can include their info.
> This doesn't scale, but that is not important if your goal
> is to get something up quickly.  Do the simplest thing that
> will work.
> -Ralph

David Young             OJC Technologies
dyoung at onthejob.net     Engineering from the Right Brain
                        Urbana, IL * (217) 278-3933

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