Disruptive technology in progress

Last week, Bob Cringely wrote about how you could reprogram a WiFi router to become the neighbourhood ISP, thanks to a small software house in Sweden. This week, he details the reaction, with the story of an entrepreneur that took him up on the idea, a VoIP company that got interested, and a pretty nifty idea to provide semi-mobile communications for homeless people in San Francisco.
This is literally how disruptive technologies come about – someone comes up with a cheap way of providing good-enough service, initially serving a market that nobody else cares about. If it is good enough for the homeless – the ultimate mobile person, at least within the confines of a city – it should eventually be good enough for us regular users. As said by FCC Chairman Michael Powell – if you are an incumbent PTT, you ought to be terrified at this point…….

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