What are Mesh Networks?


Wireless mesh networks are a type of ad hoc network in which mesh nodes communicate with each other to relay data for a network connection across an expansive geographic area. These nodes are essentially tiny radio transmitters that mimic the function of wireless routers, and the software programmed therein enables information to travel seamlessly from one point to another. This emerging technology is particularly compelling because mesh networks are genuinely wireless; even current access points that are widely called wireless still rely on being wired to the Internet for broadcasting their signal. Instead, the mesh network set-up contains only one node that is physically wired to a modem or DSL and then shares that connection with all other nodes in the area. As a result, entire offices, campuses, and even cities can access the Internet. The speed and coverage of the connection depends on how many mesh nodes are installed. Mesh networks are well-poised to provide stronger and increased web access to education institutions and the communities around them.

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(1) How might this technology be relevant to the educational sector you know best?

  • By extending the availability of access to the internet via some of the more ambitious of these networks (Project Loon for instance) remote parts of Australia and the region could have constant access. Regional and remote indigenous communities could experience a massive influence. - k.flintoff k.flintoff Jan 17, 2016
  • - gillysalmon gillysalmon Jan 24, 2016 so true , I couldn't believe the extent of my sorrow when I got to Shark Bay on holiday at New year ;), and I was only there too days...bring it on....

(2) What themes are missing from the above description that you think are important?

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(3) What do you see as the potential impact of this technology on teaching, learning, or creative inquiry?

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(4) Do you have or know of a project working in this area?

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