Sasha Meinrath is Research Director for the New America Foundation's Wireless Futures Program and will be one of the speakers at eComm 2009. I've just read his comments in a recent interview by Lee Dryburgh on the eComm blog. Sasha has a particularly good explanation of an arcane concept, interference temperature.
Why does this matter? It's one way to open up otherwise assigned radio spectrum to new uses without impeding existing uses. The FCC made an attempt to float the idea in 2003 but after much comment (and pressure from those with existing licenses), they backed off in May 2007. It's still a good idea, so perhaps Sasha's explanation will help get it back on the table.
The second one that we've been fighting for, and have lost thus far, is what's called "Interference Temperature," which is that, in the same way, at a rock concert people in the audience can whisper, or yell for that matter, and not be disruptive to the concert itself, we want to see very low powered usage <permitted> on occupied channels.
The idea is, if you're sitting next to a 100,000-watt television transmitter and you want to utilize a device to connect your laptop computer to your television, fifteen feet away, you should be allowed to do that in the same space.
Thank you Sasha. That beats all the gobbeldygook spouted between 2003 and 2007.
I look forward to talking with Sasha at eComm 2009 in San Francisco in March.