Wi-Fi and Amtrak: Missed Connections
Marketed as “fast, reliable and consistent,” Amtrak’s Wi-Fi service has instead turned into a source of online mockery. Will unplugged passengers find smoother connections soon?
Crowdsourced Network Planning For Connection-Bridging Startup
An anonymous reader writes "Tom's Hardware reports on the Connectify Switchboard software that "divides the user's traffic between Wi-Fi, 3G/4G and Ethernet-based connections on a packet-by-packet basis. Even a single stream — such as a Netflix movie — can be split between two or three Internet connections for a higher resolution and faster buffering." As part of its Kickstarter campaign, Connectify is geolocating their backers to optimize deployment of their servers. This is a clever way for supporters to influence the project beyond pledge levels and stretch goals, and it's actually kind of fun to watch."
Amtrak Upgrades Wi-Fi
New submitter WillgasM writes "A bit of good news for American travelers, according to the New York Times: 'After years of criticism of the wireless service on its trains, Amtrak announced on Thursday that it had upgraded its cellular-based Wi-Fi using broadband technologies that will improve the speed and reliability of the Internet in its passenger cars.' So far the service has been rolled out on the high-speed Acela lines and a few routes in California, but they hope to have the rest of their trains upgraded by the end of Summer. We're still an order of magnitude away from high-speed rails in other countries, but it's nice to know someone's trying."
Google Glass Will Soon Also Let iPhone Users Access Navigation And Text Messages
To use text messaging and navigation on Google Glass, users currently have to pair it with an Android phone and install the Glass companion app on their phones. This will change very soon, however, one of the Google representatives in its New York office told me when I picked up my own unit yesterday afternoon. Glass, the Google employee told me, will soon be able to handle these features independent of the device the user has paired it to (and maybe even independent of the Glass companion app). While Glass will happily work with any iPhone over Bluetooth or use any Wi-Fi connection to get online, iPhone users are currently unable to get turn-by-turn directions through Glass – one of its killer features. Those direction are pretty useful while you are navigating a new city and they do show off the power of location-based apps on Glass, but the software will currently balk if you ask it to give you directions while it’s connected to an iPhone. In this context, it’s worth noting that ...
Rendezvous Connects You With Nearby Folks Who Share Your Interests, Keeps Track Of Who You've Met
Rendezvous is an upcoming mobile application built at the TechCrunch Disrupt NY 2013 hackathon by San Francisco developer Taran Gill and designer Mehtab Bajawa. The app intends to connect you with others nearby who share your interests, as based on Facebook profile data. But while other mobile apps, including those in the recently trendy “ambient location” space often do the same, the difference with Rendezvous is that it keeps track of your location history, too. That way, you can scroll back to see who you met and when, as well as perhaps discover other missed connections. The mobile app was built using the Facebook API alongside the NewAer API for location data. And also unlike other location apps, Rendezvous doesn’t use GPS data – which means it won’t kill your smartphone’s battery. (Hooray!) Instead, Rendezvous will be able to tell if users are connected to the same Wi-Fi router or cell tower in order to determine their proximity to each other. Though the build created ...