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Wireless technology and its impact on computer networking - Essay Example

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In the beginning of the last century, the particular timeline was referred to as the 'Industrial Age'. True to an extent, as that era saw the emergence of a new kind of advancement for the betterment of mankind…
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Wireless technology and its impact on computer networking
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Download file to see previous pages Three quarters of a century later, civilization witnessed the birth of a new era, one which was largely ahead of its predecessor in terms of technological advancements. This new era as we all know it is the age of information technology. One need not go into the depth and the history of this achievement but move on towards a more current realization, the accomplishment which is more conveniently termed as an industry due to its sheer magnitude and relative importance. According to Kaveh Pahalavan and Prashan Krishnamurthy, "it owns the largest market share, and it has enabled us to change our lifestyles by entering the information technology age. This industry is the telecommunication networking industry"."Wireless networking has exploded in popularity in the last few years. From the way we communicate with friends and family to the way we conduct our daily business, and even the way we listen to music, wireless networking is quickly changing the face of technology" (Magoo). The impact of wireless networking or WiFi (wireless fidelity) on the existing computer networking has been rather drastic. And the number of benefactors are countless, educational and business institutions are just a few to name. It is the birth of a new dynasty, the new generation of telecommunications. The WiFi system provides support to countless devices for connection, may it be laptops, cell phones, PDAs etc.
Wi-Fi or Wireless Local Area Network (WLAN) is based on the IEEE 802.11 specifications. "IEEE 802.11, the Wi-Fi standard, denotes a set of Wireless LAN/WLAN standards developed by working group 11 of the IEEE LAN/MAN Standards Committee (IEEE 802)" (Wikipedia). A typical Wi-Fi setup involves setting up access points which as the term suggests are geographical areas where internet can be access via a router.
A wireless network is a very complex structure and has evolved over the past decade. Some light needs to be shed on the entire architecture of a wireless network. In that respect, an important reference point is the OSI model. "The OSI, or Open System Interconnection, model defines a networking framework for implementing protocols in seven layers" (Webopedia). The seven layers are defined as Application (Layer 7), Presentation (Layer 6), Session (Layer 5), Transport (Layer 4), Network (Layer 3), Data Link (layer 2), and Physical (Layer 1). In the OSI model, control is passed on from the top layers to the bottom, one-by-one and back up. For example, an information exchange between two users will go in such way that 'user 1' will send data from one terminal. The data will transmit via all the layers starting from the application layer down to the physical layer. There will be a physical link between the physical layers of both users. The data will be transmitted to the physical layer of 'user 2' via a physical link. Once there, it will be passed on the hierarchy up to the application layer where it will be received by the user. One common misconception has to be clarified that the user is not a part of the OSI model.
"The OSI serves as a reference model for all network protocols because its functionality exists in all communications systems, although two or three OSI layers may be incorporated into one" (TechWeb). The OSI model is an important aspect in the entire architecture on which serves as the basis of networking. All network communication taking place between two devices is based on all or some layers (TCP/IP) of the OSI Model. Using this definition on the original topic, it can be deduced that OSI model is a networking standard and wireless networking is a part of it.
When it comes to wireless networking, the OSI model alone is not responsible for data transmission. It requires support ...Download file to see next pagesRead More
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