Wired vs Wireless

Advocates suggest that wired connections are a suitable alternative for internet access. The reality is that devices with ethernet ports are becoming increasingly hard to find on contemporary laptops

But it is not just computers. Entire new lines of devices, such as tablets, e-readers and smartphones, have come to the market in recent years that also have no physical network connections. Restricting wifi means an entire generation of technology is not useable in classrooms.

Additionally, hard-wiring buildings with physical cables and establishing wired access points is expensive compared to installing WiFi access points.

However, there are also teaching and learning implications to choosing wired vs. wireless access. Wired only computer access restricts internet access to specific physical locations. In many schools, the only place where you have internet access is in a specified room – the computer lab. While this might have been an economical and even pedagogically sound learning environment 20 years ago, it is not today. Increasingly, both the internet and mobile devices are being used by teachers inside the classroom, with studies showing that up to 73% of teachers are using mobile devices for teaching and learning purposes. Wired networks were great 20 years ago, but are as adequate for contemporary teaching and learning as slate and chalk. Sure, they work. But is that really the best learning environment we can provide for our children?

10 comments on “Wired vs Wireless
  1. dyr2 says:

    so your main arguments so far are based on obeisance of authority, apparently fully not cognizant of how these have failed in the past and are structured then & today, and now you put the cart before the horse, the tech before the kids — because some stupidly engineered out hard-wired access, means we should just go along??

    you can bet that when school regions decide contra wifi, there will be a whole industry arising to cater/retrofit to that

    there are potential health problems with ALL our electronic equipment, incl hard wired, focus on wifi should be the start of examining the issue in its breadth

    the argument from expense is absurd in many regards one one admits health dangers

    i’d say, it’s back to the slateboard for this commentator

    • Scott Leslie says:

      Daryl, sorry the arguments here don’t satisfy you; as is hopefully clear by our creating this site, neither are the arguments from a vocal fringe convincing to us. As to your last line, hope you enjoy going back to the slateboard!

      • dyr2 says:

        so it is not about rebutting a rebuttal, argument for the sake of getting closer to the truth of the matter that animates this site’s defence of a harmful technology, but what then?

        it is clear from what i’ve seen on this site so far & from some commenter-defenders of status quo, that appeal to authority is the main basis — how is this claim false?

        how is it false that $ do not = better ed.?

        how is it wrong to expect entrepreneurial catering to schools without your beloved wifi?

        you do discredit to your cause in failure to argue it out

        • Scott Leslie says:

          Daryl, you do discredit to your cause by writing in incomplete, barely coherent sentences.

          There really are many avenues open to advance this discussion with the people who need to be convinced in order for it to effect public policy at large. Bullying school boards and scaring parents advisory committees with unsubstantiated claims are NOT those avenues. If you REALLY are serious about the specific harms of EMR, then maybe try targeting some sources that DWARF (by many orders of magnitude) the levels that children (or anyone else for that matter) get exposed to via wifi. Cell Towers. Airport Radar. Naval Radar. Ham Radios. Seriously, do a little research – as your own side rightly claims, there is literally a “soup” of EMR surrounding us, all the time. Not even just man-made either. Yet you have all seen fit to set your sights on a few school boards. Not only will that not make a damn bit of difference to the overall amount of EMR any child is likely going to be exposed to, it continues to drain energy and attention from actual threats to their education. I get that the people who believe this REALLY believe this, and have made it their mission in life to stop it. But not only is it misplaced, it sadly draws the energy of those of us trying to work for changes on real and present dangers, of which I remain absolutely unconvinced that this is one.

          • dyr2 says:

            (i am replying very quickly, thus the sometimes fragmentary syntax, you haven’t shown me that your arguments are worth more time yet for full careful sentence structure)

            “levels that dwarf”

            you are committing the very big error of singular attention to power levels – it is not all about power levels; to an extent, yes, it has to be to a bio-detection level, but there is evidence that this threshold of detection/reaction is getting lower & lower with ever-increasing exposure

            eg Baubiologie guidelines (a ref pt i believe now for the Austrian Med Assn) have been lowered over the yrs, as they found detectable deleterious effect at lower & lower levels of incident power

            eg esp in people >50 microwave auditory effect which morphs into lasting tinnitus – a mw effect well-established in the sci lit going back some 50 yrs – this tinnitus is provoked at miniscule power levels, i am one in whom this occurs, eg after wireless smart meter deployment where we are (Ont) i could actually “hear” the at least 1/4-hourly pinging of the x-mitter, although do not get this effect from wifi (other symptoms, but i am a mild sufferer who has clued into what is provoking the symptoms), whereas my spouse cannot abide being in wifi for very loing without evincing cognitive effect; the key is that the thermal effects paradigm is completely wrong and discardable but will not for the lock had on the intl hierarchy affecting regulatory bodies; and that this tinnitus needs far lower power to be evoked now than when 1st experimented with by Frey in the 60s i think it was

            it ain’t all about power levels

            “as your own side rightly claims, there is literally a “soup” of EMR surrounding us, all the time. Not even just man-made either.”

            schools not only should be wifi-free, but of extremely reduced manmde emf exposures altogether, a containable micro-environment to work with

            it is wrong if school wifi opponents do not frame their cause carefully & constantly as part of the wider issue; but you know that disempowered people pick on where they feel they might have an effect, some eventual success, school people since tender charges are involved are possibly more responsive to a logic that differs from the regnant authorities’
            (as co-advocate i myself disagree with overfocus on chldren & schools, for several reasons, but that does not make the main pt of their dissent wrong)

            there are plenty of dangers to public ed., yes, there was plenty enough wrong some 30 yrs ago to have had us mostly non-school all our children, wifi-ing the vulnerable puts it way over the top

            i think i said on one of these pages, that zeal for ed. by wireless devices undermines the educative reason for schools as they are at all — how is this wrong except in a trivial way of maybe teachers’ showing the young how to navigate the web etc?

          • Scott Leslie says:

            Don’t even know where to begin, if this site is so beneath the effort involved to comment coherently, then PLEASE STOP COMMENTING.

            The fact that both you AND your spouse claim hypersensitivity just boggles my mind. I haven’t heard, even from the anti-wifi groups, claims made that hypersensitivity is rampant in the general population, so what are the odds of two (not biologically related) people in the same household share the condition. Somehow it won’t surprise me if indeed there seem to be “clumps” of sufferers in the same household; rather than offering evidence that they are all experiecing the same effects, it seems to me to lend credence to the suspicions that these subjectivity complaints have other, less physical, sources.

          • dyr2 says:

            We should wait until you reply to the many points brought. Your shouting me away does not look good on you.

            There is interesting stuff to say on the pt you picked to speak to, but in context it is something of a digression, and i’ll not speak to it for now, awaiting your speaking to other more germane stuff adduced.

          • Scott Leslie says:

            Wait away Daryl, I’m pretty much done trying to deduce anything from your ramblings.

          • dyr2 says:

            Well, scottie, maybe some others will be braver and more capable than yourself in argumentation. Call ’em on in. And while you’re at it, don’t forget to salute your authorities.

          • Scott Leslie says:

            Will do, and thanks Daryl, it’s been a slice.