EAA members and AirVenture visitors looking to stay connected during this year's fly-in will have their
choice of nearly 50 locations throughout the grounds where wireless Internet access will be available. Those areas, ranging from small "hotspots" to Wi-Fi station with higher amenities, will be in place prior to opening day on July 26.
"As we surveyed AirVenture 2009 attendees on their preference for service, the overwhelming response was whether EAA opted for hotspot or full-blanket coverage, they wanted to have a good connection and experience with Wi-Fi on the grounds," said John Carrier, EAA's director of information technology. "We will improve on last year's coverage by dedicating specific areas for Wi-Fi connections and taking steps to ensure that those areas won't be overwhelmed."
Among the 47 locations will be new AirVenture Wi-Fi Stations, which feature seating areas, lighting, and AC power. Those areas will be identified on the AirVenture map and on signs with specific symbols. Smaller Wi-Fi hotspots will also be identified with
their own symbol. The Wi-Fi coverage is being developed in conjunction with Cisco Systems and Heartland Business Systems of Little Chute, Wis.
Those Wi-Fi areas are available throughout the grounds, including Camp Scholler, along with the southside and some
northside areas of the North 40 aircraft campground. In addition, the larger food courts will have Wi-Fi, as well as locations in
the Warbirds, Homebuilt, and Vintage areas and near AeroShell Square. At each location, there will be
the name of the site and the simple steps to connect to Wi-Fi.
In order to prevent overwhelming the systems, the following protocol will also be used:
- Users will be required to enter the location ID and approve the terms and conditions
- A time-out feature will log out connections that are unused after 30 minutes
In addition to the Wi-Fi locations, the Internet Café will continue to operate at the EAA Welcome Center near AeroShell Square for those who need a computer terminal to check e-mail. A smaller Internet café will also return near the Red Barn Store at Camp Scholler. Dedicated, protected Internet networks for exhibitors and other uses will also exist on the grounds.