In todays fast paced, connection oriented, streaming digital world of information exchange, networking has become one of the highest priorities among the information markets requirements. However, the current standards in networking are becoming nigh on obsolete. The most commonly used standards in a networking situation have been in use for several years, and in the information technology field, that is rapidly approaching the venerable stage.
Recently however, new standards have began to show. These standards do not redefine the older networking standards, but instead create a whole new set of rules. These new rules apply to the newest networking creation, the wireless network.
The wireless network is now on the verge of becoming the base standard for all networks. With the lowering of costs to inplement and maintain a wireless network, older cable-based networks may begin to disappear.
The IEEE has released two new standards for networking, both of which apply to wireless networking. IEEE 802.11b, also called WI-FI, is the low cost and easily setup alternative to older cable based networks. It uses a low cost, low maintence equipment to maintain a network running at approximately 4.3 Mbps. The rated speed of a network ran using the Wi-Fi standards is 11 Mbps. Installation of a 802.11b card and implementation of the network can take as little as 30 mintues to complete. The drivers for the hardware come pre-installed in a Windows XP environment. The actual networking cards come in three types, depending on the hardware situation that a network has. PC cards for a Wi-Fi network range in price from $80-&120 while PCI cards range from $120-$140 dollars.