April 19, 2004

Battlefield 'Net VI

The US, via DARPA is moving towards cognitive radios. These are software defined radios that are loaded with local rules and search for open chunks of spectrum to use for their transmissions. This permits a much higher use of spectrum without providing interference. DARPA has decided to release the specifications of these radios as an open standard, hoping civilian equipment manufacturers will widely adopt the technology and make military interference in local RF networks a thing of the past as both military and civilian equipment adjusts to stay out of each other's way.

This also has implications on bandwidth licensing. The current FCC structure, for instance, assumes dumb end devices that require rigid spectrum allocation according to very old formulas. With cognitive radios and like minded equipment like cell phones and TVs, such rigid rules can be relaxed in future (if we can get the bureaucracy to loosen its death grip on power).

Posted by TMLutas at April 19, 2004 12:38 PM