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I had some wireless connection problem with our automation machines at a convention (2000+ people). We control our machines wirelessly. Each of our machines has a Wi-Fi box, serves as an AP.

Then we use ipod/ipad/pda connect through wifi to control the machines.

Before the conferences all machine were able to connect wirelessly but once people start to come in we couldnt find a connection between our machine and the ipod/ipad/pda.

I understand that there has been known issues that at large conferences, between everyone's smartphone can tether, and laptops wireless cards.

There are just too many competing devices for the channels we have access to. Anyone have a solution for this?

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@Zoredache I love when you get snippy! – Publiccert Feb 23 '12 at 23:23
Since the iPhone/iPad all have a 802.11a (5 GHz) capable radio, why don't you simply use that instead of the b/g frequencies typically used. – Zoredache Feb 23 '12 at 23:26
@Zoredache - that sounds like an answer to me – Mark Henderson Feb 23 '12 at 23:35
ya i heard of suggestion to move up to 5 Ghz range, but the wifi box doesnt support 5Ghz. We use a Wi-Fi serial converter box. – fpeng Feb 23 '12 at 23:51
But is there any other way to improve our signal of the wifi? does setting a password helps? – fpeng Feb 24 '12 at 0:13

If anyone comes up with a solution, they could make a ton of money on it (as well as improving our understanding of physics)!

The issue is interference, plain and simple. There's too many clients around, so they all interfere with each other. It's like trying to hear someone whispering in the middle of a loud party.

Possible solutions:

  1. Ditch the wifi. If you are a vendor at a conference, you do not want to rely on something as unreliable anyway.
  2. Switch to 5Ghz. I'm not sure what a 'Wi-Fi serial convertor box' is, but I'm pretty sure you can fashion one out of any standard linux box with a Wifi card.
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I suspect he is talking about wifi to RS-232 device. – Zoredache Feb 24 '12 at 1:16
You can probably rig something up with a linux box in that case – devicenull Feb 24 '12 at 3:34

Are you responsible for providing wireless connectivity at the convention? Or are you just exhibiting? I wasn't clear from your question. If the former:

This article discusses one person's experience providing wireless service at a technical conference. It's an interesting read and suggests some things one can do to provide more robust wireless connectivity.

In fact, that is one of a series of articles, I think this is the first one.

If you're not actually responsible for providing network service, those articles are less relevant. The suggestion to use 5 Ghz frequencies is probably a good one.

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