[Blabber] Passive Wifi offering a 10, 000x reduction in power consumption for remote Wifi nodes

Robby O'Connor robby.oconnor at gmail.com
Sat Apr 2 03:04:30 UTC 2016


Shut up, nothing special about today. This is real.
On 04/01/2016 04:47 PM, gabe at bigapplehobbies.com wrote:
> April 1, April 1, April 1 !!!!
>
> Sent from my iPhone
>
> On Apr 1, 2016, at 2:58 PM, James Carpino via Blabber
> <blabber at list.hackmanhattan.com <mailto:blabber at list.hackmanhattan.com>>
> wrote:
>
> > haha (re: pick two).
> > I tried to read the article,
> > http://passivewifi.cs.washington.edu/files/passive_wifi.pdf
> >
> > but found no explicit statement like, "This is not actually real" or
> > "This isn't what people are making it out to be."  To me, it looks
> > like a real hack.  It's implemented on FPGA, so it isn't clear how
> > cheap it could be in the end.  And I don't perceive (from skimming the
> > article) that a passive device can transmit in the absence of a signal
> > that is already being broadcast, and so then you would intuitively
> > expect that there should be just enough signals but not too many... an
> > unlikely situation in an urban area.  It seems to me it's really just
> > a proof of concept.  
> >
> > Yeah I'm siding with John.  I think there's something to be gained
> > here, it's definitely unconventional thinking to do this thing with
> > backscattering.
> >
> > James
> >
> >
> > ------------------------------------------------------------------------
> > *From:* John Larson <larsonj.home at gmail.com
> > <mailto:larsonj.home at gmail.com>>
> > *To:* Hack Manhattan! <blabber at list.hackmanhattan.com
> > <mailto:blabber at list.hackmanhattan.com>>
> > *Sent:* Friday, April 1, 2016 1:03 PM
> > *Subject:* Re: [Blabber] Passive Wifi offering a 10, 000x reduction in
> > power consumption for remote Wifi nodes
> >
> > Guan,
> >
> > Totally agree, it isn't clear to me how this actually works either.  I
> > assume they worked out a solution for breaking the IP stack in their
> > prototype.  Its a good question.  There would probably have to be some
> > kind of packet sniffer along the route that would look for and record
> > the broadcasts.  The thing here that sounds promising to me is the
> > ability to simplify integration between the OT and IP network while
> > reducing power requirements and cost for the remote nodes.   
> >
> > Here's the thing.  One of the hurdles that IoT integrators face is how
> > to route data from non-IP, OT networks into the cloud safely and
> > cheaply.  It can be done.  It can't be done in a simple, cost
> > effective and standardized way... yet.  Weather or not this solution
> > makes it out of the lab is less important to me than solutions like
> > this are getting publicity.  My take away is that simpler to
> > integrate, cost effective options are on the horizon.  
> >
> > What is it they say?  You can have it cheap, low power or IP enabled -
> > pick two....
> >
> >
> >
> >  
> >
> >
> >
> >
> >
> > On Fri, Apr 1, 2016 at 12:11 PM, Guan Yang <guan at yang.dk
> > <mailto:guan at yang.dk>> wrote:
> >
> >     This confuses me a little bit. I thought I understood the pros and
> >     cons when this was publicized - you waste a lot of power
> >     transmitting all over the place in case someone wants to transmit.
> >     But the benefit was that this would integrate with existing wi-fi
> >     networks. If you don't need Wi-Fi compatibility, you might be able
> >     to energy harvest enough energy for a lower power network, or find
> >     some other solution.
> >
> >     But I don't quite understand the concept of a device that only
> >     transmits, and does not receive, wi-fi signals. This works for a
> >     wireless protocol that supports that, but for Wi-Fi, it seems such
> >     a node would not be able to integrate very well with an existing
> >     Wi-Fi network. How would it receive acknowledgments and
> >     retransmit, for example?
> >
> >>     On Apr 1, 2016, at 12:06, John Larson <larsonj.home at gmail.com
> >>     <mailto:larsonj.home at gmail.com>> wrote:
> >>
> >>     An interesting development on the low power wifi front from our
> >>     friends at the  Univ of Washington, CS Dept
> >>     <http://passivewifi.cs.washington.edu/>.  They are promising a
> >>     10,000x reduction in power consumption for passive wifi nodes
> >>     that transmit (but do not receive) wifi signals.  
> >>
> >>     This is perfect for cloud enabled embedded wireless sensor
> >>     applications.  Of course wifi range limitations still apply but
> >>     it is an important breakthrough for simplifying integration (and
> >>     hopefully cost) of embedded wireless applications with the cloud.  
> >>
> >>     Wired published an article
> >>     <http://www.wired.com/2016/03/future-wi-fi-10000-times-energy-efficient/>
> >>     about it in march.  
> >>
> >>     Emerging Tech like this is going to make integration with OT
> >>     networks a lot more palatable for some significant IoT use
> >>     cases.  Its not available yet but it looks like something to keep
> >>     an eye on.  
> >>
> >>     -John
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> >
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