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stds-802-16: letter published in _IEEE Spectrum_
You may be interested in this letter published in the "Forum" section
of the November 1999 issue of _IEEE Spectrum_.
I applaud IEEE Spectrum for its coverage of "Fixed wireless routes
for Internet access" [September, pp. 61-69]. I expect fixed wireless
technology to indeed play a crucial role in making broadband access
Surprisingly, the author overlooked the major role that the IEEE
itself is playing in the development of this industry. The mission of
the IEEE 802.16 Working Group on Broadband Wireless Access, which I
chair, is "to develop standards and recommended practices to support
the development and deployment of fixed broadband wireless access
systems." This transnational group has 106 voting members and has met
eight times since August 1998 (including several start-up meetings
organized by the National Wireless Electronic Systems Testbed of the
U.S. National Institute of Standards and Technology).
IEEE 802.16 recently unveiled an aggressive timetable to provide a
draft interoperable air interface specification by next autumn. A
separate project aims to provide a Recommended Practice for system
coexistence, without interference, by the summer of 2000. I encourage
you to read more on the Web at http://nwest.nist.gov.
Standards are vital to the success of communications systems. The
IEEE, through its outstandingly successful LAN/MAN
[local/metropolitan-area network] Standards Committee (Project 802),
has set the stage for tremendous technological innovation and rapid
deployment of digital networks. IEEE 802.16 is building on those
successes as it pioneers standards on which to build a broadband
wireless access industry.
Roger B. Marks