The wireless fundamentals base station session at the International Wireless Communications Exposition took the theoretical lessons learned in the Tuesday session and ran head-to-head comparison tests between current cellular technologies and products. The test results were not available at press time.

The session, "Understanding Wireless Networking," which was broken up into a basics class in the morning, and a more advanced class in the afternoon, planned to set up a small cellular classroom network in the afternoon, and run head-to-head comparisons of different technologies and vendor products.

"Most people in the class are saying they've read the literature, but what does it all mean?" says Joe Morgan, the class instructor, and a consulting engineer for Lockard & White Inc., a telecommunications consulting and engineering company.

Morgan said the session participants have all heard the data throughput claims of the many cellular system vendors, but they wanted to test them themselves. Morgan said the class would also make a single data point estimator for different technologies.

Most of the session participants have experience in mobile radio technologies, but came to the session to learn more about the other four wireless networking technologies Morgan presented: satellite, cellular, local area networking (WLANs), and Bluetooth.

"Even though they [the session participants] work in one of the segments, they really need to know about all of them because they all impact their jobs," Morgan says. The participants were looking for practical information about wireless technologies. Most of the questions and session interaction followed this course: "One example is CDMA. "What is it, and where does it play," were what the participants wanted to know Morgan says. "Everybody has heard about it, but what does it really mean and where is it really impacting," he continued. "Where does it fit in the world of wireless networking?"