There once was a time when Internet did not come in megabit speeds. In those days, people connected though modems hooked up to noisy analog telephone lines. Just ten years ago, I used a 28k8 baud modem – barely usable with the World Wide Web – but a huge upgrade from my previous 2k4 baud modem I had before. The thing is that I have become so accustomed to speed, that I have (almost) forgotten the chores of optimizing code and images. I have a 100-megabit pipe straight into my living room: over four thousand times faster than my first modem.

A lot can be said about the wonders of video broadcasting on the Internet, but for a majority of the world’s population, data is still transmitted over extremely low bandwidth carriers. (Let me remind you that GSM for example, can only handle 9k6 kbit/s in its original configuration.)

Lately I’ve been experimenting with trying to provide access to content trough narrowband channels, and for clients with a very small (and/or low-res) screen. Luckily, the tools are very easy to use. HTML is very adaptable and works well for most computers, micro-browsers and handhelds, and most mobile phones contain a WAP-browser that handle WML-documents.

Using (slightly modified) plug-ins (wp-mobile.php and wp-wap.php) to my blogging software, enabling access for other terminals proved to be a breeze.

My perspective is simple: By enabling WAP-access, for example, I enable an exchange of ideas with virtually all mobile phones on the planet. Needless to say, there are a lot of people who lack access to computers, but own – and know how to operate – has a cell phone. Isolated, as in this blog, it is irrelevant. No one cares.

But, if we are serious about projects like One Laptop Per Child, we must also be better at enabling content for those without fiber optic Internet connections, or Apple Cinema Displays.

It’s not as sexy as Podcasting. Not as cool as IPTV. But, if it can bring millions of eyeballs – I’m game.

This blog through text only HTML
This blog through WAP