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April 19, 2006

Interesting meetings Vol.2

Tõnis Mäe, Operational Manager for HP in Estonia says:
Likes it, a lot. For him Wiferia is technicaly nothing more than a unified access web site and security feature. His main question was: what do you actually mean by security? Brought in the concept of third party security. While e have been worried mostly about the security of hotspot owner and hotspot user, he pointed out that also the content reached through the Wiferia should be protected from the assault. If Wiferia can not quarantee that, a lot of resources of large multinationals e.g. is prohibited to be accessed through Wiferia by companies themselves. Tõnis promised to surf around HP intranet to find HP initiatives and information about possible ready-made software to configure the routers.

Lauri Makke, GNT product manager & A Very Big Eastern European Linksys Hotshot say:
Linksys says we can do whatever we want to do to their routers. They do not pay for configuring and for warranty they want to get them back with our bit of software uninstalled. But they think it is a good idea and GNT as a wholesaler could contribute to the project in order to gain bigger sales of routers. We all can benefit from Linksys experience with FON.

Meelis Malk, missing link between software engineers and people with an idea for software, says:
Meelis states it is an interestin and appealing idea although with several risk factors. First of all: why should people start to use Wiferia. Promised to help us by talking to software engineers at Oskando Ltd., a company recently acuired by Skype programming team.

March 23, 2006

Interesting meetings along the way: alotta opinions

Linnar Viik, Estonian visionary says:
Been there, done that. They had a similar thought with his company Mobi but droped it because sharing income among network contributors would be too difficult task.

Arti Ots, marketing director of Estonian main telecom Elion says:
Risky, very risky. They can not support this idea! Their broadband clients would be jeopardized by violent hackers who break into Federal Bank through their shared WiFi areas.

Veljo Haamer, Estonian Wifi guru says:
Software for configuring the router makes the network spread much faster. I believe him. Programming this kind of soft is time and money consuming process.

Andres Kuut, sales director of Sertifitseerimiskeskus, authentication company says:
Great idea, let´s do it! They could help us really identify the users. This prevents online crimes and misuse. On the other hand, it slows down the fast spreading of the network due to more difficult and less anonymus joining.

Jüri Kaljundi, founder of CV Online that was the first start-up in Estonia that attracted VC money (Esther Dyson). He says:
Go to FON and peg to be their re-sellers in Eastern Europe. Or spend a lot of money puzzling with the software.

Steve Jurvetson from DFJ says (through video conference I had honour to arrange):
Fast eat the slow! Mobility is the thing! Two way communication in internet is the thing!

All the potential useer say: GIVE IT TO US!

March 06, 2006

The Others

Look what other tech-wise estonians are talking about other similar initiatives:
Jaanus Kase http://www.jaanuskase.com/en/2005/12/fon.html
Linnar Viik http://www.viik.ee/linnar/

February 23, 2006

The Wiferia logo has landed

At last. The great logo of Wiferia has arrived. Does it look familiar to you? Yes, it might recall Pan Am, but on closer look its not. Desiging this logo we actually found ourselves on innovative path again. It is called "logo recycling". There are great logos of not so great companies that have died decades ago. But why should their logos live only on retro t-shirts. So here it is. Blue as a sky. Global as a Globe. Simple as hell!

Weird day

City of Riga would like to join the Wiferia. They asked, what should they do. Sadly, not me and Urmas can tell in technical terms. I asked our Finnish friends but no answer by this time.

The website design is a day behind. Tomorrow is an indipendence day in Estonia so I doubt to see it this week.

We called with Urmas to Sten Tamkivi, Skype head in Estonia and Veljo Haamer, an Estonian WiFi guru. Talked about the idea. Checked the feelings. They both asked: Is this something like FON? FON has over 17500 users. It is difficult to figure out, how to catch them. The pace is absolutely too slow. We might be doomed to offer WiFi services in some Estonian suburbia near Russian border.

We really need now something to cheer us up. A joke about Estonian males using IT might do the trick.

An Estonian male steps into the bar. Where will he sit?
a) near gorgeous girls
b) near window
c) near the bar
d) other.

Correct answer is d): Estonian male sits where there is plug in for his laptop and best WiFi coverage. Haaaaa-haaaaaaa-haaaaaa!

February 22, 2006

What a shopping trip to IKEA teaches you about WIFERIA

Yesterday I visited great Finland with my wife and my friends. As IKEA does not bother to build a shop to Tallinn, we sometimes make the trip there, get some cheap curtins and traditional king size meat balls from the cafeteria. That was nice. But what I learned?

I brought my laptop with me and kept it open while driving thru city central. At best, there where up to 15 WiFi networks available. Majority entrance protected, some open. But the problem with all of them was that they were much too weak. The big challenge with WIFERIA will be that not only people have to join the network, THEY HAVE TO PLACE THEIR ROUTERS CLOSE TO WINDOWS. Even better, our routers, the WIFERS, should come with the RANGE EXTENDER ( http://www.bizrate.com/marketplace/product_info/overview/index__cat_id--495,prod_id--7352508.html )as a standard. Or make it available in our web-store.

I love Akateeminen Kirjakaupa, biggest bookstore in Helsinki. I feel so wise when I am there. I can feel it sticks to me ;) So there it was, the latest WIRED ( www.wired.com ). And on the cover there where: IS THE NEW TECH BOOM FOR REAL? And inside: YES IT IS! I was reliefed, really.

So today is the day to revile the logo that will take SparkNet initiative to Balitcs an beyond under the name of WIFERIA. The logo is blue. Because most of successful ITC companies have blue identity. The logo is globe. Because we really wish to take it global. The name is Wiferia. Because, no bullshit brandind involved, it is a WiFi AREA! And the logo is similar to something that has died a long ago but a has to do with air. Because WiFi is in the AIR. This similiarity, whatsoever, is purely coincidential. When I learn to post pictures here, I post the logo ;)

February 20, 2006

Actions on Monday

Today I meet couple of logistics guys who culd help us to deliver the routers in Estonia. Also, I ordered a banking link so people can pay for the routers at our web site.

Our friends at FON have changed their slogan. It is now: WiFi Internet Access Everywhere. FON, share locally, enjoy globally! Last one was share a little, benefit a lot. I liked earliel more.

This week we plan to meet with Jaakko and Mikko to discuss the future. At this point of time the future strategy seems to be rather simple: Hanat auki, Mika!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

And off course, today is the day for wiferia logo drafts. Somehow, a logo and design are still very important in e-business. As you do not have a product to hold, a fresh and catchy design might make the difference. And good texts as well!

February 17, 2006

the story in short and what´s new today

Two guys from Finland and three guys from Estonia create largest worldwide WiFi area that is cheap, easy and safe. Period. Finnish guys have the technology, estonian guys have the investor relations some marketing ideas and huge balls. Finns have huge balls too. So. We´ll make it!!!!!!!

The logo versions of Wiferia are underway, we see them on Monday. The brief for web page has yesterday explained to provider. We see the designs early next week. The model for a web page is Skype. Only better ;)

Today I have been working on understanding how it is easiest to ditribute routers (WIFERS) in Estonia. Got in contact with Kait, a guy who runs web store in Estonia. In addition to some useful advise, he talked a little about Sir Sammelselg´s attempt to cover the Estonia with WIMAX. Well, good luck to him. He has to spend his money somewhere.

Weird thing is that today you can pay for your online purchases in Estonia only buy direct internet banking link. Now Visa or MC possibility. That´s because the traffic was so lousy. Still, the service will be up and running in one ore two months.

See you!