Last year I went to Finland on the ARADIS project. On the way back I slept a night in a mall (Siperia) until I got thrown out and then moved on to the top floor (not a room) in a hotel in Tampere, Finland.
What I didn’t think of then was, though I can’t recall seeing any at this moment, the great opportunity which is presented with construction sites. The construction workers basically build a temporary house for travellers. At least they have a roof and several floors so you can choose a nice, safe place to sleep.
I’m talking about the ordinary construction sites which are built along side houses, for example when someone’s renovating a wall or similar. Though I suspect the from-scratch house building places might be even better. Anyhow, no one bothered me when I slept like that in Vaasa last night so no one will hopefully bother me this night in Lappeenranta.
Moving on to a more interesting subject, wireless networking. Lappeenranta has the benefit of a widespread wireless network (ok, I haven’t tried it besides at the railway station). Of course I wouldn’t mention this if there wasn’t something extra spicy to it – and that spice is that it’s free. Anyone with a 802.11(a/b/g?) card can connect to the internet. The bandwidth is limited to 400 kb/s I think I read somewhere, and ports for SMTP and Windows Filesharing are blocked.
This is of course no matter when you’ve got a VPN and/or SSH tunnel setup for browsing and stuff. That, I must say, is a better solution than using some wicked WPA2 encrypted connection. One must also avoid being intercepted by the ISP, you see.
Now, I ask myself, why doesn’t Umeå have this? In Umeå we have a very widespread wireless network for the communal employees which seems to work great for everyone with certificates. Anyone else has to go through a horrible http-only proxy solution setup for outsiders – and no current way to get or buy access to it.
However, it wasn’t fully automagic here in Lappeenranta since I had to specifically choose “SAINET-FREE” as ISP on the page they redirect me to. But that’s acceptable as I understand students/communal employees want unfethered access to the world wide web. While lowlives like me who live in construction sites may only get 400 kb/s.
It’s in situations like this I want an iPhone or similar. But apparently it’s a piece of crap, partly due to Apple’s lockdown (only Apple-certified software unless hacked) and you can’t transfer files using Bluetooth. Gosh. Napoleon Dynamite moment.