I stopped by ISPCon for an hour or so this afternoon. I wasn’t able to attend any of the conference sessions, but it looked like there was lots and lots to be learned there. The exhibit hall was fairly small, but there were some goodies hidden in there.
I could see two major themes among the trade show booths. There were many things that you would expect at an ISP conference: wholesale dialup, backbone sales, high end hardware, and high end software. There were two newer areas that seemed to steal all of the buzz: spam killing and wireless.
Here is a quick list of vendors selling anti-spam or anti-popup software:
If seemed that by far the most buzzworthy booth was that of YDI Wireless. They’re a Northern Virginia company that specializes in wireless cool stuff.
You can see their WIPOP, an industrial WiFi access point. It absolutely rocked. The product summary says it all:
The YDI exclusive WIPOP-in-a-Box is a complete 802.11b two- or three-channel WIPOP system in a heavy-duty outdoor waterproof enclosure. All that is needed is YDI antennas, coax cables, and AC power.
In addition to their higher end industrial stuff, they also make midrange (~$500 list) indoor access points as well as access points built in to a flat antenna.
I should also note that they also have a selection of midrange to top end 2.4GHz antennas.
RadioLan also seems to specialize in wireless network gear. There was a lot of talk about wireless broadband in the air.
I used Pocketwarrior on my @migo handheld to sniff out various WiFi signals. There were signals from YDI, Hotspotzz, a Linksys access point, and a few others. I was able to change my SSID a few times and was able to get intermittent connectivity on my Pocket PC device. I picked up a weak signal from somewhere at the Inner Harbor briefly, but it fell off the radar quickly. I was able to do some basic browsing, but I ran into a JSP error (JSP error pages are ugly) a few times while trying to leech a connection from Hotspotzz.
All in all it was an interesting show. If I had the time and money, I would have definately attended some of the conference sessions. Most of the gear and software demonstrated was high high end. I would have liked to see some lower end and midrange stuff that mom and pop ISPs/webhosts would be interested in.