The SDR Forum
promotes the success of the next generation radio technologies with members from commercial, military, and academic circles. The group boasts of a 100+ members. The conference this year was held in Washington DC and grew in attendance to over 500 which is a 20% rise of last year and is remarkable given how most conferences shrank in size.
DannyWeitzman of NTIA gave one of the keynote addresses. In his talk he compared the innovation of the internet in the 1990s to the current state of the spectrum today. The internet was
--easy to add technologies
--cost of failure is low
--done without lawyers, in particular regulatory lawyers.
In an effort to foster the development and adoption of software defined radio tools and technologies he asked what would be helpful and proposed testbeds and structured testing environments. He noted that the internet was itself a platform for testing
The NTIA doesn't hear from the public enough and then threw open the floor for feedback. The resounding answer from the audience to his question was "money." There needs to be an investment of money into the industry to drive development further and faster.
Weitzman noted that the commercial success of the internet happened on the edges and while it was government sponsored in the basic infrastructure, the commercialization was driven less by government and more by the industry players.
Other members of the audience talked about the need for gauging sensitivity of current systems to noisy environments. As the specrum changes, can more users fit into the spectrum without disrupting existing systems? and can we improve those existing systems?
Another comment was the ability to transmit without a license if you're sure you won't interfere with the spectrum. This would speed up development time dramatically. Ironically, there was no wireless service in the keynote room. Why couldn't the engineers use that space without a license to test out their designs?