... conspired to write a really excellent article in IEEE Spectrum Online - When Spectrum Auctions Fail.
Not coincidentally, the lawyer, the engineer, and the writer are actually the same person, Mitchell Lazarus of Fletcher, Heald & Hildreth PLC.
In the article, Lazarus takes great pains to clearly explain (great writing!) the history (good legal research!), and technology (great engineering background!), of fixed microwave links, and wraps the article up neatly, with all the history and technology, why it simply doesn't make sense to auction off entire bands that are really only suitable (at the moment) for fixed links, to a single entity.
I rarely say this here given how laughably bad most writing of late has been about wireless technology, especially writing about fixed wireless technology and legalities (and lack of historical context)... but...
I highly recommend Lazarus' article. Lazarus does an excellent job, including a very realistic treatement of the utility and usability of the 2.4 GHz and 5 GHz license-exempt bands in fixed wireless usage (this is rarely handled well, accurately, or fairly). And Lazarus gets it exactly right (this is really, really rare) in discussing the little-known 60 GHz band:
Radio waves around 60 GHz suffer an even greater problem: They are absorbed by oxygen molecules, and to a 60-GHz signal, clear air will look like dense fog. But systems in this band are still used, for instance, to connect nearby buildings on a single campus. Here, the atmospheric attenuation can be considered a feature rather than a bug, because it allows the same frequency to be employed a short distance away without risking interference.
One trivial point off for Lazarus not pointing out that the wavelength of a 60 GHz signal is about the size of the cross-section of a pencil, and therefore doubly hard to interfere with (or intercept). One other trivial point off for not discussing the (now) comedic (probably not so funny to investors) antics of the failed predecessor companies of FiberTower (which Lazarus mentions briefly). Two such failed companies that come readily (and laughably, painfully) to mind from those days are Teligent and WinStar. But even online articles have length limits, so perhaps not mentioning these two was the fault of an editor :-)
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