Wi-Fi on the Tarleton State University campus can be unpredictable. Signal strength varies between buildings, some being reliable and others failing to meet the needs of students.
As a collective media writing class, students had several questions about the “Wi-Fi-ability” in the buildings across campus and mapped their results.
Students conducted their research using an app, “GPS Lat: Long.” This app gives the exact latitude and longitude of the point at which you are standing. While gathering the latitude and longitude they also recorded the Wi-Fi strength in that particular building.
The students on the project conducted their research by going to the various buildings and recording an average measurement of the Wi-Fi strength over a period of 30 seconds by watching the signal bars on an iPhone or similar smartphone. Students measured the Wi-Fi strength from various locations and floors in each building to find an average reading for the building. If two distinct readings were found for certain areas of one building, both were mapped.
They used GPS apps to track their location using latitude and longitude points. Students used apps such as “Where Am I At?” and “GPS Lat Long” to find coordinate points. The apps were tested before the project began.
The points were then recorded in a Google Fusion Table and plotted on a map. Each point on the map represented a building within the Tarleton campus. These points had a color that represented the wifi strength: Red meaning 0-1 bars, yellow meaning 2-2.5 bars, and green meaning 3 bars.
Article and mapping project by Kerbie Anderson, Lacy Woods, Camden Lawless, Shelby White, Carissa Gentry, Brittney Blake, Blair Smith, Paige Franco, Shelby Wofford and Andrea Beare.