Let's get physical!

Meetup – July 15, 2015

Wi-Fi signalMeetup Notes

If you go on vacation in Minnesota, you go up north. Even if you live in Embarrass, there’s still a little more north to go.

Tom Bridge is a consultant and Mac admin living in Washington, D.C., but his mother’s family is from the North Shore. He has many fond memories of summers there. He’ll be returning in mid July with his wife Tiffany and nearly two-year-old son Charlie to make some new memories.

I asked Tom if he’d mind stopping by for a quick presentation on his way and he was gracious enough to accept the invitation. This comes on the heels of the PSU MacAdmins conference where he’s presenting an all-day workshop Fundamentals of Wi-Fi (or, Arguing with Physics).

He’ll present an abbreviated version for us where I’m sure he’ll discuss those infuriating little bars—symbols of weakness, indicators of helplessness.

Our host for this meetup is Colle+McVoy, an advertising, design and branding agency in downtown Minneapolis.

Only your time.

Date & time:
Wednesday, July 15th
5:00 p.m. – 8:00 p.m.

400 North 1st Avenue
#700, Wyman Building
Minneapolis, MN 55401

On-street metered parking is available around the building. Off-street Ramp C parking is available at 318 3rd Avenue North, Minneapolis, MN 55401.


5:00-5:30 p.m. — Arrival and socializing

5:30-6:00 p.m. — Introductions, about Colle+McVoy

We’ll ask John to emcee this time if he’s not out chasing tornadoes.

We give our hosts a little time to tell us something about themselves and what they do. Will Pierce, Macintosh System Administrator for Colle+McVoy, is our sponsor for this event.

6:00-6:30 p.m. — Bryson and Brian lead an open discussion of current news.

We learn from each other and this is a chance for our group to discuss what’s happening in the Mac admin world.

  • WWDC announcements
    For the first time, Apple opened WWDC to the Internet by posting more than 100 session videos from throughout the weeklong event including a few every Mac admin should watch. The videos feature detail about OS X 10.11 (El Capitan) and iOS 9, which release later this year. What do folks think about Apple’s new System Integrity Protection (SIP) which  only allows system binaries to be modified by the system installer and software updates. (That means “off limits” even to Mac admins!)
  • PSU MacAdmins Conference
    This conference is a wealth of information not only for those attending but Mac admins around the world. The organizers post not only slides but recorded videos of most sessions (nearly 60 hours) every year in their Resources section. Five of us traveled last week to attend. We’ll give our impressions of this technical but also very human conference.
  • Microsoft releases Office 2016 for Mac for Office 365 customers
    The updated suite includes redesigned, rewritten versions of Word, Excel, PowerPoint, Outlook, and OneNote. Office 365 Home and Personal subscribers can download Office 2016 for Mac today, and a standalone version will be released in September. Why is January 2016 so important? What do Mac admins need to know?
  • Hello, rootpipe, my old friend!
    It’s baaaaaack! We’ve been talking about this vulnerability in OS X since nearly the beginning of the year. Apple releases a new fix and someone finds yet another method to exploit it. Emil Kvarnhammar, who discovered the vulnerability, explains what he found in OS X 10.10.4 (Yosemite).
  • Slack tops 700 Mac admins
    This new online community has hit 700 unique users and nearly 100 channels in just a couple of months. That’s probably the largest online Mac admins community anywhere. Learn how attendees at PSU MacAdmins Conference used it to collaborate and take notes of sessions. If you’re interested in joining, submit your email address to sign up.
  • Google and Mozilla pull the plug on Adobe Flash
    Despite various patches and attempts at fixes to fix a serious vulnerability that would let hackers take over anyone’s computer, Google and Mozilla have now both pulled support for the plugin on their respective Chrome and Firefox browsers. By its nature, the Chrome version of the Flash plugin is more secure than the program but its extra security was still not enough to block hackers completely.

6:30-6:50 p.m. — Bio-break

Tom Bridge6:50-7:50 p.m. — Main presentation

Tom Bridge with Technolutionary, LLC presents an abbreviated version of his PSU MacAdmins workshop:

Fundamentals of Wi-Fi (or, Arguing with Physics)

Wireless access is a critical piece of modern networks, so why is it so terrible all the time? Between urban environments where APs proliferate in a crowded spectrum, to some easy-to-make mistakes that will cripple your network, it’s important to understand how we got to 802.11ac, and where we’re going from here. Get a good history lesson, learn some quality physics, and make your office and home networks suck just a little bit less.

Tom Bridge is a Partner at Technolutionary LLC in Washington DC, where he supports businesses small and large navigate all matters information technology-related. He holds a Masters Degree from Virginia Tech in History of Technology. His wife, Tiffany, and son, Charlie, put up with his constant tinkering with their home network.

7:50-8:00 p.m. — Wrap-up

We’ll ask for announcements from the group as well as job openings.

After the meetup we’ll head over to the Kieran’s Irish Pub for a late dinner and to continue the conversation. If you can keep your evening open, we’d love to have time to mingle and get to meet everyone.

We’ll also announce details about our August meetup including date, time and place.

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