Capitol Cafeteria pretends to offer wireless

The Less Networks wireless hotspot at the Capitol Grill is fabulous in concept, but the implementation is close to pointless.
“I’m sorry, you can’t use that power outlet. It’s a safety hazard.” David Rice, the General Manager of the statehouse cafeteria came over to warn me as I checked office email, since the power cord of my laptop snaked along the wall toward a hallway plug.
Me: “Are there any other power outlets to use. ”
Rice: “No. It’s a safety hazard. People might trip over the cords.”
Me: “Would it be possible to add more power outlets?”
Rice: “No. The State Preservation Board doesn’t allow adding more power outlets.”
Rice: “Oh, and by the way, I turn wireless access off between 11 and 3, when the cafeteria is busy.”
So: the Capitol Grill advertises itself as a “wireless hotspot”, but doesn’t have any electric power, and isn’t available during the hours that most people want to use the cafeteria.
I was ecstatic when I heard that cafe and the conference rooms were going to have wireless access. I do volunteer lobbying with the ACLU-TX amid my day job responsibilities. It would be extremely valuable to be able to communicate with the office if I go to the capitol during the day. Wireless at the capitol is a great step toward making politics accessible to citizens.
Fellow civic bloggers, if you’d like to request real wireless access at the Capitol cafeteria, express your opinion to:
David Rice
General Manager
Capitol Grill
No email address on the business card.
If you’d like to tell the State Preservation board that their no-wall-outlet policy is keeping Texas communication in the 19th centry, contact:
State Preservation Board
Caretakers of the Texas Capitol
201 E. 14th St. Austin, TX

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