The idea of sending information over radio waves (i.e., wireless communication) is over a hundred years old. When several devices with radio transceivers share a portion of the radio spectrum to send information to each other, we say that we have a wireless communication network, or simply a wireless network.

In this chapter we begin by developing a three-layered view of wireless networks. We delineate the subject matter of this book—that is, wireless networking—as dealing with the problem of resource allocation when several devices share a portion of the RF spectrum allocated to them. Next, we provide a taxonomy of current wireless networks. The material in the book is organized along this taxonomy. Then, in this chapter, ...

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