Rockport Public Library
One Limerock Street, PO Box 8, Rockport, Maine 04856-0008

Rockport Public Library
Walk-In Wireless Access Policy


Rockport Public Library is pleased to offer wireless network access to its Internet connection. This service is made possible through the Maine State Library's Walk-in-Wireless project, supported by a grant from the Maine Telecommunications Education Access Fund. The project provides one laptop computer for use by the public for Internet access plus wireless access for personal laptop computers or other wireless devices such as PDAs.

Use of the library's wireless laptop computer

The library's laptop is configured for access to the library's wireless network. Users are required to have a Rockport Public Library card, be at least 18 years old, and to have read and signed the library's Internet Usage Agreement. You will also be asked to leave keys or a driver's license at the desk. The laptop may be checked out for 30 minutes and must be returned to the circulation desk at the end of the time. The laptop must be returned to the circulation desk 30 minutes before the library's closing time. The laptop may not leave the library building. You are able to print to the public printer near the circulation desk; printouts are 5 per page. You are not able to save to any removable media; if you need to do so, please sign up for a desktop computer and save to a diskette purchased from the library. Any information saved to the hard drive will be deleted.

Use of personal laptop computers or devices

The public is welcome to bring their laptop computers or other wireless-enabled devices to use in the library. When connecting to the Internet you are expected to abide by the principles of the library's Internet Usage Agreement, which includes not using the library's Internet connection for abusive or illegal activity or allowing offensive material to be viewed by others.

The service is configured to allow your computer to automatically detect and use the link without the need for a password or any configuration of your computer.

What you need:
  • A laptop computer or other device equipped with a wireless network Internet card (NIC) that supports the Wi-Fi standard (also known as IEEE 802.11b/g). The library does not check out wireless cards. No special encryption settings, user names, or passwords are required.
  • If you have a newer laptop or wireless card, your computer may automatically find the wireless network. If you need to change its settings in order to use Wi-Fi, be sure to set up your computer to use:
    - Network name or SSID: Rockport Public Library
    - Wireless mode or network type: access point or infrastructure (not "ad hoc")
    - Network properties: use DHCP enabled or obtain an IP address automatically
    - WEP (Wired Equivalent Privacy) or data encryption: disabled or off
    - You may need to reboot your computer.
  • A fully charged battery and/or power cord - the library has limited electrical outlets available so be prepared in the event your battery runs out of power.
  • Headphones if you plan to access audio files.

The library is able to provide general information on the settings necessary to access the Internet, but is not responsible for any changes you make to your computer's settings and cannot guarantee your hardware will work with our wireless connection. Library staff is not available to assist with setting up wireless Internet on your computer; you are responsible for setting up your own equipment. If you have problems accessing the Internet over these connections, staff will verify the library's connections are up and running, but they cannot assist in making changes to the user's network settings or perform any troubleshooting on the user's own computer. Please refer to your owner's manual or other support services offered by your device manufacturer.

Security

You should be aware that, as with most public wireless "hotspots," this connection is not secure. Because the service is configured to allow your computer to automatically detect and use the link without need for a password or any configuration of your computer, your interaction over the wireless network is not encrypted and could be intercepted by someone using network "sniffer" software.

Please take appropriate precautions when using this service. We cannot guarantee the security and confidentiality of any transaction, particularly e-commerce transactions. Avoid entering credit card numbers, passwords or any other information you consider confidential unless you are certain that the Web site you are interacting with provides its own security mechanism, such as Secure Sockets Layer (SSL) encoding. An SSL-protected Web page is usually indicated by a small lock icon display along the lower edge of your browser window.

If you are concerned about these transactions, or for that matter any transfer of sensitive electronic data, we suggest you do not use library computers for this purpose. The library will not be responsible for any information (i.e. credit card) that is compromised, or for any damage caused to your hardware or software due to security issues or consequences caused by viruses, hacking, or library systems. Use of these access points is governed by the library's Internet Usage Agreement.

Use of this wireless connection is entirely at the risk of the user and the library disclaims all liability for loss of confidential information or damages resulting from that loss.

Technical Considerations

Rockport Public Library has a T-1 line for Internet access. However, as with any Internet connection, the speed may fluctuate due to the heavy traffic on the Internet.

The bandwidth available for the wireless Internet connection is shared with all others in the library. To show consideration for others' needs, we ask that you not download excessively large files, use peer-to-peer file sharing programs, or access streaming audio/video.

Failure to abide by the rules set forth in this document and in Rockport Public Library's Internet Usage Agreement may result in being barred from using the laptop and/or the library's Internet access service.


Rockport Public Library Walk-in-Wireless Policy
August 13, 2004


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