Connecting an Ashton Digital Passport 2100 computer to a satellite dish
Can I connect my Ashton Digital Passport 2100 computer to a satellite dish on the road for Internet access?
To paraphrase a famous philosopher: You can connect it on a train, while pulled over in the breakdown lane, and even in a drizzling rain. The Ashton 2100 PC is actually a very capable unit that features multiple USB ports, up to a 60G-byte hard drive and even a Firewire connection. But, in order to make use of a mobile satellite connection, all you need is a single USB port for the satellite modem, the appropriate power connections (no big deal on today's SUVs that can power a small city block with their on-board converters and outlets), and a satellite dish from one of many providers. One of these is Ground Control
, a company located in San Luis Obispo, Calif. This company offers a complete mobile satellite systems, called Data Storm, that can be used for mobile Internet access, voice over IP connections, and event to receive DirectTV broadcast signals. The service is also available for a flat monthly rate. It is recommended, though, that you have a place to mount your dish. Most users of these systems own an RV or motor home, and mount a retractable dish on their roof. Truck on!
This was first published in October 2003