Brought into being as a result of the Wireless Matrix a personal area network, usually referred to as a PAN, is a mesh network in the physical vicinity of a user with a commlink at its center. This mesh network can consist of all manner of devices but common ones include eye wear, headphones, simsense trodes, smart clothing, and cyberware.
All devices subscribed to a given user's PAN can communicate with each other seamlessly, sharing information and interoperating according to settings made by the user. Individual PANs may access each other or local terminals for the purpose of wirelessly sharing data, personal information and identification, or even transferring funds.
In fact, the vast majority of all transactions are completed in this manner.
PAN Operating Modes[edit | edit source]
PANs may operate in three modes:
- Active - This is the default mode for the average user. The PAN can access and be accessed by all other PANs and networks freely. Active mode is sometimes required in high security areas (so the user's ID can be scanned at any time).
- Passive - Often used in high traffic areas or for additional privacy. The PAN can access any networks but can only be accessed by authorized networks. It will still show up in a scan of active networks however. Passive mode is tolerated in most locations.
- Hidden - This mode is usually reserved for extreme paranoia. The PAN operates not only as though it were in passive mode but additionally it will be completely invisible to any non-authorized networks. Hidden mode is often considered rude and can draw the attention of law enforcement in some areas, however, in shadowier establishments it is almost expected.