Hedy Lamarr invented the basic technology for WiFi.The name is coined from the terms Wireless & Fidelity.It is a direct descendant of the term Hi-Fi used for audio recording and playback equipment.
Wi-Fi is often referred to as 802.11 technology-this is because it is based on the IEEE 802.11 standard. The standard further has the following sub-standards which can be used for Wi-Fi communications:
802.11a – uses high frequency-hence, high speed but cannot penetrate walls.
802.11b – slower; about 11 mbps, lacks range but can penetrate walls.
(802.11c – not used for Wi-Fi)
Most commonly used – 802.11g – 54 mbps.
The future – 801.11n – 150mbps.
802.11n, 802.11g and 802.11b Wi-Fi standard equipment can all network together, the alternative 802.11a standard does not support cross-compatibility with any of these others.
Special Wi-Fi access points that support both 802.11a and 802.11b (or higher) radios must be used to bridge the two.
Wi-Fi transmission makes use of The Spread Spectrum-which spreads the signal in the frequency domain to occupy higher bandwidths.
More precisely, it employs the single-carrier direct-sequence spread spectrum radio technology. This increases the reliability and security of the transmitted signals.
A cleverly-designed feature of Wi-Fi called dynamic rate scaling causes wi-fi connection speed to vary with distance.