Access Point (Wireless Access Point): Often referred to as a “wireless router:” Stationary radio station that has a connection to the Internet. Other names for the WIFI Access Point are: Access Point, AP, or Base Station. There are many different types of Access Point. At the high end of the range are commercial grade installations operated by Marina’s, Telephone companies etc. At the medium end are libraries, cafes, and smaller businesses. Finally, there are low systems operated by private individuals largely to provide wireless coverage for their homes. Some Access Points are open access; others are more protected and require some form of password entry. Some Access Points are free; others require some form of payment. The important thing to know is that with good client-side WIFI equipment, one has a larger choice of what Access Points to connect with. This often eliminates the need for paid access.
BRIDGE (wireless bridge /WiFi bridge): Converts a WIFI connection to an ethernet port, for standard network-cable connection to any PC with a network interface card (NIC) or to another network device with ethernet ports, such as a network printer or network switch/hub. Another way of stating this is that a WiFi bridge connects your “wired” LAN to a WiFi network. The wired and WiFi LAN thus connected must use the same IP address configuration (usually passed through the bridge automatically via DHCP).Author: George Hardesty