"You don't need a TV. You don't need a radio. You don't even need a newspaper," says Mr. Pitts, an aspiring poet in a purple cap and yellow fleece jacket, who says he has been homeless for two years. "But you need the Internet."The homeless in San Francisco, accordingly, spend some of their meager resources on Internet access, picking up netbooks or older laptops and using free wifi.
This story reminds me of one I linked to a while back, on homeless people relying on mobile phones in lieu of fixed addresses. As wifi-enabled smartphones become more common, perhaps we'll see pay-as-you-go, peripheral-ready smartphones that can better serve the needs of low-income and homeless people, bringing some light to these black holes.