Video: Wi-Fi – An invention that has changed the world

My video is about the Australian inventors of Wi-Fi and their legal struggle against the IT giants of the world. Apple, Microsoft, Dell, Intel, HP, Toshiba, Netgear, ASUS, Fujitsu, Nintendo and more.

I included part of my interviews with the Wi-Fi inventors, Dr John O’Sullivan and Dr Terry Percival.

This is my final primary school project for Year 6. It is called S.K. Austin. It is the biggest project for our school and Year 5 and Year 6 participate.

Last year in Year 5 I produced David Warren’s Black Box video. I was lucky to receive a “Highly Commended” award. I also have 4,200 views on YouTube, which is pretty cool. Even though I have had almost 3,700 people sign my petition – I still need more signatures. Australia should have an airport named in David Warren’s honour.

This year I chose Wi-Fi and I did a lot of research. I chose this topic because Wi-Fi has changed the world, as it gives us freedom to be on the internet without any wires. In fact, because I am only 11 years old, I have never not had Wi-Fi!

Wi-Fi was invented in 1997, but the story begins much earlier when Dr John O’Sullivan was researching black holes. This project failed, but it is not the end of his story. Dr O’Sullivan was offered some new projects and one of them appealed to him. Making a wireless internet connection that was as fast as wires/cables. Dr O’Sullivan told me that at the time, CSIRO were looking to try working on some commercial projects. Projects that might make some money for CSIRO. He was very keen to choose a project and form a winning team.

Dr O’Sullivan told me it was not so much choosing who he wanted on his team, but attracting them by telling them how cool the project was.

Dr Percival said that when they saw the first laptops, they believed there would be a future need for internet without cables. They were not frightened of the task ahead and they knew that the knowledge they had gained from the prior black hole project would help them.
Dr O’Sullivan formed a great team and they invented a number of clever mathematical algorithms and an auto-correct system in the Wi-Fi router for the missing data.

Dr O’Sullivan’s team went from this big thing to this tiny thing

Dr O’Sullivan’s team went from this big thing to this tiny thing

Success. The biggest companies in the world now use their technology. Known today as Wi-Fi, which makes a wireless connection in more than 3 billion laptops, mobile phones and other devices.

The Wi-Fi super group.

The Wi-Fi super group: John Deane, the business man, John O’Sullivan, Diet Ostry, Terry Percival and Graham Daniels

What amazing Australians! They sure would be a lot more famous if they could kick a ball a long way or a drive a car very fast around a track, many times in a row. My mum didn’t know Wi-Fi was invented in Australia, but what is worse is my dad didn’t either and his job is in IT!

Thank you CSIRO for creating the Radio Physics division. I don’t want to be a radio astronomer, but they definitely are smart and Australians need to remember that without these five great inventors, they would not have fast wireless internet every minute, every day, everywhere they go in the world.

To see the rest, including the legal struggle, watch my video.

Help my next video. Record a short video about Wi-Fi

I want to do another video on Wi-Fi and I would like to include some of your stories. Please tell me what amazing differences Wi-Fi has made to your life. You can email it to me at evecogan @ gmail com

Every time you get that little “connected feeling”, say “Aussie Made” to remind others where this magic comes from.

– Eve


  1. Sue Hawkins on 16/10/2013 at 12:41 pm

    What a well done, wonderful piece of work…I learnt a lot and was kept interested. Well done Eve!

  2. Tim Kugel on 16/10/2013 at 1:45 pm


    What an informative website: first the “black box” and now WiFi; things I knew of, but I didn’t know who had invented either.

    I am very interested in inventions, since I am a patent examiner here in the US.

    I recently learned of the most prolific inventor, in terms of patents issued, who might be of interest to you. Most people would guess that it was Thomas Edison, but it’s not; it’s Kia Silverbrook, who is from Sydney, who holds over 4500 patents — four times those held by Edison.

    I issued one of his patents here a few years ago. It was for a special ink used in ink-jet printers, but Mr. Silverbrook has made inventions in many fields. You may want to research him for your next project.

    Keep up the good work,
    Tim Kugel

  3. Mehdi Khalili on 16/10/2013 at 5:20 pm

    Nice work Eve. You’re truly inspiring. Keep up the great work.

  4. Peter Barnes on 16/10/2013 at 10:04 pm

    Well done Eve. You are so inspiring and patriotic. You should be very proud of yourself. We need more people like you in Aus.
    Cheers, and keep it up, Pete.

  5. Hugh Boyd on 16/10/2013 at 10:35 pm

    Congratulations on a wonderful project. I hope that you will continue to broaden your mind & keep informing people on the great steps that we as Australians don,t normally hear about until many years later.
    Absolutely brilliant.
    Hughie Boyd

  6. Keith Anderson on 17/10/2013 at 10:21 am

    Well done Eva, you are awesome & I dip my lid to you.

    Such enthusiasm is inspiring & makes my a very proud Australian. Our future is in good hands through young Australians such as you.and your genuine interest in the journey of our people through time.

    I look forward to reading your many more projects and stories over your lifetime..

  7. Ashraf Salem on 17/10/2013 at 6:26 pm

    Very impressive work and camera presence. Looking forward to your next project.

  8. Larry Bailey on 21/10/2013 at 11:29 pm

    It is young people like you who make this a better world for everyone, keep up the wonderful work

  9. […] have had some emails asking me how I made my latest Wi-Fi video. Making this video was definitely challenging and fun and much less work and stress than my […]

  10. […] visited the CSIRO during the making of my Wi-Fi video. It is a place of scientific magic, world firsts around every corner. These scientists toil long […]

  11. Selwyn Garwell on 03/02/2015 at 9:02 pm

    Professional and very informative..I also was unaware of WiFi’s origins but it is heartening to learn that CSIRO triumphed in the end.. As a member of the Australian owned companies association (AUSBUY) it resonates particularly with me. Well done!! thank you

  12. William Vaughn on 04/02/2015 at 6:07 am

    Again. Another triumph. Smooth, professional production qualities. A true David and Goliath story. I look forward to more of your blogs.


  13. Maimuna on 10/11/2016 at 8:34 pm

    Thanks Eve! You helped me a lot with my school project. Keep it up:)

Leave a Comment

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.