Reply to comment:

Robert Kisteleki
Measuring public wifi availability is the key use case -- the example mentioned in the article is Eduroam, but it could be any other network. In these cases first you want a working connection (existing wired) and then you want to see if the wireless is indeed available and working. In Eduroam's case, this is a non-trivial question. The SSID may be there, but the (federated) authentication may fail in all or some cases. Once that works, can you actually send and receive packets properly? That's where the steps of associate/authenticate/measure help.