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The Origin, History, Structure, And Future Of Broadband
Broadband, Digital Subscriber lines, Wireless Access, Cable Modems how is the average person supposed to make a decision regarding what kind of Internet access they need for their home or business?
Over the next few months I am going to answer the following questions about DSL/ADSL.
- What is it?
- What are the benefits?
- How fast is it?
- How does it work?
- How do I get it?
- What can I use it for?
- Where is the technology headed?
- How does it compare to other Broadband services like Cable Modems or Wireless.
Short Sketch of the History of DSL
When DSL was first developed in 1989 it was designed primarily for video. ADSL was the flavor of choice because it provides the high downstream rates needed for streaming video. Video on Demand (VOD) was viewed as the next generation service supporting the next generation network from telephone companies around the world. Video on Demand was expected to be the Telephone Company's way of competing with cable television providers, and ADSL was the technology to make it possible.
However, with few exceptions, VOD has not proven to be as popular as was once predicted. Instead, the market for DSL has emerged much differently than was once expected. As it turns out, personal computer users need high-speed access to the Internet and corporate networks from residences and remote offices. Now, this PC user market has captured the attention of both cable TV providers and telephone companies, as both are furiously working to meet their needs.
While the theoretical capacity of copper to transmit data was long known, the practical use of telephone wires for high-speed data was first demonstrated in the late 1980s. Joseph Lechleider, now retired from Bellcore, through mathematical analysis demonstrated the feasibility of sending broadband signals, and is considered by many the originators of all these technologies. He went on to suggest the power of asymmetry, (the A in ADSL), recognizing many users would benefit from the higher data rates possible in one direction. His colleagues speak of him with great fondness, and he inspired many of the other pioneers in the field. The editor of DSL Prime would appreciate photocopies of any of his seminal papers from the late '80s or early '90s.
The first efforts created ISDN and then the two-circuit replacement for T-1 lines that came to be called HDSL. ISDN never was effectively marketed in the US, but remains popular in Europe. HDSL, on the other hand, was very successful, and is used for most T-1 circuits installed today. In the early 1990s, many sought a way to deliver broadband to more users, John Cioffi, now a Stanford Professor developed DMT, the standard for most DSL circuits.
By separating the signal into 256 sub channels, many problems relating to line noise and disturbance can be minimized. He founded Amati, where they designed equipment that in 1993 had dramatically better results than all competitors in Bellcore testing and became the most common standard. Several of his competitors to this day think it was not the best technical solution at the time, but carried the day because of Cioffi's personal brilliance. They blame other companies for not putting appropriate resources into other technologies, and the success of Broadcom, whose founders were major participants, speaks to the alternatives.
While these debates were raging at Bellcore, standards committees, and technical journals, others were impatient to bring product to the market. The dream was to deliver video on demand; a Telco goal while the cable world was promising 500 channels. Kim Maxwell, also of Amati, was a key founder of the ADSL Forum, which brought the industry together and today is the key institution. But while the technologists believed deployment was practical, little happened in the field, so an alliance was formed between telcos and computer companies (Intel and Compaq, especially) which became the UAWG and developed the G. Lite standard.
July's article will pick up here as we continue to explore this product that is being touted as the "new" wonder of high speed Internet access and yet is actually nothing more than a previously discovered technology with a new application.
Founder and CEO FullNet Communications, Inc.
Make Your World A Better Place One Click At a Time.
Need a public trash can on your street corner? Email your mayor.
Your senators and representatives want to hear from you so take five minutes a day and let them know what you want. If you're not sure which office to contact, go to Vote.com to share your opinion on everything from the latest movies to decisions about defense and education. The site sends your votes to the appropriate politicians, critics, and school districts. This guide to city and state government offices and agencies will help you get your voice heard closer to home.
http://Greatergood.com, a shopping portal that donates a portion of every sale to a cause of your choice, also operates several click-to-donate sites.
It's just like it sounds click a button and the sponsors donate a specified amount to causes such as child AIDS care, world hunger relief, and rainforest salvation. Sponsoring merchants offer good deals to folks who come to their stores from the charity pages. If you have some online shopping to do, you might as well start here.
Next time someone says you have no reason to complain, explain gently that you do it for philanthropic reasons. Visit Complaints.com to share your horror stories about products.
http://VolunteerMatch.org lists hundreds of virtual volunteer opportunities that you can do from your own computer, such as grant writing, fundraising, and web mastering. For more traditional volunteering, you can enter your zip code and preferences and the site will return a list of local events and groups that need your help.
Got College-Bound? Milk Student Loans For All They're Worth... Online!
It's almost mid June in Oklahoma and that means severe weather and high school seniors frantically checking their mailboxes for those long-awaited college opportunity letters. Three questions are paramount: #1) Did I get it? #2) Did I get financial aid? #3) Is it going to be enough? For help locating scholarship and loan money, have those graduating seniors head straight to http://www.FastWeb.com - and did I say fast? Believe it or not, they still have a shot at landing college cash for the fall semester at this site.
A site that searches more than 600,000 scholarships totaling $1 billion. If your student isn't a super scholar, like three out of four of mine, you can stop sweating. Not all of FastWeb's finds are based on academic merit. The questionnaire is extensive and very personal. It asks for hobbies, affiliations and career goals, which sometimes requires a stretch at this point in their life, but the site does seek out scholarships that match the applicants profile. One caveat: It's rife with ads and special offers, so a great deal of care has to be taken to check the appropriate boxes.
Another alternative for students who have decided against college this fall is to start a savings plan. Spending can equal savings when you visit http://www.Upromise.com. This unique site touts a new spend-'n'-save offer, which started in April 2001. When you and/or designated family members buy at participating companies, such as Lands' End, AT&T and Zany-Brainy, 1% to 10% is siphoned into a tax-free college fund, sort of a college 401(k). You can sign up at upromise.com and monitor your account on a private, secure page.
Check out these sites for additional college aid opportunities:
- http://WiredScholar.com - Explains all the various financial aid options and ways to apply.
- http://FinAid.com - A stellar source for sorting out the loan process, including help filling out complex forms.
- http://EStudentLoan.com - Compare loans and apply online with major lenders.
- http://Scholarships.com - Another big scholarship search site, with important information on scholarship scams.
I know that we've said it more than once but good news is always worth repeating. Finding funds for your college bound student can more than pay for your monthly Internet access membership at FullNet Communications.
VP Marketing and Authorized Agent Sales