Aug 27, 2007 at 12:00
Most of us have suffered with consumer Wi-Fi gear whose performance is crippled by chip sets and manufacturing practices that focus on more on cutting BOM costs than in boosting range or data rates. That’s why I was very pleased to see that Metalink had finally stepped up to the plate and done some comparative performance testing between its chips and those of several competitors (see their August 8, 2007 release). My enthusiasm was considerably dampened however when I took a closer look at the report published by the Tolly Group (available on their web site) and noticed several problems with their test methodology that, in my opinion, raised at least as many questions as the tests answered. This is especially troubling because I think Metalink has one of the best Wi-Fi solutions available on the market (see this week’s networkZONE product review ) and that they probably would have demonstrated equally-impressive performance advantages under more rigorously-designed, more carefully-cont...
Aug 27, 2007 at 12:00
Summers in our business are usually quiet. This year you could have put the industry in an anechoic chamber and shut the door and not notice that anything had happened.
But those days are nearly at an end. Come the beginning of September the trade shows and conferences start rolling again, and all the news releases associated with them will pour into our e-mail inboxes.
It has always been a mystery why this happens. Most marketing departments seem to think that they absolutely have to have a certain number of releases primed and ready to go for day one - and no earlier - of a trade show. With X number of exhibitors releasing N number of announcements you actually end up with NO coverage. Someone explain noise levels to them, please?
When you go to a trade show as a journalist you are engulfed with information overload. The releases, the press conferences, the keynotes all deposit information; but there is no chance of even a fraction of the stuff making it into ink, or bits, or...
Aug 20, 2007 at 12:00
When I was a kid I used to love playing in my eccentric Uncle Martin’s basement which was stacked high with lots of tools, gadgets, and technology from the early 1900s. I still smile every time I remember the day he helped me fire up a 1920s-vintage carbon arc light which he’d salvaged out of a theater -- its white-hot glare lit up the basement brighter than daylight. Perhaps some day we’ll have the same nostalgic feelings about the inefficient light bulbs in our homes and the mercury and sodium lamps that light most of our streets today. If the doings in Raleigh, North Carolina and Toronto, Ontario are any indicator, that day may be arriving sooner than expected.
Toronto and Raleigh are first two cities to commit to modernizing their lighting technologies in partnership with LEDCity, a community of government and industry stakeholders working to promote and deploy energy-efficient LED lighting technology in the roads, buildings, structures, and public areas of towns and cities. By ...
Aug 20, 2007 at 12:00
When I was a child in England, my uncle - a Catholic priest in Oregon - would often send my brothers and myself each a Dollar bill as a Christmas present (together with salmon he had caught, canned in nearby Winchester Bay). We would take our bills to the bank and receive, in exchange, 5 Shillings, which was the fixed rate of exchange set up to help Britain repay the huge loans of military materiel made by the US during WWII. Even the slang for 5 Shillings was a "dollar." With 20 Shillings to the Pound, that was a USD4 to GBP1 exchange rate.
Then the gloves came off exchange rates -- allowing the marketplace to determine what they should be -- and when Nigeria punished the UK by, overnight, pulling all its Sterling holdings and converting them into US Dollars, there were major economic problems in the UK and the difference between a Pound and a Dollar was suddenly minimal.
The current administration has insisted that the US economy is strong:
"A future of hope and opportunity...
Aug 6, 2007 at 12:00
I’m sick and tired of my Birkenstock-wearing, Volvo-driving, liberal friends at the ACLU whining about how government programs to monitor our phones, e-mails and library activity is the end of America as we know it. Maybe the fine points of the Constitution are still part of Jimmy Stewart movies and some romantic version of America they teach our kids about in grade school. But it’s hard to find a place for intangibles like privacy, human rights, and due process on the corporate balance sheets that drive our globally-connected economy. These things might be nice in theory, but it may be time to realize that with our nation now living in a perpetual state of Threat Level Orange we may not be able to afford the liberties our parents took for granted and should instead find ways to cash in on the new opportunities that universal surveillance can offer.
Instead of being outraged by Attorney General Gonzales’ revelation that the once-presumed-dead Total Information Awareness database pro...