Posts Tagged internet

Internet QoS Sucks: why modern browsers use parallel connections

Earlier tonight (using “tonight” loosely) I attended a meetup that hosted an excellent presentation about scaling AngularJS applications, by a guy who obviously knows what he’s talking about. But this post is, more or less, not about that.

It’s about a comment that I made, in response to a question fielded by a co-attendee of the meeting. The question went something like this: “Why is there a performance gain in delivering multiple code files over the wire to the end user’s browser, versus just one, when you’re going from one server to one client? Shouldn’t a single transfer just max out their connection anyway?” My response: “[incomprehensible mumbling] Basically, Internet QoS sucks.”

That’s an oversimplification, but not as far from the truth as you’d expect. Read the rest of this entry »

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Verizon WIreless – A Quick Test

So up until now I’ve tested three of the four providers who have 3G service in Fredericksburg, TX: AT&T, Sprint and CricKet, listed in order of connection speed, descending. I was able to borrow a Verizon aircard from work (Novatel USB727) and check Verizon’s speed at my house. Here are the results: Read the rest of this entry »

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My experience with GVTC

So I’m headed down to South Padre Island for some downtime with the family before Christmas. We made a pit stop at the Flagstop Café and my mom noticed that there was a big sign in the window advertising the availability of WiFi.

So naturally I pulled out my HTC Touch Pro, which has WiFi, to see what network they were running on. After registering for an account on the hotspot provider (Less Networks, never heard of them) I checked to see who I was on. Sure enough, the connection there was GVTC, registered as “Guadalupe Valley Telephone”. Right before we pulled out of the place I opened up my laptop, logged into the WiFi network that way and did some tests. Read the rest of this entry »

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State Of The Internet, Fredericksburg, TX

Interesting stuff happening lately about internet service in this area:

  1. My mom saw a Verizon truck in the county fair parade today (I didn’t go; saw no need and was tired). The truck has “High Speed Internet coming soon!” or similar painted on te side. This is DSL, not FiOS (Verizon always refers to their fiber offering by its trademarked name). However from what I hear Verizon’s DSL release is just a ploy to drive up the sale cost of their system here; Fredericksburg isn’t a large metropolitan area, and there are too mayn bridged taps and other phone system anomaies here for DSL to reach beyond a small part of town. At least that’s what the scuttlebutt says. My prediction: Verizon offers some flavor of DSL to folks who can currently get Windstream DSL, then sells the system to whoever will take it, using the “we have DSL in our central office” argument to jack the price up slightly above what the system is worth.
  2. Bee Creek Communications, the local our-hands-are-tied-and-if-anyone-competes-with-us-we-lose wireless ISP, was in the parade today as well. They also have a third-of-a-page ad in the paper advertising free installation to new customers until September 15th. A few years ago an installation with similar equipment would have run you around $220. The problem here is that their network is already over capacity in some areas, they’re spread too thinly in terms of manpower and their speeds are the stuff of yesteryear, barely competitive with satellite internet (though their monthly transfer caps are higher). The service also requires a two-year contract with a $125 early termination fee. If you want a one-year agreement service will run you another $10 per month. In short, don’t buy. Read the rest of this entry »

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The Perfect Set Top Box

So I’ve got some crazy ideas about launching a fiber-optic triple play operator somewhere. Or maybe someone else has those ideas and I’m just throwing in my own ideas. Now the hardest “play” would be TV, once you’ve got all your infrastructure in place. Internet is pretty much a given, as is VoIP; just white-label a solution from someone who already does it well (VOIPo for example, or so I hear). But with TV you have to not only make deals with all your content providers, but also figure out how you’re going to get video from point A (the content providers) to point B (subscribers’ TVs). Cable providers have fallen down on this a bit with utterly crappy set top boxes. Sat providers are a good bit better, as are TelcoTV providers (like U-Verse and FiOS) though, except in the case of FiOS, a better set top box goes hand in hand with lower picture quality. Which is unfortunate.

So the big question in my mind is, how would I design the perfect set top box, from both a consumer and a provider point of view? Here are some specs I came up with: Read the rest of this entry »

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As It Turns Out, HughesNet Is Horrible, Rest Stop Edition

I pity him, to think how, with no man to care for him, and seeing no companion’s face, suffering, lonely evermore, he is vexed by fierce disease satellite internet service, and bewildered by each want his ire as it arises. – Chorus, Philoctetes The Man With HughesNet, a Greek tragedy

Okay, so maybe not everyone using HughesNet is suffering, always lonely, is stuck on a deserted island and has a bunch of people in the background chanting about his doom. Still, the plight of someone on HughesNet these days can’t be overstated by much. Hence the excerpt from a play that I acted in my sophomore year in high school. Four years later, I had to Google it to make sure I got it word for word, but I was close enough to find the passage.

What does this have to do with my short, albeit rather painful, experience with HughesNet? Not much, other than the painful part. In fact, the rest stop west of Eden, TX, while remote, is quite different than a deserted island. For one thing, the structure on which the internet satellite dish was purched was well-maintained. Second, US-87 runs by said rest stop. Third, the Texas Department of Transportation instituted the free wireless hotspot as a public safety measure, seeing as how some carriers’ cell phones (ahem, Sprint…ever heard of roaming on Five Star Wireless in the Eden area?) just flat out don’t work around those parts. Of course, you can’t use any sort of voice communication technology over HughesNet, but I suppose that’s beside the point. Still better than a deserted island with vipers and no free public WiFi, right?

Read the rest of this entry »

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That’s Comcastic (in a good way)

So I’m back in my apartment in Colorado. And, as usual, I’ve got my ear to the ground on tech. Especially since, mysteriously, my quite-reliable router had dropped off the ‘net sometime a few weeks ago…or so it seemed.

What had really happened is the modem has been kicked off the network for a bit, been reassigned a new IP address, and I had forgotten to set up DynDNS again on my router (easy to overlook when you’ve had the same IP for months on end). So in reality the internet at my place was hunky dory…I just didn’t know where “my place” was on the ‘net.

So what was the cause of the modem reboot and subsequent switch from to for my IP address (people with addresses probably didn’t see a change; they’re still around here)? A DOCSIS 2.0 upgrade, as a matter of fact.

Read the rest of this entry »

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