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Broadband Direct

Daily news and top headlines for broadband communications engineering and design professionals

Is data simply today's CB craze?

October 31, 1996 7:00 pm | by Roger Brown | Comments

For example, at last month's Convergence: Digital Television and Internet conference in San Jose, Stephen Weiswasser, president and CEO of the Americast consortium, was decidedly bearish. "The number of people on-line and the growth rate of on-line is decreasing significantly," he was quoted as saying.

How to build a stainless steel house

October 31, 1996 7:00 pm | by Wendell Bailey | Comments

The best known of these early efforts was the QUBE system by Warner Cable. This service was used in several communities, and was the subject of literally thousands of articles about future two-way offerings. One of the issues that began to surface in late 1981 was directly related to the QUBE service.

Digital video and transport connectivity options

October 31, 1996 7:00 pm | by Jay Shuler, Senior Manager of Broadband Applications, Nortel (Northern Telecom), Atlanta | Comments

Many cable providers understand the compelling need to migrate to an all-digital network, for reasons including pristine signal quality over any distance, rock-solid reliability (bit error rates of up to 1 error in 1,000,000,000,000,000), compatibility with existing long-haul telecom networks and flexibility to accommodate every conceivable type of service.


CED Archive:

October 31, 1996 7:00 pm | by Staff | Comments

Davis says he has talked to some subscribers who are quite pleased with the service. In fact, he says he's even received calls from some people who aren't in the test wondering when they can sign up for SBC's cable service. The FTTC architecture itself has been fleshed out by suppliers like AT&T and Broadband Technologies Inc.


New trend: Traffic control times two

October 31, 1996 7:00 pm | by Tom Robinson | Comments

Yes, I am one of those folks who attempt to get work accomplished while inching down the highway, and yes, I do understand that this increases my chances of being involved in a fender- bender. But currently, at the 0 mph that I'm traveling, the chances of any vehicle-to-vehicle contact are remote. So first I'm wondering, is there anything that could help alleviate this situation and enable me t...


Digital TV equals big electric bills

September 30, 1996 8:00 pm | by Jeffrey Krauss, Electric Bill Payer and President of Telecommunications and Technology Policy | Comments

It shows that some broadcasters will be hit with big electric bills, because they have to use UHF channels for DTV, rather than their current VHF channels. In addition, I've noted some new interference problems that could arise, one of which could affect cable TV. The new assignment table The FCC plans to give each existing TV broadcaster a second TV channel to use for DTV.

Does broadband data need eye candy?

September 30, 1996 8:00 pm | by Fred Dawson | Comments

The growing presence of small, but consumer-pleasing video windows on Web sites has raised the bar for the technical parameters in near-term broadband data service rollouts, adding new issues to operators' technical choices. While some experts argue that the key to success with consumers in the early going with broadband data services is provision of fast access to conventional sites, in combi...

Preventing ingress in the return path

September 30, 1996 8:00 pm | by Kevin J. Oliver, Product Marketing Manager, CATV Division, Wavetek Corp | Comments

With new opportunities for revenue available and competitive threats building, the focus of the cable industry is on making cable networks quality, interactive, two-way communications pipelines. As such services as high-speed data, interactive TV applications, telephony, and even Internet TV are being considered or activated, one of the big questions being asked is how do I handle ingress encou...


Boston College soars with high-speed modems

September 30, 1996 8:00 pm | by Roger Brown | Comments

Remember when going to college and living in a dormitory meant long hours of study, bad food, a single telephone down the hall and an old TV that pulled in maybe five or six snow-filled channels? My, how times have changed. Sure, the studying is still necessary, and the food is probably just as bad, but today's students are becoming active participants in the Information Age-and they're bringin...


Investing in super headends

September 30, 1996 8:00 pm | by Lynn Newsom, Vice President, Network Services, MediaOne; and Tore Nelson, Director of Headend Marketing, Scientific-Atlanta | Comments

MediaOne, a US West company and main provider of cable television entertainment services throughout metropolitan Atlanta, has embarked on a $350 million rebuild/upgrade of its Atlanta network, most of which was originally built during the late 1970s. With the goal of creating a state-of-the-art 750 MHz hybrid fiber/coax system to provide entertainment, data, video and telephony services, MediaO...


Looking through your customers' walls

September 30, 1996 8:00 pm | by Roger Brown | Comments

Both, of course, offer data transfer and Internet access at speeds hundreds of times faster than the telcos can with conventional POTS modems. And both are providing continuous connections for a monthly flat fee. With the launch of their own high-speed data services, the nation's largest cable system operators are plunging headlong into uncharted waters as they search for new revenue opportunit...


Software has to be useful, not perfect

September 30, 1996 8:00 pm | by Wendell Bailey | Comments

I don't believe it is necessarily the fault of the computer or software industry. I don't, for instance, believe that companies create bugs on purpose, or that they do a bad job of building hardware and developing software. What I put all of the vagaries down to is the conditions under which these enterprises are conducted; specifically, the rush to market that characterizes the efforts of thes...

New needs create a new demand

August 31, 1996 8:00 pm | by Roger Brown | Comments

You don't have to go too far back in the history books to find a time when, if you announced to the world that you planned to deploy 1550 nm fiber optic technology, you were considered odd, or unique. After all, 1550 was itself an oddity-a distraction to those who were lobbying cable operators to deploy fiber as fast as possible, but preferred that they use 1310 nm gear.


From 1550 to WDM, choices abound

August 31, 1996 8:00 pm | by Roger Brown | Comments

Any video network designer who thought his life became infinitely more complicated a few years ago when fiber optics came on the scene will be astounded by the sheer number of options that are coming on-line today. No longer is it just a debate over 1310 nm vs. 1550 nm, or hybrid fiber/coax (HFC) as opposed to switched digital video: It's that plus a few others.


Bury your head — and bury your business

July 31, 1996 8:00 pm | by Roger Brown | Comments

I've written tutorial stories about the technology, commentaries about its possible use as an adjunct to cable TV (before that idea was prohibited by FCC mandate) and covered new product releases - all in an effort to educate CED readers about what was happening with that alternative video medium. The fact of the matter is, however, that I was never really impressed with the technology.



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