Trading Transit for Telecommuting – How Bandwidth Needs Are Affecting the Telework Trend

shutterstock_1625472021 in 5 workers, 7 days a week with 5 million by 2016.

4.2 million professionals, ≥ 1 day a week.

The numbers don’t lie. Telework has become the new norm. In a world where the lines have blurred and access of information is simply at the click of a button, many organizations have opted for the virtual office or in some cases “coffices” (the local coffee shop turned office). Whether to reduce costs, your environmental footprint or boost employee productivity and morale, the concept has gained some positive traction in the workplace. Of course, there are some operating logistics that require attention to truly make telecommuting a reality.

In Need of a Bandwidth Boom

Before we start turning those office buildings into neighborhood parks, we’ll need to increase the availability of high-speed connectivity to residential areas. At present, broadband is the missing link for teleworkers. According to Akamai’s “State of Internet” report, Delaware leads the U.S. charge in average IP connection speed at 10.9Mbps. Read more of this post

Top of “Class” – Schools Leading the way in Network Technology

Kids with TechnologyA surprising development over the past few years has been the astounding growth and sophistication in the data networks operated by local school districts. With a smaller IT staff typically than the medium to large enterprises, and the help of E-rate (see our latest on the schools and libraries mechanism here), school districts are depending more and more on managed Ethernet providers to help them keep pace with an ever-growing need: bigger and bigger bandwidth to support their robust network environments.

Enterprises will tailor a network to meet the needs of various departments, data centers, labs, etc. Depending on where you sit, or your role in the organization, you may need a small connection to other offices or more likely, the Internet, to get your job done. Read more of this post

Weaving the Great World Wide Web

Veronese DiscussionOn a recent trip to the great Italian city of Venezia, I had the pleasure of exploring the Doges Palace (Palazzo Ducale), the residence of the supreme authority of the Republic of Venice. While discovering the many rooms and paintings that adorn the palace I came across a painting, by the artist Veronese, on the ceiling of the Collegio Hall (Sala del Collegio). The painting depicts a woman staring in awe at the intricacies of a spider web.

So, why blog about a spider web? Good question. At the time the painting was executed, the spider web represented the Venetian symbol of “Discussion.” One can picture, the web of truth and/or lies that were discussed by the ruling body. In present day, it has taken an even more interesting turn towards a web that represents Venice, the city that grew in great wealth and knowledge via trade by reaching out to many parts of the Mediterranean world. Expanding its silk threads, so to speak, to capture and bring great fame and acclaim to the city. Read more of this post

Maintaining the Balance on Net Neutrality

House_of_cardsAlthough it’s become a frequent topic in recent months, the debate in the U.S. about how we maintain a “free and open Internet” goes back to at least 2005. That year, the FCC issued a policy statement outlining principles for an open Internet, which they attempted to codify in their Open Internet Order released in December of 2010. Central to justifying authority in the order was Section 706 of the Telecommunications Act of 1996, which:

“Directs the FCC to make the major policy decisions and to select the mix of regulatory and deregulatory tools the Commission deems most appropriate in the public interest […]”

In the order, the FCC took pains to explain that in its opinion its regulation did not constitute reclassification of Internet Service Providers as “common carriers;” utilities that are subject to regulation under the Communications Act of 1934. A case brought by Comcast was heard in federal court and, in January 2014, most of the 2010 Open Internet Order was struck down, the court citing this very reclassification as its primary reason. It is worth noting that the FCC was allowed to implement the principle of “transparency,” and today Internet Service Providers are required to disclose how they manage traffic on their networks and policies pertaining to different types of traffic. Read more of this post

E-rate: Molding the Future of Education

E-rate Play Doh AppleWell folks, the FCC has released the E-Rate Modernization Order and the educational community did not fall apart! Many were fearful of the changes and their impact. For those still curious of the implications presented, read on.

The overall “order” was a reform of sorts, with some rather significant modifications. The basic premise was to “reorient” the program towards the goal of bringing broadband access to the end users. They aim to accomplish this with three steps; increase Wi-Fi usage and funding, increase cost effectiveness, and streamline the process. The modifications were not received well by all (of course it’s tough to please all parties), but did accomplish the goals of many. That is usually the sign of a sensible approach when dealing with the idea of “reform.” Read more of this post

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