Comments are closed. Cribsheet:The latest technology in a nutshell. This week: Broadband.Whatis it? Thename used to describe various types of high-speed connections to the Internet.Broadband is viewed in many quarters as the key to the e-economy. Thetwo big constraining factors of Internet usage, especially at home, is speedand cost – broadband potentially gets rid of both restraints. Oneof the most talked about broadband offerings of the moment is ADSL (asymmetricdigital subscriber line) and works across existing copper telephone wires.This, potentially, works at 10 times faster than a standard modem connectionand offers an always-on link to the Internet for which users pay a flat-rateaccess fee rather than call charges each time they dial up their Internetservice provider. Otherforms of broadband include cable modems, leased lines and satellite.Whatdoes it mean to me? Ifyou’re accessing the Internet via your office network, speed is probably not anissue at the moment. However,broadband will have an increasingly important part to play in the developmentof mobile or home-working and also in the field of e-learning. Ifyou access the Internet at home, you will have noticed how much slower it iscompared to across your network at work. ADSL, for instance, can work at up to10 times as fast as a conventional modem (upwards of 512kbps whereas aconventional modem is around 56kbps).Broadbandaccess at home will not only enable workers to carry out any Internet-basedwork far more quickly, it will also let them maximise technologies that currentlystruggle across standard home modems, such as video-conferencing andwebcasting. Itwill also enable the HR department to control the cost of a workers’ Internetaccess at home, since they will be paying a flat rate for the service. Thismeans you can also be fairly relaxed about them using it for leisure activitiessince it won’t cost any more. BT’s domestic ADSL service is £39.99 a month plus£150 set-up fee.Manye-learning courses rely on users being able to download large amounts of data,such as multimedia and video files as part of the course, and broadband alsomakes this a much more viable option from home.Wheredo I go for further information? Ifyou want to further investigate a broadband solution for members of yourworkforce, there are a number of educational sites. Among the best are www.broadband-news.co.uk www.broadband-help.co.uk and www.cable-modems.co.uk. BT’sservice at www.btopenworld.com details BT’s ADSL service and Demon Internet’sequivalent can be found at www.demon.net/products/access/adsl-launch.shtml.Nokiais developing a range of wireless broadband solutions aimed at the mobilemarket. For details of these, go to Nokia’s site at www.nokia.com (where there’s also a handyglossary of telecoms jargon). BroadbandOn 18 Apr 2001 in Personnel Today Previous Article Next Article Related posts:No related photos.