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What is VDSL?

What Is VDSL (Very-high-bit-rate digital subscriber line)? Most of us are familiar with ADSL (Asymmetric digital subscriber line), or what we refer to as DSL. DSL is common in the United States. How much faster is VDSL than ADSL? The experts claim that it’s 3X faster than DSL.

VDSL is widely available in towns and cities throughout New Zealand.

VDSL is a digital subscriber line (DSL) technology providing data transmission faster than ADSL (Asymmetric digital subscriber line) over a single flat untwisted or twisted pair of copper wires (up to 52 Mbit/s downstream and 16 Mbit/s upstream), and on coaxial cable (up to 85 Mbit/s down- and upstream) using the frequency band from 25 kHz to 12 MHz. These rates mean that VDSL is capable of supporting applications such as high-definition television, as well as telephone services (voice over IP) and general Internet access, over a single connection. VDSL is deployed over existing wiring used for analog telephone service and lower-speed DSL connections. This standard was approved by ITU in November 2001.

VDSL can be found in these locations: Denver, Colorado; Salt Lake City, Utah; Boise, Idaho; Phoenix, Arizona; Seattle, Washington; Omaha, Nebraska; Minneapolis; Des Moines, Iowa; Fayetteville, North Carolina.

Exactly how does VDSL work? Follow the link @ howstuffworks to find out the juicy answer.

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Rumor Countdown: Olbermann Coming Back To MSNBC?

Face it; the ratings have tanked and the MSNBC Rumor Alert is that Olbermann is coming back. “The struggling cable net has to figure out how to overhaul its programming following two of its worst quarterly performances in recent memory.”

Why? Maybe not the only reason, nevertheless, the sending away of the talented political satirist, Mr. Keith Olbermann, was a major contributing factor. Ahem.. Maybe his presence was underappreciated.

It’s hard to make an argument against Olbermann when George Stephanopoulos allegedly donated $75,000 to the Clinton Foundation. What’s the rub now?

“Olbermann established a niche in cable news commentary, gaining note for his pointed criticism of right-wing or conservative politicians and public figures.” Keith’s stinging criticism and witty satire gained him a huge audience. This is no small achievement by any means.

Many of his followers would agree that MSNBC lost the punch when Olbermann left the network. Olbermann connected with a mainstream audience who remembered what it was like before the era of political correctness. Opinions are just opinions, but this is all-American and some honesty is quite refreshing, whether it leans to the left or to the right.

And as far as the liberal label, Olbermann has said so himself: “I’m not a liberal. I’m an American.” He is simply an entertainer in a niche role that he carved out for himself. If you don’t like it you could always tune in to the other guy—shall we make the reference—the other clown…

How could we forget the famous routine: “Worst Person in the World”?

Yes, it might be true that Olbermann is over-the-top and he may have crossed that line from time to time. Many entertainers are guilty of this. It’s that spontaneity and candor that adds the appeal to any show. Without it, it’s just another uneventful day.

What can we say about the harsh criticisms of the Bush administration, or of any other for that matter? What would you say the consensus is at the present time? Have you checked any political approval ratings lately?

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Schedule your favorite TV program and record it on your PC.

HDHomeRun EXTEND OTA TV Tuner

Turn your computer into a true media center with software and the SiliconDust HDHomeRun EXTEND 2-Tuner. Watch the game live on your phone or tablet wherever you are in your home. Extend’ your multi-room, multi-device, multi-user TV experience.

The HomeRun TV Tuner enables you to receive the glorious HD 1080i definition content at your convenience, while a cheaper version does standard definition only.

Schedule your favorite TV program and record it on your PC. Then you can play it back later. Watch, pause, and record.

If you purchase the device and already have an HDTV antenna, then you’ll be ready for the download, which contains the drivers. Here it is at the SiliconDust website.

Live TV can be viewed with the HDHomeRun View app (which is supported on Windows, Mac, Linux, PC or Android devices such as phones, tablets, Amazon branded media devices and Android TV) or it can be viewed on any client device that supports the Kodi/ XBMC Add-On.

MythTV, a software option for Linux users, is the ultimate Digital Video Recorder and home media center hub. Think of it as a Free and Open Source alternative to Windows Media Center or Tivo. Pause, skip, and rewind live TV shows.

Though MythTV was initially written to run only on the Linux operating system, BSD and MacOS X are also well supported, and it has recently become possible to build a version that can run on Microsoft Windows.

Some consumers use Plex. The free Plex Media Server simplifies your life by organizing all of your personal media, making it beautiful and streaming it to all of your devices.

It pays to have access to the TV Signal Locator, in order to know where to point the antenna!

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The 1% Of 1% That Are The Political Gatekeepers

The One Percent of One Percent… They fall into 3 categories.

While most of us Americans fall in the 99.99% range and can ill afford such massive contributions, these privileged elitists have unique access, which allows them to play the gifted role of political gatekeeper.

Corporate donations are the most common. Of the 10 companies with the most representation (The One Percent of the One Percent) in the 2010 election cycle, 6 are financial companies. The financial gift that keeps on giving.

Don’t be shocked at the clear winner of the corporate category—why it’s Goldman Sachs with 92%—far ahead of everyone else. You may have heard of Citigroup, with 32%, putting it in second place.  The political gatekeepers fall into 3 different categories.

3. The corporate contributors
The corporate contributors are the only category to give primarily to Republicans (they contribute 44.1% to Republican candidates and party committees, as compared to 39.8% to Democratic candidates and party committees; the rest goes to other vehicles, including independent expenditures). They tend to give to half as many candidates as they (on average less than 4.6) and give almost half of their money to party committees (the highest percentage of the three types).

2. The lawyer/lobbyist donors
The lawyer/lobbyist donors give the most money directly to candidates (51.1% goes directly to candidates), and they give to the most different candidates (10.1 on average). Presumably, this is because they are interested in maintaining access to multiple elected officials.

1. The ideological contributors
The ideological contributors on average spend the most (their median contribution level is $17,976). They also give the most money to independent expenditure groups (like American Crossroads) – 21.8%, much more than the other two types of donors. They give on average to 9.5 different candidates.

In 1990, only 13 federal candidates relied on The One Percent of the One Percent for at least half of their itemized donors. In the 2010 election cycle, 74 did. A big transition happened in the wake of the McCain-Feingold campaign finance regulations in 2002. With soft money off the table, individual campaigns became much more reliant on big The One Percent of the One Percent. In 2004, 56 candidates relied on The One Percent of the One Percent for at least half of their campaign funding, as compared to just nine the year before.

The Bipartisan Campaign Reform Act (2002)

The Bipartisan Campaign Reform Act (McCain–Feingold Act), federal law that amended the Federal Election Campaign Act of 1971, which regulates the financing of political campaigns.

Source: Sunlight Foundation

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New Horizons’s transmission rate is slower than a 56K modem.

Unfortunately, New Horizons’s transmission rate is slower than a 56K modem. The full array of data will trickle back to us over 16 months, with full scientific insights into Pluto following a similar timeline.

Read More:

1. Tense wait for New Horizons to phone home after Pluto fly-by — New Scientist

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Amnesia, Greek Debt, And Goldman Sachs…

Greek Debt Grew Out Of A Deal With Goldman Sachs

Americans have amnesia when it comes to important news, or anything beyond yesterday as far as that goes. Some ideas need perspective and it usually takes a professional to guide us through the fog. We might ask ourselves one important question. Did the Greek debt grow out of a deal with Goldman Sachs?

Enter economic wizard Robert Reich, author of Aftershock: The Next Economy and America’s Future.

People seem to forget that the Greek debt crisis — which is becoming a European and even possibly a world economic crisis – grew out of a deal with Goldman Sachs, engineered by Goldman’s Lloyd Blankfein. Several years ago, Blankfein and his Goldman team helped Greece hide the true extent of its debt — and in the process almost doubled it.

When the first debt deal was struck in 2001, Greece owed about 600 million euros ($793 million) more than the 2.8 billion euros it had borrowed. Goldman then cooked up an off-the-books derivative for Greece that disguised the shortfall but increased the government’s losses to 5.1 billion euros. In 2005, the deal was restructured and the 5.1 billion euro debt was locked in. After that, Goldman and the rest of Wall Street pulled the global economy to its knees – whacking Greece even harder.

Undoubtedly, Greece suffers from years of corruption and tax avoidance by its wealthy. But Goldman Sachs isn’t exactly innocent. It padded its profits by catastrophically leveraging up the global economy with secret, off-balance-sheet debt deals. Did any of its executives ever go to jail? Of course not. They all got fat bonuses and promotions. Blankfein, now CEO, raked in $24 million in 2014 alone. Meanwhile, the people of Greece struggle to buy medicine and food.

Doesn’t seem right, does it? —– Robert Reich

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Robert Reich is an American political economist, professor, author, and political commentator.

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Disconcerning Or Disconcerting?

The word that at least sounds like ‘disconcerning’ can be heard on a normal basis. Shouldn’t it be ‘disconcerting’ instead of this other term, if we are to be correct? Let’s turn to a plausible explanation if we may.

Is disconcerning even a word? Dictionary.com does not list this word. A website that I found explains that “disconcerning is a nonsense word.”

Dictionary.com lists a word named disconcerting and its meaning: 1. (adjective) disturbing to one’s composure or self-possession; upsetting, discomfiting.

If we are to express ourselves properly, we should use the word disconcerting, and forget the other word that does not exist. I find it disconcerting that we use the wrong term. Don’t you?