Showing posts with label Comcast. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Comcast. Show all posts

Feb 20, 2015

Robot Reporters

Quarterly business earnings reports are dull and boring to read. That makes them ripe for automation. The Associated Press has been using an automated system since last year to write its stories and few readers noticed. AP implemented the system six months ago. It now publishes 3,000 such stories every quarter and that number is poised to grow.

AP says the automated system is now logging in fewer errors than the human-produced equivalents from years past. Of the estimated 3,000 such reports each quarter, about one hundred will have an added human touch, either by updating the original story or doing a separate follow-up piece.

The giveaway is that there is no byline and at the end of the article we see, "This story was generated by Automated Insights." The Wordsmith platform also generates millions of articles per week for other companies, such as Allstate, Comcast, and Yahoo, whose fantasy football reports are automated.

Jun 20, 2014

Beware Hot Spots

Comcast is doing something different, adding your router output as free WiFi to others passing by. It is also an opt-out solution, which means it is enabled by default and you need to turn it off. It also does not pay you for this use by others.

Comcast is quietly turning on public hotspots in its customers’ routers and turning private homes into public hotspots. Other Comcast customers get free Wi-Fi wherever there is a Comcast box and the company gets to build out a private network to compete with telecoms, but using your resources.

Fifty thousand users with basic modems that Comcast cable provides have already been turned into public hotspots in Houston, and there are plans to enable 150,000 more.

It is using your private residence as a corporate resource and using your electricity, your Internet connection, and potentially opening up your private browsing to hackers. Comcast says these two streams are independent, but that has never stopped hackers. There is also nothing to stop someone from downloading illicit material, software, and other junk from your hotspot, implicating you if caught. Remember, if there is a line out, that means there is also a line in. Caveat Emptor Comcast users.

Apr 1, 2011


We have become so accustomed to speed for our internet play time that we get upset when things slow down. All Internet Service Providers (ISP) do not measure their speed equally.

ISPs are the big name companies, like Comcast, Verizon, AT&T, Sprint, etc., that offer you service and provide an on-ramp to the internet and email from your phone or wireless access for your laptop, or iPad. They tout claims of 3G (3rd generation cellular wireless), 4G (4th generation), etc., but the claims are not truly living up to the legal descriptions of those services. For instance, the original ITU-R requirements of data rates approximately up to 1 Gbits ( 1 gigabit = a billion bits per second) for 4G systems. Average phone users get speeds of about 1Mbps (1 thousandth of a Gbits) and the minimum is 400Mbps.

Bottom line, don't believe any of the hype. All providers these days are good enough, unless your are a power user and download large amounts of data or play games with users around the world. Be happy that, for the most part, we no longer have to rely on dial-up service for our home PCs.

Here is a site where you can test your speed. LINK  It takes about 30 seconds and you can see how your home system compares to others. Below are my results with Verizon FIOS.

Google's internal studies show that introducing a delay of 100 to 400 milliseconds (thousandth of a second) when displaying search results led users to conduct up to 0.6 percent fewer searches.