Blue Star

Ala Modem
Scott Sullivan
As long as I’d bought a $140 modem, I thought, I should learn what one is. Wikipedia informed me (at presumably 16 times the speed), it’s a network bridge that provides bi-directional data communication via radio frequency channels on a hybrid fibrecoaxial (HFC) and radio frequency over glass (RFoG) infrastructure. Any moron knows that, I thought. Well, not any moron … DOCSIS stands for Data Over Cable Service Interface Specifications: methods for transporting data over a CATV plant utilizing QAM and or QPSK RF modulation. If I’d known it was that easy, I’d have handmade the thing myself.

My modem is outmoded. How can that be? Easy. People outlaw laws and vent outrageous rage all the time.

I don’t even know what a modem is. But hey, if I need a new one …

“You have DOCSIS 2. You need DOCSIS 3,” said the cable guy.

Of course, I thought as I drove to Best Buy. How much is a DOCSIS 3? I asked the aisle guy.

“What speed is your internet connection?”

How should I know? I thought. Not fast enough, I told him.

“Do you want 4x, 8x or 16x?”

Sixteen times what? I asked. Never mind, the fastest. I want stuff yesterday.

“It can’t download data that’s not been sent.”

Will I have to buy DOCSIS 4 for that?

“The cashier is that way,” the aisle guy said.

For full story, pick up a copy of the May 28 Commercial Record or subscribe to the e-edition.

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