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Off Topic: Cable Modems & Comcast at Home



Just got back from an 10 day shoot back east (Philadelphia and Baltimore).
Was doing an infomercial for Comcast at home, the cable service into which
Microsoft just dumped 60 million bucks.  We were doing user testimonials on
their cable modem.  I was matting live web sites behind the people we were
interviewing.

The technical aspects:

Comes in on your standard cable line.  A special splitter is installed in
the home, and there is a "cable" side and a "data" side at the output.  The
data side is sent via coax to a Motorola cable modem, whose output is then
sent to a standard 10baseT network card they install in your computer.  You
are essentially logged in on their "network."

You are online full time, no login required. Although they do not advertise
it, you have a static IP address, which means you can put up an accessible
web/ftp server.  There is some possibility as demand rises and they add
more hardware that the IP addresses will ripple, which is why they don't
make the static IP aspect public.

Although the company claims it's not possible, several of the respondents I
talked with privately claim they have managed to set the system up in such
a way that they were able to access the service from all machines on their
home network.

Hands on:

An absolutely astounding technology.  Faster than having a T1 line,
according to *all* of the respondents who have T1 lines at work.

Download speeds which I personally verified between 200k and 500k /sec.

All the pages snapped onto the screen like it was loading from the local
Netscape cache.  Just awesome.  I kept looking for the proverbial man
behind the curtain to whom I should pay no attention.

$75 installation, and $39/mo. (plus the basic cable rate).  I would sign up
immediately if it were available here, but my local cableco has no
immediate plans for it.

If this type of service is available in your area, and you spend time on
the 'net, check it out.

Bob Kertesz
BlueScreen LLC

The Ultimate in ULTIMATTE compositing

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