Tag Archives: internet

Sprint LTE sightings in Austin

LTE service has been randomly popping up on my iPhone 5 in the North Austin area these past couple of days. Note that Sprint LTE has not yet launched in town.

It only lasts for a few minutes, and the speeds may differ from what we’ll get once it goes live. But the fact that they are testing is a sign that the launch is imminent.

Proof:

Obviously, when I saw LTE, I had to run a speed test. Speeds were a little disappointing compared with what I’ve read about LTE; but are about a million times better than the notoriously slow Sprint 3G service. Boy I hate CDMA.

For comparison’s sake, here are other results I’ve gotten. They vary from run to run and each run depends on a lot of factors, like how far you are sitting from the cell phone tower or WiFi station, or how much other network traffic there is at the moment. But they do provide a good idea of what to expect:

Provider Ping (ms) Download (Mbps) Upload (Mbps)
Sprint LTE (Austin, test) 76 7.77 0.71
Sprint 3G (Austin) 332 0.21 0.44
Sprint LTE (Woodlands) 56 7.95 9.44
Home (Time Warner Cable) 85 16.90 2.18
Work (jealous?) 48 48.35 23.76
AT&T LTE (Austin) 57 30.05 19.45

As you can see, 3G is soooo slow you can almost hear this. Can’t wait for LTE to go live.

Update: Reader Rolando O. sent a screenshot of SpeedTest results in AT&T LTE. They are amazing. I’ve added the numbers to the table.

Online security

Eva thinks I should use this image in this post. Click on the image for others I could have used.

The many high profile hacks that have occurred recently, like the one on Sony and Gawker (and those are the ones we know about) have made me think a lot about my online security. We all know what we need to do: Use different strong passwords that cannot be guessed using dictionary attacks for every single account.

The stakes range from the mildly annoying (someone sending spam from your email account, which can get it deactivated) to the really annoying (damage to your reputation due to inappropriate posts made from your Facebook/Twitter/Google+/whatever account), to the really painful (money stolen from bank accounts, identity theft).

I think password reuse is especially bad: someone gets access to one password database, they can now try them on many popular websites. It will work. Hackers don’t do this because “I” or “you” are terribly interesting people to hack. They do it because it’s profitable. Spam, Google Bombing, you name it. It happens all the time, just see how many fake emails you get from for friend’s email accounts. Just a few weeks ago my friend Rafa had his Skype account compromised and his SkypeOut credit used. It’s real.

Ok, but is there a practical way to have different strong passwords for every service we use? I think there is, and I’ve decided to do it. Follow up post coming.

The Browser Wars III

I wanted to see how the readers of The MKX® compare to the rest of the world once again. We have compiled statistics in 2006 and 2009, so might as well check again.



Browser Internet
June 2011
The MKX®
April 2006
The MKX®
Dec 2009
The MKX®
July 2011
Explorer 54% 59.32% 38.57% 23.03%
Firefox 21.67% 27.12% 34.84% 28.73%
Safari 7.48% 9.32% 18.55% 13.00%
Chrome 13.11% No data 5.68% 28.94%
Opera 2.98% 2.54% 0.49% 1.95%
Other 1% 2% 2% 4%

That’s right: The #1 browser around here is now Google Chrome, then Firefox, then IE (warning – disturbing domain name), and then Safari, who’s share has disturbingly fallen since we last checked in spite of growing in the Internet as a whole. A mystery.

Device neutrality

Everyone is talking about Net Neutrality (ok, maybe not everyone). It’s a very important issue and if you aren’t familiar with it maybe you should follow the link. But in this post I want to talk about a related issue that does not seem to be getting the attention it should: Device neutrality. Read more if you care to…

Continue reading Device neutrality

Trolololo

This latest internet meme is strangely relaxing, soothing… even hypnotizing. I find myself humming it non-stop. Trolololo!

Read more for more info about this wonderful video.

Continue reading Trolololo

Browser comparison

Safari 4 just came out of beta. I gave it a try at my work computer (a Windows XP machine) just to go back to Chrome shortly after. Now I’m back with Safari. The main reason? Text rendering. See, in Safari you can configure the browser to render its text like Mac OS X does. In my opinion, text looks a lot better in Mac OS X than it does in Windows. Sure, it’s a matter of taste; my excellent taste versus other people’s terrible taste.

To illustrate my point, I took a screenshot of the Facebook homepage. Why? Because it shows text in the English, Hebrew, and Arabic alphabet. You’ll see how Safari’s text looks much better. From left to right: Apple Safari 4, Google Chrome 2.0, Mozilla Firefox 3.0,and MS Internet Explorer 7.0:

browser-comparison
Web browser comparison on Windows XP: Safari 4, Google Chrome 2.0, Mozilla Firefox 3.0, and MS Internet Explorer 7.0 (click to zoom)

What do you think? Which one do you like better?

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