I’ll be first to admit it: I’ve bragged about my internet speed on the internet. And like most braggarts, I use Twitter as my blowhorn.
People still brag about the cost of their cars and the number of trophies their partner earned for beauty. And their homes, too, although a new study suggests that a big home is worthless if it’s not wired with high-speed optical fiber. But the Twitter speed brag — usually accompanied by that blue and green speedometer from Ookla — is the new yardstick for virility.
A recent Akamai study showed that the global average connection speed was just 5.0Mbps, with South Korea leading with a 23.6Mbps average. The global average peak connection speed topped out at 29.1Mbps, with Singapore besting the world with a 98.5Mbps average peak speed. For comparison, the average US connection speed clocks in at just 11.9Mbps, while its average peak speed was just 53.3Mbps — neither of which is fast enough to put the US in the global top 10. Nevertheless, it helps explain why the Ookla speedo redlines at 50Mbps in the age 1000Mbps speeds.
Increasingly, US citizens are gaining access to gigabit internet over fiber optic connections to the home. Google blazed the trail in 2012 by demonstrating demand for its Google Fiber service. Remember, it wasn’t so long ago that some misguided Time Warner Cable exec said that people didn’t want high-speed internet. Now we have gigabit services for the home offered by AT&T, CenturyLink, Cox, and even Comcast (if you can afford it).
I’m fortunate to live in a city where homes and businesses have been wired with fiber internet for years. I’m currently enjoying TV, phone, and internet all over a sustained 200Mbps / 20Mbps connection for about $75 per month. Oh, was that boastful? Sorry, not sorry.
Gigabit internet speeds remain a rarity, so say it loud and say it proud all you lucky subscribers to Google Fiber, Gigabit Pro, Gigablast, and 1Gig. Scream those speeds from the digital rooftops and bask in the likes and retweets as they rain down upon you. The more envy you create amongst your peers the more they’ll demand access to the same, helping to raise all boats in the water.
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A picture of a man in a black shirt playing guitar, for example, is picked out as "man in black shirt is playing guitar," while pictures of a black-and-white dog jumping over a bar, a man in a blue wetsuit surfing a wave, and little girl eating cake are also correctly described with a single sentence. In several cases, it's unnervingly accurate.
There's no indication of what the press conference might entail, but there are some obvious possibilities: the first Model X deliveries are expected to start within the next few months, which means the company might finally unveil the production vehicle.
The new iPod touch is just as thin (6.1mm) and light (88 grams) as the 2012 version, but it still feels impossibly light. Hollow, even. Inside the new iPod is a lot of the same stuff that makes the iPhone 6 perform so beautifully. Apple's added the 64-bit A8 processor for faster performance, and it shows.
The X-Files is coming back early next year, and Fox just aired the most extensive footage yet during tonight's episode of Wayward Pines. It's still only about ten seconds, but it's enough to see that Mulder and Scully appear to be slotting into today's modern TV era just fine.
Thirty years ago, Back to the Future was released and became an international phenomenon. To celebrate this anniversary, Universal is re-releasing the film along with its two sequels on Blu-ray and DVD. Better still, the studio is also bringing the trilogy back to movie theaters. On October 21st, 2015 (the date that Marty and Doc travel to in Back to the Future Part II), the films will "go back to the big screen."