I spend a lot of my time at my desk, in front of my computer, designing. I love using a notebook for generating ideas, doing research, game design, and software design. For me, the notebook helps me extend the ideas further without bounds. I have grown accustomed to bouncing between the digital and analog worlds.
When I saw the Kickstarter introduction video to a new product called Panobook, I thought to myself, “Here are some people who just get it.” (It is the love of notebooks and their utility.) My love started by watching my father collect different types of journals and Moleskin notebooks. He had many unopened ones, but the ones he did use were spiral bound and could fit in his pocket. He was often taking notes on the go writing his lectures and sermons. I typically design in front of my computer. I have been known to turn my notebook around and design particular to the lines.
I don’t need another notebook, but I have found that Panobook serves a purpose. I like that Panobook lays flat on my desk, it fits in front of my keyboard, it is spiral bound, it has a dot grid, and it is designed to be catalog on my shelf when I am done with it. Love oozes out of every design decision of the Panobook. Well done.
Hearing the origins of the Dark Knight as told by the legendary Frank Miller at Boston Comic Con 2016. I got very lucky to be able to watch his panel discussion along with Brian Azzarello. They turned Batman from a low-selling comic to a huge success with The Dark Knight Returns.
Frank shared his key to success. He suggests finding a character that no one is writing about or has a bad reputation and turn it around. He said, “Look for a loser, make it shine, and you will be a winner.” This is how he found Batman in the 1980’s – at the bottom of the ratings.
Physical security is video surveillance, entryway access, and sensors. In other words, it’s a network of things to protect and secure physical areas. Traditionally this network was analog and serial, but today it’s converging through the use of the Internet Protocol (IP). IP allows you to build a physical security network using one network and probably the very same network that you already have in place. Transitioning over to IP also gives rise to a lot more features and software based analytics. Physical security is just as important as network security.
Tim Dodge and I wrote a book last year about transitioning from analog to IP-based security systems called, “Introduction to IP-based Physical Security”, published by TESSCO Publishing. The book is meant to be a jump start for those heading over to IP-based physical security and video surveillance.
Today I had the thrill of opening up a box with a few publication samples. I know we are in a digital age, but I have to admit that it was cool holding a book with an ISBN and a barcode on it…
I look forward to running into this book in a used bookstore and/or being the reason for a book burning.
Fiber optic technology uses tiny strands of glass or plastic fibers to trap light allowing data to be carried extremely fast over long distances. Don’t look for any hype here, fiber delivers what it promises – speed, which enables high-speed internet, television services, and telephone communications. The technology is all around our lives and has been for quite some time. Recent advancements of fiber optics versus copper, reduction in deployment costs, and customer demand have brought fiber optic technology into the attention of everyone from consumers and technicians to engineers and managers alike.
Passive fiber optic technology is a key advancement allowing for fiber to be deployed in the last mile, which connects communication offices to consumers directly. For example, Fiber-to-the-Home (FTTH) uses passive amplifiers and splitters serving housing developments off of a single strand of fiber. In a copper-based scenario, each house would be connected with a pair of copper wires or networked together using coaxial cable. In either case, the distance and speeds are limited, which further restricts the carrier’s service offerings and competitiveness. Copper is also prone to interference from other cable pairs, radio services, and power lines causing high maintenance costs and degraded services.
Lasers, LED’s, amplifiers, fiber optic cable, light receivers and all of the components that allow fiber optic equipment to operate have become very inexpensive allowing for new products and technologies to be developed and offered to carriers, business, and consumers at low or similar costs. In new housing developments and office parks, establishing fiber optic technology will be the most advantageous deployment. As the copper local loop and backhaul networks age, fiber will also be present allowing for current and future service offerings to meet market demand and carrier requirements.
The need for speed has always been a driver in the communication markets. Besides the luxury of just speed, fiber optics in the minds of consumers bring about visions of fast internet, high-definition and interactive television, and mobile multimedia features. To the carriers, fiber optics offers a world converged to one technology, multiple service offerings, increased capacity at cellular sites, and minimized maintenance expenses. Inside business networks, fiber optics will be the connections that are made between routers and switches allowing for business to handle more clients, devices, and bandwidth-intensive services like Voice-over-IP (VoIP) and video conferencing.
The limitation of fiber optic technology exists only with each of us and those who will work on fiber systems. Fiber is just not installed and all of our visions come to a reality and all of our existing issues disappear. Proper design, installation, maintenance practices, and provisioning will be essential in the success of fiber optic deployments. For example, learning the proper way to clean a fiber optic connector is one skill that will mitigate several issues at communication offices, cell sites, office buildings, and residences. Engineers and managers will have to know which fiber solutions to consider and determining loss budgets while having an understanding of terminology and fiber optic technology concepts to make proper decisions. Technicians will be responsible for installation, maintenance, and provisioning as the technology spreads quickly through their networks and sites. Critical skills that require training and practice are splicing fiber optic cables, cleaning connectors, putting on new connectors, cable section replacement, and installation of cable between devices.
Fiber optic technology introduces new infrastructure, maintenance, and testing equipment to be installed and used properly. In the Local Area Network (LAN), routers and switches will have fiber optic connections to connect fiber optic cables, store cable slack, and Panduit to run cable through the premises. In restoration or installation practices, fusion splicers will be required to connect and repair fiber optic cables. Once the network is established, testing devices such as light and power meters, light generators, Optical Time Domain Reflectometers (OTDR), fiber optic scopes, and visual fault locators will be used to determine proper levels and faults.