29 January 2003
This probably isn't all that interesting to most people, but to us, it's really cool. It's an internet bandwidth (speed) meter from 2wire.com. Basically, it tells us how fast our modem is sending data back and forth from our computers to everything else on the Internet. I run the test once in a while, just out of curiosity.
When we had dial-up modems, we'd usually get speeds of 30-40 kbps (kilobits per second; a bit is a 1 or 0, the smallest, and largest, "bit" of information computers can use). When we upgraded to DSL, we got speeds up to around 380 kbps, but oftentimes it would inexplicably slow down to 10-20 kbps for a few hours or days.
Now we have a cable modem and this is the highest speed I've seen: 2889.5 kbps. It's 100 times faster than a 28.8 speed modem. The greatest thing is that the speeds stay consistently high, between 1000 and 3000 kbps. It's 2215 kbps right now. I've very rarely seen it lower than the highest speed we ever got with DSL, which was $5/mo more expensive.