On May 15th, the current net neutrality rules are going up for preliminary vote at the FCC. This initial vote is only a step in the overall process for the unfair segregation of web traffic to come to life. Our first article broke down the basics of what is in flux, so if you're unsure of what's going on, that's the place to check first. Our second article was a short opinion piece (read: doused in sarcasm and lit aflame with satire) on Chairman Tom Wheeler's response to "reassure" us.

net-neutrality-infographic"What is Net Neutrality?" infographic.

We felt that we should give readers a decisive guide to voicing views and making a difference. Reddit has good recommendations from people who are, and were, involved in the government. Their insight is invaluable to those wanting to do something helpful. Some of the basics are calling the FCC, contacting your Congress and Senate Representatives (they work for you, so use them), and a few other ways to get your voice heard. When reaching out to representatives, one of the most important things to remember is to be polite, professional, and friendly so that you are taken seriously; the people answering the phones are likely interns of some variety -- they'll mark your comment down, ask your name and zip, and then hang up. No need for aggression. Short of money, the means through which most lobbyists get their way is because there is not a big enough outcry from the public to counter them, or those who do complain aren't taken seriously because of how they object.

If you've followed our coverage of net neutrality proceedings in the US, you'll know that there's been a fierce emboldening in the US Government's enablement of a class-based internet. AT&T's patent-pending approach to deploying a micro-transaction-esque content delivery hierarchy for streamed video and gaming content is starting to look a lot scarier right now.

net-neutrality-comicImage Source: CFC Oklahoma.

After the FCC's proposal to allow ISPs the dictation of "normal speed" and "low-speed" traffic in the form of extorting content providers (Netflix, YouTube), internet backlash has prompted a disingenuous addendum by the Commission. Federal Communications Commission Chariman and mendacious troglodytic neophyte of technology Tom Wheeler is reported to have added to his plan:

After our earlier posting about Google's intentions to move to several large cities in North Carolina, we noted that the ball would now be in the court of the local officials to make progress on Google's demands. Google requires certain infrastructure and licensing to be in place before deploying its Fiber network to new regions and has a strict "checklist" that towns must complete before the company will proceed.


In an official statement today, the Town of Cary announced that it has unanimously agreed to Google's fiber hut licensing and leasing terms; this agreement will enable Google to make use of upwards of five fiber huts for light relay and transfer stations, which would effectively propagate optical signals to business and residential buildings. In speaking with Cary officials, we learned that the Town would lease the property, but Google would own the hut and its included equipment.

Two things are going to be happening this year for the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) that will directly affect the internet and its present management. The first is the upcoming preliminary vote on the revamped rules of “net neutrality” on May 15th; the second has to do with the merger between Comcast and Time Warner Cable, which would give a 40% userbase share to an ISP that already has a history of throttling users and businesses.


Almost all of you will be familiar with reddit.com, the self-proclaimed "front-page of the internet" and one of the web's largest aggregate networks. We regularly work with redditors to collect interview questions (see: Star Citizen interview with Chris Roberts), answer GPU or SSD questions, and generally get in the trenches with hardware and games.


The website attracts nearly 115 million unique visitors each month, with a significant portion of the demographic expressing interest in technology and gaming; for this reason, subreddits -- effectively user-managed sub-forums for individual topics -- arise to serve as a central hub for topic-specific news. For hardware and technology enthusiasts, the go-to subreddit for such information has been /r/Technology, largely for its accessible name; in fact, it was one of the first subreddits, and as a result was anointed a "default" subreddit by admins (official employees of Reddit). Default subreddits have their most popular submissions appear on the home page of Reddit, even if the site's visitors aren't logged in and haven't manually subscribed to the section.

Mozilla has spent the last year expanding and improving its support of browser-based gaming with JavaScript-derived asm.js, Emscripten (cross-compiler for C and C++ games to run in browsers), and the WebGL standard. At this year’s Game Developer’s Conference, Mozilla demoed its support for Unreal Engine 4 technology and games using the upcoming Unity 5.0 engine. We caught up with platform gaming experts Vlad Vukićević and Martin Best to talk about how WebGL (and accompanying components) can make gaming anywhere possible and the degree to which it replicates native performance.

If you're trying to play Titanfall a bit before everyone else, using a virtual private network to connect through Korean servers will land you in the game about 13 hours before anyone in the US. By using a VPN, we can spoof the Origin servers to think that the host computer is located in Korea, which will enable the host system to decrypt and unpack Titanfall's install files.


If it hasn't yet become clear that we give no quarter to ISPs, Verizon has now blipped on our +1 Radar of Detect Evil. And it's a big, red, checkmark-shaped blip.

xkcd-internet-securityFull comic on XKCD, found here.

Verizon CEO and Thesaurus-Waving Champion of Double-Speak Lowell McAdam says his company totally won't not-use the struck-down FCC regulations as a means to charge you negative less money in the future. You see, McAdam says that the thought of a mega-corporation misbehaving when left unregulated is -- what was his word? -- "histrionics," and that you should just "contribute to the investment to keep the web healthy."

Translation: "Can I have some money now?" (Thanks, Homer).

Google's Fiber ISP division recently emailed residents of North Carolina (where we operate our business, actually) to initialize conversations about bringing the ISP to NC. The company has already taken residence in Kansas and is transitioning to Austin (fighting AT&T along the way), where it offers data-rates upwards of 1 Gigabit per second (up/down), or roughly 1000 Mbps. In other words, it's approximately 62x faster than TWC's best download rate in parts of Cary, NC, and about 500x faster than upload rates in the same location.

google-fiber-rabbit-afiA Failure Inside.

North Carolina is well-known in the technology sector for its apocalyptic hellscape of zombified Telecomm companies, including Nortel Networks -- which refuses to die (really, put it down), Bell, and Lucent. RTP and the Triangle already have major fiber infrastructure laid in the ground, though lack to-the-wall optical wiring for residential areas. Part of Google's Fiber offering is to run fiber optic lines to residential areas at low cost to the consumer (even allowing the consumer to foot part of the bill in exchange for a reduced monthly rate); Google enforces strict requirements upon State officials in the form of a checklist, which must be fulfilled before the company will begin its transition to NC. This is good, because our state politicians are extremely competent and efficient when it comes to accomplishing things.

Telecom juggernaut AT&T—best known for its award-winning innovations in consumer exploitation and technology suppression—recently filed a patent for a transfer-based bandwidth allocation system. The patent (US20140010082 A1) aims to leverage recent degeneration in net neutrality laws to creatively charge consumers more for specific types of internet usage. For instance, file-sharing, video streaming and downloading, and certain types of game patch distribution methods could result in accounts being flagged for increased billing in AT&T's new system.


The new patent is entitled "Prevention of Bandwidth Abuse of A Communications System." AT&T, however, requires no editorial assistance in making their own patent sound evil, stating in its abstract (bold for emphasis):

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