Brian Becker on Rick Carl & Company

Jan 07, 2009

Brian is on the air on KWOC with Rick Carl and Company on the first Wednesday of every month at 8am to talk about Computers, Technology and the latest gadgets (or, more precisely, toys for Geeks).

Computer/Technology Forum presented by PB Chamber Jan 20th
The Poplar Bluff Chamber is hosting a technology forum to help chamber members better understand how to use emerging technology in their business. It is a Q&A-style forum and reservations are required. For more information see our online announcement.

New Broadband Area opens South of Poplar Bluff has recently installed wireless broadband equipment on a tower on Highway 158 between the junction of 67/160/158 and Harviel. This new service is providing broadband to an area that as suffered the “dialup or satellite” frustration and provides 256k service for as little as $23.95/month. The service has an approximate range of 5 miles, but needs near-line-of-site (meaning a few trees are okay, but not a big hill or a small forest) from the customer’s rooftop back to the tower. For more information, check out our recent online article.

Local Business-Class Internet Service Available in Poplar Bluff has be providing wireless Broadband Internet service since 1999, but in 2009, a new business-class wireless service is being deployed to help businesses who need more than a T1 of bandwidth (T1 is a service provided by the telephone company that can provide 1.5mb/s upload and download and costs begin around $400/month). Most businesses need a small amount of constant bandwidth to keep VPNs connected, VOIP calls routed, etc.; and occasionally need really fast access to download files or upload to a off-site backup server. This new service will allow companies 3mb/s, 4.5mb/s & 6mb/s transmission links with prices of $349, $425, 499 respectively.

Do you need broadband Internet service in your area? has developed a new program to allow communities to rally together and bring broadband into their area. If we get 30 customers in a 2 mile radius who want broadband service, we will find a way to get it there. The only catch is that the customers agree to pay their first year of service up front ($698) in order to help defray the cost of deployment. Now, you have the ability to bring broadband to your area! For more information, check out our online article.

The Complete Swiss Army Knife by Wenger (available through Hammacher Schlemmer)
Just under 9″ wide and 3″ long, this is NOT for your pocket. But at a selling price of $1400, I’m not sure you want to let it leave the house either. For those buying this item, surely is mostly sold as a desk-display, seeing that holding a 9″ handle to use the screwdriver might not be that easy.

Rubik’s Photo Cube
This seems like such a great idea. You send in six photos and $20 and you get back a beautiful rubik’s cube with those images on each side. Well, until your 7 year old takes it for a few twists and turns and you stare at a jumbled mess wondering how to solve the puzzle and get your cute little knick-knack back.

PC Magazine Releases Best Speed Test Product
ISPs are constantly asked by their customers “how do I test my speed” and there really hasn’t been a good way to do it because most speed tests don’t replicate typical web surfing speeds. PC Magazine developed a program that installs on your computer and tests 8 web sites and gives an aggregate speed of the combined sites. For more information, check out PC Magazine’s online article and free download.