Google Fiber eyes Chicago and L.A.

Google Fiber could be coming to Chicago and Los Angeles, where more than 6 million people live, Google announced Tuesday.

The company invited the two cities to get the 1Gbps service, then plans to work with city leaders to collect detailed information on factors that would affect construction, such as topography and city streets.

Networks technology internet

“While we can’t guarantee that we’ll be able to bring Fiber to Chicago and L.A., this is a big step for these cities and leaders,” said Jill Szuchmacher, director of Google Fiber Expansion, in the blog.

Google Fiber currently serves three metro areas: Kansas City (in both Kansas and Missouri), Austin, Texas, and Provo, Utah. Six more cities are listed by Google as “upcoming” Fiber cities and 11 others are potential cities, including L.A. and Chicago.

Those two cities would be the largest metros for Google Fiber. “Whether it’s filmmaking or entrepreneurship or more abundant bandwidth at home, Chicago and L.A. are the perfect cities to show us what’s possible with gigabit Internet,” Szuchmacher said.

Google’s announcement follows by one day the news from AT&T that it plans to expand GigaPower 1Gbps fiber to 38 more cities for a total of 58 cities. GigaPower was launched in Los Angeles on Monday and had previously been available in Chicago and nearby cities. AT&T’s first city was Austin, Texas, starting about two years ago.

High-speed Internet access to homes and small businesses is considered a key to a city’s economic development. Cities without it will be at a competitive disadvantage, said Jeffrey Kagan, an independent analyst.


Facebook building a 100-gigabit switch to keep up with video, VR traffic

acebook is more than doubling the speed of its Wedge open-source network switch, which is good news both for Facebook users and for anyone who may want to build a 100-gigabit switch.

The Wedge sits at the top of a rack of servers to connect them to Facebook’s network. It was announced in June 2014, and thousands are already deployed in the company. Plus, the social network made the design of the Wedge open source so other manufacturers could build switches like it.

Networking server data centre

However, less than two years later, the 40-Gigabit Ethernet ports in the original Wedge are proving no match for the fast-growing traffic on Facebook’s network. To keep up, the company is now developing a version of the switch with 100-Gigabit Ethernet interfaces. It gave more details in a blog post but hasn’t said when the new switches will be ready.

Much of the traffic in Facebook’s data centers is just among the company’s own switches. But it’s growing along with much more bandwidth-intensive content on the social network, including big video files and virtual-reality content like 360-degree videos that Facebook recently introduced.

“Whenever there is capacity, people will build stuff to consume it,” said Jay Parikh, vice president of global engineering and infrastructure, at the Structure conference in San Francisco on Thursday. Facebook says it has more powerful servers, and more of them, than it did when the first Wedge was introduced. As many as four servers can be hooked up to each port of the Wedge.

The Wedge 100 will have 32 100G ports, the same maximum number as on today’s Wedge but all at the higher speed. Like the current switch, it has a non-blocking design, meaning that it can fully feed all of its ports at the same time if necessary. Thus the total capacity of the Wedge 100 is 3.2Tbps.

Facebook designs its own switches and writes its own software for them because it wants the flexibility to meet its own rapidly developing needs. In addition to the Wedge, earlier this year it introduced the 6-pack, a modular switch for connecting server racks to each other. The 6-pack is based on the Wedge and can have as many as 128 40-gigabit ports. Facebook has also developed its own data-center network design.

What Facebook invents in network hardware, it makes available for others to use. At least one vendor, Accton, already sells a customizable top-of-rack switch based on the 40-gigabit Wedge. The design has been accepted by the Open Compute Project, which Facebook founded in 2011 to share open-source hardware designs. It also plans to share the Wedge 100′s design.

The company uses an internally developed OS, called FBOSS, on its own switches. But it has also joined up with Big Switch Networks to offer an open-source network operating system called Open Network Linux for others to use.

The advent of so-called “white box” networking gear based on open hardware and software could trickle down from giant IT shops like Facebook to provide enterprises with an alternative to traditional systems from companies like Cisco Systems. But Cisco says its overall architecture costs customers less in the long run.


History of the POS System

It’s hard to believe, but the beginnings of the first Point-of-sale (POS) system dates back as far as the late 1800s. James Ritty, a Dayton, Ohio, saloon owner, was known as the “father” of the cash register. He invented a device that could register the amount of cash transactions recorded at his saloon because he wanted stop employees theft. He called it “Ritty’s Incorruptible Cashier,” or as we know it today, the cash register.

He would later sell his rights to the cash register to Jacob H. Eckert. Eckert wanted to manufacture cash registers to a wider audience. So he founded the National Manufacturing Company. That company would later be sold and the name changed to the National Cash Register.

In 1906, Charles F. Kettering created an electric motor for the cash register. This made it easier for employees to process transactions quickly, rather than ringing up sales by hand.

In the 1950’s in London, brothers Sam and Henry created a manufacturing company called Gross Cash Registers where they built, sold, and exported cash registers. In 1971, they created the only cash register that could handle the conversion of currencies, which made their business boom.

Then the first POS systems were introduced to the market in 1973. IBM announced the electronic cash register (ECR), as a mainframe computer packaged as a store back end. It was limited in capability and functionality, but ECR’s were the first computer-based client-server technology to be used in a commercial atmosphere. This system was able to pinpoint top selling items, and print out a summary of the report. By 1974, the system was installed in Pathmark Stores in New Jersey and Dillard’s Department Stores.

In 1979, Gene Moshel, a New York restaurateur, used this technology to pioneer a system for his deli. Mosher wrote software that worked with his computer where customers would order at the restaurant’s front entrance. Then their order would print out in the kitchen.

In 1985, Mosher introduced the first color touch-screen driven POS interface. This software operated on the Atari ST, which was the world’s first consumer-level color graphic computer. This was the beginning of POS system helping business owners to track reports, keep inventory, and monitor employees.

Through the 90’s and into the 21st century the point-of-sale system would continue to evolve, moving from bulky systems to back office services, and tablet based mobile systems. Also, cloud computing would allow POS systems to run as SaaS software, a service accessed from the internet.

Bepoz made it’s mark in POS history, starting in the early 70’s as Business Electronical Pty Ltd. Established in Sydney Australia, the company sold office products and cash registers. Through the years the company would move with customer demand distributing electronic programmable cash registers in the 80’s, and in the 90’s selling POS system solutions.

In 2004, after years of reselling other solutions Bepoz decided to develop it’s own POS software called Bepoz. This revolutionized the POS market with a fresh, intuitive, feature rich, yet easy-to-use, point of sale software. They became both an end-user solution provider and a major software developer in the Australian market.

In 2007, Bepoz started building a worldwide distributor network in New Zealand, the UK, Malaysia, Singapore, Indonesia, Canada, and of course the United States.

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