Which is funny, as AT&T is starting petitions (and passing laws) in many states to no longer be considered a common carrier and be regulated as a utility.
Printing: Face it, 99% of all printers are supposed to be connected to a computer via USB. While certainly a lot of things have been digitized, there are still many occasions when you need to print a packaging slip, a label, or just -something- for your records. While printing from mobile is getting better, it's still pretty convoluted. Right now I can print from my smartphone, via google Cloud Print, but face it, I still have to have a -printer- attached to a -computer- to do it. I'm not sure what iOS' solution is yet, as I don't have an i(device), but if I'm not mistaken, it's not much better.
Lastly, tying it all together: These desktop computers are really the way to tie it all together because they are the only way to -easily- connect to these other devices. Mapping to the storage server as a network drive gives the desktop access to the files. Connecting to the printer - plug and play. Then some client software and you simply remote into the computer to access it all from wherever you are.
Not to argue (I'm one who does everything on the desktop myself), but pretty much all the printers come with built-in WiFi, bluetooth and/or network connectivity. I think maybe the $25 printers on sale at Best Buy might be the only ones that are USB only. The last two ones I bought are WiFi enabled, and they surprisingly work well from my tablets.
A lot of that has to do with the channels being moved around more than digital vs. analog. During the move the FCC sold off a large portion of the VHF spectrum to the cellular companies. This moved a lot of the high-propagation stations to UHF with much smaller viewing areas. At the same time, the FCC sold off the higher end of the UHF spectrum which moved all the channels that had sketchy portions of the frequency down, causing their areas in some cases to double. In our area (Lansing, MI), we lost all of our VHF except one -- the rest moved to UHF (meaning I now have a hard time getting them when I live downtown due to the shadowing effect). I ended up having to put three antennas on my house, isolated from certain directions to avoid the multipath.
Texting 911 is supported in very few places. Any area where AT&T runs the database for emergency services (32 states), has NO capability for this because they never upgraded to the newer e911 infrastructure. In those cases, if your cellular provider routed SMS messages for 911 to a place, it is often their own office which they than have to manually route to a PSAP (often the wrong one), who will then call you back.
To my knowledge, there are less than a dozen municipalities that are able to handle 911 texts in the USA. Thinking this will blindly work is dangerous -- especially since SMS is a store-and-forward type of system where there is no immediacy or urgency built in to the packets that get routed.
This would be true of a network built only on large towers. Too bad > 80% of the frequency now is tied to nano, pico or other small or directed antennas that are powered off the local grid. Look at the roof tops or steeples of the larger buildings in your area -- most likely you will find cell antennas on those -- and there is a great chance those only have a 2 - 4 hour battery at most.
I think it's funny that you make your point that voice-only conveys no emotion, yet you suggest SMS, social media and email via an emotion-less web comment. What emotion am I conveying right now, asshat?
So we have a cell Central Office layer that is regional and connectivity to it would be necessary for individual towers to complete calls. Let me extend the Q to ask: is there some standard practice that confines geographic placement of COs to a certain radius? How many of these (as opposed to mere towers) would we find on a map, if such a map was available? I presume that if a CO was isolated no one could roam-in because the necessary central inter-carrier auth could not be completed, but what of existing subscribers? Would a CO facility, even if it was restarted from power down, retain enough subscriber data to bring its 'native' users in the local area to the point where that can complete calls to each other?
Sorry about the Wheeler (FCC Chairman) booboo in the summary. Brain fart.
If you want a map of all the COs -- they are here : http://www.dslreports.com/coinfo They are not placed by geographic radius, but by number of subscribers. Back in the day, a central office might serve an exchange or two (an exchange is the three digits after the area code in a phone number, for example 517-355, where 355 was the exchange). Of course some COs were larger and served multiple exchanges, some getting as large as a dozen and some were smaller and only handled a single exchange. Each exchange could have just short of 10,000 subscribers (known as nodes, corresponding to the 4 digits after the exchange in the phone number).
COs, regardless of the brand (two of the most common in modern day were the 5ESS and the DMS100) knew ALL the info for their subscribers and how to route calls to tandem (directly connected) switches and upper class switches. These were known as Class 5 switches (they had directly connected subscribers) Similar to IP routing, if the phone number you were dialing was not a local subscriber then it would switch the call to the next higher class switch (Class 4), who knew how to route calls to every exchange in your LATA (your toll-free calling area). If it didn't know how to route it, it would toss it to the Class 3 switch and so forth. Billing is always done at your local CO using "CDR" records (and sent to your phone company for central billing). There are now exceptions to these roles with LNP (local number portability), but the same series of events generally occur. Remote COs know nothing of subscribers in other COs.
So, short answer, if a CO powered down completely, calls within that exchange would not get delivered. If your CO survived but was disconnected from the CLASS 4 switch, then it would be able to process calls locally and be able to send calls to the tandem switches, but you wouldn't be able to call others in your LATA and they wouldn't be able to call you.
Now cellular is a totally different game altogether. Cellular companies are subscribers of the phone network, not really a part of it. They run their own infrastructure and don't directly participate in SS7 for routing. A CO could disappear and the cellular network wouldn't necessarily be hurt (unless that was their point of termination with the phone network).
These were a lot more words than most people will care to read for a comment... I spent 8 years on the 5ESS DSIG crew installing new COs and working on the SS7 protocol.
And that is why we have laws like FERPA that protect this data and are supposed to prohibit schools from sharing this information with 3rd parties...
That is -- when schools choose not to ignore it.
I don't know a single "good" programmer who would join a company for a 4 month contract, unless they were stuck between a rock and a hard place.... and even then, they'd be looking for the next gig when they were on your contract.
Put faith in your hires first. Offer good rewards (benefits, salary, etc) and good employees will come. Act like you are trying to screw them over from the get-go and you will only get those desperate enough for it and can't get a job somewhere where they don't seem like they are screwing them over.
I run a phone system that covers 5 exchanges... It's fun watching them when their auto-dialer starts hitting our numbers. I just route them all to the same recording -- which they hit just short of 50,000 times.
Academic Freedom generally covers scholarly duties and not employment or illegal items (unless those are under their directive for their scholarly works). That is why many schools offer things like tenure to professors that would give them a higher ranking and would in theory protect them from all scrutiny.
Either way, pretty much everybody in academia is employed either via a contract or at will. As we move away from tenured faculty, the move is more to at-will faculty which means they can be fired for pretty much anything.
The fact is that ALL road users have to follow the rules, however many cyclists want and in fact demand special treatment.
And 12 out of the last 14 times that the DOT in my state did a survey on the street that my house is on with a speed limit of 35 MPH, the
I don't use my car in the summers unless I'm traveling > 40 miles (at most, once per week). I ride to work (~10 miles each way), to the grocery store, etc.
We've had complete streets legislation here for the past 10 years or so. I can get to most places via bike lanes or the River Trail (bike/ped only causeway that traverses the metro area). There are areas that I can't easily get to by going on bike lanes or using the trail -- so I usually don't go.
If you are a smart cyclist (most are not), and use hand signals, have lights and behave like a vehicle on the road you won't have any problems. In the last 4 years I've been doing this I've only had one close call -- and that was when I was riding home at 2am and all the drunks were leaving the bars. Most people I know in the biking community are the same way -- no issues as long as they do it the right way.
Adding bike lanes or encouraging biking won't do anything for safety. People need to act responsibly. Most people think that biking is a lower form of transportation so they don't need to pay attention to the rules (what cop would ever stop me!?). They don't realize that by following the rules they will be safer and have a more enjoyable time riding.
The patent office is doing their job. They are charged with recording and maintaining records of patents. When you file, you swear, under oath, that the patent you are filing does not already exist and is not already in prior practice. The people who file patents honestly do patent searches (that is why the lawyers get the big bucks) before they file the patent.
If you file a patent of something that already exists or has already been patented, you are expected to be taken to court to have your patent invalidated. The rules are setup in a way that the courts can deal with patent issues, not a government bureaucrat sitting in an office.
Of course that basically fails when a large company like Apple files a patent for something I invented 10 years ago. They will lawyer you into the ground instead of giving you a chance to negotiate a fair licensing model.
But, that is how the system was setup and how the office is charged in running.
They still are a fringe technology. They are only used in industry to do simple prototypes. They are used by consumers to make.... toys? I've only seen them print giveaways and demos, not a whole lot useful.
The real game is still with CNCs and milling CAD/CAM devices. Hell, even DYI laser cutters are slightly more useful than most 3D printers. With those you can make things out of metal, wood, plastic, acrylic, etc. They aren't nearly as hipster as 3D printers, but you know -- you can do something useful with them.