When you live in a neighborhood where everyone has a wireless network, you’ll struggle to get adequate coverage in every room of your home. That’s just the nature of wireless networking; we don’t have enough non-overlapping channels to cover everyone. I’ve heard a number of complaints lately that U-Verse isn’t reliable, but I’ve traced that [...]
The Marx 1590 is the best O27 switch ever made. It’s durable, works well with all makes of trains (just put a track pin in the center rail where the switch pivots so that Lionel trains can pass), and can run off accessory power without modification. The only downside is that it (allegedly) can’t be [...]
As convenient as wireless is, wireless will never match the security, speed, and reliability of wired Ethernet. I ran some wired Ethernet jacks in mid-2009 and have no regrets, but on my last trip to Lowe’s, I spied a nifty shortcut for wiring: an Ethernet coupler that plugs into a standard keystone jack. They were [...]
So Best Buy is planning to close 50 big-box stores, downsize others, and try to focus its efforts on selling cell phones, tablets, and e-readers. Sounds to me like they’re trying to become Radio Shack.
The so-called wi-fi golden era is over, and apparently being glad about it makes me an absolutist. But John C. Dvorak is wrong. This isn’t about making people pay for Internet access. It’s pure security. Toilets and drinking fountains are free because the majority of people don’t abuse them. The Internet can’t be wide open [...]
About 35, or maybe even 40 years ago, my dad went through a phase. Or perhaps I should say a craze–he made lamps out of anything that didn’t move. And I’m sure if anyone had pointed that out to him, he would have made a lamp out of something that did, just to prove them [...]
I installed a Lutron occupancy sensor switch this weekend. It detects you entering the room, turns the lights on, then turns them off five minutes after it detects nobody is in the room. The timeout period is adjustable. It comes in four models: MS-OPS2-WH (white), -AL (almond), -LA (light almond), and -IV (ivory) and retails [...]
This week I received an advance copy of the January 2012 Classic Toy Trains. There, on page 42, is my first magazine article in more than a decade: Smart wiring for the gateman. I’d like to make a couple of clarifications on the article, as space constraints kept me from elaborating quite as much as [...]