Upgrading your Wi-Fi

Here are some quick things to know about Wi-Fi

  • Wired connections are faster than Wi-Fi.
  • Wired connections are more secure.
  • From a health perspective, you don’t have the number of health risks from a wired connection as you do from wireless connections.
  • Odds are that your house is already wired for internet; you would just have need the adapters for a faster and more secure network.

 

Speed.  Speed is everything when it comes to doing things online today.  How fast a page loads.  How fast you upload your video or pictures to Facebook.   How much time you will watch Netflix, Amazon, or Hulu buffer when watching them.   There is nothing more frustrating than when it takes you 2.5 hours to watch a 2-hour movie because it is constantly buffering.   How much lag you have when you are playing games online.  For those that play online games, you know lag will ruin your day.

If you are looking for maximizing your speeds to get the most out of all the services that the internet can offer, then you will want to have everything wired.  Most people today use Wi-Fi because honestly it is easier to set up and a little cheaper.  However, Wi-Fi is slower than a wired connection.  In addition, from a security standpoint, wired connections are also safer.  Now knowing all of this you may think that having a wired network will cost thousands of dollars to place in your home, but the reality is, there is a very good chance that your house is already wired for this.  All you would have to do is have the right adapters.  How can you tell?

If your house was built in the last 15 years, there is a very good chance that you already have the wiring that is needed to achieve a wired network.  Yes, you may have to possibly purchase another adapter or two, however the total conversion will be a few hundred dollars, not thousands.  First thing to do is to understand how your house was wired in the first place.  Look in your rooms and see if there are wall hookups for TV (coax cable) and or telephone jacks in the rooms that you would want internet.  If they are there this is a good sign.  You will need either/or, not necessarily both.   If you have telephone jacks in all the rooms the next thing to look at is the type of wire that is used.  If you have a coax cable jack (what you plug a TV into) you would be good to go, especially for example if you have Charter for your internet service.  Look at the type of wiring that the builder used in the phone jacks.  You can do this by either looking in your basement (where they would have bundled the wires together) or carefully remove the wall plant and look at the wire.   Look at the wire and see if you can see the one of the following written on the side Cat5, Cat5E, or Cat6.   Any one or combination of the three will work.  The difference in the three types is the speed.  They are listed from slowest to fastest.  So if you have coax cable jacks, Cat5, Cat5e, or Cat6 wiring– you are already wired.  All you will really need is the right adapter and you have a wired network that is faster and more secure. If this is something that you want to look into further, I would suggest contacting www.soundinstallationsinc.com for those in the Eau Claire area.  For those outside that area look for an internet/audio specialist in your area.

Dry Toast-Guest Blog by Jeni

Sunday was a pivotal day–for what reason I cannot explain, but pivotal just the same. I had a retreat this past weekend. All girls who like to scrapbook or quilt, love their families, are such sweet and unique individuals. It was nice. Hard. Different. Cathartic. Nice. Everything is that way these days, Nice….but. There is a bit of a BUT, but I don’t worry about that BUT as much as I used to.
On Thursday, the scrapbook weekend started off with a bang. I had been preparing–for scrapbooking-layouts, photos, journaling, color schemes, stamps, brads, buttons…oh my!! I was prepared.  What I wasn’t prepared for was grief. For telling my story. It is something that you cannot prepare for. No matter what you do. No matter how hard you try, your feelings are unknown. It’s like when you are 9 months pregnant, you know this baby will arrive sometime….you just don’t know when!-it sometimes drives people like me crazy who kind of like to know about what the day will bring. Grief and feelings are not like that. Life is not like that. And it is ok.
I got all set up and began to scrapbook, looking at my detailed list, eager to check off items one by one. I was starting with our California trip, such a fun time. And really a journey of growth-a FIRST vacation without our girl.  Though like so much these days, a study of opposites.  SO very glad to be with Ayden and Joe and very dear family, yet also SO missing my girl and knowing she would have loved so much about the vacation too.
As I got started scrapbooking, more girls began to arrive, each of them with crazy sets of luggage that matched the amount that I had just brought in. All eager to begin…and so we did.  As the day progressed, we continued with the “getting to know each other” chats, and with it, questions about family.  Although I should have known this part would be hard, it seemed that I had not really prepared for these feelings. As I shared a little bit about Kyanna and my loss, tears filled my eyes. I no longer knew what to say. I did not know what to do except squeak out thank you to their very kind condolences, a small smile, nod, and tears, as some of the girls found out about this very dear girl that was now missing in my life.
I continued on with my scrapbooking, trying to swallow down the grief. All the preparation-journaling and planning, and lists-and this so very important thing-that I am different-that a big piece of my family, a chunk of my heart is missing….I couldn’t prepare for that–or know these emotions I would feel, at a place with all these kind, fun-loving ladies, who hold dearly their families so much that they lovingly spend 16 hours a day for 3 days looking at photos, arranging photos, perfectly putting down on paper or digitally their love for their families, their children, their pets.
For the rest of Thursday, I choked on my grief. I swallowed it like a dry piece of toast. It was stuck, yet I didn’t really want the discomfort of it coming up, so I politely ignored it, and continued to do so for the next day, even when after dinner we played a conversation game.  I got a “chat stack” game card that invited me to tell my story–the card I got said–if you could ever write a book, what would you write about? I proceeded to tell a light-hearted, sort of cute story about a mouse in our car. My piece of toast just got stuck a little bit further inside.
Oh well, you go on. you just DO. Then Saturday morning, someone asked me to see photos of Kyanna, she asked about what I was scrapbooking. She asked.  She wanted to hear about my girl.  She maybe could see the crumbs of grief sprinkled all around me. Maybe not. Maybe it was just a simple question.
Well, that was all it took. What I didn’t expect was how this grief looked as it rose out of me.  Yes, it was tears, maybe ugly tears, but with it was beauty.  Questions.  Loving and kind words.  Understanding, connectedness.  Not what I expected or what I prepared for–nothing at all.  Something better.  I talked about Kyanna to people who didn’t know her at all.  But who wanted to hear–and she was alive, if but for a moment in time.

One person asked me about how I see Kyanna since she has been gone-an animal or symbol or image…I couldn’t answer-even though I somehow knew the answer deep inside.  Well today, it hit me on the head.  Literally.

I got home from the scrapbooking retreat.  I unpacked.  I talked to Ayden and Joe about their weekend.  I put my stuff away, watered plants.  Task.  Task.  Task.  One more task-to go for a run.  While I was running I thought about these ladies I met and why I was so emotional.  It dawned on me.  This was the first time I really told my story.  Like for real.  Like not to people who already kind of knew.  But to people who had no idea, and then you give them this glimpse of you.  Like the real you.  The different you.  And they were ok with that.  They accepted that.  I am thankful.

Well, as I ran, I cried. I choked.  I made those horrible gasping sounds that usually you try to hide.  The gravity of opening up this weekend was exhausting.  Cathartic.  Exhausting.  Good.  Difficult.  Again, a study of polar opposites.  Paradoxical.  A piece of dry toast that got stuck.  As I ran, it all came out and I knew I needed to write my story down.  As I got nearer to home, I cried more and let myself go more, gasping and choking and crying.  I got near my neighbor’s house and that was when it happened.

Something BIG hit the brim of my baseball hat.  It startled me…what was THAT!  I ducked and moved, quite ungracefully, to the side of the sidewalk.  I SPAZZED and flailed my arms.  But then I looked up and I saw it–an enormous, beautiful dragonfly had given me a gentle reminder, a little nudge on the brim of my Brewers baseball hat…. then floated it’s way up and over my neighbor’s house… and into the woods.

There’s the answer to that question.  Thank you Kyanna.  I will tell this story.

SAR

SAR stands for Specific Absorption Rate.  In short it is a measurement of how much radiation is absorbed by an object.  In this case that object is us.  SAR is measured in W(Watts)/Kg(kilogram) and although it has practical uses in a laboratory, its adaptation to the real world is flawed.   It has become a marketing tool to sell phones and pass them off as safe which in turn the majority of the public has bought into.

The ‘safe’ SAR limit established by the FCC is 1.6 W/KG.  Know the FCC doesn’t test this, the manufacturer of the device is responsible for testing and reporting the SAR value.  SAR is woefully inaccurate in terms of relating the safety of any given device.  SAR is a point measurement.  Meaning when the manufacturer of the device measures the SAR value it is calculated in a lab, where everything is controlled.  Measurements are taken around the device and measured at multiple angles and distances and the ONE point that records the highest value becomes the SAR value.  I will say that again the highest point at one time becomes the SAR value.  Nothing else is considered.   There is no cumulative effect taken into account and furthermore this is only when the device is in use (on a call).  It will not take into account for example when the phone is dormant and is looking for the nearest tower to connect to in your pocket or purse, texting, or using apps.

In short the real world applications of the SAR is a fancy number with no real meaning.  If you have based the safety of your device off this number, then you have been taken for ride.   If you would like to limit your exposure as much as possible, but still use a cell phone then make sure it is in airplane mode when not in use.  This will also mean you will have to turn off your location and blue tooth functionality.  If turning these on and off is too inconvenient, then just turn the whole phone off.  Turn it on when you need it or are expecting a call.  Avoid talking with the phone next to your ear.  Keep the phone away from your body when you are using it.  When you talk on the phone use a wired head set or air tube head set.  If you are unable to do this talk on speaker phone.

SAR is a single point in time, nothing more.  People will look at a SAR value and see that it is below a given value and then proceed to use their phone as much or more thinking that it is safe.  Mobile phones are not safe.  The more that you use them, the more risk you assume.  Age matters because it is all about cumulative effects over time.  Because of that younger people are more at risk than older.  In addition, this not only affects the user but everyone around the user.   Just like second hand smoke with cigarettes.  If you are looking for a number to rate a phone, look for one that takes into account the cumulative exposure over time whenever the phone is on (not just on a call), as well as what this will project to anyone around the phone.  As you might have guessed, there is no number for that.  I will leave you to ponder why.

The top 3

Here are three easy steps to reduce your EMF exposure.

1) If it communicates using Wi-Fi, Bluetooth, or connects to anything wirelessly, avoid it. If you have to use it, use it sparingly

2) Install filters to address the dirty electricity in your home or office created by electronics

3) Get rid items that create a lot of electromagnetic pollution like treadmills, CFL’s, dimmer switches, and DECT phones to name a few

Wireless communication is everywhere and saturates us in a sea of EMF’s.  There are many simple things that you can do to reduce your exposure to wireless communication.

  • One is stay away from ‘smart’ tech. Anything that uses a form of wireless commination should be avoided.   Always opt for the wired version.
  • Instead of Wi-Fi use an Ethernet cable. From a health perspective it is safer and it is faster to boot.
  • Opt out of smart meters in your area. These could be located on your gas lines, utility box, and also public water systems.   If you are not able to opt-out, then shield it.
  • Turn off your cell phones when you are not using them. If you are able to get along without them then all the better.  Almost everything you can do on a phone you can do on a computer with a wired connection.
  • Make sure that all your electronic devices (computers, printers, blue ray, game consoles) are not communicating wirelessly
  • Avoid items like your tablets that only use wireless. If you use them only use them in airplane mode.
  • Replacing certain DECT phones, which are the cordless phones that people with a landline use.  There are some that constantly send out a signal even when not in use.  If you want a wireless phone, only buy one that connects when in use or buy a phone with a cord.

You will need to also address the dirty electricity that is running through your home.  To do this you will need filters and also a meter to measure your levels.  The meter, like a scale will just tell you what is there, nothing more, nothing less.  Armed with a simple meter you will be able to clean up your own environment.  The average home takes about 20 filters.   You can purchase filters and a meters here.  I also send instructions on how to use and install the filters.  If there are questions on installation, feel free to contact me at darnell@flutterbusters.com

Lastly cleaning up your home environment by getting rid of big polluters like CFL (curly-q) light bulbs, treadmills and dimmer switches.  Instead of a treadmill, run outside—it is free.  Treadmills have VFD’s (variable frequency drives) which create a lot of dirty electricity.  VFD’s need harmonic filters and most treadmills do not come with them.  If you know how to create filters you could add it to your treadmill but an easier route would be to use something else.  A good substitute would be anything that is mechanical (ie doesn’t use a motor) like an elliptical, exercise bikes, many Nordic Tracks, and rowing machines.  You don’t want anything that can hook up with Bluetooth or Wi-Fi.

Never ever buy a CFL bulb and if you have them, replace them as soon as possible.  Incandescent bulbs or halogen are a suitable replacement.  LED are hit or miss.  Some are good some are not.  Having a Microsurge meter will tell you if the bulb is ok or not.  Simply plug it into a power strip and take note of the reading.  Turn on the light and if the reading is higher than when you started it is bad.  If the number returns to the initial reading then it is alright.   Simple as that.  Lastly replace your dimmer switches with just a standard switch.   Not only are the standard switches cheaper than dimmer switches, they created less power quality issues.