Lighting a Fire Under Satellite Broadband

The root of satellite speed is processing power on the ground

3 min read
Lighting a Fire Under Satellite Broadband


Photo: Space Systems/Loral
Engineers run final tests on the ViaSat-1 satellite, whose 140-gigabit-per-second capacity will vastly enhance service for its namesake company's broadband Internet customers. It will help give them data transfer speeds comparable to those enjoyed by Web surfers with optical fiber connections. Click on the image to enlarge.

17 February 2012—ViaSat is hoping to leave the rest of the satellite broadband universe in the dust. On 10 January, it launched Exede, a new satellite broadband service that the Carlsbad, Calif., satellite communications company claims will be as good as or better than the average optical fiber connection on the ground. ViaSat plans to offer the service to about a million subscribers across the United States and Canada.

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How Police Exploited the Capitol Riot’s Digital Records

Forensic technology is powerful, but is it worth the privacy trade-offs?

11 min read
 Illustration of the silhouette of a person with upraised arm holding a cellphone in front of the U.S. Capitol building. Superimposed on the head is a green matrix, which represents data points used for facial recognition
Gabriel Zimmer

The group of well-dressed young men who gathered on the outskirts of Baltimore on the night of 5 January 2021 hardly looked like extremists. But the next day, prosecutors allege, they would all breach the United States Capitol during the deadly insurrection. Several would loot and destroy media equipment, and one would assault a policeman.

No strangers to protest, the men, members of the America First movement, diligently donned masks to obscure their faces. None boasted of their exploits on social media, and none of their friends or family would come forward to denounce them. But on 5 January, they made one piping hot, family-size mistake: They shared a pizza.

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