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March 7, 2003

The Ideal: Unlimited Bandwidth and a Captive Audience

I was reading Pete's entry about bandwidth, caused me to reflect on two things I appreciate about where I work.

1. We rarely face bandwidth issues. The users of our service at Tufts are med students, often spending the entire day on campus and using our site in a classroom or computer lab (which are all connected by either a 100Mbt or gigabit line to our servers). In addition, a high percentage of them have good connections (DSL, cable modem) in their apartments. We occasionally get a dial-up user who has issues with downloading a large PDF filled with high-res images, but 85% of what we serve up is HTML so even on a slower connection most of the information is available.

2. We have a captive audience. Professors put up their images, video clips, PDFs, quizzes, evaluations syllabi and the students have no alternative but to come to us to get the information they need. Promotion is not something I enjoy, and it's nice to know that we're not at the whims of search engine rankings.

Maybe I'm being narrow sighted, one could probably argue that we are better off paying attention to both issues, bandwidth and marketing, even though they might different from the next guy's internet service.

Posted by mike at March 7, 2003 9:25 AM