Technology vocabulary cheat sheet!
Bytes (Mega MB, Kilo KB, Giga GB) - A group of bits form a byte of data operating as a single unit of measure. Ex. A file size located on your computer occupies megabytes or kilobytes of space. Typically used to represent data capacity. Example: A high resolution photo for your conference program may use 2MB or more of space.
Latency - The time, typically measured in milliseconds (ms) that it takes a bit or byte of data to reach the destination from where it initiated. This processing time is affected by the network equipment sending and receiving the data. Therefore the equipment used is an important factor in overall speed of the system to your meeting participants.
Bandwith - Measured how much data can be sent over a specific connection in a given amount of time. (Picture a physical pipe with water flowing through it. The data is water, and the size of the pipe affects how much you can push through quickly). For example: 100mbps bandwidth allows 100 megabits per second to flow, versus a 1Gb bandwidth allows 1000 megabits per second, so 1Gb bandwidth is 10 times larger.
Wired - Known as Local Area Network or LAN. This is the physical network design within the venue to allow various devices to connect to the internet or communicate with one another. A wired connection is just as it sounds, plugged into a physical port usually via Ethernet cables. Wired connections experience little interference and are consistent in speeds/bandwidth offered.
Speed - Measure in mbps which stands for "megabits per second" is also called Bandwidth. See above.
Wi-Fi - also known as Wireless LAN or WLAN. A wireless network using radio, microwaves, etc. (as opposed to wired or cables) to transmit signals and allow various devices to connect to the internet or communicate with one another inside a space.
Dedicated vs Shared - On a shared Internet connection, all bandwidth (5 Mbps, 10 Mbps, etc.) is split among all users and devices, meaning you will get "up to" that much speed on the system. Dedicated bandwidth belongs to that user alone whether it is fully used or under-utilized. Dedicated can be wired or wireless.
Hotspots - A hotspot is a predefined area within location where people may obtain Internet access, typically using Wi-Fi technology, via a wireless local area network (WLAN) using a router connected to an internet service provider, such as your home or mobile.
Interference Sources - Sources which operate in the wireless spectrum of 2.4GHz or 5.4GHz which affect wireless transmission ability. Example or sources of 2.4GHz interference are microwave ovens, Bluetooth, gaming consoles and 2.4GHz digital audio. Each of these when operated can make Wireless Networks temporarily unavailable as they utilize the same spectrum. (Important to consider if planning a trade show, will exhibitors be using these devices?)
Streaming - A technique of transmitting or receiving data (especially video and audio material) over a computer network as a steady, continuous flow, allowing playback to proceed while subsequent data is being received.
Webcasting - The broadcasting of an event (pre-recorded or live) over a network.
Cloud computing - The delivery of hosted services over the internet. Ex. Office 365, Microsoft OneDrive, Google Drive and Facebook.