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Cable Installation Guide

Why the Cable You're Installing Is So Special

Cat 5 cableThe kind of cable that NetDay volunteers will install is called Category 5. It's made up of eight color-coded, twisted copper phone wires encased in a sheath, and it costs about 10 cents a foot at computer supply stores. State-of-the-art, it's the same cable that high-speed networks in most businesses run on. If Category 5 cable is installed according to certain specifications, computer data can travel over it at high speeds. It's said to have high bandwidth.

The cable that NetDay volunteers will install will let students and teachers in different schoolrooms send one another e-mail and share text files. Through the Internet, it will also help connect the students and teachers at your school with knowledge, resources and other students and teachers across the world.

In addition, Category 5 cable's high bandwidth will let students and teachers within a school exchange and view one another's pictures and movies. (Generally, when pictures and movies are translated into digital format, they make relatively large files that can't travel well over low-bandwidth cable.) And finally, schools wired with high-bandwidth cable won't be a bottleneck in the future, as bigger and bigger chunks of data become available over the Internet. Phone companies around the country are now replacing old phone networks with high-bandwidth cable.

Glossary of Terms