Category Archives: Networking

MTRG: An Automatic Grading Method

MTRG stands for Medical Transcription Report Grader — a software that uploads a transcribed document and compares it to a corresponding answer key that is set within the system. It is an automatic grading method used by students, which gives a numerical score and feedback on both correct and incorrect transcribing.

What it Can Do

The current MTRG program can distinguish errors or slip ups of certain kinds, but not all. Some of those that it cannot detect are the spelling of medical terms versus the English counterparts, paragraphing elements, and punctuations. However, some institutions are developing a more advanced scheme to detect errors on student reports to make it a more comprehensive and extensive grading software.

Among the plans to improve MTRG are the features that assign point values on some types of error; working it out has been the primary goal of bigger medical transcription schools. Reports do not have to reach the hands of the instructors for them to be meticulously checked and graded.

Fast Feedback

MTRG is a grading protocol that color-codes its feedback on some error types in the medical transcription (MT) student’s report. Its main function is an accurate matching system. When a report is transcribed, it has to be saved the on MTRG.exe file on the computer. This program uploads the document so that instructors can access the graded reports of their students. The school’s server stores them in case of the need for further review.

Medical Transcription Skill

Medical transcription needs skill to be performed well; and with the help of this program, the students learn without difficulty what mistakes are frequently made in their work. The terms associated with the medical field are hard to make out as there are many things to consider before they can be plotted into words. Sometimes, the speaker’s voice is not very audible; and accents can be challenging.

With the help of a fast grading method, students can gain speed and accuracy in doing their sample transcriptions or be given quick response on their errors. Training for most job skills requires manual operation and checking, but Medical Transcription Report Grader is a positive and constructive element in the tedious work of medical transcription.

MTRG

Medical Transcription Report Grader (MTRG) is a software that uploads a transcribed document and compares it to a corresponding answer key that is set within the system. It is an automatic grading method used by students to give a numerical score and feedback on both correct and incorrect transcribing.

MTRG is a grading protocol that color-codes its feedback on some error types in the medical transcription (MT) student’s report. Its main function is an accurate matching system. When a report is transcribed, it has to be saved in the MTRG.exe file on the computer. This program uploads the document so that instructors can access the graded reports of their students. The school’s server stores these reports in case of the need for further review.

Why is MTRG needed?

Medical transcription needs skills to be carried out well. The terms associated with the medical field are hard to make out as there are many things to consider before they can be plotted into words. Sometimes, the speaker’s voice is not very audible; and accents can be challenging.

MTRG helps the students to easily learn what mistakes are frequently made in their work. With the help of a fast grading method, students are given the opportunity to study their errors as soon as they have completed their transcriptions. This will help them improve their skills more quickly.

Training for most job skills requires manual operation and checking, but Medical Transcription Report Grader is a positive and constructive element in the tedious work of medical transcription.

Limitations of Current MTRG

The current MTRG program can distinguish errors or slip ups of certain kinds, but not all. Some of those that it cannot detect are the spelling of medical terms versus the English counterparts, paragraphing elements, and punctuations.

Some institutions are developing a more comprehensive and extensive grading software to detect errors on student reports. Bigger medical transcription schools are now planning to improve MTRG that assign point values on some types of error. Through this, instructors will no longer need to manually check and grade the reports.

TCP

Transmission Control Protocol, or TCP, is one of the many core elements in the Internet Protocol Suite. The Internet Protocol Suite is the set of protocols used to communicate in the Internet and in other networks.

The TCP’s whole suite is widely held as “TCP/IP”. The IP takes care of the lower-level computer-to-computer transmissions. TCP operates at a more intricate level. TCP takes care of only two end systems such as a Web server and browser.

The model of TCP/IP is composed of four layers (starting from the highest):

  1. Application Layer,
  2. Transport Layer,
  3. Internet Layer, and
  4. Link Layer.

How TCP Works

IP works by exchanging packets. A packet is a piece of information composed of a series of bytes and has both a header and a body. The header determines the destination of the packet and the routers where it will pass, while the body holds the data of the IP it is about to transmit. When the IP transmits data as a substitute to TCP, the IP packet body contents are called TCP data.

Advantages of TCP

TCP is efficient in delivering a stream of bytes from one computer to another, even if they are of different programs. TCP is useful in the Web, file transfer and in email transactions. TCP can control message sizes, message exchange rates and network traffic organization.

TCP is also keen in detecting congestion within networks, traffic imbalances, and other inevitable network mishaps. If the TCP detects these, it sends a request for the retransmission of packets that were caught in the crossfire.

It rearranges the packets and reduces the possibility of other network problems, thereby minimizing network congestion. When the TCP at the other end has already rebuilt a perfect replica of the data originally transmitted, it sends this data to its application programs. TCP hastens network communication tasks.

Data Load Delivery by TCP

TCP can efficiently send a large load of data through the Internet using IP. Before, these data were broken down into IP-sized chunks and were requested through a set of IP requests. With TCP, you can send a large amount of data with just a single TCP request which will handle all the IP intricacies.

Hostname

A hostname refers to the name assigned to an individual machine that is a component of a computer network. Each one of these machines can be given a unique hostname (with which they can be pinpointed within the network):

  • A computer
  • A network server
  • A network printer
  • A network storage device
  • A fax machine
  • A copier
  • A modem
  • Any electronic device linked to a network

Allotting hostnames uses different naming systems. Each of these systems has a unique naming convention. The Domain Name System (DNS) is the most widespread naming system used in the Internet. DNS recognizes the host computer where the website exists. Indicated before the domain name is the host computer’s address separated by a period.

The domain name comprises a sequence of labels. Periods separate these labels. There are no spaces permitted between or within labels in the domain name. All specified labels (plus the top-level domain name or TLD) result in a Fully-Qualified Domain Name (FQDN). Strictly, FQDNS should end in a period, although these periods are usually omitted in practice. An individual label may have as many as 63 characters but the whole FQDN cannot exceed 255 characters.

Certain rules determine the validity of a hostname. A hostname should only contain characters from ‘a’ to ‘z,’ numerals from ‘0’ to ‘9,’ and the hyphen. It does not allow special characters such as the underscore (_).

For example, if 123.com is an organization’s domain name and XYZ computer is a component of that network, then the FQDN of that specific computer would be xyz.123.com. The whole FQDN would be the hostname.

Who Invented the Internet

The Internet took several decades and the effort of a number of significant individuals to build. It now fuels a great deal of the processes of the world these days.

Leonard Kleinrock: Packet Switching

Imagine a system requiring you to have an individual phone line and modem for each person you want to talk to. This makes things a lot more expensive. Packet switching allows multiple users to connect using a single physical connection, rather than by multiple connections.

Leonard Kleinrock understood and applied this concept in the effort to replace the old circuit switching process. Packet switching, the concept that refers to the transfer of information online and relies solely on such a theory, is essential to the Internet.

Larry G. Roberts: Long-distance Computer Network

Larry G. Roberts created the first long-distance computer network. This is vital for the Internet, relying on the long-distance networks of computers in the distribution of data. He also initiated the Advanced Research Projects Agency (ARPANET), which later grew into the modern Internet.

Bob Kahn and Vinton Cerf: Transmission Control
Protocol

Data travels, consequently creating traffic. Bob Kahn and Vinton Cerf saw this problem and came up with the Transmission Control Protocol (TCP). This is the closest thing to modern Internet technology. TCP controls the traffic of data and manages connections worldwide. These two geniuses could have produced the Internet by themselves. However, they did not create the other important components of modern Internet.

Radia Perlaman: Spanning Tree Algorithm

Any fine connection requires an excellent bridge to keep the data flow working to a maximum. Radia Perlaman built the spanning tree algorithm to create that bridge between separate networks. This allowed a good bridging solution, since the absence of such would render networks of this scale impractical.

Tim Berners-Lee and Robert Cailliau: The Internet You
Know

Tim Berners-Lee and Robert Cailliau created the popular and well-liked application we know now, in the effort to make the Internet available to the public. They developed a user-friendly interface and a system to allow easy access to various types of information.

FCAPS

The acronym FCAPS stands for Fault, Configuration, Accounting, Performance, and Security. It serves as a network management model and framework of the ISO Telecommunications Management Network. This represents the individual categories within the ISO model that specifies the tasks involved for the overall network management process.

For some organizations that use the model, “Administration” replaces “Accounting”. First introduced during the early 80’s, FCAPS was used to separately identify and single out the varying protocol standards, with each having its own function.

Every organization requires a proper Information Technology (IT) infrastructure for effective management. With this in place, problems or mishaps can be easily detected and corrected. Repair time can be shortened thus reducing system downtime and minimizing revenue losses.

The Five Aspects of Management

  • Fault Management
  • This is the process of the domain that identifies and pinpoints problems within the network. Unless problems are detected, nothing can be done to correct them and improve the efficiency of the system. Hence, this part of the entire management process is crucial. Once problems are identified, steps can be taken to correct them.

  • Configuration Management
  • This part is the monitoring and controlling of daily operations. It is important that all programming and hardware changes are coordinated within the network for easier maintenance. The same also applies when new programs, applications, or equipment are added into the network. Similar procedures must also be observed when removing systems or programs.

  • Accounting Management
  • This part of the system relates to billing management. Usage statistics for users are gathered so that they can be billed accurately. Also, this helps in the enforcement of usage quotas.

  • Performance Management
  • This level is charged with overlooking the entire performance of the network.
    It assesses the network’s performance in terms of the average number of messages successfully delivered through a communication channel. This can be done through the gathering of analysis of performance data. Trend forecasting can then be used on this data to alert management of any imminent threat to the system.

  • Security Management
  • This level of management will help reduce the possibility of sabotage or unauthorized access into the network by illegal users. This part involves the authentication and authorization of users as well as the encryption of data to protect the confidentiality of user information and rights.

SSH

Secure Shell (SSH) is a network protocol which uses a secure channel for data exchange between two devices in a network. It was created by the SSH Communication Security Ltd.

The Secure Shell program enables logging on to another computer within a network. It allows execution of commands in a remote machine and file transfer from one device to another.

SSH offers solid authentication and secure communication when using unsecured channels. Moreover, it guards a network from DNS spoofing, IP spoofing, and IP source routing. A user attacking a network will be unable to play back traffic or hijack connections when encryption is activated. The attacker can only drive SSH to disconnect.

Linux and Unix-based systems utilize SSH to access shell accounts as a replacement for unsecured remote shells. These unsecured shells transmit passwords and such information in plaintext which make them prone to interception. SSH’s encryption endows confidentiality of information and integrity of data over unsecured networks like the Internet.

In addition, SSH listens through the traditional TCP port. Logging into remote machines and executing commands are the typical processes that use SSH. SSH also forwards TCP ports and X11 connections, supports tunneling, and transfer files with SCP or STFP protocols. SSH uses the client-server model.

Furthermore, SSH utilizes public-key cryptography for authentication of the remote computer; thus, allowing the computer’s authentication of the user. It is virtually impossible for an outside user to save passwords since the login session is encrypted.

SSH is present in most Operating Systems, including FreeBSD, Mac OS X, Linux, OpenVMS, and Solaris. It also operates under RSA authentication.

MMDS

MMDS stands for Multichannel Multipoint Distribution Service. This is a specification that uses broadband wireless technology and a point-to-multipoint structure. This means MMDS uses a single antenna which broadcasts to several receiving antennas. MMDS makes use of Ultra High Frequency (UHF) communication.

MMDS operates on frequencies licensed by the Federal Communications Commission (FCC). The said government agency divided the US into separate basic trading areas with MMDS bands in each area. To regulate MMDS, the FCC sold to certain providers the transmission rights for the MMDS bands in each basic trading area. Apart from USA, other countries that use MMDS include Canada, Ireland, Mexico, and Russia.

MMDS presents several specifications for companies providing the service. The maximum bandwidth of MMDS is 10Mb with a range of 70 miles. Its band uses microwave frequencies ranging from 2.5GHz to 2.686Ghz. To achieve data transport security, MMDS performs Triple DES, a Data Encryption Standard, on the traffic flows between the wireless modem and the Wireless Modem Termination System (WMTS). These components are found in the network of the provider’s main station.

Aside from being used in programming receptions for certain cable television systems, MMDS is also used in broadband networks. Its high speed data transfer capability enables users to acquire more information in less time. In both cases, since users do not need to acquire wires for their cable TV or Internet access, MMDS entails relatively lower costs.

MMDS also adapts the Data Over Cable Service Interface Specification (DOCSIS). DOCSIS defines standards involved in cable modems and equipment that support high speed transfer of data.

Jitter

Jitter is a change in the characteristic of pulses in a high-frequency signal. This digital deviation can be caused by conditions in phase timing, amplitude, or signal-pulse width. Electromagnetic interference (EMI) and signal crosstalk are some of the sources of jitter.

In personal computing, jitter can make a monitor or display flicker, affect a processor’s performance, change audio signals, and induce the loss of transmitted data.

In Voice-over Internet Protocol (VoIP), jitter is the variance in time of packet arrival, often rooted in high network traffic, route changes, or timing drift.

Procedures of jitter measurement and evaluation depend on the circuitry being tested. Eye diagrams are used to measure jitter in Serial Bus (SB) architecture. The data stream of digitized analog waveforms on the other hand, is analyzed in the measurement of pixel jitter. The objective of jitter measurement is to make sure that jitter will not upset the circuitry’s normal operation.

Types of Jitter

  • Constant Jitter – a near-constant level of variation in packet-to-packet delay.
  • Transient Jitter – a single packet incurring an incremental yet substantial delay.
  • Short Term Delay Variation – a number of packets incurring increase in delay, accompanied by an increase in variation of packet-to-packet delay.

Types of Jitter Prevention

  • Anti-jitter Circuits (AJC) – electronic circuits that reduce jitter level in a normal pulse signal. AJCs retime output pulses to align with a standard pulse signal.
  • Jitter Buffers – also known as de-jitter buffers, these counter jitter from packet-switched networks to ensure a continuous stream of audio or video transmission over the network.
  • Dejitterizer – a device that lessens digital signal jitter. It consists of a buffer where the signal is stored temporarily, then resent based on the average rate of the incoming signal.

IrDA

IrDA stands for Infrared Data Association. This is an organization that creates and develops communication standards for infrared technology. This organization was founded in the early 90s. It presently has a large managing body for a wide array of infrared-related hardware.

The expansion of infrared technology brought about the need for the standards made by the IrDA. The first line of infrared devices, primarily consisting of remote controls, could only send data. Bi-directional devices, on the other hand, have intricate designs capable of a two-way transfer of data. In response to this development, IrDA formed the standards which all developers and manufacturers adhere to.

The specifications of IrDA are classified in different levels. The Infrared Physical Layer Specification or IrPHY is the most basic level. This specification defines the angle limits, distance range, and speed range for an IrDA hardware.

The Infrared Link Access Protocol, or IrLAP, is the second level of the IrDA specifications. The IrLAP defines and draws out the means through which an infrared device would establish connection with another infrared device.

The Infrared Link Management Protocol, or IrLMP, is the third level of the IrDA specifications. This level defines and organizes the ways in which service providers can be listed. In addition, IrLMP also defines how data channels can be found.

The IrDA’s specifications are applied to a wide array of technologies. Printers are the most common hardware that use IrDA standards. Cameras and mobile phones are examples of portable devices that also use the IrDA specifications. Other products that apply these standards include smart cards provided by a number of banks.

UDP

UDP, which stands for User Datagram Protocol, is a communications protocol that provides a limited amount of service when messages are exchanged between computers within a network using the Internet Protocol (IP). It is an alternative to the Transmission Control Protocol (TCP).

Designed by David P. Reed in 1980, UDP is sometimes referred to as the Universal Datagram Protocol. TCP and UDP have pertinent similarities and differences. Like TCP, UDP uses the Internet protocol to transfer a data unit called datagram from one computer to another. However, it does not divide the message (datagram) into packets and then reassemble it at the other end of transmission. UDP has very small data units to exchange so there is no guarantee that the entire message will arrive in its proper sequence.

Both TCP and UDP, and two other remaining protocols of IP and ICMP, have checksums. In all protocols, the checksums cover the protocol header and any present data. On the other hand, the use of checksums is only optional in UDP.

The many metrics built in TCP’s header, such as TCP sequence number and acknowledgment number, make it connection-oriented whereas the latter does not have built-in metrics in its header.

  • UDP uses the Internet Protocol, much like TCP, to get a data unit called datagram from one computer to another.

TCP has an average header length of 20 bytes, while UDP has an average header length of 8 bytes. Therefore, UDP is much faster because there is less to transmit. Time-sensitive applications often use UDP because of its speed, albeit deliveries that are not guaranteed.

  • UDP has no connection state, while TCP maintains a connection state in the end systems. These connection states such as receive and send buffers, congestion control parameters, and sequence and acknowledgment number parameters, are needed for TCP’s reliable data transfer service. As UDP does not maintain connection states, an application running on UDP can have its server support more active clients.
  • UDP has an unregulated send rate. UDP’s rate of sending data is only limited by the rate at which the application produces data, the capability of the source, clock rate, and other factors. On the other hand, TCP utilizes a congestion control mechanism that chokes the sender when one or more links between the sender and receiver becomes extremely congested.
  • Some of the most common applications that use UDP are: Trivial File Transfer Protocol, Domain Name System (DNS), Voice over IP (VoIP), IPTV, and Online gaming.

    UDP Segment Structure

    The application data is found in the data field of the UDP datagram. For instance, the DNS data field contains either a response message or a query message. On the other hand, audio samples fill the data field for streaming audio applications. UDP headers have only four fields, each consisting of four bytes. The destination ports’ numbers allow the destination host to transfer the data to the appropriate process running in that host. Checksums are used by receiving hosts to check for errors that had been introduced during its transmission from host to destination.

    The UDP segment structure is completely defined in RFC 768.

    Ethernet Hub

    Before any two devices could be attached, they need to intersect at a certain place. In the context of computers, this intersection, which hooks up several users together, is called a hub. A hub that supports Ethernet standards is called the Ethernet hub. It connects devices and makes them function as a single network segment.

    The most important function of the Ethernet hub is to forward large packets of data, also called packets, from one computer to another. The data goes through all the ports that are hooked to the hub.

    How Ethernet Hubs Work

    Ethernet hubs work at the layer 1 (physical layer) of the open systems interconnection (OSI) model. Because of this, the hub is also called the layer 1 switch. The hub is a form of a multiport repeater, which forwards jam signals to all connected ports if a collisions are detected.

    The number of ports that an Ethernet hub supports varies. There are some that only support one port, while some support eight or more ports. The hubs with multiple ports are very common in big offices with numerous inter-connected computers.

    Disadvantage of Using an Ethernet Hub

    The only disadvantage of using an Ethernet hub is that data can be forwarded from only one source at a time. If there are many computers connected to the hub simultaneously forwarding data to others, a collision will happen. This drawback can be compared to a one-way road, wherein vehicles coming from the wrong direction are likely to cause disorder.

    Types of Ethernet Hubs

    There are different types of Ethernet hubs. Some have screens that show the network usage information. These allow the user to identify how much data is being passed on among computers. Other types of Ethernet hubs vary depending on the broadband speed or the speed of the network connection.

    The newer array of hubs available in the market are comparatively smaller and do not create noise. The earlier versions are noisier due to built-in fans needed to cool the system.

    An Ethernet hub is usually situated in a corner or in a location where there is not much movement, since any kind of motion can interrupt its operation. Most computer networks today have hubs, even homes.