Jim Hayes

Fiber Optics Columnist and Freelance Writer

HAYES is a VDV writer and trainer and the president of The Fiber Optic Association. Find him at www.JimHayes.com.

Articles by Jim Hayes

July 2005
Fiber optics, like many of today's technologies, has developed its own language, created from technical terms specific to fiber optic technology. Sometimes the fiber optic community cannot-or will not-standardize, and we mean beyond choosing a standard connector. Sometimes the industry cannot even agree on what to call something. READ MORE
June 2005
There are two different ways to join two optical fibers: splices or connectors. Splices are permanent joints, while connectors allow the two fibers to be disconnected at the joint. There are obvious advantages with connectors, allowing for changes in network connections or accessing the network for testing. READ MORE
May 2005
Since the beginning of fiber optics, groups such as the Telecommunications Industry Association (TIA) have worked to create standards. Standards are mandatory for technologies to move from R&D to large-scale commercial applications. READ MORE
April 2005
Now that fiber optics is finally being used for a broadband connection to the home, it's time to consider if it has a use in the home. READ MORE
March 2005
Contractors and installers generally are concerned with cabling, not networks. Installing and testing cabling to standards such as TIA-568 is the heart of their voice/data/video work. Cabling standards writers are primarily concerned with performance and interoperability. Eventually, all cabling must be able to support network traffic. READ MORE
February 2005
Since the first installations of fiber optic networks more than 25 years ago, the goal of the fiber optic industry has been to install fiber optics all the way to the home. From an economic standpoint, fiber was most cost-effective in the long-distance networks. Fiber’s high bandwidth and low attenuation easily offset its higher cost. READ MORE
January 2005
Every year, fiber optics gains more converts and more market share. And each year, many of its proponents predict the demise of copper wiring. Don't believe it-not yet. The wiring manufacturers have been working overtime for the last 20 years to keep up with the performance of fiber optics, although the latest round of network performance upgrades is severely stretching their capabilities. READ MORE
December 2004
In outside plant fiber optic installations, the biggest cause of network failure is what we call “backhoe fade,” which is pretty self-explanatory. Cables in premises installations are unlikely to be dug up accidentally, but are susceptible to damage when installers are working around the cables in trays or conduit. READ MORE
November 2004
Is it time to fine-tune older fiber? Some fiber optic networks have now been in use for more than 20 years, a tribute to the inherent capabilities of optical fiber. In that same time, copper cabling for premises networks has been through two generations of coax and at least four generations of unshielded twisted pair cabling. READ MORE