Employee Feature: Nick Powell


We want you to get to know our team at Daystarr, so we give you Nick! Nick works as a Customer Experience Technician, working to get customers internet/phone back up when it goes down. A very important job indeed!

Outside of work Nick enjoys staying active; he plays on a Volleyball league, golfs in the warmer months, and hiking!

When asked what he likes most about working at DayStarr, Nick notes “I have two favorite things about working at DayStarr. One, is that I know that the product we offer our customers is truly the best. Two, is that the people that work here are amazing, and create a great work environment.” Nick has made a great addition to our team, we are so glad to have him!

Choosing the Right Ethernet Cable


In today’s world, reliable and high-speed internet connectivity is essential. When wiring a house or workplace with ethernet for transferring local data, there’s a wealth of options to choose from – each with its own set of characteristics and capabilities. To make an informed decision, it’s essential to understand the differences between ethernet cable standards.


CAT5e (Category 5e):

CAT5e is a reliable choice for home networking and some small businesses. It offers a data rate of up to 1 Gbps (Gigabit per second) and a maximum bandwidth of 100 MHz. It’s suitable for everyday internet use, video streaming, and online gaming. If you have a modest network setup and don’t require lightning-fast speeds, CAT5e will be cost-effective and sufficient.


CAT6 (Category 6):

For those who need a bit more speed and reliability, CAT6 is a logical step up. It supports data rates of up to 1 Gbps, just like CAT5e, but with an improved maximum bandwidth of 250 MHz. This extra bandwidth reduces crosstalk and interference, making it ideal for larger homes and small to medium-sized businesses. CAT6 is an excellent choice for tasks like high-definition video streaming, VoIP (Voice over Internet Protocol), and even light server tasks.


CAT6a (Category 6 Augmented):

CAT6a takes things up a notch, supporting data rates of 10 Gbps over a maximum bandwidth of 500 MHz. This cable is the standard choice for demanding applications, such as data centers and high-performance networks. It’s perfect for large file transfers, 4K video streaming, and future-proofing your network for upcoming technologies. CAT6a’s improved shielding minimizes electromagnetic interference, making it suitable for longer cable runs and high-speed applications.


CAT7 (Category 7):

If you need exceptional performance and want to invest in an extremely up to date Ethernet cable, CAT7 is a compelling option. It can handle data rates of up to 10 Gbps over a maximum bandwidth of 600 MHz. It’s specifically designed to minimize crosstalk and interference, and is ideal for advanced applications including large-scale data centers and high-speed data transfers. Most homes and businesses won’t benefit from the advantages of CAT7, so it might not be worth the higher price tag – but there’s an argument to be made for future-proofing your house as much as possible!


There are even options more advanced than CAT7. CAT7a and CAT8 are options that offer 25 Gbps and 40 Gbps data rates, respectively. These are designed for cutting-edge applications; only necessary for enterprises with exceptionally high data demands.


Your choice of Ethernet cable should align with your current and future networking needs. For basic home use and small businesses, CAT5e will probably be plenty. For more demanding applications, consider CAT6 or CAT6a. If you’re an enterprise with high data requirements, explore CAT7 and beyond.


Also consider your network environment, the length of cable runs, and your budget. Investing in a higher-grade cable ensures future-proofing your network and a seamless experience as technology continues to advance, but that may not be necessary for your use case. Making the right choice now can save you from network-related headaches down the road and provide you with the high-quality connectivity you need.

How Search Engines Work


In our digital age, most of us use search engines every single day. But have you ever wondered how they work behind the scenes? In this article, we’ll explore the mechanisms of search engines and delve into the intricate algorithms that power their search results.

Crawling and Indexing

A search begins with a process known as crawling. Search engines like Google deploy computer programs called web crawlers (or spiders) to explore the internet. These crawlers start from a list of known web addresses, or URLs, and systematically follow links to other pages. They continuously scour data on web pages, including text, images, and other media.

After gathering this data, the next step is indexing. The search engine processes and organizes the information it has collected, creating a massive database of web content. This index allows the search engine to retrieve relevant pages quickly when users make a search query.

Ranking and Relevance

When you type a query into Google’s search bar, the search engine sifts through its index, identifying relevant pages. Google’s algorithm evaluates several factors to determine which pages appear at the top of the search results, such as the relevance of the site to your search, the perceived authority of the site, and the freshness of the site (or how recent it is).

Serving Results

After analyzing these factors, Google creates a list of search results. The pages are displayed in descending order of relevance, as determined by the algorithm. The user is then presented with a list of clickable links.

The Future of Search Engines

Search engines are continually evolving. Voice search, artificial intelligence, and natural language processing are transforming the way we interact with search engines. Voice-activated assistants like Siri and Google Assistant are gaining popularity, enabling users to search for information by speaking into the device’s microphone.

In conclusion, search engines are intricate tools that have revolutionized how we access information. From crawling and indexing to ranking and relevance, these systems work tirelessly behind the scenes to provide us with the answers we seek. As technology advances, we can expect search engines to become even more sophisticated, making our digital quests for knowledge faster than ever before. Next time you type a query into Google’s search bar, remember the complex processes that power those search results and make the internet’s vast information accessible at your fingertips.

Employee Feature: Katie Stanfield





Katie joins DayStarr as the newest member of our Customer Experience team. When asked what she likes most about her work here, Katie expressed her love for the culture at DayStarr. She enjoys being able to help the community through communications and being a part of a great local business!

Here’s a bit about Katie as a person: Katie grew up in Owosso and graduated from OHS. Her favorite activities outside of work include riding her bike, and finding a good place to set up her hammock to read a good book.

How to Organize Your Desktop!


If you’re like me, you’re very familiar with the struggles associated with a messy desktop. Your entire screen is a chaotic jumble of files – videos, homework assignments, random pictures, and folders with obscure names. You can’t remember where anything is supposed to be, and it becomes a massive pain to deal with. Luckily for you, I have some tips for cleaning your desktop and keeping it that way!

First, move everything into a folder.

When I clean my desktop, I usually begin by moving everything on the screen into a single folder, probably labeled “Desktop” or something similar. This immediately cleans up the look and puts everything into one spot where you can easily sort and organize it.

Next, make folders to keep things organized.

Second, I make folders for each category in which I might want to store my files. I might have one for work or school, one for pictures, one for videos, and one for those miscellaneous files that don’t fit anywhere.

Start organizing!

Now for the hardest part, assuming your desktop is as messy as mine was. Time to start organizing! You can approach this however you like, but I usually sort the files by file type and move them into their respective folders. Then I go through deleting everything I don’t need anymore. Don’t forget to empty your trash bin afterward – this will clear up space on your hard drive!

Other folders.

You may also want to investigate cleaning out other folders, such as your downloads and documents. These can hold a surprising amount of data in them, especially the downloads folder.

If your computer is running low on space, you can also uninstall old programs or games that you don’t use anymore.

Keeping things clean.

Now that your computer is all nice and organized, you should ensure it doesn’t revert to where it was!

Storing files in their proper locations (instead of dumping them on the desktop) goes a long way to keeping them neat. You can also clear your downloads folder whenever you download something from the internet and empty your computer’s trash bin every week or so.

What is Artificial Intelligence?


If you’ve been paying attention to social media lately, you’ve noticed that everyone is talking about AI – or artificial intelligence. While these AI programs have been around for a while, their development speeds and capabilities are skyrocketing. What seemed impossible yesterday is possible today.

Why did AI become so popular?

Explaining AI’s popularity spike is easy. The buzz started with the release of DALLE-mini (or Craiyon), an AI model which generates low-quality images based on short text prompts. Due to the humorous nature of these images and the free, accessible online interface, everyone started to experiment and share memes.

DALLE-2 was the next evolution, a model developed by Open-AI, which is several times larger than Craiyon and can generate more realistic, detailed images. Many others, such as Midjourney and StableDiffusion, are available either for free or through payment. Each has its own vibe and niche.

Text generation snuck up on a lot of us. When ChatGPT, an AI-powered chatbot, was released in November of 2022, the detail and consistency of its responses astonished the internet. It can write articles or stories, answer factual or philosophical questions, and even write computer code! It’s also free, which means anyone can use it.

How does AI work?

These artificial intelligence programs work somewhat like our brains, utilizing a “neural network.” The neural network takes in information from the outside and searches for patterns, bouncing it back and forth between different “neurons.” It gets better at the specific task every time it does it, becoming faster and more accurate.

But how does this turn into text or image generation? Text generation models predict the next word in a sentence based on what came before it. The AI is trained on massive amounts of text from the internet, so it has a pretty good idea of how people write. Image generation is similar – the AI is trained on extensive datasets of images from all over the internet and can predict where pixels should go based on the prompt it receives from the user.

What are the ethical concerns with AI?

Many people have raised ethical concerns with these programs.

The visual art community is understandably skeptical about AI art, arguing that it isn’t real and detracts from art created by real people. They’re also angry that art is often included in training datasets without the artists’ knowledge or consent.

Teachers and professors are facing an entirely different problem – cheating. Since ChatGPT is adept at answering questions and writing essays, students have been making it complete their homework.

There are also concerns from writers that AI will take over their jobs.

What do you think? Are the risks worth the benefits of using AI?

How to Protect Your Identity Online


Protecting your identity online is incredibly important in today’s day and age. Countless hackers and opportunists are constantly scouring the internet for vulnerable users, waiting to seize their personal information – including usernames, passwords, addresses, and full names.

Thankfully, it is easy to protect yourself from these attackers. They’re looking for weak targets, so strengthening your online security will make it much less likely that something terrible happens to your online identity.

Use strong passwords.

This one seems obvious, but you might be surprised how many people use flimsy passwords to protect their online accounts. Including varied capitalization, numbers, and symbols will make your passwords tougher to crack. Avoid using important places or dates, and definitely avoid using the same password to protect multiple important accounts!

Don’t sign into suspicious websites.

Unless you are 100% certain you’re signing into a legitimate organization’s website, don’t enter your personal information! Secure websites will usually have “https” in front of the URL, as opposed to unsecured sites that may say “http” or “unsecured.”

Hackers will also create mock login pages for popular sites like Facebook or Google to trick you into inputting your account names and passwords. If you aren’t sure, look at the URL and verify that it’s correct. Sometimes there may only be a letter or two changed from the original site’s address, so watch out!

Look out for phishing emails.

Suspicious emails might show up in your inbox now and again. They will often include links to those sketchy login pages discussed earlier or attempt to install malware on your device. If an email looks weird, do not even open it!

Protect your credit card number.

It is wise to be careful where you use your credit card online. While large stores like Amazon are usually secure, examine smaller sites carefully before you input your card number. It is also good practice to avoid letting these websites keep your number on file, to minimize the chances that it is stolen in a security breach.

Never give out your personal information on the internet.

Finally, if a stranger on the internet asks for your full real name, birthday, password, or social security number, never give it to them – even if it’s someone you’ve talked to online many times. You never know who could be trying to trick you out of your personal information!

Hopefully, this helped educate you on the dangers of risky internet behavior! Are there any other tips you know for internet protection?