The article below was recently featured in the Boulder County Business Report…
APconnections helps shape bandwidth with NetEqualizer
By Jules Marie
LAFAYETTE – Once a frustrated homeowner unable to maintain consistent Internet service, Art Reisman is now a global manufacturer of solutions for clogged bandwidth on the Internet.
Reisman, founder of APconnections, has developed NetEqualizer – a device that minimizes the peaks and valleys of Internet use by distributing bandwidth according to preset rules. Customers include the elusive Blackwater USA and the burgeoning Afghanistan wireless industry. The company also has domestic sales to corporations in industries around the country.
NetEqualizer is a bandwidth-shaping system designed for voice and data networks of 100 to 10,000 users. No changes to the existing network are needed, and it installs in minutes.
“Equalizing is the art form of looking at the usage patterns on the network, and then when things get congested, robbing from the rich to give to the poor,” Reisman said. “Rather than writing hundreds of rules to specify allocations to specific traffic as in traditional application shaping, you can simply assume that large downloads are bad; short, quick traffic is good, and be done with it.”
The software has jettisoned APconnections to the front of Internet traffic jams with its built-in fairness rules. When the network is congested the fairness algorithm favors business-class applications, including voice over Internet protocol, Web browsing, chat, and e-mail while delaying by a second an e-mail with 10 attachments.
Growing in popularity is AirEqualizer – proprietary software that minimizes disruptions to wireless network users. Reisman said it solves the hidden node problem found in wireless networks. Think of ‘nodes’ as wireless users, and historically the farther a wireless user was from the remote, the less priority those transmissions received. AirEqualizer balances the flow by using latency – similar to a time delay – which essentially blocks dominant nodes from usurping weaker ones.
Sweat equity, 401(k)s and day jobs financed the company. Minimal development costs were incurred as they added software to off-the-shelf hardware. First to market was the Linux Bandwidth Arbitrator – an open-source freeware program. Open source software is shared, and end users can make and suggest changes, but the software is still copyrighted. APconnections reaped the benefits of debugging advice globally and today enjoys worldwide recognition for its popular anti-clogging software programs.
In addition to the accolades received in cyberspace, APconnections advertised with http://www.adwords.google.com and found it to be a very cost-effective way to advertise on a small budget and is largely responsible for their international business growth.
Reisman’s goals have remained the same since 2003 – slow, steady growth. He declined to state his revenues though he did say that he is very profitable, moves 40 units a month and is growing steadily.
NetEqualizer has proprietary features and is no longer free. The basic device starts at $2,000 and with upgrades approaches $6,000. Reisman said he tries to ignore the competition.
“We stay original by not looking at others’ work. I don’t have the philosophy that we have to beat someone to grow or win. Internet optimization is slowly becoming a commodity. We’re not locking you into our solution, and it doesn’t require upgrades every year to keep it running. We do add new features, but we don’t obsolete customers or sell support contract.
“Philosophically, do the best, live in the now, and good things happen,” he said. “I don’t believe in saying we have to make this much money in order to be successful. We don’t have investors so it’s almost a completely stress-free life. We have a vision, we’re healthy, and we’re growing. We measure ourselves on how relaxed we are.”