Other Network Access Technologies
LAN technologies such as ethernet are common throughout the mechanized world, but there are many other ways to connect computers. Any networking technology must have some means of preparing data for the physical network, and therefore any TCP/IP technology must have a Network Access layer. As was already mentioned, a modem is another means of supporting a network connection. You'll learn more about modems in Hour 8. Wide area network (WAN) technologies support connections that operate over greater distances but often at slower transmission rates. WAN connections require specialized hardware that, as you might guess, requires specialized software at the Network Access layer. You'll learn more about WAN technologies in Hour 9.