Network cards and Win98SE

Pete Turnbull pete at
Tue May 14 10:32:25 CDT 2019

On 14/05/2019 14:17, John Foust via cctalk wrote:
> At 03:02 AM 5/14/2019, Christian Corti via cctalk wrote:
>> On Mon, 13 May 2019, Grant Taylor wrote:
>>> "Gaming adapters" take a wired computer and connect it to a wireless network.
>> That "adapter" has always been called a WLAN or wireless bridge.
> I've known the term "gaming adapter" because I knew it was the common
> name for what I'd call a dedicated wireless network bridge.  Just another
> fine example of how gaming has come to dominate parts of the computer world.
> They who sell the most get to name the thing.

But they probably don't.  Almost every smart TV and settop box 
manufacturer sells a wired-to-wireless bridge dongle, and I'd bet there 
are more "wireless adapters" or "network adapters" sold for that purpose 
rather than gaming, simply because TVs, settop boxes and DVD/BluRay 
players outsell gaming machines.  And then there are the slightly more 
sophisticated/robust ones sold by the likes of 3Com and Cisco, which 
I've never seen called anything other than a "wireless bridge".

There are two or three groups at my university who regularly organise 
gaming parties, or sometimes called "LAN parties" here, and plenty of 
ad-hoc groups who also do so since the word got round that IT Services 
was willing to provide some support for them.  I've never heard the term 
"gaming adapter" from them.  Perhaps it's a piece of localised jargon. 
The AV Services department, who use quite a lot of them for large TV 
screens in lecture theatres, for remote lectures, teleconferencing, as 
bulletin boards, etc always call them "wireless adapters" or sometimes 
"network adapters".

When "gaming adapter" was first mentioned, one of the first things that 
came to mind was the joystick-shaped gadget that fits over a keyboard to 
press the up/down/left/right keys when you waggle it.  Searching "gaming 
adapter" throws up a lot of USB wireless dongles before wired Ethernet 
ones.  I don't really care what you or Grant call it yourself, but at 
best the term is confusing, given it can mean at least two other things, 
and it's certainly not any sort of canonical name as has been suggested.

Pete Turnbull

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