Modem is a contraction for MOdulator/DEModulator and is a telephony term for changing analog voice grade signals to digital signals at the sending end and changing digital signals back to analog at the receiving end. A MoDem is an economical but inefficient way to send faxes to and from fax machines and computers because they use the standard telephone line to send and receive information. A MoDem is used to send e-mail and get onto the internet when a computer is not connected to a broadband circuit like the ones provided by the CATV, satallite, or telephone companies. They run at a rip-roaring 33 to 56 KILObits per second speed. Broadband is in the 720 Megabit to 20 GIGAbit range.