Parallel Port - Current Use

Current Use

For consumers, the USB interface — and sometimes Ethernet — has replaced the parallel printer port, for connections both to printers and to other devices.

Many manufacturers of personal computers and laptops consider parallel to be a legacy port and no longer include the parallel interface. Smaller machines have less room for large parallel port connectors. The guidelines for Microsoft's Windows Logo Program "strongly discourages" systems builders from including parallel ports. USB-to-parallel adapters are available that can make parallel-only printers work with USB-only systems. There are PCI (and PCI-express) cards that provide parallel ports. There are also some print servers provide interface to parallel port through network. USB-to-EPP chips can also allow other non-printer device to continue work on modern computers without a parallel port.

For electronics hobbyists the parallel port is still often the easiest way to connect to an external circuit board. It is faster than the other common legacy port (serial port) and requires no serial-to-parallel converter, and requires far less interface logic and software than a USB target interface. However, Microsoft operating systems later than Windows 95/98 prevent user programs from directly writing to or reading from the PrinterPort. Current CNC Milling Machines also often make use of the parallel port to directly control the mills motors and attachments.

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Current Use

Current use is a phrase used to describe the present condition of land use and corresponding scheme for property tax incentives for qualifying land owners (typically rural) who wish to preserve open space and avoid having their property assessed at the "best and highest" use that could be made of it (i.e., a housing development or a commercial use). The statutes provide significant savings when the land is currently in use for farming (agriculture and horticulture), silviculture, or comprises wetlands, or even unproductive woods or barrens. Further discounts may accrue if the land owner is willing to file a recreational easement permitting the unimpeded public to come upon the land for non-motorized recreation (e.g., hiking, hunting, bicycling, bird-watching, etc.). Some jurisdictions require a qualifying submittal of a "stewardship plan" for woodlands, while others (including New Hampshire) provide further tax reductions for these optional inclusions. Soils data must often be included for requests related to agricultural areas.

Based upon a modest tax assessment of land that remains undeveloped, the "current use" abatement and recreational easement can result in very affordable tax bills. The reduced burden may help postpone the decision to divide and sell off portions of the undeveloped land as local tax rates climb. The public benefits from the continued presence (or recreational enjoyment) of unfragmented and undeveloped areas until development plans overtake the current use incentives.

In New Hampshire, USA, the owner of ten or more contiguous acres can file for the current use abatement for that portion of land not currently covered by structures or other improvements. The same application form is used to request the recreational easement, which is then recorded in the county registry of deeds. The abatement then persists until the land is subdivided or developed, at which time the local tax authority can reclaim some of the deferred taxes through a "change of use" tax. The recreation easement may also be revoked (or suspended for three years) if the land owner posts the property against trespassing.

There is often an influx of new "current use" requests each time a town increases its assessments of open space, and the impact of this factor must be anticipated in the municipal tax budget. For example, a town with non-participating parcels may have only a net tax increase in the first-year after a higher assessment as many remaining qualified open parcels will join the current use program. Once they obtain the statutory abatement, they may actually pay less tax than before the higher assessments were imposed.

See NH RSA 79-A


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