take that, buffering
August 8, 2014

Congratulations, Virginia: You have the world's fastest internet connection! The southern state's average speed of 13.7 megabits per second topped all other states in the Union (including the District of Columbia), according to cloud services provider Broadview Networks.

Broadview Networks used Akamai's "State of the Internet Report" to gather data on the average internet connection speed in each state. Virginia was joined in the top five by Delaware, Massachusetts, Rhode Island, and Washington, D.C. New York and California, home to the country's biggest cities, ranked 14th and 20th, respectively.

As for America's slowest internet connection? You'll find that in Alaska, where the average speed of 7 mbps is roughly half of Virginia's fastest-in-the-nation rate. So if you're planning out your next major Netflix binge-watching session, maybe try to avoid the nation's largest state. Kimberly Alters

now available
8:27 a.m. ET

Are you "ready for Hillary?" And if you are, how far are you willing to go to show it?

Hillary Clinton's new web store for her presidential campaign includes items like the "everyday pantsuit tee," which offers to bring "a whole new meaning to casual Friday." The red shirt, which the site boasts is made in the U.S.A., features Clinton's campaign logo and a printed necklace to accompany the faux suit jacket.

If pantsuit tees aren't really your style, the web store is also offering a pillow cross-stitched with the phrase "A woman's place is in the White House," as well as a tank top featuring Clinton's campaign logo. But as entertaining as Clinton's web store is, it's hard to top the Rand Paul web store's "Don't drone me, bro" T-shirt. Meghan DeMaria

fashion you can use
8:01 a.m. ET

It's now after Memorial Day, so you can wear that linen suit to work, if you so choose. But that's not the kind of fashion advice Donna Rosato, Money's Careerist columnist is offering for workers. "Here's a rule of thumb that you need to keep in mind," she explains in the video below: "You want to keep things covered. The more skin you show, the more likely you're going to distract people in the office." No short skirts, no showing off chest hair on men, and no flip-flops. If you didn't know any of that, or you want to be amused by a career specialist having to spell it out (and more), watch below. —Peter Weber

ISIS
7:53 a.m. ET
Gokhan Sahin/Getty Images

American intelligence analysts believe the U.S. could be making better progress against ISIS if they weren't trying to prevent civilian deaths.

The New York Times reports that the U.S. has avoided targeting seven key buildings in Raqqa, Syria, that serve as ISIS headquarters. And last week, U.S. forces didn't stop ISIS from overtaking Ramadi, Iraq. American officials have admitted they avoid the large ISIS targets because the attacks could kill civilians.

The Times notes that many Iraqi commanders, and some American officers, think the U.S. is using too much judiciousness with its air power. "The international alliance is not providing enough support compared with ISIS’ capabilities on the ground in Anbar," Maj. Muhammed al-Dulaimi, an Iraqi officer in the Anbar Province, which contains Ramadi, told the Times. "We lost large territories in Anbar because of the inefficiency of the U.S.-led coalition airstrikes."

The plan is backfiring, too: ISIS militants are using civilian areas to avoid being bombed by U.S.-led airstrikes. Meghan DeMaria

Iraq
7:26 a.m. ET
John Moore/Getty Images

On Tuesday, Iraqi state television announced that Iraqi security forces, Shiite militias, and Sunni paramilitary forces have launched an expected offensive to dislodge Islamic State from western Anbar province. ISIS captured the provincial capital Ramadi, 70 miles from Baghdad, earlier in May.

Iraq is putting a brave face on the setback, with Shiite militia spokesman Ahmed al-Assadi predicting that the counter-offensive will "not last a long time" and saying that Iraqi forces have Ramadi surrounded on three sides, and are using new weapons "that will surprise the enemy." Iraqi commanders are also complaining that the U.S. isn't using its air power boldly enough, The New York Times reports, specifically as ISIS was attacking Ramadi. The U.S. says it has been limiting its aerial targets to prevent civilian casualties. Peter Weber

veterans affairs
5:58 a.m. ET
Stephen Lovekin/Getty Images/Comedy Central

For the past three years, Daily Show host Jon Stewart has been quietly running five-week-long boot camps aimed at getting interested war veterans into the television industry. On Monday, The New York Times made the program public, publishing an interview in which Stewart explained why he hasn't been touting the program — he didn't want Daily Show fans as much as vets looking to break into Hollywood, for example — and why he is talking about it now: He's retiring, and he wants other TV shows to create similar programs.

"This is ready to franchise. Please steal our idea," Stewart told The Times. “It isn't charity. To be good in this business you have to bring in different voices from different places, and we have this wealth of experience that just wasn't being tapped." Stewart said that veterans face a special challenge when it comes to getting jobs in the TV business:

There are well-worn channels into this industry that are closed off to veterans.... You get into the television industry generally by going to certain colleges known for having good television programs, getting internships, and getting to know people who work in the industry. A lot of veterans never had that opportunity because they were busy at war. This is a way to give them that chance. [Stewart]

Stewart has hired at least two vets for the show, and says they are “way less whiny” than most of his employees. Read more about the program at The New York Times.

Mergers and acquisitions
5:30 a.m. ET
Spencer Platt/Getty Images

On Tuesday, Charter Communications confirmed its bid to buy Time Warner Cable for about $55.33 billion in cash and stock. If the deal is approved, Charter would pay about $195 a share, which is about 14 percent more than Time Warner Cable's closing stock price on Friday. If you include debt, the deal is worth about $78.7 billion. The combination of Charter, Time Warner, and Bright House Networks would have 23 million customers in the U.S., second only to Comcast's 27 million. Comcast dropped its bid for Time Warner Cable last month, amid regulatory scrutiny. Peter Weber

ISIS
5:02 a.m. ET

Islamic State controls a chunk of territory about the size of Belgium, and that territory doesn't govern itself. You probably already know about the self-proclaimed "caliph," Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi, but if you've ever been curious about the rest of ISIS's organizational chart, BBC News tries to fill in the blanks. Given the nature of ISIS, the BBC isn't able to provide a complete chart — al-Baghdadi's "inner circle is secretive and keeps changing as members are killed," BBC News notes — but it's an interesting look at the big picture, and in just 90 seconds. Watch below. —Peter Weber

See More Speed Reads