Locations with no good Internet (was ISP in Johannesburg)

Joel Jaeggli joelja at bogus.com
Sat Feb 27 09:18:33 UTC 2010

On 02/26/2010 03:10 PM, Paul Bosworth wrote:
> I think a lot of people often forget that ISPs are actually
> businesses trying to turn a profit.

Bearing in mind that the facilities that exist in much of the rural
united states are actually there  because we collectively payed for them
rather than simply:

	waiting for the right set of economic incentives to exist

	or leaving people to suffer.

It not unlikely in some cases that the economic incentive for universal
service may never exist may never exist in some  reasons which doesn't
mean that we shouldn't do something about it.


> At my last job we built out a fiber to the home ILEC in relatively
> rural Louisiana. This means that we had quite a number of customers
> that didn't meet the density requirements for deployment. Using 
> made-up numbers for the sake of discussion, lets assume that a
> customer provides $1/month for service. If you can place deployment
> in a highly-dense area you'll make a lot more of those $1's per month
> with that investment. When you start deploying further to the edge
> you really slide into the "we're not even breaking even on this"
> market. Obviously anyone that has a job for profit knows that this is
> a no-no.
> As telcos deploy high-density technologies (fiber, metroE, etc) they
> can pull the legacy technology (xDSL, T1, etc) and push that to the
> edge. Unfortunately the edge is always going to get the hand-me-downs
> but it's better than nothing. My wife is from a tiny town in central
> PA (the vortex between Pittsburgh and Philly) and her parents have
> had dialup until last year, when the local telco finally pushed DSL
> to their location. They only draw 1.5meg but it's better than the 56k
> they were paying for.
> As they say in vegas, "It's just business, baby."
> On Fri, Feb 26, 2010 at 5:51 PM, Crooks, Sam
> <Sam.Crooks at experian.com>wrote:
>> I had good luck getting my dad some form of broadband access in
>> rural Oregon using a 3g router (Cradlepoint), a Wilson Electronics
>> signal amp (model 811211), and an outdoor mount high gain antenna.
>> It's not great, but considering the alternatives (33.6k dialup for
>> $60/mo or satellite broadband for $150-$200/mo) it wasn't a bad
>> deal for my dad when you consider that the dialup ISP + dedicated
>> POTS line cost about as much as the 5GB 3G data plan does.
>> Speed is somewhere between  dialup and Uverse or FIOS.  I get the
>> sense that it is somewhere in the range of 256 - 512 kbps with high
>> latency (Dad's not one for much in the way of network performance
>> testing).
>>> -----Original Message----- From: Michael Sokolov
>>> [mailto:msokolov at ivan.Harhan.ORG] Sent: Friday, February 26, 2010
>>> 3:35 PM To: nanog at nanog.org Subject: Locations with no good
>>> Internet (was ISP in Johannesburg)
>>> Daniel Senie <dts at senie.com> wrote:
>>>> Better than western Massachusetts, where there's just no
>> connectivity
>>> at =
>>>> all. Even dialup fails to function over crappy lines.
>>> Hmm.  Although I've never been to Western MA and hence have no
>>> idea what the telecom situation is like over there, I'm certainly
>>> aware of quite a few places in "first world USA" where DSL is
>>> still a fantasy, let
>> alone
>>> fiber.
>>> As a local example, I have a friend in a rural area of Southern 
>>> California who can't get any kind of "high-speed Internet".  I've
>>> run
>> a
>>> prequal on her address and it tells me she is 31 kft from the CO.
>>> The CO in question has a Covad DSLAM in it, but at 31 kft those
>>> rural residents' options are limited to either IDSL at 144 kbps
>>> (not much point in that) or a T1 starting at ~$700/month.  The
>>> latter figure is typically well out of range for the kind of
>>> people who live in such places.
>>> That got me thinking: ISDN/IDSL and T1 can be extended infinitely
>>> far into the boondocks because those signal formats support
>>> repeaters. What I'm wondering is how can we do the same thing
>>> with SDSL - and I mean politically rather than technically.  The
>>> technical part is easy: some COs already have CLECs in them that
>>> serve G.shdsl (I've been told that NEN does that) and for G.shdsl
>>> repeaters are part of the standard (searching around shows a few
>>> vendors making them); in the case of SDSL/2B1Q (Covad and
>>> DSL.net) there is no official support for repeaters and hence no
>>> major vendors making such, but I can build such a
>> repeater
>>> unofficially.
>>> The difficulty is with the political part, and that's where I'm
>> seeking
>>> the wisdom of this list.  How would one go about sticking a
>>> mid-span repeater into an ILEC-owned 31 kft rural loop?  From
>>> what I understand (someone please correct me if I'm wrong!), when
>>> a CLEC orders a loop from an ILEC, if it's for a T1 or IDSL, the
>>> CLEC actually orders a T1 or ISDN BRI transport from the ILEC
>>> rather than a dry pair, and any mid-span repeaters or HDSLx
>>> converters or the like become the responsibility of the ILEC
>>> rather than the CLEC, right?
>>> So how could one extend this model to provide, say, repeatered
>>> G.shdsl service to far-outlying rural subscribers?  Is there some
>>> political process (PUC/FCC/etc) by which an ILEC could be forced
>>> to allow a
>> third
>>> party to stick a repeater in the middle of their loop?  Or would
>>> it have to work by way of the ILEC providing a G.shdsl transport
>>> service to CLECs, with the ILEC being responsible for the
>>> selection, procurement and deployment of repeater hardware?  And
>>> what if the ILEC is not interested in providing such a service -
>>> any PUC/FCC/etc political process via which they could be forced
>>> to cooperate?
>>> Things get even more complicated in those locations where the CO
>>> has a Covad DSLAM in it serving out SDSL/2B1Q, but no other CLEC
>>> serving G.shdsl.  Even if the ILEC were to provide a G.shdsl
>>> transport service with repeaters, it wouldn't help with
>>> SDSL/2B1Q.  My idea involves building a gadget in the form factor
>>> of a standard mid-span repeater that would function as a
>>> converter from SDSL/2B1Q to G.shdsl: if the loop calls for one
>>> mid-span repeater, stick this gadget in as if it were that
>>> repeater; if the loop calls for 2 or more repeaters, use my 
>>> gadget as the first "repeater" and then standard G.shdsl
>>> repeaters after it.  But of course this idea is totally dependent
>>> on the ability of a third party to stick these devices in the
>>> middle of long rural loops, perhaps in the place of loading coils
>>> which are likely present on such loops.
>>> Any ideas?
>>> MS

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