Muni Fiber and Politics

Larry Sheldon LarrySheldon at
Tue Jul 22 03:41:54 UTC 2014

On 7/21/2014 2:08 PM, Blake Dunlap wrote:
> My power is pretty much always on, my water is pretty much always on
> and safe, my sewer system works, etc etc...
> Why is layer 1 internet magically different from every other utility?

Almost forces a "what planet" question.

Our power comes, some times, from Omaha Public Power District (not a 
municipal entity).  Cutting the necessary slack for the storms we have 
here, there are still way too many hits, blinks, and occasional 
hours-long outages that are never explained.

When I was a manager in a data Center in San Jose, California we had to 
install a 250KVA UPS plant and run the 1100/80 on rotating machines in 
order to survive the incessant hits, dips, drops, and outages.

Our water here is from a non-municipal Metropolitan Utilities District 
(who also does natural gas which we don't have).  And it is reliable and 
safe (if drinking water strongly laced with chlorine products can be 
said to be "safe").

Where we are, the sewer system (a Municipal Utility!) seems to work, but 
in parts of Omaha if there is any rain to speak of peoples basements 
fill with sewage.

Several tax-increases and bond sales have been made to fix that, but it 
appears that the upscale parts of town gets new sidewalks.

Telephone, TV and Internet Service Provision is all Cox Cable (not a 
Municipal Utility) and it all pretty much works as long as OPPD hasn't 
gone to lunch.

So I don't think it matters much what "kind" of an operation it is--it 
matters what kinds of things are demanded-of and provided-for (funded) 
by the customers and the owners.

Requiescas in pace o email           Two identifying characteristics
                                         of System Administrators:
Ex turpi causa non oritur actio      Infallibility, and the ability to
                                         learn from their mistakes.
                                           (Adapted from Stephen Pinker)

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