Step aside, Leonardo DiCaprio. I'm the new king of the world – unashamed to appropriate one of the cheesiest movie lines ever.
Because I deserve it.
I, me, myself, Brian the Hines, was responsible for bringing Qwest DSL to our rural south Salem neighborhood after many would-be kings (including moi ) had tried and failed for years.
At this very moment I am praising myself in a blog post that will be uploaded via wireless DSL, a vast improvement over our dreadfully unreliable Wild Blue broadband satellite service, which never saw a raindrop that it wasn't afraid to send a signal through.
Wild Blue also suffered from slow upload speeds. I could download at over 1000 kbps most of the time, but frequently I'd get a 30 kbps upload speed, not much different from our old 24 kbps dial-up connection.
Our DSL started functioning (after some load coil problems were resolved) yesterday. Retrieving information rich web pages like the NY Times and Google News now is happening five times faster with DSL, even though the download speed (1239 kbps) is about what I was getting with satellite.
It must be DSL's much faster upload speed, 711 kbps, that's keeping a web-surfing smile on my face. Yes, cable and faster speed DSL users, I realize that what I've got is run-of-the-mill broadband; but beggars who live in the countryside can't be choosers when it comes to broadband options.
Many of my neighbors are deeply grateful that I've brought the potential of DSL to some 240 homes in our area. Quite a few are trying to run businesses out of their homes. That's tough to do with a dial-up connection, and satellite is expensive.
I've been thinking that a bronze statue of me, commemorating my DSL triumph, would be a nice addition to one of our local streets. Which could be renamed after me also.
The statue idea hasn't taken off yet, except in my own mind. But I've got a rough design pictured. I'd be gazing out over cyberspace, holding a laptop in one arm and the letter that I sent to the Qwest CEO in the other.
It was the letter that apparently did the trick, because my entreaties to Congresswoman Hooley, and through her to the FCC, didn't go any good.
Nor did an exasperated blog post directed to the previous Qwest CEO. A few weeks after writing that post, an acquaintance offered up the bright idea of writing an actual personal letter to the CEO. I did just that. Download qwest_dsl_letter_shared.doc
And the rest is south Salem DSL history.
Early on, after a Qwest manager called me saying "let's get this done," I joined the company's Refer A Friend program. I'd get $25 for every customer in the area who bought DSL after signing an "I'm Interested" sheet that I shopped around our neighborhood.
I ended up sending over 80 names to Qwest. So far about 24 have gotten DSL. I'm over halfway to paying for a new multimedia computer.
My involvement with Qwest hasn't gone totally smoothly. Nor has the DSL roll-out process. But some glitches are to be expected, especially when you're dealing with a large communications company (which, I learned, doesn't always communicate all that well).
I'm a happy DSL camper now. So if you've got satellite broadband and have a chance to switch to DSL, do it. Paying less than half the money for five times the speed is a no-brainer.
And now Oregon raindrops can fall on my head without me thinking, "Oh god, there goes my Internet connection."
Hooray for Brian! Where one has gone, many can follow!
Just where is this DSL coverage? I know you don't live too far from me, and I'd gladly be responsible for another $25 in your pocket. ;>
Posted by: Deb | January 03, 2008 at 02:04 AM
Deb, if you emailed me (link in top of sidebar)I could tell you where the DSL coverage is. Basically it's along Liberty Road south of Bunker Hill Road to the Ankeny Road area.
Posted by: Brian | January 03, 2008 at 10:56 AM
Thanks Brian! Our DSL service (billing) started yesterday and the modem arrived the day before. It's been 10 years since I had reliable internet from a modem that actually plays nice wirelessly. Actually, I have to wait a bit longer. As part of the remodel I hardwired a new kitchen computer base station in anticipation of DSL (put in dual RGC6 too in case someone ever wants to go back to satellite. bleh.). Although everything's wired at the outlets, I still have to crawl back up in the attic and figure out which of the million little telecom wires goes where. Wheeee....
Fortunately, our satellite broadband (HughesNet) works in most rain still, ever since they pointed it at a different satellite after much complianing. So, I just need to get DSL working before the next sat bill cycle so I can stop sending $60 a month to the rural SSalem boradband former monopoly known as Hughes.
As for your statue, you deserve it. Please accept our $25 contribution, payable from Qwest. ;)
(R&D engineer for Hewlett Packard, competitor of Lenovo.....but that's a different post. :)
Posted by: Mike | January 15, 2008 at 12:21 PM
When I was younger I was incarcerated. The crimes although petty and debateable are of no matter here. But, one day I came across a pocket sized version of the Tao Te Ching. Even at my fairly young age I was intrigued. I loved how overwhelming the message was. Ever since, although inconsistently, I have pursued these teachings. I carry the Tao te Ching with me practically every where I go. I have also started reading the Basic Writings of Chuang Tzu and have tried unsuccesfully many times to utilize that oracle of fortune we call the Book of Change(I ching). I really feel as though I will never turn back and totally abandon the Way but I have a lot to "unlearn". Maybe you could refer me to some sources or give me a wee bit of guidance, because it feels as though I'm lost.
Posted by: Joshua | January 31, 2008 at 08:01 AM
Joshua, I replied to your comment via a post on my other Church of the Churchless blog. See:
Posted by: Brian | February 01, 2008 at 09:52 PM