RE: [funsec] Not so fast, broadband providers tell big users (fwd)

I do admit that I haven't been keeping up on BPL technology lately, as
I am not in [and know only one person living in] an area where power
lines are the only cabled connection to the world. My point was more
that there are areas where it's simply impractical to put out many of
the today-common technologies for broadband.

In British Columbia, Canada, they replaced the copper intercity network
with fibre back in the early 90s. Maybe intercity is the wrong word
considering I saw them running fibre 25 miles from Enderby to Mabel
Lake. Look here on Google Maps
http://maps.google.com/maps?f=q&hl=en&q=enderby+bc&ll=50.595007,-118.970
947&spn=0.332142,0.86792
There is actually a road to Mabel lake which you can see in the
satellite photo snaking through a valley of small farms. Most of those
brown patches are cutblocks up in the mountains where they have
harvested logs and nobody lives up there. There is a village at the
intersection where a road goes south and another where the road meets
the lake. At the time, a telco worker told me that they were mining
copper, i.e. they chopped up and collected the copper cable after the
fibre came online.

When I did some work in another BC city, Prince Rupert, we faced the
problem of how to get broadband into the city because the main
connection was microwave bounced off a station on top of a nearby
mountain. Hiway 16 into the city
http://maps.google.com/maps?f=q&hl=en&q=prince+rupert+bc&ie=UTF8&om=1&z=
10&ll=54.24597,-130.001221&spn=0.380349,1.255188&iwloc=addr ran for a
long way with rocky cliffs above on one side and rocky cliffs below to
the river on the other side. The only place to put fibre would be to
plow right into the gravel fill under the pavement. I don't know if they
ever did that but, in general, if people live in a location, there
should be a feasible way to get fibre there. It might cost a lot, but
that is another question. In mountainous areas with low population, then
some form of point-to-point wireless such as microwave, wifi multihop or
optical wireless can be used.

Note that in really wild and hairy areas, you can get away with laying
fibre on top of the ground although I doubt that any "official"
organization would accept that. I remember a guy who lived out towards
Mabel Lake who powered a water pump for his cattle by running a parallel
fence wire under the power lines and stealing a few watts by induction.

Really, people in remote rural areas need to band together and do the
research to find out how others are solving these problems in other
states, other countries and even other continents, such as Africa.

--Michael Dillon