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Old 8th September 2019, 07:03 PM   #1
Solitaire
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Can the Internet save rural America?

Bright Ridge, a power company which showed up about two years ago,
did some interesting new things around here like bring in smart meters,
solar power for those who can afford it, and level two charging station for
electric vehicles. I read about one guy somewhere around here that has
a Tesla who might use it. A couple of months ago, they brought in ten
gigabit per second internet service for a block wide and mile long section
of Jonesborough, Tennessee. If I remember correctly, the sixth smallest
town in America to do so.

It's just... well... who would use it?

Six thousand people live here surrounded by corn, cows, lakes, and mountains.
The paper suggests people into information technology might move here for
the speed. But they already live in big cities with fast internet connections.

Can you imagine any of them singing the "Green Acres" song and moving here?
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Old 8th September 2019, 07:13 PM   #2
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They can stream Fox & Friends faster?
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Old 9th September 2019, 12:55 AM   #3
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Right-wing propaganda is just not that entertaining.
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Old 9th September 2019, 01:55 AM   #4
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If SpaceX is successful with Starlink high speed internet access will be available literally everywhere.
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Old 9th September 2019, 02:36 AM   #5
Darat
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Seriously: save it from what?
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Old 9th September 2019, 12:40 PM   #6
Solitaire
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A decline in the overall economic health of the community and population.

In other counties they complain about the lack of industry, business closing,
and the youths moving away to the big cities. (The closure of the level one
trauma center in Sullivan county to save money really caused an uproar.)
In this county, the Business Journal editor noted that while the population
rose by ten thousand, the number of people working decline by one thousand.
(He wasn't happy about that fact.)

Somehow the fast internet was supposed to attract hundreds of people earning
a quarter million a year and save the local economy, but I never could see how
it could work out.
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Old 9th September 2019, 07:44 PM   #7
blutoski
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Originally Posted by Solitaire View Post
Bright Ridge, a power company which showed up about two years ago,
did some interesting new things around here like bring in smart meters,
solar power for those who can afford it, and level two charging station for
electric vehicles. I read about one guy somewhere around here that has
a Tesla who might use it. A couple of months ago, they brought in ten
gigabit per second internet service for a block wide and mile long section
of Jonesborough, Tennessee. If I remember correctly, the sixth smallest
town in America to do so.

It's just... well... who would use it?

Six thousand people live here surrounded by corn, cows, lakes, and mountains.
The paper suggests people into information technology might move here for
the speed. But they already live in big cities with fast internet connections.

Can you imagine any of them singing the "Green Acres" song and moving here?
"potentially" yes

Not individuals doing the home office thing, but corporations who need the bandwidth for, say, server farms. The real estate is probably ten percent of what they'd pay in an urban area, and the employees don't need to be paid as much because the cost of living is lower for them, too. (and they probably spit on unions)

During peak cryptocurrency mining years, rural areas with cheap power were the number one choice for plants. That's all died down, but server farms are a growing industry, they need the cheap power, cheap land, and cheap broadband.
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Old 10th September 2019, 04:46 PM   #8
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Originally Posted by Darat View Post
Seriously: save it from what?
Itself.
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Old 10th September 2019, 05:11 PM   #9
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The OP is complaining some place is too small, too rural, ergo tough luck, no internet for you???

I must be reading it wrong.
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Old 10th September 2019, 06:19 PM   #10
Solitaire
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I'm not good a communicating I guess.

For the cost of a small apartment $300 a month, you can get 10 gigabit per second
internet speed. And I wondered what possible use anyone could make of it.

Download and update the Mac operating system in two seconds? Not really practical for the price.

But the server farm idea works. The idea that people would leave the big cities for this doesn't.

P. S. Same thing for solar power, you pay $750 for a kilowatt of solar power
and get 30 kWh over the twenty year term of the lease. Not really cheap or
practical when you work in the dark.
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Old 10th September 2019, 07:56 PM   #11
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To assess the value for your buck, you need to know the cost of the alternatives.
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Old 10th September 2019, 10:44 PM   #12
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Originally Posted by Solitaire View Post

P. S. Same thing for solar power, you pay $750 for a kilowatt of solar power
and get 30 kWh over the twenty year term of the lease. Not really cheap or
practical when you work in the dark.
Can you explain this part in more detail? It's not clear to me what it means.
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Old 11th September 2019, 12:20 AM   #13
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https://www.heraldandtribune.com/loc...dband-service/

They are sticking fibre into the area, along with wireless for the bits fibre is not cost effective.

if you're going to stick fibre in you may as well make it capable of handling high usage. A large part of the cost is getting the stuff in in the first place.

Most people will simply pick up the 100Mb option.
Some companies (the article mentions industrial parks, so I assume there's more than just cows) may feel the need for the 10Gb option.
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Old 11th September 2019, 09:25 AM   #14
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I work for a rural ISP that's offered 10Gb service for nearly 10 years now. We have exactly one customer on that service tier. We've been ready to roll it out to residential customers for a while now, but the demand is nonexistent. The fiber is in place, the CO equipment is ready for it, just needs an ONT replacement at the customer premises. Businesses or residents, nobody seems to feel the need for >1Gb speeds. Closest thing we've heard of a data center wanting higher bandwidth was a company wanting to host gaming servers and they ended up with 1Gb service. So no, other than for work-from-home customers who are looking to get away from the city, I don't think rural fiber is going to affect much.

Last edited by Yalius; 11th September 2019 at 09:34 AM.
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Old 11th September 2019, 09:58 AM   #15
Solitaire
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Originally Posted by Roboramma View Post
Can you explain this part in more detail? It's not clear to me what it means.
A company called Silicon Ranch installed a bunch of utility connected solar cells.

Bright Ridge acts as their intermediary selling 20 year leases on the power
generated by the solar cells at $0.75 a watt. (Due to the fact that you sell
the power to the TVA and then buy it back through the TVA, it winds up
costing more like $1.50 a watt.) Kind of like a car lease, you don't own
the car, you just get the rights to use the car.

Over a year time the solar cell produces energy in the form of kilowatt hours
- up north maybe one kilowatt hour per year, out the desert west maybe two
kilowatt hours per year. Around here we get about 1.5 kilowatt hours per year.
Over the 20 year term of the lease you get a total of 30 kilowatt hours from
the one watt solar cell. Simply divide cost of the cell by the kilowatt hours
generated by the cell and you get 5 cents per kilowatt hour.


Originally Posted by Skeptic Ginger View Post
To assess the value for your buck, you need to know the cost of the alternatives.

Okay, looking at the alternatives:

Locally I can get AEG Monocrystalline Solar Panels for about $1.20 a watt with tax.

I can get Neo Solar Panels for about $0.81 a watt if I lived in Australia
- that works out to $0.54 a watt in American dollars.

How about if I lived in Alibaba? Why do things cost so much more here?
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Old 11th September 2019, 11:50 AM   #16
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Originally Posted by Solitaire View Post
I'm not good a communicating I guess.

For the cost of a small apartment $300 a month, you can get 10 gigabit per second
internet speed. And I wondered what possible use anyone could make of it.
That is not the cost of a small apartment around here, look at more like $900
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Old 11th September 2019, 02:23 PM   #17
blutoski
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Originally Posted by Yalius View Post
I work for a rural ISP that's offered 10Gb service for nearly 10 years now. We have exactly one customer on that service tier. We've been ready to roll it out to residential customers for a while now, but the demand is nonexistent. The fiber is in place, the CO equipment is ready for it, just needs an ONT replacement at the customer premises. Businesses or residents, nobody seems to feel the need for >1Gb speeds. Closest thing we've heard of a data center wanting higher bandwidth was a company wanting to host gaming servers and they ended up with 1Gb service. So no, other than for work-from-home customers who are looking to get away from the city, I don't think rural fiber is going to affect much.
This might be a time thing. I was on 15/0.5 until last month. The tipping point? Smarhome upgrade. 100 year old house with knob and tube so I have been putting this off for years.

I had some time off work, so finally bit the bullet and ran wiring to the front door to upgrade from a hand knocker to a powered Ring doorbell with camera. And added some security cameras. And a smart thermostat with sensors in every room. And then I opted for iCloud backups for my computers and phone... Well wouldn't you know it, but the 0.5Mbps upload speed just couldn't handle all these new cloud communications.

So I pulled the trigger and switched over to fibre (which had been connected to the demarc years ago but never used).

I have a feeling that a consumer will someday need 10GB, just not today. In the meantime it's in place.

So that's the first thing - the rural residents are somewhat futureproofed, the local service provider is going to have to wait to recover the investment, is all.



Secondly, even though I live in a dense urban area, I do appreciate rural buildouts because that's where I vacation and own rural property. Part of the reason I experimented with smarthome upgrades in my primary residence is that I want to automate and monitor my rural recreational property. At the moment there's zero internet at that location, but they're building something (allegedly). When it's finished, the property will definitely be more attractive for longer term stays. Lots of breakins right now. Sporadic internet through my cellphone hotspot. When the buildout's done, it'll potentially become my primary office. (I am shifting to a writing career)
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