I Hate Modens - Part 3

Well, by fluke, I was going to talk about life on the Island every second weekend with my mom and her modem only access (and my 3 weeks there right now), but something very bad happened this morning (as I am writing this on Monday morning). At 10:30am PDT, the monopolistic ISP lost their land link from the microwave transmitter to their offices. This meant, that I got connected, but there was no Internet to go to.

So I spent the day ripping out my hair and wondering how long the outage would be. I was hoping that it wouldn't be out for 2-3 days! When I called the ISP around 2pm, they had stated that someone from Telus was coming in from Victoria! Victoria? That's another Island. So that's how I thought it could be out for a good 2-3 days. If it was going to be out that long, I could have been declared a dead site. So as you can see my hatred for modems has been warranted.

When I got home at 8:30 p.m. Monday evening, I had a nice surprise. I tried connecting to the Internet once again expecting the connection to be down. I connected and boom, I was on the web again! So now on with time #2 when I am forced to downgrade to a modem from my ADSL connection.

I go to my Mom's on the Island every second weekend. What does she have (as of April 2000, I won't even discuss the paperweight she had until September 1998 and my sister had until June this year)? She has an iMac DV SE with a slow 56K modem!

It's a 56k modem which a lot of people would think is a great modem, but compared to my ADSL connection its like using a 100buad modem of yesteryear. To make it worse, it only connects at 31200bps. It used to connect at 48600bps until mid May, at which time it dropped to 31200bps. You would think that's the worse of it right? Nope, I brought Mr. Chomper over to the Island from August 3 - August 28th (my annual 3 weeks of eviction), and he connects at 33600bps! The irony of it all, he is only using that Global Village 33.6 modem I bought in 1997. Is that strange or what? another thing, the ISP on the island is crap with a capital C.

Why do I call them crap with a capital C? For one thing, when I connect to them, my modem 6 out of 10 times hangs! Other times, it connects, but I am off-line. By my estimates, I only have 1 successful Internet session out of every 10 connection attempts. I feel their service is not at all good. On a scale of one to 10 would give them a 5. There are plenty of worse ISP's in this world.

When I go out and talk to other people who use the Island ISP, they all say the same thing. "The ISP here is bad and not reliable."

So what are the other options for the Island? In tomorrow's installment of "I Hate Modems Part IV," I will take a look at Satellite access, and the wireless access that the local ISP will be offering.