[FRIAM] The Last Mile, again

Steven A Smith sasmyth at swcp.com
Tue Apr 24 11:09:22 EDT 2018

Nick -

You are welcome to share, attributed or otherwise.  I think the bottom
line is really how much you trust this group which is mostly a
non-technical problem... and by trust I don't just mean intentions but
also their true ability to follow through...   naturally, the more
honest support they get, the better.  

My sensibilities would suggest that you "organize" your locals to act as
a coalition to simultaneously support the effort, and to watchdog
them.   In the extreme, I could even imagine pushing for a
subscriber-owned system which is not as radical as a coop but has some
of the same properties.    If instead of a $100 buy-in, a $500 buy-in
bought a (collective) minority share in the endeavor?  I don't know if
$50,000 in capitalization would help get them off the ground faster or
if a voting block of acute stakeholders would be welcome or not, but it
is a thought.   My leaning is toward more people taking more interest in
the obtainment and support of their own services, opposite the trend
toward deferring same to (big) government and (huge) commerce until
something goes off the rails one direction or the other (tragedy of the
commons vs unregulated greed).

I appreciate your bringing this up about now, as it fortifies my
interest in trying (again) to drum up support for the sorting out of up
to date broadband in the Pojoaque Valley which is surely less difficult
(hilly and vegetated) than your own backyard there in (Maine?).

- Steve

On 4/24/18 7:56 AM, Nick Thompson wrote:
> Thanks, Steve,
> So clear.  May I share your exposition with locals, here?  Attributed?
> Or Anonymous?
> I thought “Radwin” might be a standard.  It turns out to be a
> company.  Interesting website. 
> https://www.radwin.com/
> Let me know what you think. 
> N
> Nicholas S. Thompson
> Emeritus Professor of Psychology and Biology
> Clark University
> http://home.earthlink.net/~nickthompson/naturaldesigns/
> <http://home.earthlink.net/%7Enickthompson/naturaldesigns/>
> *From:*Friam [mailto:friam-bounces at redfish.com] *On Behalf Of *Steven
> A Smith
> *Sent:* Tuesday, April 24, 2018 12:53 AM
> *To:* The Friday Morning Applied Complexity Coffee Group
> <friam at redfish.com>
> *Subject:* Re: [FRIAM] The Last Mile, again
>     Thanks So much.  Can you explain the following  passage in greater
>     detail?  What do you mean by “over-subscription”. 
> If I actually got my 10Mbps down and 5Mbps up from my provider
> consistently and I had say 4 devices running in my house, potentially
> all trying to use *all* 10/5, then within my household I would be
> "oversubscribed" by 4X.   Of course, I know that it is unlikely for
> all 4 devices to be trying to push/pull that hard at the same time,
> continuously so for all practical purposes, my 10/5 is available to
> all 4 devices under most "normal" circumstances.
> I don't know who (if anyone) regulates oversubscription of bandwidth,
> in this modern wild west it is probably just market forces.
>     That seems to be what they are promising.  See my answer to Gary,
>     just sent.  The said that they had contracted for a 1 gig pipe and
>     that that would take care of anything subscribers could throw at
>     them.  I didn’t make any sense to me, but perhaps I just
>     misunderstood.  If I understood the units, 40 users could exhaust
>     I G if they all got on at the same time.
> Yes, I misregistered the units by 10x.  IF 40 users all started
> pushing (or pulling) as hard as the link would let them (25/3) at the
> same time, continuously, then you would begin to see degradation
> (probably sooner for lots of reasons), but the fact is, very few
> people have the need to use the network that heavily except in bursts
> and rarely is there a service on the other end willing to meet them
> halfway and push/pull that much data.   If they are planning on
> supporting 100 users, then they are at a 2.5X oversubscription rate,
> but from anecdotal evidence, THAT is very reasonable.  
>       I assume we are talking about Mega/Giga per second here.  So to
>     carry out the promise as I heard it, they would have to have a 1
>     gig pipe for every 40 users and they are talking about 100-200
>     users to begin with.  So, is that what you mean by
>     “over-subscription”:  the number of paid subscribers who would be
>     left out if everybody tried to get on simultaneously at full speed? 
> Yes, that is a correct understanding, but as I indicated above, it is
> unlikely that anyone, much less everyone can push/pull that hard
> except very intermittently.
>     What questions should I be asking them?
> I think they are making all of the right promises and suggesting all
> the right things...  the real proof will be in their execution.   You
> aren't in a good position to be second guessing too much about their
> technical design, but what their redundancy/backup plans are may
> define how long they stay down if a backhoe, for example, cuts their
> main line... or if lightning fries a rack of gear, etc.    They
> probably will tell you reassuring things in any case, so the bigger
> question is whether you trust them.  
> One thing that might be *real* problems are "line of sight" from your
> location to one of their towers... if you can *see* one or more of the
> hilltops where they have towers, you are in pretty good shape unless
> you are seeing it through your bare trees (or right past the edge) or
> your neighbor puts up a big barn in the way.
> Another is whether they have the install capacity to stand up 100 or
> more customers quickly... one install team might be able to do several
> a day (without problems) but with delays and weekends, that might mean
> some customers won't see service for a couple of months.
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