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Comment: Re:BUT I have an "unlimited" connection! (Score 1) 181 181

The backbone is less of a problem than the last mile.

The backbone situation is reasonably healthy and competitive in the US (although, at some point they might have to step in and stop Zayo from buying everybody else out).

The last mile... well, that dictates who you can get based on where you live. So I'd say: open and regulated last mile, any retail ISP can offer their service to any subscriber on any last mile infrastructure they like. I may be biased but I like how New Zealand's model has become over the last few years.

Comment: Re:Links to the actual study (Score 1) 181 181

The amount of money it costs to add more capacity at a peering exchange or carrier hotel is laughingly negligible. Even more so when compared to profit margins or total costs for CAPEX and OPEX.

It's a terrible excuse.

As far as AT&T "throttling" GTT because GTT doesn't pay them... well, that's one of the things that's not supposed to be a thing now, isn't it? Besides which, what does AT&T expect when probably 98% of their services are asymmetrical? (A technology problem, obviously, but their policy needs to reflect that).

There are only a small number of ISPs in the US offering symmetrical connections to all or most of their customers.

Comment: Re:TNSTAAFL (Score 1) 272 272

Buffets set a time limit on the table (usually 90 minutes or so, else people actually come in there and can sit all day).

I can't speak for other providers, but in our case while we never used "Unlimited", we recently changed our wording from "flat-rate" to "all you can eat" to make explaining the policies easier. I always felt that "Flat Rate" was talking about flat-rate pricing rather than usage, but we changed it to "All You Can Eat" because it relates more directly to usage - in the specs for the plan we make a comparison to being "like a buffet restaurant, but you can't feed the whole neighbourhood" or something. Granted, this is for wired service, not wireless, and I can quite understand the need for some limitation on wireless services.

The same paragraph also mentions that we expect usage of between 1 and 2 TB on that particular plan (but that the limits are still soft, as they always were - chances are if we ever got anyone using 77TB of data like that guy on Verizon FiOS did we might not be too happy about it though). At the same time 2TB equates to about 6mbit/s 24x7 and is - for most households - plenty and for most intents and purposes "practically unlimited", even on a 100mbit/s connection (and as bandwidth prices fall, that threshold will undoubtedly increase).

Even so, most people buy a usage-based plan which offers data topups at fairly reasonable prices.

Comment: Re:They think they will have it working by 2020? (Score 1) 81 81

$7k for 500mbit/s? That sounds a bit expensive, even in a rural-ish area. I can get over 1 gbps (with SLA) for a little less than that in a town with under 30k people in the midwest.

Your ISP is probably getting ripped off possibly by a term contract that doesn't account for automatic bandwidth upgrades for the same amount of money.

Comment: Re:Up to 20Gbps (Score 1) 81 81

IMHO this is the wrong type of thinking. Setting minimums doesn't give anything to aspire to, it doesn't give anyone any incentive to push the technology to what it can do.

Instead providers focus on providing "good enough to meet the minimum".

And this doesn't just apply to the US.

Comment: Re:Stop charging for checked bag (Score 1) 273 273

This is mostly an America-centric problem, unless you're flying a budget airline, in which case you're probably paying 1/4 to 1/10 the price of the ticket on a normal airline, so extra baggage fees are (in some way) justified.

If I fly Jetstar (a budget airline) Auckland to Singapore for $99 I expect to pay extra for baggage. If I fly Air New Zealand or Singapore (full service airlines) from Auckland to Singapore, I don't expect to pay extra for baggage.

But in the US, it doesn't matter who I fly with, I'm going to be charged for baggage, and that is annoying.

Comment: Re:Correct, but silly (Score 1) 172 172

Perhaps if she took it a step further and superimposed an image big rubber stamp saying "void" or "this guy sucks" over his comment, she would be "appropriating" just as much as he is, as demonstrably proven by the past court case(s) against him therefore citing his previous cases as defense, he absolutely can't sue her.

But then what of the original works? If I were her I probably would be litigating because unlike his previous case where he modified (somewhat) the original image, he hasn't really done dick to "transform" anything except add his comment and print it out.

But that's just my opinion.

Comment: Re:Automatic presumption of govt incompetence... (Score 1) 206 206

But.... The Federally backed Student Loan program expansion happens to be associated with a HUGE increase in money borrowed for ... Hold on to your hat... College education... Which just happened to take place at the SAME TIME as ... Hold your hat again.... Tuition increases...

But nothin'... quit stutterin', boy, people'll think yewr stoopid

If you read my post at all, you'd see I am also not in favour of student loans. Universities should be publicly funded and available to any citizen/resident or at the very least the student should be able to fund their education and living expenses with a part-time job.

This whole idea of student loans is stupid and supports this whole obsession America has with credit and going in to debt to get stuff - top, middle and bottom all suffer from this same thing.

Say, could all that be somehow related? Might there be a cause and effect relationship between the Fed making more money available and students borrowing more for tuition AND THEN tuitions going up? I think so...

Same thing is going to happen with healthcare.. Total costs are going up... You can bet the farm on that.

So basically you didn't read my post at all. Try replying to what I actually wrote and only then can we have a coherent discussion.

Comment: Re:Automatic presumption of govt incompetence... (Score 1) 206 206

Again, for you, but as we have identified in other posts, your situation is an anomaly.

Secondly, the choice between DSL and cable isn't really choice.

Besides that, for the vast majority of subscribers, only one of those options actually offers (properly) high speeds -- and in a significant portion of cases the DSL on offer barely squeaks above the *old* definition of broadband.

So yes, there is a problem.

But it's also noteworthy that you've neglected to reply to my replies to other comments, just this and one other ;)

Comment: Re:Automatic presumption of govt incompetence... (Score 1) 206 206

Publicly funded healthcare works when the healthcare PROVIDERS aren't charging the insurance (private OR public) 3 or 5 times the actual price of the service. I was talking to a guy just last night who told me that paying for his surgery was "only" about $70k compared to the $300k they would have charged his insurance (and he'd still have been stuck with 20% of that).

I'm not talking about subsidizing student loans - getting an education shouldn't require a massive student loan, subsidized or not, nor should it require parents to start a college fund the day they get the positive pregnancy test. Students should be able to afford to pay for university and their living expenses by themselves with *at most* a part-time job and come out of it without any significant debt - like it used to be in the US and still is in some other countries.

In the US, both of these things though seem to be the "free market" at work - providers of education and health are charging whatever the hell they want, and in both cases are charging amounts that are inflationary, exploitative and far beyond reason - as we already know, per capita spending on both of these things in the US is far higher than anywhere else yet the quality/outcome is far lower by comparison.

Having private education and healthcare for those who can afford it and want the extra perks (Ivy League universities, for example) but to deny those who can't afford it *any* option whatsoever (ie, no university or healthcare for you, poor person!) is not.

The average student shouldn't *have* to rely on scholarships and/or student loans just to pay for their degree even at random-state-U, but should have the option to apply for those things if they want to go for something specific.

You can do this in a number of ways. IBM chose to do all of them. Why do you find that funny? -- D. Taylor, Computer Science 350