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Comment Here's your plan (Score 4, Informative) 239

I work for a small, rural ISP with many of the same challenges that you're looking at. We started up as a dialup provider in 1997 and have moved into wireless and DSL.

First, get some money. A lot. Shitloads. Second, raise your pain threshold. Third, that whole "this will not be my day job" thing? Forget that, it will be your day job, night job, weekend job and holiday job. Finally, hire some talent that isn't lost in licensed frequencies and other issues.

What we do is wifi mesh. We use grain elevators, radio towers, old TV masts at customers locations, whatever we can ad AP or radio on to help extend the mesh. We use inexpensive customer premise gear, lightning sucks around here. You'll need some backend equipment, bandwidth backhauls and some routing gear; everything we use is open-source, DYI equipment because money, that's why. Don't try to cover the entire area at once, hit customers you can easily reach, solidify them and then move slowly. DO NOT! run an ad that there's a new ISP in town offering high-speed service, you likely won't be able to meet the demand.

A guy, you, can totally do this. But you're going to need some help, some money, and some adjusted expectations. If you're a gambler, go for it, if you're hoping to make a bit of money from it on the side, get out now and save yourself.

Comment Re:Causes? (Score 1) 312

If I had mod points you'd get them. That's the most precise explanation I've ever read. Someone who hasn't been there simply cannot understand it, and then once you're there, you cannot see any alternatives.

Comment Re:What's the point...? (Score 2, Insightful) 306

I don't know. I think the lack of bells and whistles might be what causes some people to look for an alternative. I've quit using Facebook because of the bells, the whistles, the endless posts of what my friends like, pleas to like things that I don't like, requests to join groups I've got no interest in, and all of it from people I haven't had an actual conversation with or seen in 20 years, or even worse from friends of theirs that I've never met at all. If Diaspora strips social networking back to it's basics, if it lets me see what's going on with friends and family, look at pictures of their recent vacation and send a few "how are you?" messages, then I'm all for it.

Games

Haptic Gaming Vest Simulates Punches, Shots, Stabbing 110

An anonymous reader writes "IEEE Spectrum reports that University of Pennsylvania researchers have developed a Tactile Gaming Vest that smacks and vibrates as players get shot in a game based on Half-Life 2. Four solenoid actuators in the chest and shoulders in front and two solenoids in the back give you the feeling of a simulated gunshot. In addition, vibrating eccentric-mass motors clustered against the shoulder blades make you feel a slashing effect as you get stabbed from behind. If this kind of vest could be linked to a movie while you watch it, the experience would be that much more exciting. Or as one of the creators put it, 'every time Bruce Willis gets shot, you feel it.'"
Games

The Grown-Up Video Game 152

Phaethon360 writes "Now, more than ever, we're seeing many Mature ratings (M+, 17+, 18) being distributed by various national media regulators. But that isn't the only indicator for a game's intended audience. It doesn't take a thousand swear words, scantily clad women or gratuitous violence to differentiate a ten-year-old's game from a twenty-year-old's. The spectrum of human emotions encompasses a wider palette than just revenge, fear, and loss, but the games that shy away from these are frequently mistaken as being for a younger audience. From the article: 'The human experience is one that is made up of great hardship, pain, loss, death, and a multitude of experiences seemingly designed to destroy a person. However, that same experience is also filled with joy, love, laughter, family and friends. ... These so-called “grown-up” games need not be relegated to the category of niche gaming. In fact, at times we find that these video games are capable of reaching mass popularity among the gaming community. It is here that we find one of our generation’s outlets for the expression of conflict.'"

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