Oh nooooo, I'm an addict !

  • Yesterday morning my internet went down, & stayed down for 25 hours [apparently a h/w failure in the regional exchange]. During this outage i discovered [or rather, confirmed] a slowly growing suspicion of the past several years. I. Have. Become. An. Addict. To the internet. That 25 hours [true, i slept for some of it, but (& this is even more disturbing & utterly pathetic) even that included some miserable being-offline dreams/nightmares (i know; what a loser!)].

    It's true that i really did have several tasks that i "needed" [/wanted?] to do online yesterday, which plans were thus buggered. I tried, really quite hard, to convince myself throughout yesterday that my fidgetiness, lack of concentration, irritability [even more than usual], amorphous sense of loss & displacement, all stemmed completely & only from my enforced inability to perform said online tasks. I even almost managed to persuade myself. Almost.

    So [yesterday's thought processes continued] i can't do my Very Important Bigly Tasks, then what else will i do? I know, i'll use this opportunity to download that new distro i'd been thinking of playing with in another VM... oh yeah, no internet. Ok, i'll reinstall my distro on my Lappy & this time use the same partitioning & encryption choices as i have on my Tower... oh yeah, no internet. [Looks out the window] oh, it's a lovely sunny [autumn] day, maybe i'll go out & rake those leaves, sweep the paving, trim back those bushes & shrubs. Maybe. I should. I could. It's the right thing to do, & now i have the chance. But... it's just so... analogue.

    My analogue TV broke a few years ago [or more accurately, my digital Set-Top Box broke], but i chose not to do anything about it coz [a] most stuff broadcast in Oz is pure crap, & [b] all the stuff i do like watching, is available for live & time-shifted streaming, & [c] Netflix. But, last night, when i would otherwise usually indulge these guilty pleasures, i was bereft... No Internet LED still. Aaaaarrrrrggghh. What should i do, what could i do, what would i do? I made a nice cuppa, reclined on the sofa, & ... read a book. It was, however, an eBook, so i felt slightly like my addiction was infinitesimally salved. 👅

    Today, once i discovered The Blessed Sacred Return of the Holy Modem's Internet LED, i was aware of a sense not only of relief, but something embarrassingly [ashamedly] bordering on euphoria. It's terrible, as one slowly accepts just how far one has fallen, as one recognises how deeply the technological hooks have penetrated the psyche, how intimately the disease has intertwined with the serotonin receptors.

    But surely this is mere hyperbole, right? I really did have tasks to do. Online tasks. Legit stuff, not just frivolous time-wasting guff. Yeah. Today, several hours now PL [post-LED], coz those tasks really were legit & important & stuff, obviously by now i must have done them, or at least commenced them, right? Um. Erm. Oh, look over there.

    Well, sure, yep i would have done them, no doubt at all, but first i just needed to spend a moment launching Clementine & resuming my perennial music streaming, i mean, be reasonable! Then i just needed to browse all my fav news sites & add my Utterly Invaluable [ahem] $0.02-worth, here & there. Of course i then had to process the pile of new [backlogged] email that arrived. Then i needed to [the earth would have spun backwards if not for me] log back into my distro's forum, review the latest, & again bounce my cheques therein. Of course i could not possibly, in good conscience, then commence My Important Tasks unless i knew i first had checked out the 87 new Vivaldi forum posts, & then... etc.

    I. Have. Become. An. Addict.

    Tower & Lappy = Maui Linux 17.03 x64 Plasma 5.9.3.

  • Moderator

    @Steffie The whole world (not only people but companies, institutions, governments, economics etc.) rely or are dependent on the access to the Internet, so IMO you should not feel bad about yourself if the inability to do some (more or less) important stuff on-line makes you feel anxious.

    But one thing that puzzles me is: why don't you use any alternative service, like mobile? I have 30 GB on my mobile data plan and even if I run out of that data (didn't happen so far), I can extend that limit for some extra fee or just keep using the Internet with lower transmission speed for no extra charge. This plan also includes unlimited calls & text messages (excluding landline phones/international calls). All of that for about $7-8 per month. It really saves you some trouble, not to mention the stress... 😉

  • Moderator

    @pafflick: I likewise use a mobile hotspot in case of emergency. It has saved my bacon a few times. It's not always slower than my local "edge of the universe" (no house farther from the switch than me can be served) DSL, either. What's slightly hilarious is that I'm on the fringe of 4G LTE service as well, and so occasional loss of that service (even in the middle of a call) is a fairly regular feature of life here.

  • Moderator

    @Ayespy Yet I live in the middle of a city and 30-40 Mbps is the maximum I can get. At least the service is pretty stable & reasonably failproof - we haven't had an outage lasting longer than few hours as far as I can remember...

  • When a year back we moved and had no phone or internet for a week until connected I used my mobile as a wi-fi hotspot, worked perfectly.
    As a minor point I totally identified with the point and in some ways gladly of being an addict, so much better than many things we could be addicted to

  • Moderator

    @pafflick: You say 30-40 like it was peanuts. I'm lucky to get 8.

  • @pafflick said in Oh nooooo, I'm an addict !:

    why don't you use any alternative service, like mobile?

    Ahhhhh. Well you see, here you are "guilty" of a logical deductive error. It's entirely true that in my post i said nothing about a mobile alternative, & hence the fact that i moaned & moaned & whinged & moaned some more, ostensibly entitles any fair-minded reader [eg, your good self] to deduce that "oh, she must not have any alternative [3G/4G/5G] connection facility available for her to continue doing what she needs to do".

    In fact i do indeed have a mobile phone with 3G internet access, & i did use it several times during that outage, to check for any urgent emails to which i might need to attend, & also to check one or two news sites occasionally just to see if the world had ended whilst i was offline & hence unable to know 😉

    However both those preceding activities are "lightweight"; they consume minimal data. In Oz, we have abysmal mobile & internet services; we pay high costs for super crap services. I chose my mobile plan on the basis of lowest available price [A$16 pm] & this only gives me 1GB data pm. In keeping with my already-stated criticism of our lousy price / service ratio, once you exceed your prepaid data allowance, you get hit with $1,000,000,000,000 /byte [there might be a minor degree of exaggeration there...], so i deliberately keep all my mobile browsing restricted to the lightweight behaviour already mentioned. All music & video streaming, ISO etc downloads, i do on my Tower & Lappy, via my so-called "broadband" [ha!!] fixed-line service [500 GB pm].

    Thus one reason i didn't use my mobile for "heavy" stuff during the outage, was my personal parsimony. However the other reason was pure pragmatism [aka, my abject laziness]. Two of the tasks i had wanted to do involved accessing websites holding data i needed to copy & paste into two [separate, unrelated] spreadsheets on which i'm working. One was tabulated financial data [about 30 rows & 4 columns to be transferred], which then get plotted in my Excel scatter chart. The other was tech spec info for an investigation i'm doing to help me decide the cost-benefit ratio for replacing my natural gas space heater with a heat-pump [RCAC], for which i need to obtain the various CoP [coefficient of performance (in effect, the efficiency measure of refrigeration & heat-pump systems)] data of commercial alternatives i might consider, then incorporate this data into my custom spreadsheet i'm building to help me decide. My pragmatism / laziness is such that i don't like "double-handling", which is what would have happened had i attempted to obtain all this info on my mobile, then manually transfer it to my Tower for processing.

    I did ponder firing up my Lappy, which has WiFi & BT [my Tower has neither], & trying to deduce how to setup a "tether" to enable me to use the mobile basically as a 3G modem for my Lappy. I didn't pursue it, as [a] i don't know how to do it, so would have had to research it using my mobile, whose small screen & micro keyboard are a big disincentive to me for such work, but more importantly [b] that 1GB limit.

    My [deliberate] omission of mobile in my OP did not logically prove i had none, albeit in context that would not be an unreasonable inference to have drawn. For brevity i originally elected simply to skip that whole tangent. Now [with many more words expended] you have a fuller picture.

    You can wake up again now. 👅

  • Moderator

    @Ayespy Ouch, that could be really painful at times... 😖 I guess I just got too comfy with my 80 Mbps DSL (at least that's the maximum that I pay for, even though I can never get that much), but on the other hand, there are some fibers not that far away from my house (a couple of kilometers/miles?) which offer Internet access @ 900 Mbps... 😮

  • Moderator

    @Steffie Well, I guess I wouldn't ask that question if I knew this beforehand or if - at least - I didn't make an assumption that such kinds of services are not so vastly different in the well-developing countries like OZ or US.

    I know how painful it is to have a limited data plan because the limits were quite strict here too in the past. But I'm a little bit shocked to find that it's still a thing in some of the richest countries, as I assumed that this was already a thing of the past, just like it is here (in a much poorer country). And yet the data limits for "land-line" Internet access were lifted here a long time ago. The only limit that remained is the connection speed (or at least that's how they advertise it).

    One thing that I still find surprising is that you (apparently) don't use any kind of WiFi router? I thought that it's a must-have if you want to have a convenient way of connecting multiple devices to "the rest of the world". Especially your phone, if your mobile data plan is so limited and you still want to keep your device up to date...

  • Moderator

    @pafflick: Average "broadband" in the United States lags woefully far behind the much of the developed world. Places like So. Korea, Scandinavia, Iceland, put us to shame. "greatest country in the world." Right. Our "average" broadband is 14 MPps but there are huge stretches of the country with no broadband at all, and fringe places like this one, surrounded on four sides by the city limits of a thriving metropolitan area, and we do not have cable, (BARELY have DSL, that ends at my house), natural gas service, sewer, or city water. Our electrical service is on poles above the ground, and vulnerable to the weather. Where my younger daughter and my grandkids live, there is no physical broadband at all. It's on the Verizon fringe and only last month, for the first time, she became eligible for "unlimited" wireless "broadband." (up to 10MPps) at $300/mo. Prior to that she was paying between $600/mo and $1,000/mo for wireless service to the house which ran between 3MB and 8MB.

    Since I have a physical wire to the house less then a half mile from a switch, my 8MB costs me a mere $30/mo.

  • @pafflick said in Oh nooooo, I'm an addict !:

    80 Mbps DSL ... 900 Mbps

    Oh stop it, stop, STOP. You are driving me crazy with jealousy 🙂

    The state of internet in Oz is a national disgrace. Many years ago we had a visionary [at least with IT, not at all so in other policy areas] federal govt that conceived & initiated the so-called NBN [national broadband network] for which >90% of its infrastructure would be FTTP instead of our present obsolete broken-down copper wire. Two elections ago the then-opposition party, now [disastrously] our "govt", decided to mount a vicious sustained & wholly lying political attack on this project as a political means to fool the stupid stupid STUPID electorate. It worked [along with their lies on all their other policies too], & with the change of govt came the total destruction of this visionary project. The cretins replaced the original scope with a "plan" to reuse the existing obsolete broken copper network, patch it with chewing gum, bandages, sticky tape & plastic bags, & surprise surprise the results so far [the project still has years before completion] are widely reported as being horrible for consumers.

    If you're interested to know more, & have some spare time, here's some links, in chronological order:

    1. http://www.abc.net.au/news/2015-08-26/kidman-getting-on-with-the-job-of-failure/6725940
    2. https://theconversation.com/the-nbn-why-its-slow-expensive-and-obsolete-47191
    3. https://www.gizmodo.com.au/2015/12/malcolms-mess-how-the-coalitions-nbn-came-unstuck/
    4. https://theconversation.com/infographic-how-fast-is-the-nbn-54392
    5. http://www.abc.net.au/news/2016-03-01/manning-what-went-wrong-with-the-nbn/7210408
    6. https://theconversation.com/how-do-labor-and-the-coalition-differ-on-nbn-policy-60925
    7. https://theconversation.com/the-need-for-speed-theres-still-time-to-fix-australias-nbn-61288
    8. https://theconversation.com/australians-could-get-faster-broadband-with-more-kerbside-nbn-connections-74611

  • @pafflick said in Oh nooooo, I'm an addict !:

    One thing that I still find surprising is that you (apparently) don't use any kind of WiFi router?

    Oh i do of course have & use a WiFi router. My Tower [no BT, no WiFi] is connected to it now via ethernet cable, & my Lappy connects to it via WiFi, as does my Android tablet & my Android phone [but only when i do want to do a biggish one-off download & not eat into that small data limit i mentioned]. However in the context of my original post, my WiFi router became "dead" wrt internet access, for that 25 hr outage. It wasn't an outage at my end, it was way upstream somewhere.

    As for your "I'm a little bit shocked to find that it's still a thing in some of the richest countries, as I assumed that this was already a thing of the past, just like it is here (in a much poorer country)." ... Your "shock" is entirely legitimate & justified. There is no "good" reason for it, there is only partisan politics, per my recent other reply. It is hard to imagine, let alone believe, that a modern wealthy, educated western country would elect a "govt" determined to deny anthropogenic climate change, to demonise vilify & victimise innocent desperate asylum seekers & refugees, to espouse a Luddite IT policy, to [i could add another dozen of their policy crimes here, but obviously this is not the relevant place for it]. Well it might be hard to believe, but that's exactly what "we" did here. Whilst i have contempt for these disgusting politicians, i have anger & criticism of the electorate that voted for them & continues to support them. There was a time that Oz used to be at the front of innovation, compassion, humanity. I no longer live in those times. It is very shameful.

  • hello Steffie and everyone
    Surely the internet will be back ON Any Minute Now
    ate up forty hours of the weekend here.
    "[ahem] $0.02-worth," the Australian 2 cent is worth at least one dollar or more(?)
    You are so lucky to have email when Your internet returned; after forty hours of fretting here had a empty ebox. Caught-up quickly. Who of us can be jealous?
    How about those old years when we kept a dial-up account current as a back-up plan! not any more.
    Tethering? additional paid accounts? [yes we paid a desperation outside hotspot once.] ..just proves one cannot think reliably when the internet is off.


Looks like your connection to Vivaldi Forum was lost, please wait while we try to reconnect.