What did we do before the Internet?

A great part of ham radio is not needing an Internet connection. Much of today our area has been plagued by some sort of Comcast outage that does not allow us to access the high-speed Internet connection or VOIP (phone). Why? Don’t know and all tech support would tell me is that they are aware of an outage and they are working on resolving it. The second time I called, the system recognized my address by my home phone number and said I had called previously, there is still an outage and I was not required to stay on the line. Intuitive, I guess.

I am currently sitting in the shack on 15M CW and working Asia without a care in the world as to when my Comcast signal comes back online. Now my XYL is peeved but not without right. Comcast allegedly said if there was an high speed Internet outage, the VOIP phone service would continue to function, just in case 911 call was needed. Unfortunately for the second outage now that has not been the case.

While I don’t know the ins and outs of VOIP, I don’t see how Comcast could guarantee phone service (VOIP) and not high speed Internet when they both use the SAME technology. Guess I could spend a few minutes to read up on it, but in any case my XYL has not been happy all day long because of this outage.

When service is restored I guess my XYL is going to raise hell with Comcast…again! I have already told her I refuse to go back to AT&T’s UVerse service since it would not work with my hobby, ham radio. She claims when I am operating my signal causes her latency to increase. Mind you, she is on Facebook and I continue to point my finger at Facebook and those game developers, not my radio. I will admit to having some RFI in the phones when I am transmitting (with the linear on) at times on certain bands.

Unfortunately with UVerse their gateway modem was Chinese made and very suseptible to RFI. I had done everything within my power to clean up my signal and RFI issues in the shack, but nothing I did as it related to their hardware fixed the problem. All of my calls to tech support were answered but none of the techs that came to the house would see any problem, nor could they provide me with a solution. So, in the end, AT&T was out and Comcast was back.

This is the first extended outage with Comcast I can recall. Being at work all day it has not had any effect on me, but I know my XYL’s opinion would differ strongly. With mobile phone such a big part of nearly everyone’s life, I was all for dropping traditional (or VOIP) phone service in favor of mobile coverage. Unfortunately Verizon’s signal strength at the QTH is not good at all. It is rare to see a ‘3G’ indication or more than a single bar.