As you may have gathered from my recent lack of posts – not to mention the content of my Twitter stream – I am currently experiencing a very inconvenient Interweb blackout in the Lolocaust Flat. It seems that someone didn’t put fifty pence in the Web Meter and now we are featuring a series of rolling blackouts. Oddly this has ensured nothing less that a gritted, determined effort to get online by any means necessary, and obviously I have had some success as I am writing this.
Waking up to a lack of Internet would probably not trouble too many people, but as I ambled down the stairs at five in the morning and noticed a flashing orange light on my modem I didn’t consider the impact that this blackout could have. Within an hour I realised that I had no email, no web access, no updates on my iOS games, no new podcasts, no Twitter feed… As a gamer I also lost Xbox Live and the PSN, which is now really starting to bite.
At first the intermittent connection issues were only affecting the main connection, the BT Fon connection was working fine so I could connect – admittedly at low speeds – to check emails and Tweets on my iPod. Sometimes my neighbour with the unlocked modem would turn it on, and I could connect via that, but generally I am in a dead zone. Communications with BT have turned up no specific issue that would explain the problem, but given the extortionate rates I pay to get online I am disappointed that this hasn’t been resolved yet.
Luckily modern Britain is a world of free Wi-Fi, shared hot-spots and mobile dongles and as such I am now working a series of different locations to get my work done online. Currently I am in a Wetherspoons pub using the Cloud network to get online with decent speeds and reliability. McDonalds just outside of town uses the same network but with far worse speeds/reliability. I have also now got myself an o2 3G dongle to connect at home in case of emergency/sudden burst of inspiration but even this was a bit of a minefield when o2 let us know that they didn’t recommend we buy it – a clear case of transparent fairness that came at the wrong time, we bought it anyway – and then took about an hour to actually get working.
So here we are now at a bit of an impasse as I have no further option but to become an Internet Hobo, wandering from place to place – possibly making a new friend, then I turn around and go again… maybe tomorrow I’ll want to settle down – with a laptop, an iPod and a dongle keeping just enough information at my finger tips, and setting on Twitter have been changed to ensure I still get my more important Tweets.
How long will this last? I don’t know. I will strive to update as often as is possible – one article is pre-written to go up tomorrow anyway – but I can’t guarantee constant streams of posts, or swift responses to comments. I can only apologise for this.
Rock on, spread the word and keep The Lolocaust going…