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Verizon Promises 4G Wireless For Rural America

ScuttleMonkey posted more than 5 years ago | from the finally-the-dairy-twitter-market-can-explode dept.

United States 135

Hugh Pickens writes "A Pew study last year found that only 38 percent of rural American homes have access to broadband Internet, compared to 57 percent in cities and 60 percent in the suburbs. All that could be about to change with the announcement that Verizon plans to start introducing a new wireless network in the 700 MHz spectrum in 2010. 'The licenses we bought in the 700MHz auction cover the whole US,' says Tony Melone, a Verizon Wireless VP. 'And we plan to roll out LTE [high-speed mobile service] throughout the entire country, including places where we don't offer our [current] cell phone service today.' Because the [700 MHz] spectrum is in a lower frequency, it can transmit signals over longer distances and penetrate through obstacles, and because the signals travel longer distances, Verizon can deploy fewer cell towers than if it used spectrum from a higher frequency band, which means it can provide coverage at a lower cost. President Obama's administration is well aware of the high-speed Internet divide that exists today, and as part of the overall economic stimulus package passed by Congress, the government is allocating $7.2 billion for projects that bring broadband Internet access to rural towns and communities."

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Welcome (3, Funny)

Mishotaki (957104) | more than 5 years ago | (#27451653)

Let us welcome our future monopolistic overlords! so... they're gonna cap them at 5 gigs of data transfer a month for 200$ ? gotta pay for the bills of the bran new network!

Re:Welcome (1)

timeOday (582209) | more than 5 years ago | (#27452021)

They are adding another route to the Internet on top of whatever exists today. How exactly does that create a monopoly?

Re:Welcome (1)

R3d M3rcury (871886) | more than 5 years ago | (#27452087)

Not for the 38% of rural customers who have access to broadband, true. But for the other 62%, they're going from no choice to one choice.

Re:Welcome (4, Insightful)

Aranykai (1053846) | more than 5 years ago | (#27452155)

I for one would welcome a monopoly over a lack of any service.

Re:Welcome (1)

Hurricane78 (562437) | more than 5 years ago | (#27452659)

Let's see what you will say *after* you are bound to their contract...

Re:Welcome (1)

bluesatin (1350681) | more than 5 years ago | (#27453359)

Let's see what you will say *after* you are bound to their contract...

Well maybe he will choose not to take their contract, he still has the choice to not use the service.

Re:Welcome (1)

halsver (885120) | more than 5 years ago | (#27452709)

I for one welcome our new monopolistic-service-providing overlords.

Fixed that for you.

But will it be capped? (3, Interesting)

kdekorte (8768) | more than 5 years ago | (#27451679)

I just hope it is a service with a reasonable cap or without a cap. The current 5GB limit to the wireless internet is way to small. If it has a 100GB or over cap I'd sign up today. Currently, I run about 25GB over Sprint Broadband and would expect more with a faster service. And yes it is all legal stuff...

Re:But will it be capped? (1)

nine-times (778537) | more than 5 years ago | (#27451795)

Just a big question, I think, is "will I be able to get a dumb pipe?" if Verizon will offer 4G accounts with high bandwidth and high allowances, without any kind of filter or "walled garden", then will there be anything to prevent hardware manufacturers from providing 4G VoIP handsets and killing the cell phone market? Will Verizon allow that to happen?

Re:But will it be capped? (1)

snowraver1 (1052510) | more than 5 years ago | (#27451815)

Each 4g handset would have to be registered on Verizon's network. Verizon will still get paid. Sure you could hook the 4G into a router and NAT it, but that is no different than using a DSL link for VOIP.

Re:But will it be capped? (1)

nine-times (778537) | more than 5 years ago | (#27451893)

Each 4g handset would have to be registered on Verizon's network. Verizon will still get paid.

Yeah, but the question is whether they'll try to force you (through some means) to pay for voice service on top of the data service that you'll be paying for. It's not as though they haven't put any effort into fighting 3rd party VoIP services on their DSL lines.

Re:But will it be capped? (1)

mobets (101759) | more than 5 years ago | (#27452249)

I assume it will work in much the same way as the current 3g network. They sell USB WWAN adapters that will give your computer an internet connection anywhere you can get a decent signal. The service on these devices is already data only.

Re:But will it be capped? (2, Insightful)

Yez70 (924200) | more than 5 years ago | (#27452273)

Wasn't Verizon forced to agree to an open device network in order to even bid on this spectrum?

Re:But will it be capped? (1)

nine-times (778537) | more than 5 years ago | (#27452461)

I don't remember which of the provisions set forth by Google Verizon was required to agree with, but I think it was only one of them.

Re:But will it be capped? (4, Interesting)

maxume (22995) | more than 5 years ago | (#27451975)

Maybe they will do something completely ridiculous and charge reasonable prices for metered bandwidth.

Everyone one wins, light users pay less, heavy users get the bits they want for a reasonable amount, the company has the resources necessary to expand the network.

Re:But will it be capped? (2, Insightful)

rawg (23000) | more than 5 years ago | (#27452411)

I 2nd this. Metered bandwidth is the way to go. Grandpa can afford to send his three emails a month and I can do my remote development 6 days a week.

Re:But will it be capped? (3, Insightful)

Daimanta (1140543) | more than 5 years ago | (#27453669)

"Everyone one wins, light users pay less, heavy users get the bits they want for a reasonable amount, the company has the resources necessary to expand the network."

That's what happens if companies play nice.

What really happens: Light users pay exactly the same, "heavy users" will pay a lot more.

My proposition: do NOT oversell your capacity. You cannot sell what you do not have and if the network grinds to a halt, it's not the rightful users who are to blame.

Re:But will it be capped? (1)

maxume (22995) | more than 5 years ago | (#27453823)

Yeah, hence the tone of the part that you didn't quote.

On the upside, moves towards sane usually seem to have some traction.

Re:But will it be capped? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#27452051)

Hmm? I go way over that each month on my current 3G service (Only halfway through the payment term and I've already used 12GB) and I've never noticed any overage charges or the like. Is there some "limited" plan that I happen to not be on?

Anyway, I'm personally quite excited: My 3G dongle is amazing. It's a bit more expensive than I'd like for the size of the pipe ($60/month for top speeds of 200 KB/s) but it works everywhere, all the time, on any machine I plug it into, with no caps or throttling. It's well worth it considering my only other alternative is Commiecast.

I'll be one of the first to look into this when it becomes available.

Re:But will it be capped? (2)

venuspcs (946177) | more than 5 years ago | (#27452695)

I use an AT&T cellphone as my internet connection. I used 165GB last month and it was all legal stuff....Mostly Hulu!

Re:But will it be capped? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#27452861)

Yeah, in the country it was filmed

Because it worked so well last time (0)

merreborn (853723) | more than 5 years ago | (#27451683)

the government is allocating $7.2 billion for projects that bring broadband Internet access to rural towns and communities

Didn't Clinton throw a few billion down the same hole?

We don't really have much to show for it, do we?

Re:Because it worked so well last time (5, Insightful)

nine-times (778537) | more than 5 years ago | (#27451725)

The problem is giving subsidies to private companies without anything that tracks where that money goes. Building Internet infrastructure is a worthwhile investment. Giving Verizon billions of dollars and saying, "I hope you build something good with this," is not such a great idea.

Re:Because it worked so well last time (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#27452599)

From the second link [cnet.com] in the summary:

Melone said it's too early to say if Verizon will request money from the government as part of the package to fund building its network in rural communities. But he said that with or without government money, Verizon is committed to providing service in rural areas via its 4G network. "At this point we haven't made any attempt to get stimulus money for the LTE build-out," he said. "But it's still early in that process and there's not enough clarity around the stimulus package. We don't know what strings will be attached to that money. Regardless, we plan to blanket the country over a period of time with 4G. We bought the licenses to cover the entire continental U.S., and we plan on building the network where ever we have a license."

Re:Because it worked so well last time (0, Troll)

Gizzmonic (412910) | more than 5 years ago | (#27451767)

We've got my billion dollar penile implant to show for it! Wanna see it?

Re:Because it worked so well last time (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#27452169)

Hmm, as GP said, it's not much...

Re:Because it worked so well last time (0, Troll)

ksheff (2406) | more than 5 years ago | (#27452881)

Didn't Clinton throw a few billion down the same hole? We don't really have much to show for it, do we?

His administration gave a lot of money to the Detroit automakers for R&D in producing fuel efficient vehicles too. Great ROIC on both projects, I see.

Prediction: (3, Funny)

lessthanpi (1333061) | more than 5 years ago | (#27451693)

Farm related porn will flood the interweb

Re:Prediction: (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#27451887)

Farm related porn will flood the interweb

(emphasis mine, emphasizing future tense of verb)

I'll take it you haven't been around the internet much, then?

Re:Prediction: (2, Funny)

couchslug (175151) | more than 5 years ago | (#27452887)

"Farm related porn will flood the interweb"

But think of the boost in tourism!

Re:Prediction: (1)

Shikaku (1129753) | more than 5 years ago | (#27453917)

"Farm related porn will flood the interweb"

But think of the boost in voyeurism!

This is great news if it happens -- (2, Informative)

Cutting_Crew (708624) | more than 5 years ago | (#27451709)

Verizon did win the bid to get the 700 mhz spectrum but that is not what will elevate them into rural america alone.

Verizon merging with Alltel [cnet.com] will be a big factor as Alltel has had a presence in a lot of rural and small city suburbs.

Thanks Obama! (1)

randyest (589159) | more than 5 years ago | (#27451717)

As someone who is making ASICs for 4G (including LTE and WiMAX) $7.2 billion for 4G wireless is stimulus I can really believe in!

(I hope no one tells him that many rich people are going to get a lot richer thanks to this. Or that it would have been done anyway without the "stimulus" because it's a huge fat cash cow!)

Re:Thanks Obama! (1)

geekoid (135745) | more than 5 years ago | (#27452189)

You just keep sucking at that teat.

Re:Thanks Obama! (1)

lgw (121541) | more than 5 years ago | (#27452873)

Eh, I wouldn't be giving crap to anyone who's actually producing somehting useful for a living, even if some bailout dollars do fall their way.

Re:Thanks Obama! (1)

flyingfsck (986395) | more than 5 years ago | (#27452357)

Don't worry, because of the incredible rate at which Washington is printing money, inflation will soon wipe out any perceived riches.

Re:Thanks Obama! (2, Insightful)

RyuuzakiTetsuya (195424) | more than 5 years ago | (#27452769)

New LTE service also means that someone's going to have to support that network. Sales, customer service, tech support, network deployment, etc. etc. While the moderately well off get richer,a nd the obscenely wealthy get even richer, there's also the result of new jobs being created.

Re:Thanks Obama! (1)

falconwolf (725481) | more than 5 years ago | (#27453489)

I hope no one tells him that many rich people are going to get a lot richer thanks to this. Or that it would have been done anyway without the "stimulus" because it's a huge fat cash cow!

The thing is is incumbent broadband providers are fighting tooth and nail to stop competition. I wouldn't surprised to see the same thing here.

Falcon

halp! (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#27451743)

is anyone else having the comments display totally borked?

all i see is flat comments (no nesting) in rectangular boxes. wtf happened in the last hour?!?!

Re:halp! (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#27451943)

Nesting is for the birds.

High Speed Internet Availability (4, Insightful)

snowraver1 (1052510) | more than 5 years ago | (#27451759)

compared to 57 percent in cities and 60 percent in the suburbs[...]

That's pretty terrible...

Re:High Speed Internet Availability (1)

Cutting_Crew (708624) | more than 5 years ago | (#27451957)

makes you wonder why major suburbs and cities(i assume metro city areas are at least 100,000 people) don't break at least the 75% barrier of getting high speed internet. sure there might not be much choice but then again these days i can hardly justify dial-up being a viable choice. The issue i have is that there is a choice. i assume we are talking about high speed internet being 1.5mbps+ so with every one in these area at least able to get DSL why is it only 57/60% ??

Re:High Speed Internet Availability (1)

Sardak (773761) | more than 5 years ago | (#27452219)

I can't speak for other places, but where I live we have pretty terrible options for "high speed" internet access.

The main source, if you happen to be located near the downtown area, is the cable company, who offers UP TO 2Mbps. Sadly, where I live, they don't provide service, so I'm stuck with DSL from the phone company with a maximum down speed of 512 Kbps and a mere quarter of that up.

There's another company starting up that claims to be planning to offer up to 12Mbps connections over DSL fairly soon in the area. I'll believe it when I see it, of course. Likely, if they ever do come into existence, they won't service my area anyway.

Re:High Speed Internet Availability (2, Informative)

pnutjam (523990) | more than 5 years ago | (#27454009)

You know I fell for the Cable is much faster then DSL garbage for a long time. On paper, that is true. Now that I have DSL, I can genuinely say it feels much faster. I get consistantly faster torrents and downloads. My VPN is more responsive.

I do miss my "sticky" IP, it changes alot more w/ DSL, but that's easy to work around.

Re:High Speed Internet Availability (1)

phantomfive (622387) | more than 5 years ago | (#27451991)

Especially since the broadband of those who do have it isn't really all that fast....

What are those other people stuck with, dialup? That's beyond terrible...

Re:High Speed Internet Availability (1)

Cutting_Crew (708624) | more than 5 years ago | (#27452431)

but even if "isn't really that fast" is only 1 mbps thats still enough for most people to do web browsing and video streaming online and of course email. again even if there is only 1 dial-up, 1 DSL and 1 cable provider in most of these areas you have a choice to have "high-speed". perhaps we should define for the average joe was exactly high speed would be.

Re:High Speed Internet Availability (1)

ksheff (2406) | more than 5 years ago | (#27452827)

I'm wondering how they are defining "have access to broadband Internet". I'm guessing they are defining it as broadband service in the neighborhood AND having a computer to use it. Since there are significant numbers of people who don't give a shit about computers or the internet, the telecoms will continue to use these low-ball numbers in order to get governments to subsidize equipment upgrades.

Fewer towers = more congestion (1)

squiggleslash (241428) | more than 5 years ago | (#27451761)

And more deadspots.

I'm sure LTE across currently unserved areas will be better than nothing, but the "I know, this technology gives us oodles of bandwidth, let's just roll it out with as few towers as possible!" is what made a lot of networks barely usable back in the 1990s.

Re:Fewer towers = more congestion (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#27454161)

I think you're on to the crux of the problem. If currently they can only manage (say, I can't tell exactly from their coverage map) 5% coverage of the US with 3G (EVDO) and that coverage only allows at most 2-3 simultaneous users (1.2 Mbps split 3 ways is still barely 3G) per RF carrier on a cell site segment, I figure that they are going to have to increase the number of cell sites on the order of 1000 times in order to provide 4G for a significant fraction of their user base - never mind the general population. It will be worse than that if they really intend to deliver 4G performance since the cell diameter must shrink even more. And of course, cost and zoning for that dramatically larger infrastructure will magically happen at $39/month per subscriber!
Doing it in this "same old way" of flooding all users from a central cell site with 2-5 km radius is a pipe dream.

New network on phones? (2, Insightful)

ClaraBow (212734) | more than 5 years ago | (#27451773)

It would be nice if we could use this new wireless network on our smart phones and then let us tether our phones to our computers so that we could use it on the go and at home for one "reasonable price." --that is what I would love to see!

Re:New network on phones? (1)

dunkelfalke (91624) | more than 5 years ago | (#27452131)

here you are. [htc.com]

Re:New network on phones? (1)

ncohafmuta (577957) | more than 5 years ago | (#27452133)

i can tether my phone to any computer for $15 extra bucks a month. whether that's reasonable enough to drop [insert bane of your existance home provider here] for the drastic speed difference and limited cap is debatable.

Re:New network on phones? (2)

PitaBred (632671) | more than 5 years ago | (#27452393)

I can tether my phone to any computer for an extra $0 a month. Gotta love T-Mobile. I even clarified it with their rep before ordering it... I'm not breaking any TOS, and I didn't have to do any jailbreaking or any kinds of hacks to the phone firmware to get it working.

Re:New network on phones? (1)

Macrat (638047) | more than 5 years ago | (#27454479)

Yup. T-Mobile rocks.. Been tethering on their service for many years. And their services keep getting cheaper.

Re:New network on phones? (1)

falconwolf (725481) | more than 5 years ago | (#27453665)

It would be nice if we could use this new wireless network on our smart phones and then let us tether our phones to our computers so that we could use it on the go and at home for one "reasonable price."

Yea, I read in an article on CNet [cnet.com] broadband will be fixed not mobile.

Falcon

New Qualcomm Technology (1)

sarahbau (692647) | more than 5 years ago | (#27451775)

I've heard they're going to use Qualcomm's new dynamic network of Wolfpigeons to get as much coverage as possible - http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=3agYeT-T9co [youtube.com]

Hmmm..... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#27451789)

which means it can provide coverage at a lower cost

HAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHAHA

Fios or Wireless (1)

locallyunscene (1000523) | more than 5 years ago | (#27451791)

So their wireless network is superior but ridiculously expensive and their Fios support is good and cheap, but hardly anywhere.

I wonder what path this will take?

I can't help but wish Google had won the auction. Yes their a corporation like the others, but I like their products and prices better than Verizons' products and prices in general.

Meh (1)

dedazo (737510) | more than 5 years ago | (#27451809)

My sister can't even get FiOS where she lives.

Why is everyone ignoring the latency issues? (3, Insightful)

NevDull (170554) | more than 5 years ago | (#27451817)

It seems as though everyone's excited about "wireless broadband", but the speedtest app on my iPhone says 416ms ping while I'm on 3G.

Latency that's even half that is useless for many applications, and just frustratingly slow for just about all the rest.

Are we just heading for a new definition of the digital divide whereby some people don't have access to *useful* broadband?

-Nev

Re:Why is everyone ignoring the latency issues? (1, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#27451913)

Because with EVDO there are no bad latency issues. ATT 3G is not very good. HSDPA and UMTS in their current form are less capable than EVDO, which has ping times under 100ms. If ATT would support HSUPA, then they would get 3.6 Mb/s on the link.

Re:Why is everyone ignoring the latency issues? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#27452005)

+1

I consistently pull 100-150ms ping times when tethered to my EVDO phone. I am stuck with satellite internet (Wildblue) at home, so I am really hoping something good comes of this, esp WRT bandwith caps. My satellite is capped at 17gb down / 5gb up on a 30 day rolling window.

Oh yea... my Wildblue ping times? 1000-1500ms.

Re:Why is everyone ignoring the latency issues? (2, Informative)

Pros_n_Cons (535669) | more than 5 years ago | (#27452505)

I am stuck with satellite internet (Wildblue) at home, so I am really hoping something good comes of this, esp WRT bandwith caps.

I feel your pain. I was with wild blue and those latency times made my internet use almost useless. I got a sprint mobile on USB and my d/l is typically 1.2mbps but latency is usually around 100 and has never been over 200. Yes its 60 bucks a month but wild blue was 80 so get outta that contract homie.

Re:Why is everyone ignoring the latency issues? (1)

cryfreedomlove (929828) | more than 5 years ago | (#27452159)

Latency does not matter for media streaming and downloads. This will soon be the dominant use of bandwidth.

Video conferencing (2, Insightful)

tepples (727027) | more than 5 years ago | (#27454203)

Latency does not matter for media streaming

It matters for video conferencing, which as far as I know has a similar bandwidth requirement to YouTube in each direction.

Re:Why is everyone ignoring the latency issues? (1)

moosesocks (264553) | more than 5 years ago | (#27452317)

What desktop applications significantly deteriorate as a result of high latency?

I suppose it'd be annoying for video conferencing and gaming, though it seems like it'd be adequately tolerable (ie. still way better than dial-up) for most web browsing.

Re:Why is everyone ignoring the latency issues? (1)

tepples (727027) | more than 5 years ago | (#27454225)

What desktop applications significantly deteriorate as a result of high latency?

SSH, X, VNC, Remote Desktop, GoToMyPC by Citrix, etc. Or even web pages that use XMLHttpRequest.

Re:Why is everyone ignoring the latency issues? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#27452365)

Dude.. try rural satellite internet. Same sort of caps. You get 1/2 of the "burst" rate you pay for, equipment breaks once a year $200-$500 to fix, and the latency is up to about 1200-1500 ms pings. For $88/mo. Still it's better than dialup when your phone line goes out every two months because the pairs are >50 years old and QWEST won't run new ones. The problem with Verizon is the caps are even worse than the Satellite jerks. Hopefully Verizon won't be the only one out there offering this as they will restrict it so much as to be useless.

Re:Why is everyone ignoring the latency issues? (3, Informative)

kindbud (90044) | more than 5 years ago | (#27452395)

It seems as though everyone's excited about "wireless broadband", but the speedtest app on my iPhone says 416ms ping while I'm on 3G.

Speedtest.net from my PC when it is connected to my Cradlepoint WAP, which in turn is connected to Verizon's 3G EVDO network, shows me 150 ms latency all the time. Xbox360 games, EVE Online, other PC games, they all work great over my 3G service.

Re:Why is everyone ignoring the latency issues? (1)

bluesatin (1350681) | more than 5 years ago | (#27453445)

I don't know what is with the Speedtest.net service but their latency calculation is terrible.

If I manually ping a server based in London I can get pings of down to 20ms, when I do it on the site I get a ping of 300ms minimum.

I don't know if their servers are struggling or it's just the site has been terribley written, but it sure isn't accurate.

Re:Why is everyone ignoring the latency issues? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#27452567)

Part of the specification for LTE is MUCH lower latency then 3G. According to the 3GPP site (the standards body for LTE) latency is supposed to be as low as 5 ms for some packets.

Re:Why is everyone ignoring the latency issues? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#27452687)

You're seeing AT&T's attempt at 3G. EVDO (Sprint, Verizon) doesn't suffer the same fate.

Re:Why is everyone ignoring the latency issues? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#27453759)

Dude, that's 3G. This is 4G. That's like 1G faster.

Obama is our gracious overlord (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#27451867)

He can expect to get a nice fat Verizon campaign contribution laundered his way a few years hence.

Your First Premis is WRONG: +1, Helpful (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#27451929)

The United States of America has collapsed ECONOMICALLY. The U.S. is now in the POLITICAL COLLAPSE phase.

Yours In Communism,
Comrade Kilgore Trout [youtube.com]

4G? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#27451969)

4G?

What does "have access to broadband" mean? (1)

jfruhlinger (470035) | more than 5 years ago | (#27451977)

I interpret that as meaning "can get broadband of some sort if they chose to pay for it"; if that's the case, then the numbers given for cities and suburbs are shockingly low -- so low, in fact, that I don't believe that the phrase means what it appears to mean. I'd guess they mean "actually have broadband in their home," in which case the figure cited for rural areas in meaningless if we're talking about potential broadband penetration.

Re:What does "have access to broadband" mean? (1)

falconwolf (725481) | more than 5 years ago | (#27453855)

I interpret that as meaning "can get broadband of some sort if they chose to pay for it"; if that's the case, then the numbers given for cities and suburbs are shockingly low -- so low, in fact, that I don't believe that the phrase means what it appears to mean. I'd guess they mean "actually have broadband in their home," in which case the figure cited for rural areas in meaningless if we're talking about potential broadband penetration.

Even in New York City [broadbandcensus.com] broadband [citylimits.org] isn't available everywhere [nycfuture.org] .

Falcon

America? (1)

chaval7 (1523933) | more than 5 years ago | (#27451995)

America is not US only, please fix that.

Re:America? (2, Insightful)

maxume (22995) | more than 5 years ago | (#27452017)

It is in U.S. English.

Re:America? (1)

chaval7 (1523933) | more than 5 years ago | (#27452135)

so how do they refer to the continent? the-other-America?

Re:America? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#27452199)

"so how do they refer to the continent? the-other-America?"

How about North America, or South America. There is no continent of "America".

Re:America? (1)

RoboRay (735839) | more than 5 years ago | (#27452313)

Which one?

The northern one is referred to as "North America."

The southern one is referred to as "South America."

Both together are referred to as "the Americas."

Re:America? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#27452801)

I'll fix that for ya ...

The northern one is referred to as "North America."

The southern one is referred to as "South America."

The one in between is referred to as "Central America."

All together they are referred to as "the Americas."

Re:America? (2, Interesting)

mobets (101759) | more than 5 years ago | (#27452355)

I usually say North America to refer to the continent. This has the added benefit of distinguishing it from South America.

Re:America? (1, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#27452401)

America is not US only, please fix that.

You want the US to annex the rest of North and South America? That's nut, but you did ask nicely, so I'll see what I can do.

Re:America? (1)

thetoadwarrior (1268702) | more than 5 years ago | (#27453055)

Yes it is.

The continents are North American, South America and Central America.

America is short for the United States of America which is the only country to use the America on its own. So saying America is no different than saying Britain despite the fact the nation's actual name is The United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland.

Britain is a good example too because, speaking of mistakes with locations, it's often referred to as a country but Britain is not a country but a nation or state made up of countries. But British people seem to have less of an issue with this than Canadians do with the term America even though it's 100% correct to abbreviate the USA as America and Canada has nothing to do with America as there is no continent America.

Re:America? (1)

maxume (22995) | more than 5 years ago | (#27453245)

'Chaval' is Spanish, so I wouldn't be surprised if gp is from Central or South America (or has such roots), rather than Canada (you loosely implied that they were from Canada, or, at least, I read your post that way).

Re:America? (1)

mosherkl (1251628) | more than 5 years ago | (#27453609)

Yes it is.

The continents are North American, South America and Central America.

America is short for the United States of America which is the only country to use the America on its own. So saying America is no different than saying Britain despite the fact the nation's actual name is The United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland.

Britain is a good example too because, speaking of mistakes with locations, it's often referred to as a country but Britain is not a country but a nation or state made up of countries. But British people seem to have less of an issue with this than Canadians do with the term America even though it's 100% correct to abbreviate the USA as America and Canada has nothing to do with America as there is no continent America.

I'm not sure where you went to school, but there are only 2 "American" continents. They are North and South America. Central America is a region, not a continent.

How are we of service? (1)

qw0ntum (831414) | more than 5 years ago | (#27452109)

This question has been on my mind and it's relatively related to the topic of the article, so I'm interested to hear you folks feedback. How can we as computer scientists and IT pros be of service to society?

I've had some people tell me medical applications of CS are where it's at, others point to projects like OLPC, others say get rich and give away your money. Others still tell me to just do my work well and let the rest take care of itself. As a computer scientist, I feel like I have training and background in an area that's somewhat rare in society as a whole, and I feel like if I'm out to try to make an impact I should leverage those skills.

For instance, urban-rural digital divide. What have any of you done with regard to this? Anything in the developing world? Specifically applicable to the developing world, what's the role that technology can/should play? Where do you feel our field has the largest social impact?

PS: Yeah, I know it's youthful idealism. With all due respect, if you're just going to tell me that I'll just get slapped in the face by reality then you can save your breath; I hear that on a daily basis already.

Re:How are we of service? (1)

IamGarageGuy 2 (687655) | more than 5 years ago | (#27452527)

Don't make it complicated. You don't need a huge organization to help people that need it, you pass by them every day. Next time someone asks for help, actually help them. Go to their place and sit with them in front of the computer and let your knowledge out. You also get the benefit of explaining things that you have not even thought about for years and when you explain it to them you have to rethink and put into simple terms the complicated nature of the tech. As soon as you help one person, that leads plenty others that will want to talk with you and discuss their "problems". I feel the homegrown approach to "just helping" is a lot more rewarding then getting caught up in commitees and board meetings that spend time figuring out how to help instead of just helping. Keep it simple.

Deja Vu... (1)

rickb928 (945187) | more than 5 years ago | (#27452175)

If Verizon does as well with this as they did with Net Day and E-Rate, they'll get all $7B+ and deliver some moderately-broadband service to some of rural America.

And get rural Americans to pay for it all over again. And again.

Our patriotism at work, finally!

Lack of widespread demand ... (1)

Wrath0fb0b (302444) | more than 5 years ago | (#27452531)

Broadband penetration in rural counties is likely to plateau around 50% in the foreseeable future not for lack of supply but for lack of strong demand, especially when technical challenges will push the price considerably above dialup.

I know that /. is the wrong place to say this, but many people (myself absolutely not included) can get by with minimal internet usage. Insisting that they must secretly want to be like us is flattering, perhaps, but it's delusional and paternalistic.

Followup:

http://techliberation.com/2008/03/07/debunking-rural-broadband-myths/ [techliberation.com]
http://voipservices.tmcnet.com/feature/articles/20381-rural-broadband-demand-not-supply-problem.htm [tmcnet.com]

Huh? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#27452661)

"...as part of the overall economic stimulus package passed by Congress, the government is allocating $7.2 billion for projects that bring broadband Internet access to rural towns and communities."

WTF? Didn't the US taxpayer *already* give these turkeys tax benefits to the tune of tens or hundreds of millions of dollars?

I'm beginning to think these greedy SOB's ought to wire every home in the US with fibre, for free.

Verizon has No Luv for Rural America (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#27452921)

Verizon just dumped their land line business in the upper north east (NH, VT, ME). Where's my FIOS, CAN YOUR HEAR ME NOW?????? Chances of Fairpoint (the suckers who bought up Verizon's land line business) being able to figure out how to send light down a piece of fiber is laughable.

Win / Win situation (1)

dave562 (969951) | more than 5 years ago | (#27452989)

Rural America gets broadband access and the US government gets the infrastructure to roll out all of their privacy invading tools.

Haha Yeah (1)

/dev/trash (182850) | more than 5 years ago | (#27453143)

Just wait til they try to erect yet another tower in yeat another 'pristine' park that is just too close to someone's backyard.

Australia (1)

Samah (729132) | more than 5 years ago | (#27454333)

And yet many of the heavily populated areas of Australia don't even have 3G.
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