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Friday, 15 May 2009

Power to the people (JFDI)

OK, now we have the next two episodes of the JFDI FTTH dig in Wray. For those within the industry, it seems there is quite some interest in the approach taken, which whilst not necessarily upholding the highest professional standards of industry has allowed many to consider that there are other routes to the superhighway than those which take years and cost billions.

Let's face it, the truth of the matter is that for 25 years, industry and government have been sitting around on their arses talking about FTTH. I and others have been growing increasingly frustrated, despite involvement for me for only half that time, at the apathy shown and barriers invented to prevent it happening. Those affected MOST by this failure are, of course, the ones who will inevitably pay for it in the long and short run - the consumers and the taxpayers.

It had to get to the point where the people said, "Enough is enough. If you are just going to sit there talking, we will get on with it." And lo and behold, it has now started. It's not a great surprise, in other countries similar Dig Where You Live projects exist too. It's just that the majority of those have had the support of utility companies, or local and central government funds.

We can no longer pretend that the incumbents are the only ones who can play in this area, and accept that more and more people are going to start taking matters into their own hands to take our families, businesses and communities into the world of 21st century fibre optic communications that many other countries are already well and truly entrenched in. Pun intended.

It is to be hoped that the Digital Britain report shows an awareness of the DEMAND for this level of connectivity TODAY, and stops assuming that all internet users are muppets, willing to be BROADCAST to and be PASSIVE. We are not. As a post-industrial exporter myself (one of those with so-called digital skills), I and many thousands of others have been watching the Department of Trade and Industry (and now DCMS too) allow a private company or three stymie our business development, hinder our economic growth, restrict our productivity, and force our children to suffer limited levels of interaction with what can only be termed as the 'real world' these days considering how much is on the Internet that they need to engage with. Ironic huh?

On with the show......
Part 1 - in the stables. Splitting the fibre to feed to two homeworkers with Lucid star, Dave!

Part 2 - in the utility room. Showing the end connects being done, also starring Dave.

There are lots of photos taken by Chris on Picasa to peruse too.

Nice to see the war of the Roses may finally be well and truly over. This is a northern project, with players from Yorkshire and Lancashire working extremely well together! Am just off to see Chris now (from Cumbria - by 'eck us northerners can cross borders, just as fibre can!) so will report back when I have had a play on the first rural fibre connection within the UK I have ever managed to get my hands on! And it ain't for want of trying ;o)


wray said...

you sure do have a way with words! War of the roses - great comparison, peace now grows between the counties, so you could call it a Lancashire/Cumbria/Yorkshire project really,CLY YLC LYC LCY (go-an as cybedoyle would say), think of a good name for it apart from JFDI

Cyberdoyle said...

killer vid! says it all, power to the people

Sam Sutton said...

I'm really interested in your work, I like this idea of taking it into our own hands. How would this work in the city? I imagine costs and redtape increase dramatically once you start having to dig up streets.

Cyberdoyle said...

Hi Sam
I don't know much about cities, my fight is for the rural areas. In a city there is every chance you already have fibre near you so you can afford to buy it from BT. In our case it costs £76,000,00 a year to light it to us, that's before we even do fibre to the home. You need to get a quote from BT and go from there. If you want to run fibre through your neighbourhood then you need permissions from highways and councils I guess, but maybe someone with more knowledge will answer this post, good luck if you decide to JFDI, it gave us great satisfaction to prove it could be done.

Sam Sutton said...

I take your point; rural areas are way behind so its right that you concentrate on them. My knowledge on this issue is fairly limited (as you can tell), forgive me if my answer sounded glib. I am really impressed with your efforts; like a lot of things happening with the web right now, it seems people taking it into their own hands is the best way to get results, and maybe shame the government and media companies into doing their bit along the way.