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Friday, 13 November 2015

How to overbuild your infrastructure.

Read more! I have to admit that it was the trip down the sewers near the London Olympics that made me investigate Bazelgette. If you are in any way involved in infrastructure, you need to research this.
This blog post can be read at

If you cannot use DuckDuckGo and do not know how to visit the British Library (in real life or remotely), give yourself a shake. If you are involved in any way with the build of Digital Britain, you should not even be allowed to do so without citing some of Bazelgette´s theories about infrastructure.

This is the man who has so far stopped the City of London flooding with sewage. Go and look at the architecture that protects Londoners from having dirty feet. Take 2 mins to comprehend how this chap´s maths has kept London safe from cholera, typhoid etc for far more than 100 years.


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What is "average usage"?

Read more! If we are going to plan a network that is fit for purpose, then one would hope we know at least the capacity required to do so. On a Bazelgette Basis.
This blog post can be read at

Today (yesterday) I read that an average user consumes 15TB a year, 600GB a year, 150GB a year and umpteen other figures. Most, if not all, came from "trusted sources".

Gigaclear, BT, Virgin etc.

Now I don´t know what to believe. And I´m sure if we are going to plan a network that is not only fit for purpose but also fit for the future, we need to grasp some of the usage figures over said network. There is one helluva big difference between 15TB a year and 600GB for 25 Million premises. We cannot plan for capacity if we have no solid hold on what is being done on the network.

I have no idea who is right, wrong or indifferent and producing numbers simply to keep the marketing department happy. But I do know that unless you lot sort yourselves out and start telling the truth, we are going to end up with ever more confused Ministers (not hard), a network that is worth two bobbins of broken string, and an economy which cannot grow at its natural rate.

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Sunday, 8 November 2015

Lest We Forget

Read more! The initial "cable rush" far more than a century ago was led by Britain, followed quite some time later by France and Germany.

This blog post can be read at

Queen Vic and US Pres Buchanan exchanged cable messages waaaaay back in 1859, but the cable packed in after a mere 732 messages had been sent. It was finally fixed once the Civil War was out of the way in 1866. (At least there was a pretty good reason for the delay).

In 1892 Britain had 66.3% control of all the cable on earth with a staggering 163,619km. By 1923, this had risen to 297,802km and we still maintained control of over half the cable on the planet. This meant that as we wandered into the 20th century (and a set of international crises the world is in some ways still recovering from), everyone had to send all international and diplomatic comms through us. No wonder we developed such a world-renowned spy network - the info was handed to us on a plate!

Great photos of Porthcurno in Cornwall where the first Transatlantic cables came ashore

In 1870, a cable was laid from Porthcurno to Portugal with a second going in just three years later in 1873. In 1887 and then again in 1897, the Brits managed to lay cables from Cornwall to Gibraltar. In 1901, we threw one in down to Madeira to complete a link to Cape Town and the undersea and under ocean cable laying just went on and on.

Considering the fuss made now about laying fibre down a street in UK, maybe we should be giving more history lessons to our MPs, councillors, citizens and civil engineers!! It clearly isn´t rocket science if we were laying thousands of miles every year over a hundred years ago.
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