Pigeon Thrashes Rural Broadband in speed test
From BBC News 16/09/10:
Broadband is the most modern of communication means, while carrier pigeons date back to Roman times.
But on Thursday, a race between the two highlighted the low speeds of rural broadband in the UK; the pigeon won.
Ten USB key-laden pigeons were released from a Yorkshire farm at the same time a five-minute video upload was begun.
An hour and a quarter later, the pigeons had reached their destination in Skegness 120km away, while only 24% of a 300MB file had uploaded.
Campaigners say the stunt was being carried out to illustrate that broadband in some parts of the UK is still "not fit for purpose".
The pigeons are expected to complete a 120km journey to Skegness in around two hours, but Tref Davies, who is organising the stunt to give publicity to the campaign for better rural broadband, said the broadband connection will take significantly longer to tranfer [sic] the 300MB file.
"The farm we are using has a connection of around 100 to 200 Kbps (kilobits per second)," Tref Davies, the stunt's organiser, told BBC News on Thursday morning.
"The kids need to do school work and the farmer has to submit online forms but the connection is not fit for purpose."
Tell me about it, Tref. My shocking internet connection is the bane of my life and while I’ve gotten used to using the connection strategically, it’s still a painful experience. As Roy said to Moss in an episode of the IT Crowd, “Oh do you remember the internet at this speed? Up all night and you'd see eight women.”
But quite enough of that!
Anyway, I hope the stunt was cleared by the RSPB first; there’s nothing like taping a USB key to a pigeon to get the animal rights brigade’s panties in a twist!
It’s hard to believe my GF and I been in this house 11 months now and suffered with a terrible internet connection for so long. Given the fact we’re miles from the local exchange, the attenuation on the line means our ‘broadband’ connection is very narrow indeed. Of course, Virgin Media doesn’t provide cable in the area either!
So, short of doing some kind of community stunt a la what Rutland Telecom did in Lyddington, we’re stuck with sub-standard internet until we move. Of course, if our plans had worked out we would have been long gone by now - in our own house. As it is, we’re battening down the hatches for another winter in a house and area we both hate. Oh well.