A backwoods, backward week off

I just spent a week at a family reunion up in Estes Park at the Lane Guest Ranch.

At the start of the week, I was excited to hear that they had a computer at the main lodge that had internet access. And, I was told – they even had wireless! It’s hard for me to go a week without email, even on vacation (I bet many of you are in the same boat).

There were only about 4 problems with this setup they had. First, the main lodge was a good half mile from where I was actually staying. Second, the wireless was restricted to port 80. That meant no VPN access and relegated me to webmail (good for reading, but not for writing if you ask me). Third, the wireless was super slow and often unreliable. Fourth (and probably the reason for the slowness), they were using DirecWay. Put simply, the sum of my experiences with DirecWay is that it sucks nearly completely. Service was coming and going all the time, with web page requests typically resulting in their “temporary” service interruption message in the clearest of weather. And I’m not bashing a Colorado company (I would never!) – DirecTV is partially based here but the DirecWay division was acquired by Hughes which is now based in D.C. That’s what I call an excellent export.

The result was that I was able to exchange only a few messages. It left me feeling like I was in an information blackout. It was almost like I was on vacation or something. Bizarre. I’ve blogged before about the surprising lack of decent connections in major European cities and even in Silicon Valley.

In any event, I did get 82 spam comments on the blog while I was away. At least the robots are reading the blog.

file under: Blog, Startups