Landlines steadily being discontinued. Essentially, end coming--but not soon


The article seems to confuse a lot of things. I switched from POTS to U-Verse, which also runs on copper, as far as I know. I haven’t seen them planting fiber on my street. U-Verse does not have backup power from the CO, but I do have a backup battery for my gateway. In theory, if I expected the power to be out for more than a couple hours, I could unplug the battery from the gateway to conserve power, rather than run the battery down keeping the line going for the hordes of telemarketers that try to harangue me every day.

Cell towers can go down in a power failure too. I think it was Quaz who was talking about running from tower to tower, setting up generators to keep the towers going…and, as soon as he drove away, someone would steal the generator.


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Remote cell towers might have generators. Not in or even near cities/towns.

All the cell towers I have ever seen have Generac generators feeding them that would be impossible to remove unless you had a hell of a crane. I suspect the generators he was talking about might have been when cell towers were first being built.


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Yep, they use big generators. Usually enough to keep the tower running for 24-72 hours during a power failure. I pass a small cell tower (hidden in a flagpole) every few days. If I remember, I’ll snap a photo and post it here.

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There are now valid/viable alternatives, but not sure if the companies would want to save THAT much money.

Smaller cell sites may rely on batteries in adjacent cabinets, but with an inlet to plug in portable generators if it looks like a longer outage…

Larger sites go for auto start diesels, nice big tanks, or others ran off propane… Big city sites, generally a generator or several, as well, maybe up on the roof…

Same with Telco Central Offices, a combination of locomotive sized diesels to turbines…

Advantage of the turbine were they could fire up, take the full office load in 9 or 10 seconds, where the diesels had to warm up, synchronize and settle in to 60 Hz so they could tie into the same load bus…

But, depending on how well run the cell company is, you are going to rely on how soon they get their backup power out to remote sites…

I held onto my landline a lot longer than I should have, really, it ran $50/m just to field spam calls, to whee I turned the ringers/recorder off last year, but then, DW in error returned a call to a neighboring area on that landline, should have been a freebie, but the cell she called had a long distance prefix, 72 minute call bumped the bill up another $50… The last straw… Gone… We had that number since the early '60s… Gone… Have to retrain folks to call our cells, or text us…


(Installed those locomotive diesels, 18" exhaust, as well as lots of battery plants, cell sites for the local Bell, T, Sprint, Verizon, others…)


Was that a POTS line? My U-Verse voice is $39/mo, plus another $15 of taxes and fees, and it includes 250 minutes/month of time. Not counting the two 45 minute calls to Samsung tech support, in Korea, 'Nam, or wherever they are, which were toll free anyway, total usage in December was 3 minutes. I can easily go two or three months without touching the thing. Thing is, when I switched from POTS to U-Verse, I kept the same number I have had since the last time I moved, in 96.

I also have the ringers turned off, as the voice line’s primary users are telemarketers.


POTS = Plain Old Telephone Service

U-Verse was a rebranding to pull in DSL, TV abilities, locally it meant using 2 copper pairs to make it happen, but the service from the CO (Central Office), is on fiber to a local distribution cabinet, then back down to our buried copper plant. than undergrounding was done in the mid-60s, is pretty bad from the Outside Plant repairmen I’ve talked to as they searched for clear pairs the last time I had them out…

BTW, that fiber was part of a Telco project called Pronto, with dreams of fiber to the curb for all of California. It stalled in SoCal when trenching costs were way higher then planned, permitting in each and every town, city, village, delayed progress nearly everywhere… We, WeCo/Lucent had acres of materials ready to go, reels of fiber cables, mini NG generators, literally tons and tons of materials that went to scrap in the end… A few areas, new housing tracts made it happen… But the rest, nearly no help… Unclear who paid for that mess, buried in the contracts, I guess… The only reason I knew of it is that one of my old upper managers headed up our efforts…


You know what else is going away? Schoolbusses. As of now, less than half of kids are transported by school bus. Now it’s Mom or Dad in an endless line of cars, all idling, all wasting gasoline and producing tons and extra tons of smog.

Hey, but at least taxes don’t go up to pay for the busses!

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Never mind the economic and environmental stupidity. Getting myself to and from school for 13 years was invaluable to my and my schoolmate’s physical and mental health, and crux in my developing social and urban skills.

In so many ways our culture has, eyes wide open, gone insane, producing children who never escape close “adult” supervision until they themselves are idiotically stunted adults.

david fb


Yup! We have no bus service because we live “too close” to the school. The elementary had zero busses, period. Middle School does, but we are within 2 miles so not to our house. Will be same for the. High School. So you sit in a long line idling and waiting. Too far to realistically walk, especially in central Texas weather and lugging the school backpack, the flute, the dance backpack… and you’ll never bike with that much stuff either. It’s utterly stupid.

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Lots of busses in the burb I live in, and lots of psycho parents lined up at the schools too. For psycho mom or dad to pick up their spawn, they need to be out of work at 3 in the afternoon. A lot of “JCs” would be “burdened” by that.

One time, the bus broke down, and we had a long wait for another bus.

Second time the bus broke down, I was in Jr High, and the bus had gagged only a mile from home. I bailed out and walked home.

Steve…free range kid, before it became a crime


I’ve done a bit of research into the school bus issue. It’s mostly because parents are choosing to drive their kids, but not because of why you think! I live in a generally affluent area, and noticed that even in places where buses are available, parents are choosing to drive instead. It’s mainly because of one reason. After school activities. Parents schedule their kids for all sorts of activities after school, whether tennis, math enrichment, baseball, robotics, football, soccer, or various other sports. And the kids need to get to those activities asap after school. One of my kids did math enrichment and my wife would take him directly there from school once or twice a week, then I would pick him up on my way home from the office. If they wait until the bus loads all the kids, wends its way through the various neighborhoods, drops the kid off at the nearest entrance to the subdivision, then there is no way the kid can make it to their activity. Some of the parents are “psycho”, but not all of them.

But the lines are insane at some of the local schools. I’ve seen people begin to queue up nearly AN HOUR before the kids let out. I assume those parents are doing that because they need to be sure to get their kid as early as possible (could be they have a long-ish drive to the activity, could be it starts early) to make it to an afterschool activity.

Additionally, the folks that run the carpool lines, and the folks that designed the school parking lots didn’t account for so many pickups in such a short time period. Any new school designed today should have the cars flowing in split into 4 or 5 lanes, and have each lane accommodate a bunch of cars so multiple pickups can be done at once. The grade school that all my kids attended split into two lanes, 10 cars in each lane, and did 20 car loads at a time, the person working carpool that day would radio in the names, and the 20+ kids would come out to their respective cars. Then all 20 cars would leave the area and the next 20 cars would file in. They managed to get through carpool relatively quickly once that method was instituted.

I attended school in a large city, so we all walked (if possible) and took buses (when necessary), first yellow school buses, and later city buses/subways to some extent. And there was no such thing as “afterschool activities” other than hanging out with friends or pickup sportsball games in the street on your block or at a nearby playground, or riding around aimlessly on our bikes. Nobody had money for afterschool activities back then.


What’s with all the carp kids are carrying back and forth these days? Although high school for my son wasn’t all that long ago, I was a bit sheltered from the main stream as he was in special education. But I still could see his fellow students toting rolling suitcases on their way to school. Even elementary students are carrying backpacks.


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Anyone who schedules their spawn that tight isn’t right in the head. And they will be raising another generation of status obsessed head cases. I suspect the more common motive is the parents believe the hysterical nonsense the media feeds them, and are trying to protect their spawn from everything.

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Perfect mode for “growing up” as a well socialized self-activating individual. Not to speak of how bicycling the 3 miles to school and then 3 miles back in Los Angeles taught me how to write and/or solve math problems in my head, or plot my next escapades.

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