The Age of Info versus the view

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Out here in the boonies, our best option for Internet service is a setup whereby we get our connection via cell phone signals. The service is through nTelos and our modem is simply a little black doodad that plugs into a USB port and communicates directly with nearby cell towers.

This is cheaper than satellite, and DSL doesn’t exist on our road. So we’re happy to have it. It’s making this very blog post possible! But, as you might imagine, it has its limitations. Just like with cell phones, the signal sometimes get dropped. The speed of the connection sometimes plummets. You learn to save your work.

Recently my husband commented that he thought the signal had improved as of late. Makes sense–a new tower had been put up not far away. For us, it’s a win-win; nothing changes except that we get better Internet. If that new tower were within sight of our house, though, I might feel differently. I’m the type who always hates to see trees being cleared, ground being broken, and horizons being punctuated by tall new structures.

We may not be able to see the new tower, but someone else surely can. And even before this latest improvement, we were relying on existing towers so we can check the news, send e-mails, and get our work done.

When you live in the country, a connection at your house can save you trips to town for work and other necessities. But someone–or all of us–pay the price in the form of the infrastructure that’s needed to bring us those Internet and phone signals.

Any of you readers had your views altered by a tower? Do you think it counts as an "improvement" anyway?

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