1 EAGLETON NOTES: Back in Blogland

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Thursday, 18 December 2014

Back in Blogland

It's been a rather odd week since I returned to the Island.  Little or no Internet access has caused me more than a little irritation and wasted time communicating with India.  I shall not go on about it too much, I promise, but after being, in effect, called a liar by a lady who, in all probability, has better degrees than I have but, unfortunately, could neither easily understand me nor make herself easily understood to me, I got the bit between my teeth.  After many days and being told that an engineer would come on the afternoon of 12 January, I eventually gave notice that I was going to institute the formal complaints procedure against BT.  I'm sure that it was sheer coincidence that within an hour my broadband had returned to what is normal here.  Given that BT tell me that they are only contracted to provide a download speed of 0.2 Mbps (which is just about adequate to get emails but not really to blog) I'm doing pretty well.

Whilst I was away we went for lunch with friends and on the way back Anna and I went into the Kelvingrove Museum and Art Gallery which we visit frequently.  This view looking over to the University tower on the way out struck me:


I've been experiencing weather during the last month that I haven't experienced for 9 years and whilst a lot of the time it has just been dark and grey and wet and windy some of the skies have been quite spectacular:



I've also had a frosty morning (which is unusual for my house which is so near the sea) when the pond froze over.  That's the first time I've ever experienced that.


Obviously coming up to Christmas most of us are very busy with one thing and another but now that I'm back in Blogland I'll hopefully do my usual catch-up with everyone.

36 comments:

  1. Graham, I can't advise on BT but in my early days at sea we had a schedule for replacing copper wire on radio antenna arrays. I can't remember how long it was but it seemed almost annually. Copper stops doing what it does quite quickly. Gaz would perhaps remember. Get a new copper phone line or switch to a dongle. 3G says mine doesn't work at my sisters but it does and I'm pretty sure it worked at yours. Trouble is you can't plug a dongle into an Eyepaddy Thinghy. It works so fast most places that I haven't needed to check speeds for a couple of years.
    The second picture is a beauty. I like the gull whatsits in the pond they look like cobwebs.

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    1. Adrian the problems lie within the BT infrastructure generally and not, I think, with my wiring because I can receive a good service some of the time. It's a long story but they have basically run out of capacity and refuse to do anything until the high speed network is up and running. That will be 2016 for this village. Gaz had a 3 dongle and it wouldn't work here. The only phone signal at the house is Vodafone and there's no Vodafone 3G on the Island. I don't know anyone who can receive satisfactory data on the Island via a dongle. Most who don't use BT's lines (whoever their provider is) use satellite.

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    2. I had really good dongle reception in Stornoway and brilliant download speeds On the east coast of Harris also super fast. Try Hutchinson.
      Forget EE and BT. Load of tossers. They charge a fortune for no band width. I can't remember when last I had a problem. Yes I can Loch Morlich is not good but it does work. Takes two goes sometimes.
      Ask them to rewire to your house from their pole. I bet a pound to a shilling the lazy sods haven't done it in two decades. The wires will be past their sell by date.
      Satellite is not brilliant, it's better than nowt but you pay a high price for large bandwidths and immediate. We should have by right what Londoners get for free, I have to think twice before writing this.

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    3. PS, Children out of school trashes the system. Make teachers work a bit longer and confiscate phones. The teachers are paid enough to save the infrastructure. Teachers couldn't care so no point blaming them. It's a nine to five and thanks for the pension job.

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    4. Adrian I use the internet on too many things for a single dongle to be of anything other than emergency use and in Stornoway I have plenty of wifi access to the internet anyway. Hutchinson does not work at the house: I have tried it and Hutchinson say that they do not cover my area either.

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  2. Good to see you back. Love those seascapes you shot. What a marvelous light behind those clouds.

    Mersad
    Mersad Donko Photography

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    1. Thanks Mersad. Hopefully in the next day or two I'll be up to date again.

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  3. Lifeline. What with storms, ice and no internet, you probably just need famine to cover all the horsemen, don't ypu? X

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    1. For me, Kate, it feels a bit like that although in the greater scheme of world problems it's pretty insignificant. Since internet contact came back it has been slow and intermittent: an hour here and there perhaps. Trying to use it in practice is a challenge.

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  4. Welcome back, Graham. Lovely views and skies, as always. What's it like for you, experiencing an English winter after all this time?

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    1. There are quite a few things making this winter an experience for me Frances. It's enabled me to go to some concerts in Glasgow (but I've missed the ballet in New Zealand). I've been spending a lot of time preparing the garden for next spring and summer (including planting hundreds of bulbs) which should eliminate having the huge tidy-up and all the work that limits my going away much in the spring. There have been more visits to friends on the mainland and the difficulties of travel from the Island due to storms has made me aware once again of a few of the difficulties of Island life. I had plans to do alls ports of things this winter but, in fact, I've been far to busy living to do almost any of them so far.

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  5. Good to see you back in Blogland - and your wonderful views of seas & sky :) I hope the broadband stays stable.

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    1. It would be nice if it did Monica. As you can see it took 40 minutes between the last to comments I've made because I had no internet during that period.

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  6. So sorry to hear about your problems with BT. Those things are so exasperating. The photos of the skies are wonderful and I love the ice photo. What pretty patterns it makes.

    Take care and God bless, xoxo DeeDee

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    1. Thank you DeeDee. I' always aware of how insignificant a problem it really is but to those of us who rely on the Internet so much for communication it's a Big Deal.

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  7. I find that when I am put through to call centres in India it is best to speak in Hindi - unless of course the call centre is in Madras (aka Chennai) then I speak in Tamil. You will find that the call centre employee is rather more helpful when you make the effort. Begin like this "Namastē, mērā nāma grāhama hai aura maiṁ apanē brŏḍabaiṇḍa paikēja kē bārē mēṁ phōna kara rahā hūm̐.".

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    1. I have to say YP that of the (very many) calls I've had with people in call centres in India that was the first time I'd not been able to understand the person (and the first time I'd not been understood too). I have always found the people helpful and knowledgeable and polite if sometimes a little too bound by the algorithm in front of them. This lady, however, implied that I was lying and that has annoyed me. Interestingly if what you have written really is Hindi or Tamil then I was rather surprised that, rather like some Lewis Gaelic it seems relatively easy to follow.

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  8. You do pretty well at blogging if the internet is that slow. And the weather might almost just be worth it, to get fantastic sights like that sea with the white horses and vivid colours.

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    1. Jenny sometimes the speed actually gets up to 1.2 Mbps and that's when I can blog. When the weather is not just dreich and grey we can get spectacular colours on the land and sea and in the sky.

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  9. Sheer coincidence my foot!!!
    Always works, as soon as you threaten to move to another service provider or to write a formal complaint, Abracadabra!! It's fixed....glad you're back up and running in Blogland.
    Don't get me started on the overseas call centres...the last time I had a phone line problem I ended up speaking to someone in Costa Rica.....what next?
    It's going to get worse too, since the internet company I'm with has just been purchased by Cable and Wireless (the same company I wanted to get away from) so now we have to put up with the big monopoly AGAIN!!!...sigh.

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    1. Oh, Virginia, that's a real bummer. Here outwith the cities where there are cable companies operating all the providers rely on BT infrastructure so it does no god whatsoever moving. In fact what happens is the provider blames BT's infrastructure and BT blames the provider's network. At least staying with BT I have only one company who can be to blame.

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  10. You not only caught some great sky but also some great landscape in your photos.

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  11. Well, in case we don't see or hear from you again before Christmas Graham ~ may it be a really enjoyable time for you catching up with Island friends and family. And a Happy New Year to you!

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    1. Thank you Carol. As you can see I have managed to return despite ongoing glitches.

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  12. Very beautiful pictures, and I like the first one very much, too; an unusual perspective from behind a statue.
    Every now and then, my internet connection is lost, but usually it helps to reset my router. I was on the phone (mobile, because my landline goes through the internet, too) a year or so ago to someone from my provider's (German) support team, and they told me it wasn't my router's "fault" but still it would help to reset it when the connection was lost. So far, it has always worked and I have not had to call them again.

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    1. Meike I have a routine now which I go through endlessly involving swapping routers, resetting routers, changing splitters, checking the phone socket, resetting my phone, iPad and two laptops (not to mention the ranges extender and the two smart televisions in the house). Nowadays so much in the house relies on having an internet connection. Without it I can't even update my sat nav (which last time took two days attached to a laptop). Apart from the irritation of not having internet it's the amount of wasted time I really resent.

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  13. Great skies Graham!! I love the pictures!

    That's too bad about the call center :(( I guess these people are not trained on customer relationship at all and are uniformly liars who never get to solve the problem. The banking (credit cards) and the wireless networks guys are the worst of the lot!

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    1. Thanks Ruby. Actually generally have found the people very helpful but in this case the problems lie with basic infrastructure problems and it needs decisions at a higher level. I've now given up on call centres.

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  14. The ice on the pond is very pretty, and I hope you keep your Internet connections running smoothly.

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    1. Thanks Terra. I was quite amazed at seeing the pond frozen. I'd loved to have got more photos but I was out for much of the day and then it thawed.

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  15. Tales out of school. heard of someone stuck in a similar Call Centre fiasco recently.

    Fortunately that person had both computer and Telecomunication skills and hacked the Phone System of a company with M in the name and left a message for the General Manager to call them back.

    Even more amazing was the lack of security on that companies Phone Systems

    Problem sorted, however person was convinced they would be fired for his actions but instead became something of a company heroine.

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    1. Peter I now have all the phone numbers and email addresses that I need to take the matter further! Which is what I intend to do. I am now on a mission.

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  16. Basically forget the call centre. Find the number of the companies Head Office, research their internal phone directory find the General Managers extension leave a polite message asking them to call you back.

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  17. Glad you have your internet sorted! I love those seascapes Graham!!

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    1. I spoke too soon Liz. It was sorted for a day or two and is back to a mixture of non-existant and very poor. I'm on the case though and and email to Someone Who Matters has at least brought a response from Executive Level Complaints. To be continued........

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