Sunday, August 02, 2009

Soup Can Post Minus The Soup Can

Mark Evanier created the "tradition" of posting a picture of a Campbell's Tomato Soup can on his blog on those occasions when he knows or believes that he won't be able to post for a while. Well even though I haven't been posting all that often this summer I'm posting the Tomato soup can. Except that I can't post the image, and here's why.

A few days ago I got an email from my ISP, Shaw Cable telling me that because of changes they were making that would make my Internet faster, but to make this work I'd have to replace my modem which wasn't being supported by the manufacturer, which was reaching the end of its expected life span. So yesterday – Saturday – I took my old Motorola Cybersurfr modem down to the soon to be closed office in the mall and replaced it with a brand new SB5102 Surfboard Modem. I took it home and hooked it up... and I've been hating it ever since!

Downloads have been significantly, observably, slower. Images in particular have slow in downloading. Running Speedtests – including Shaw's own Speedtest – revealed download speeds hovering around 1 mbps and upload speeds of about 450 kbps. For the service that I'm paying for I am supposed to be getting download speeds as high as 7.5 mbps. Podcast downloads, which usually take about a minute now take up to ten. The breaking point came when I was trying to play poker online at Full Tilt Poker. It was a nightmare. The client kept disconnecting and at one point crashed entirely. I had to restart the program and when I did it took about five minutes for it to actually connect get me back to the tournament I was playing in. I think I can safely say that this has cost me (a small amount of) money. I've done everything that I can think of – short of calling Shaw, which is the next step after I finish writing this post – and nothing has changed. And since I don't how long this is going to take I post the Tomato Soup Can.

Ah, but of course I can't. That would mean uploading an image file and with the way things are going, who knows how long that would take. So I'm afraid I'm going to have to post the Tomato Soup Can without actually posting the Tomato Soup Can.

P.S.: It took me three tries to get this posted from Word. Wholly unacceptable.

Update: Apparently the problem has remedied itself without my having to call Shaw. Well not quite remedied itself. Turns out that for some unearthly reason best left to wizards and gurus, all it all had something to do with my power bar. I plugged the modem into the power bar as I have with just about every electronic device on my cluttered desktop. The exception is the printer because the cord won't reach. In a last desperate move I pull the printer plug from the wall socket and the modem plug from the power bar, plugged the modem into the wall socket and Hocus Kadabra, Alika Pocus (as a certain Wascally Wabbit would put it) everything is working as advertised, although I haven't tested it yet with Poker. Makes me wonder if maybe I should get a new power bar though.

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