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90 Percent of Eligible Kansas City Neighborhoods Sign Up For Google Fiber 241

puddingebola writes in with a story about how popular Google Fiber is in Kansas City. "The company wrote in a blog post yesterday that at least 180 out of 202 'fiberhoods' have already qualified for the super-high-speed Internet service. Google says that it's still processing verification requests, and should be able to hand over the final list later this week. Since bringing fiber to homes can be expensive, Google is charging each home that hopes to hook up to the service a one-time $300 construction fee."
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90 Percent of Eligible Kansas City Neighborhoods Sign Up For Google Fiber

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  • I don't get fiber (Score:3, Insightful)

    by slashmydots ( 2189826 ) on Monday September 10, 2012 @11:09AM (#41287889)
    Fiber was a big dream of perfection like 5 years ago. Now I get a 10x1Mb connection for like $30 with Time Warner and it pings at about 19ms. I'm a total geek and even I think going any faster would be pointless. Both my roommate and I can watch netflix in HD at the same time with bandwidth to spare. Even Nvidia driver download finish in like 2 minutes. I do website design quite a bit so a faster upload would be really, really nice but that doesn't apply to a whole lot of other customers out there. Giant Steam game downloads apply to a certain percentage but not even that often for hardware gamers. Is the only reason for fiber (in home personal use) p2p downloading? Because I don't see what else would be driving it other than flashy marketing meets stupid people.
    • by Anonymous Coward on Monday September 10, 2012 @11:15AM (#41287973)

      Because 640kb of ram ought to be enough for anybody right?

    • Re:I don't get fiber (Score:5, Informative)

      by hypergreatthing ( 254983 ) on Monday September 10, 2012 @11:16AM (#41287991)

      ohh wow.
      I live in an area that gets fios, 150mbit down/ 65 up.
      Sure torrents are faster. Usenet is even faster, but everything is just so much quicker. Those downloads you wait 2 minutes for? Try like 5 seconds on my end. There's really no wait time for things. I have a openvpn set up between my home and a remote location and copying things to my backup site is much quicker and faster. I can even open videos on the other site and watch them real time without having to download them. I don't really get the concept of "ohh this is enough, i don't need any more". There's always a use for more bandwidth and speed. Plus it drives the prices down due to competition. Maybe the fastest speed isn't worth the price, but you'd better bet the competition will take note and offer better deals.

      • It's all a matter of perspective. Being used to slooow speeds makes people not need more. It's simple habit. On the other hand, I pay the equivalent of 10 dollars a month for 100 mbit/s optical fiber transfer speed, at least metropolitan. Of course, downloading from external sources slows the transfer down to cca 20 mbit/s but I admit I mostly use metropolitan for heavy transfers. I sometimes transfer gigabytes of data (mostly pictures) to friends or family within the metropolitan network and it's blazing f

    • by Crasoose ( 1621969 ) on Monday September 10, 2012 @11:17AM (#41287995)
      You're a total geek and you can't figure out what to do with a better upload speed than 1Mbps? Turn in your geek card, your time has come.
      • What exactly? Host a website? No static IP and I have a multi-host. Host a gaming server? All my games have better company servers. Host a Linux distro image? Why? Why would I pay more money just to do that? So nothing particularly legal comes to mind. There's not 1 single thing I can think of that fits "Oh man, if only I had a faster connection, I could..." And in case you missed it, via copper coax, Time Warner offers a 50Mb connection in my area. Why do we need fiber for home users again? Tim
        • Re: (Score:2, Informative)

          by Anonymous Coward

          Geeks don't actually need valid economical reasons for any of this. Turn in your geek card already..

        • by rtb61 ( 674572 ) on Monday September 10, 2012 @12:23PM (#41288911) Homepage

          Think of a family connection. Four people watching different programs at the same time. Now how many people make or receive phone calls whilst watching a video program. Now add in downloading other software whilst watching a program, just for example legally bought steam games. Now ramp up that phone call to a video call and add in email or something you will see more often now that fibre has become available vid-mail.

          Now I wont bother totalling that all up because of course that steam game wants it to be downloaded as fast as possible same with the vid-mail. Of course people will be passing a lot more video around the internet especially with phones becoming much more capable at producing it. Even without wanting maximum download speed for the items mentioned a digital family could readily suck 25 MB download and you can see how burst into 100 MB is desirable when people are waiting for the game they have just bought.

          Then of course there are things like scenery channel for people without a view but who have a 90inch LED LCD screen, I have a view and believe me they are well worth it. With falling prices in video displays having a live scenery feed, whilst watching a program are feasible. Just as previewing multiple video streams simultaneously is desirable when possible.

          Now add in modern age things like live health monitoring when people are suffering an illness so they can be at home rather than in a hospital or for the elderly. Face it you are the cave man, squatting in a cave not knowing or understanding why people would want to live in a timber framed house, what could they possible need or want that is not provided by a cave.

          • by zlives ( 2009072 )

            but you will never need better then 640 (x480) image resolution... ;)
            i for one welcome our 4k tv overlords

        • Re:I don't get fiber (Score:4, Interesting)

          by DuckDodgers ( 541817 ) <> on Monday September 10, 2012 @01:58PM (#41290405)
          25/5 or even 10/2 is good enough for most people - but right now, at least near me, it's $55 per month - so you're getting 1-3% of the Google Fiber bandwidth for 80% of the cost. I'd be totally satisfied if I could get 1-3% of the Google Fiber bandwidth for even 10-15% of the cost, but Comcast, Verizon, and Time Warner haven't moved substantially on cable internet pricing in ten years and clearly have no interest in moving much on it until competition appears.

          For that reason alone, this is cause to celebrate - you can guarantee that every additional major city that gets Google Fiber will have a real price war on high speed internet access. Kansas City has no such price war, at least so far, because Time Warner has been caught with their pants down. But they won't fold without a fight - maybe the next city to be offered Google Fiber will have Time Warner offers of 10 down/1 up for $20 per month, or $15. That's something to celebrate. And of course many of these providers have monthly transfer caps, and Google Fiber does not.

          But separately, the DVR service for Google Fiber television service ($120 per month instead of $70, but no $300 setup fee) carries a DVR that records 500 hours of HD video and can record 8 shows at once, and your television remove for it is a Google 7 inch tablet. I don't know of any other service that gives you both that much storage and also 8 show simultaneous recording and lets use use a tablet as your primary television remote. Here again, it's a shot across the bow aimed at the other television companies, showing consumers what we could be getting but are not because they other companies would rather have higher profits than focus on better features for their customers.

          And maybe if you had 1Gbps home download and upload bandwidth, hosting your own website would be something 'normal' people do for fun. Few non-geeks do it today because of the cost and complexity. Free software for building your own website is getting better and easier to use every day, and if 1 Gbps upload speeds with zero bandwidth restrictions are part of your default home internet connection package, then the cost for hosting your own site drops dramatically.
      • by TCM ( 130219 )

        "Total geek" my ass. Nobody uses a "10x1" notation.

    • by h4rr4r ( 612664 )

      I have 25/25 and am considering going faster.

      10x1mb seems slow, why would you not want to go faster?

      Do you never access data from your home computers while somewhere else?

      Here is what drives it:
      Skype and other HD video chat, Steam and Desura and the like, Hosting your own data by yourself, legal p2p, illegal p2p, and the whole host of things that will be created to take advantage of it.

      • Skype operates at their maximum allowed free account bandwidth already on my connection as far as I can tell. Steam I download a game for about 1 every 3 months tops. I don't leave my computer running while I'm gone because my room gets too hot and you know, the electrical bill and hard drive wear and tear. Anything I need to access while away is on a synced thumb drive. Keep in mind, I'm an IT manager and computer repair business owner. 99% of other people have even less need for high bandwidth than m
        • by h4rr4r ( 612664 )

          Tears fiber apart?

          I can get 150/150 on FIOS if I want to pay for it. That kills cable.

          You sound like you are getting old, being a manager and all, you don't use as much data as younger folks like myself. I bet far more than 1% uses more data than you. Why sync a thumb drive when I can pull the data right off one of the machines at my house? With 25Mb up and 4G all around town, that is nice and fast.

          I do run one computer 24x7 it is hidden away and no one can see or hear it. The $5 a month in electricity is w

          • With respect to running a computer 24/7: we are rapidly approaching a time when the smart phone you had before your most recent upgrade is powerful enough to serve as a decent home server. Then the power costs (and cooling costs) of running your own home server 24/7 become insignificant.
            • by h4rr4r ( 612664 )

              My old smartphone would do a fine job at that, if it had enough storage.

              Right now I am just using an old Core 2 Quad. Sure more electric cost than the D1, but not really noticeable on the bill. I use it as my HTPC as well, so it would be in use a lot anyway.

    • by afidel ( 530433 )

      Live content requires more bandwidth, the Olympics coverage from NBC was running about 7Mbps and it was barely adequate, double the bandwidth likely would have resulted in a significantly better picture. Add to that the fact that an average household can have 4 streams going and you could easily get to 60Mbps of just video streams, and that's for today's technology. Google is mostly looking at what next generation uses may spring up when bandwidth becomes ubiquitous, think of it as a private version of Inte

    • I wish I had it, 'cause I get it. I'm on 4M/768k DSL service - it's the fastest I can get without getting worked over by (historically unreliable, but faster) Comcast cable - those are my only two terrestrial options. I'm effectively locked out of all of the cloud services because my upstream is so slow. Even with 1Mb, your upstream makes it difficult to backup to a cloud service. I have ~250GB-300GB of data, closer to 450GB of data if you include audio, but that's months of upload time. I've done it on

    • The question isn't whether what you have now is enough to do what you're already doing. Obviously, it's sufficient even if it could be better. The question is, what aren't you doing that you would be doing if you had a 50x50 connection? What aren't you doing that you would be doing if everyone had a 50x50 connection?

      • There isn't much I'd be doing different. However, what I would want is a completely unmetered connection. I'd be fin with 5 Mbit if I had unlimited throughput. I only pay for a 18 Mbit line because that's the one that offers a high enough per month capacity. This is what I hope that fibre will bring to the table. Unlimited monthly usage at whatever speed I have signed up for.
    • by xaxa ( 988988 )

      I've just moved house in London, and the new place can't get cable broadband, only ADSL. We've gone from 60Mbit/s down, 3Mbit/s up, to 13Mbit/s down, something (1?) up. (There was an option of 100 down, 5 up at the old place, but it was twice the price, so we didn't bother with it.)

      It's not the end of the world, and the other things about the new place (location, cost etc) make up for it. But it's going to be more annoying -- I'm going to have to go back to checking if my flatmate is gaming before starti

    • by sjames ( 1099 )

      Consider, streaming down 2 live HDTV mpeg streams. You're already past your max down. Now, try to have a video conference connection (even just between 2 parties) now your over your upstream capability as well.

      Meanwhile, there's a lot of potential uses that never see the light of day because they're obviously impractical while people are limited to 10x1 Mbps.

      For example, might it be nice if you could VPN in to work and mount the corporate fileserver directly onto your PC? That's not going to be a lot of fun

    • by cfulton ( 543949 )
      A total geek, but you don't see the day when fiber to the house could be necessary. A day might be coming when several 3D Billion Pixel movie streams are coming into the residential environment. Capacity will almost always be used by something.
    • I think the most significant thing here is is 1 Gb Upstream . The Internet's underlying technology is fundamentally peer-to-peer, but the subsequent evolution of the Internet has been firmly rooted in the assumption of clients and servers. I feel the Internet is getting too centralized. With 1 Gb upstream, you could serve a popular website or other service from your home (granted, not youtube.. but don't worry you won't be that successful :)

      Now you will say, "nobody wants to do that." Ok, but why? Th

      • Oh crap, I just noticed a complaint below about server hosting not allowed. Now I think it is pointless.

        As a point of reference, I've hosted my own ssh/website/email on my Comcast account for over 10 years without any trouble. And since they have a bandwidth cap, I figure that should settle the issue... so long as I'm within the limit why would they complain?

      • Actually, you would be able to serve current generation internet services from home. Next generation services are going to suck down a lot more bandwidth than the current generation services.
        • Most websites are essentially the same as they were in the 90s; just a bunch of text and a few images. I don't know what "Next generation services" are you referring to, but I'm pretty sure that current service models will be around for a long time.

    • Think bigger. Gigabit speeds open the market to whole new applications of the internet. Just because we wouldn't use it to its full potential immediately doesn't mean that we won't eventually do so.
    • by grumbel ( 592662 )

      Try backing up your 3TB HDD over a 1Mbit/s upload link, it will take you a year, at 1Gbit/s you might be able to do it overnight if you drive is fast enough. The point with super fast Internet isn't that you can now watch Youtube a little better, but that it will allow applications that would have been impossible before. And yes, that of course includes things such as P2P, as with 1Gbit/s up and downstream, a content addressable anonymous network such as Freenet could get really interesting and provide some

    • Now I get a 10x1Mb connection . . . and even I think going any faster would be pointless.

      No one will ever need more than 640K.

      If you build it, they will come.

      Look, you may not need 100 or 1000 Mbps now. But what about when you want to stream 3D content? Or what if we start streaming lossless J2K videos, instead of the super compressed HD video you get now? The point of the Google "experiment" is to see what is possible when this type of bandwidth is available. They are trying to bypass the chicken/egg problem. On the other hand, it's not likely that such a small scale deployment will spur

    • Good for you. Many of us can't get anything faster than the 3G connection on my phone. I guess that makes me stupid for not living wherever you live.
    • I'm paying $140 per month for HD cable (no premium channels) and 25 down/4 up, a DVR that records 160GB of content and can only handle two shows at once, and a 300 GB usage cap with $10 per 50 GB over, so if my kids, my wife, and I want to use Netflix and Hulu Plus a lot, we have problems. If I use bittorrent - which I use for Linux distributions - I have to throttle the bandwidth heavily or the upload transfer prevents streaming video or anything else from working while I run bittorrent. (You can belie
  • by Anonymous Coward on Monday September 10, 2012 @11:12AM (#41287927)

    Nuff said.... You don't want the real graphic details do you?

  • by jdogalt ( 961241 ) on Monday September 10, 2012 @11:13AM (#41287935) Journal

    (my support email to google fiber-)


    I've recently filed an FCC form 2000F complaint regarding how your
    current terms of service for google fiber prohibit hosting any server of
    any kind. I feel this is in violation of paragraph 13 of FCC-10-201
    which I believe cements my right as an end-user to provide novel
    services to the internet at large via a server hosted at my residence
    connected to my fixed broadband internet service. While I have
    communicated secondhand with Milo Medin about this, perhaps this is a
    more official channel. Please tell me if I've misunderstood the concept
    of "Net Neutrality" or your Terms of Service. All I want is to host a
    linux lamp server. I.e. web pages and files served with apache via IPv6
    to other IPv6 clients on the internet. And probably I'd want to host a
    quake3 server as well as other entrepreneurial servers I conceive of and
    deploy due to the abundance of helpful free and open source server
    software available to me.

    A length debate on the subject (57 posts, 15 authors) was recently held
    on the discussion forum for the Kansas Unix and Linux User's Association
    (ironicly hosted on google groups rather than someone's server at home
    running linux+mailman). I encourage an official response clarifying the
    situation from Google.!topic/kulua-l/LxsOtdglNM0 []

    Thanks for any feedback, Regards,

    Douglas McClendon

    (note, this online/form tract was reached after selecting that the
    target of the complaint was a fixed broadband internet service provider,
    believed to be in violation of the 2nd(blocking) of the 3 primary open
    internet rules layed out in the FCC's 10-201 report and order preserving
    the free and open internet.

    --- REF# 12-C00422224 ---
    Google's current Terms Of Service[1] for their fixed broadband internet
    service being deployed initially here in Kansas City, Kansas, contain
    this text-

    "You agree not to misuse the Services. This includes but is not limited
    to using the Services for purposes that are illegal, are improper,
    infringe the rights of others, or adversely impact others enjoyment of
    the Services. A list of examples of prohibited activities appears here. "

    where 'here' is a hyperlink[2] to a page including this text-
    "Unless you have a written agreement with Google Fiber permitting you do
    so, you should not host any type of server using your Google Fiber

    In my professional opinion as a graduate in Computer Engineering from
    the University of Kansas (and incidentally brother of a google VP) I
    believe these terms of service are in violation of FCC-10-201.

    [1] []
    [2] []

    --- (end of form 2000F complaint text)

    • Oh, I'm sure they'll offer a "business class" of service for those needing to work from home. You'll pay a lot more, but at least you will have unrestricted (as long as it's legal. No hacking allowed, etc.) access and bandwidth to use. Generally that's the case with all business class offerings.

      • by jdogalt ( 961241 )

        I understand the whole 'business class' thing. I'm trying however to make a legal point that the last sentence of paragraph 13 of FCC-10-201(aka net neutrality), can logicly be seen as criminilizing such differentiation of service through network level (or I would argue, evil-tos level) blocking. The whole 'neutral' aspect of 'network neutrality'.

      • Oh, I'm sure they'll offer a "business class" of service for those needing to work from home. You'll pay a lot more, but at least you will have unrestricted (as long as it's legal. No hacking allowed, etc.) access and bandwidth to use. Generally that's the case with all business class offerings.

        What if your job is pen testing will they ban you for hacking/cracking then?

        • by jdogalt ( 961241 )

          "What if your job is pen testing will they ban you for hacking/cracking then?"

          If you hack/crack any system you don't have permission to, I'd presume yes, else I'd presume no. I think when you hack a shell to a server you own, there is no substantive difference as far as being banned from a network than if you had logged in with ssh normally. Of course, if your method results in some side-effect traffic going to any system other than one you own or have rights to 'crack', then yeah, I hope you get banned f

    • by tmosley ( 996283 )
      You have to pay more for commercial level services, silly-billy.
      • by jdogalt ( 961241 )

        FCC-10-201, paragraph 13, last sentence. It sure sounds to me as though _all end users_ are allowed to create content, applications, services, and devices with their 'neutral' fixed broadband internet service links.

        "Because Internet openness enables widespread innovation and allows all end users
        and edge providers (rather than just the significantly smaller number of broadband providers) to
        create and determine the success or failure of content, applications, services, and devices, it
        maximizes commercial and

    • I think the idea of preventing "services" is laughable. There are too many remote access "services" and the like that they really can't stamp down on lest they start a shit storm.

      I mean, is Teamviewer a "service"? Is LogMeIn a "service"? SSH... maybe. HTTP definitely, but even a personal web service is iffy.

      I don't see them invoking this unless you're running something that brings down the whole area of town.

      • by jdogalt ( 961241 )

        "I don't see them invoking this unless you're running something that brings down the whole area of town."

        I'd like to believe that basic automatic network management features of the relevant hardware, or at worst, more intelligent custom software written by google, can trivially enforce sharing of network resources in an application and service agnostic way. The only way you should be able to bring down any segment of the network would be through some serious blatantly criminal level hacking. Or accidental

    • by Anonymous Coward on Monday September 10, 2012 @11:46AM (#41288357)

      Posting anonymously for reasons that will be obvious.

      Larry Page is really annoyed by the "no servers" clause. In an internal weekly all-hands meeting he repeatedly needled Patrick Pichette about the limitation, and pointedly reminded him that the only reason Google was able to get off the ground was because Page and Brin could use Stanford's high-speed Internet connection for free. Page wants to see great garage startups being enabled by cheap access to truly high-speed Internet. Pichette defended it saying they had no intention of trying to enforce it in general, but that it had to be there in case of serious abuse, like someone setting up a large-scale data center.

      I don't think anyone really has to worry about running servers on their residential Google Fiber, as long as they're not doing anything crazy. Then again it's always possible that Page will change his mind or that the lawyers will take over the company, and the ToS is what it is. If I had Google Fiber I'd run my home server just as I do on my Comcast connection, but I'd also be prepared to look for other options if my provider complained.

      • by jdogalt ( 961241 )

        MOD PARENT UP (until determined to be a made-up story instead of factually accurate)

      • by jdogalt ( 961241 )

        What does "crazy" mean? Anything that gets on the radar as potentially commercially competing with any existing or future commercial google endeavor or aspiration?

    • by msauve ( 701917 )
      Just define things like they do with "X servers." The end with the screen/keyboard is the server.

      Want to run Apache? It's merely a client for the I/O services a browser offers, etc.

      Client/server is an artificial, and arbitrary, distinction - ignore it.
    • This was posted by an Anonymous Coward. Sounds plausible enough that I'll post it again to help its visibility-

      Posting anonymously for reasons that will be obvious.

      Larry Page is really annoyed by the "no servers" clause. In an internal weekly all-hands meeting he repeatedly needled Patrick Pichette about the limitation, and pointedly reminded him that the only reason Google was able to get off the ground was because Page and Brin could use Stanford's high-speed Internet connection for free. Page wants to s

  • One cool thing (Score:4, Interesting)

    by afidel ( 530433 ) on Monday September 10, 2012 @11:13AM (#41287943)

    If the residents pay the $300 install fee they get 10Mbps speed for 10 years without paying any further fee. For many of the poorer neighborhoods this was the only way to get enough households to participate to justify the buildout.

    • Google gets a comprehensive record of online activity for thousands of individuals living in Kansas City. There's got to be a big benefit in that.

      To Google, anyway.

      Google Fiber will certainly be useful for people - and if it were available to me, I'd most likely sign up - but let's not ignore the fact there is a tangible benefit to Google as well.

      • by afidel ( 530433 )

        That's fine, though I would posit that every ISP has access to the same information, and with the advent of switched digital video the cable companies have that and detailed access to what television stations people are watching (why are we relying on a handful of Nielson households for viewership data?)

      • I'm OK with that. Expecting such things to be done altruistically is cute, but not realistic.

    • by h4rr4r ( 612664 )

      Do they have to pay that all at once?

      Seems like google could have made a little extra scratch by letting them pay it off monthly for $40 for a year and probably gotten more folks singing up. $300 is a large chunk of change for some folks.

    • If the residents pay the $300 install fee they get 10Mbps speed for 10 years without paying any further fee. For many of the poorer neighborhoods this was the only way to get enough households to participate to justify the buildout.

      That seems avg on speed right now (or below) but what will 10Mbps look like in 10 years? Pitifully slow. I'd think with Google Fiber the speed would be around 10x that.

      • by afidel ( 530433 )

        Perhaps Google will revisit what they deliver for free in the future, as it stands these residents are getting $30-50/month worth of service for free so it's pretty hard to complain.

  • Google can afford to lose $300 per customer in a limited market like KC. But most customers won't just throw away $300 on something they don't plan to use. By collecting $300 per customer, Google is ensuring that their users are motivated to use their service.

    • At $300 install Google is probably already losing money. Hopefully the cable tv option will be popular.
  • I live in Québec city and we're the lucky ones: Bell Canada decided to start their Fiber to the home program (Bell Fibe) in our town!

    I paid 50$ for the install, the tech spend 4 hours installing the fiber in my apartment and told me that it once took him 8 hours to do the install in an old house.

    Now I have 50/50 Internet (50 Mbps downlink, 50 Mbps uplink with a 250 GB/month cap) for 63$ per month and I'm really enjoying it!

    Granted, it's part of a bitter turf war with the cable provider (Videotron) but

  • I've never seen so many people get so excited about something they don't really understand... actually, yes I have - presidential elections!

    But seriously, it's actually relieving to see so many people, even those in the "bad" neighborhoods in KC, actually going out of their way to preregister. It gives me new hope that people might actually be capable of some foresight every now and then.

    Of course, then there's that annoying nameless voice on the radio here singing the praises of Google Fiber and urgi
  • by TubeSteak ( 669689 ) on Monday September 10, 2012 @11:44AM (#41288333) Journal

    I just read this Wired article a few days ago:
    Google Fiber Splits Along Kansas City's Digital Divide []

    Basically, the signup for Google Fiber was split along the line dividing historically white and black neighborhoods.

    But Liimatta [who runs a Kansas City nonprofit that works to bring broadband access to low-income residents] says the pre-registration process itself set a high bar for those already on the wrong side of the digital divide. To pre-register, residents needed to be willing to pony up $10. They also needed a credit or debit card, a Google Wallet account, and a Gmail account, which are harder to come by if you never had internet access in the first place. "Many don't even have bank accounts," Liimatta says. "That's why there are so many check-cashing places out there."

    The fact that they managed to get these neighborhoods qualified in 3 days says a lot about the lengths Google went to.
    The Wired article talks about Google sending out teams to knock on doors and expedite signups for families that don't have internet already.

    • I believe a lot of that was the result of educating residents on what this whole thing means. I've had to explain exactly what some of the advantages were myself to a half dozen people or so I thought would have picked up on it themselves.

      That, and the primary means for signing up was via the web, and I believe that for a lot of these households, fiber is going to be their first broadband connection to the Internet. I think there was a phone number you could use as well, but it wasn't very well publishe

Some people manage by the book, even though they don't know who wrote the book or even what book.