Sunday, December 10, 2006

What a technological nightmare!

I've been offline since November 12th when I changed my plain DSL service to one that combined with my home phone. In the process I lost both services. The problem apparently was that there are so many layers between my computer and the network that services all that -- that it was impossible for either the broadband service that leased the lines or the company that they sublet the lease to -- to touch the wires.

My credit card was charged -- and at my insistence -- a credit was issued mid-problem, but only for half the time I was offline. About 18 hours on "hold" overall over the past month -- with someone probably in New Delhi or somewhere in Bombay -- two technicians who came to my home on 4 occasions -- who could identify the problem but could not touch the wires (due to that lease) -- and, finally, one who was willing to cut through the confusion and DO something yesterday (12/9) to restore my service after only a few days short of a full month!

I sent a blistering email to the original service provider (on their monthly bill announcing my ($104.00) charges for the transfer) only to receive a curt reply that "...if I wanted to contact anyone with my complaint, I would need to go to their website and fill out a form that would handle the matter."

This morning I spent about an hour online -- reading my accumulated emails and responding -- when the DSL went out again and I found myself talking to myself. Ten minutes ago, service mysteriously returned and I'm taking advantage of the time here by explaining to anyone reading this blog to know that I haven't died (a real possibility at my age) nor am I incapacitated in any way -- except by the magic(?) of technology.

'Tis a fragile thing, indeed, this wonder called the Blogosphere et al. At times like this there may be reason to wonder just how far advanced the human element has come -- and whether or not we're able to control this magical power we've concocted for the edification of the world. This past month has shown me just how far we still must travel before any of this can be taken for granted.

What if I were on a battlefield instead of sitting here in my comfortable den with no lives counting on my ability to remain in communication?