Feren (feren) wrote,

I still have the old skills!

Yesterday after work I picked up lady_curmudgeon and we went over to see our friend H.K., who lives only a few miles away. Our purpose was two-fold: first, to see how she's recovering from her surgery and give her some company. Second, to rescue her sanity! It seems H.K. has been without Internet service for quite some time now, as the last time the local Bell technician paid her a visit they managed to rewire her NID (Network Interface Device, the place where the telephone company's wiring is cross-connected to the wiring inside your house/condo/apartment complex), ostensibly to address some signal quality concerns. Ever since then? No DSL service and no dial tone anywhere in the house. How nice is that?

It didn't take me too long to figure out what the problem was -- the installer was a wank and he cut out pretty much everything she had wired in herself, replacing it with only a connection to the standard red/green wires of pair #1 -- a pair that is not used anywhere in her house. What did take me a while was identifying the wires that served her office and kitchen, then figuring out how everything was supposed to be connected -- the Bell technician made a right mess of things, interconnecting two or three pairs with lots of button crimps. I hate button crimps.

It's been a long time since I worked with telephone service but it felt good to get back to the basics, as it were. Telephones (especially the push-button multi-line telephones) were fascinating to me when I was young and they are what eventually sparked my interest in networking. It was a happy coincidence for me that computers were moving in that direction as well. When I started college for my B.S. in Telecommunications and Management, my first classes focused around voice communications and the various laws and theories that drive this ubiquitous service. In fact, that's how H.K. and I first met -- she was the TCom Lab supervisor who helped set up my first class's lab final. It was a "practical" exam where I had to troubleshoot and repair 3-5 different problems that were keeping an analog telephone from working (a cut phone line, cotton in the receiver, a disconnected Tip line, etc). Funny how 12 years later I'm coming full circle, isn't it?
Tags: friends, telephony

  • Thirty words or less

    Had Jury Duty on Tuesday. Sat most of the day, got a two hour lunch, was empaneled shortly after lunch and then sent home by the judge because the…

  • Paid vacation from work!

    A few weeks back I received word that I'd been summoned to serve as a juror. Today I didn't need to go in as I wasn't selected.. but when I got home…

  • What it is to be present on the hinge of destiny

    Some of you will remember Babylon 5. Maybe some of you will discover it because of my post this evening. In any case, the message of G'kar's…

  • Post a new comment


    default userpic

    Your IP address will be recorded 

    When you submit the form an invisible reCAPTCHA check will be performed.
    You must follow the Privacy Policy and Google Terms of use.
  • 1 comment