Tuesday, October 31, 2006

Broadband in the Boonies

Look Ma! I made a news. Jackson West over at Web Worker Daily picked up a guide I wrote for Work.com called "Getting Internet to Your Business in the Boonies". Hopefully it will help out some of the rural entrepreneurs who are struggling to make locating in the new or growing businesses outside the major metro areas.

I personally live on one of those rural areas and love the fact that my cost of living is now 1/3 - yes, a 66% decrease - what it cost me to live in cities like Dallas and Atlanta.

Like me, many folks locating in rural areas have to pre-plan what they will be doing for broadband. It's usually not as simple as getting a phone line and ordering DSL or calling up the local cable company for a cable modem. In most cases there is no cable company anywhere near the location. And if the local central office does have DSL, you're too far out to get it. Those are the breaks that come with country living.

Are the trade-offs worth it for a techie? Absolutely! My living costs are dramatically reduced. My commute to the metro airport here is exactly the same as it was to the airport in Dallas or Atlanta. And my internet connection still works the same - it just costs a lot more (which is offset fully in my case by the decreased cost of housing). The only things I miss are nice resturants and quick access to tech toy stores like CompUSA, Best Buy, Fry's Electronics and MicroCenter. But... on the flip side, I'm now on a first name basis with the UPS, FedEx and DHL guys thanks to online shopping.

(PS... If you live in a rural area, Amazon Prime is a steal! I know I've more than gotten by money's worth on the free 2-day shipping and $3.99 overnight shipping. I can't figure out how they don't lose their shirts on it... b/c I keep ordering stuff that ways more than a pound or two and they keep shipping it to me overnight for $3.99.)