The space is now equipped with (sort of) high-speed broadband, so we’re no longer breathing through the drinking straw of a dialup-speed Unwired modem. Installing the ADSL was an Adventure™. For starters, I had to wake up at 6.30am to get to the space by 8am, which was when TPG said was the earliest time the engineer might reach the house. I arrived with coffee and Subway cookies, and looked around for the phone socket. Um. There wasn’t one. I peered around the front of the house, and saw aerial cables from the nearby telephone pole (which I later found out were completely irrelevant — Foxtel or Optus cables). 15 minutes of searching for a torch later, I ventured under the house with a floodlight (overkill is what we do!). I traced the aerial cables to cables under the house (my hair collected about 40% of the cobwebs off the beams). There’s a 4-wire cable, but it’s been cut. Ugh.

Floodlight underneath the house

Half an hour later, the TPG guy shows up and crawls under the house with me to look for the cable. Eventually we found it, poking up into the board room with no socket on the end. He tests it, and to his great surprise (and my relief) it works. Clearly the line hadn’t been used for years, and for it to still be connected and working all the way through to the exchange is a small miracle.

TPG guy testing the connection

Somewhere in the junk room a Netgear modem was found, and a 12V/1A power brick stolen from the Linksys router. The modem was configured, and Internet was had. And there were megabytes.

The Netgear modem

No longer will hackerspace-goers be plagued by the lack of data or the irritatingly long wait for Youtube videos! No longer shall we resort to our variously crappy 3G connections! At last, we are free!