Quote of the Week

"One cool judgment is worth a thousand hasty councils."
- Woodrow Wilson

Saturday, December 10, 2016

Just when I was hitting my stride, technology happened

Just when I was hitting my stride with this daily blog challenge I gave myself, technology happened. Or more accurately, didn't happen. For roughly a 24 hour stretch I had lost my internet access.

Thursday evening I was getting ready to make my daily post and....... no internet. I didn't worry too much. The internet goes out every once in a while, then it restores. It's not a game stopper for most of us. We can still live a few hours at a time without being online. Well, as long as we still have a cell phone signal of course.

I live out in the woods and in this remote area we pretty much have no options for internet providers. My options are the rural telephone company, a satellite provider, or a small local wireless service provider.

Since  don't have satellite TV anymore and have no interest in having it ever again, not bundling services makes the satellite option way too expensive. I really like the idea of working with the small local wireless provider. Even if they're a little more expensive, I'd like to see them succeed. But looking at the coverage map on their website, I'm not sure how good the speeds would actually be. I may have to have them out for a demo sometime for fully vet out that option.

Like most around here, by default the rural telephone company is the only viable option. While priced a little high for what you get, what you get it is a fairly reliable connection and pretty good consumer service.

But it is pretty comical when people do have problems. It truly is Midwest small town humor at it's best. Since us (mostly) Scandinavian linage Midwesterner country folks don't want to make a fuss, when we can't get online at home we follow these steps:

1) Wait for about five minutes to see if the connection fixes itself
2) Reboot the computer
3) Reboot the computer again and swear a little under your breathe
4) Reboot the modem and wireless router
5) Reboot the modem and wireless router again and swear a little under your breathe
6) Turn everything off for ten minutes and turn it all back on, then swear out loud
7) Run the diagnostic tool of your computer (optional beyond the skill sets of many)
8) Call or text a neighbor and ask if they have problems
9) Post on Facebook if anyone else is having problems
10) Give up and call tech support

Step 9 is where the small town humor kicks into high gear. Since I live where pretty much everyone knows everyone, when someone posts to Facebook asking if anyone else it having problem; roughly half the time an employee of the local phone company will comment that everything is fine on their end.

It's a running joke around here that whenever someone has a connection problem all they have to post about the connection problem on Facebook. Then within a half hour someone from the phone company will comment that everything it working and presto! The connection will miraculously be restored. Of course the timing of that is purely a coincidence, but it has sparked a humorous tongue-in-cheek local conspiracy theory.

Now the whole point of this (hopefully) funny small town first world problems story about internet service is not to complain about my service options. Nor is it to make an excuse for the break in my daily blogs. The point of this post is to highlight an area of self improvement for myself that this break in internet service brought to my attention.

Going with a "just in time delivery" model for a daily blog is not realistic. At least not for me. Besides the occasional outage of internet service (which I've found out is kind of important to posting a daily blog on the internet), life throws a  few curve balls and change ups at me. Much like everyone else, my day to day often strays from the plan. And I need to plan for my plans falling apart.

One feature the blog template I use has, along with all of them I'm sure, is the option to schedule when a post is published. There is absolutely no reason for me not have several posts written ahead of schedule, just waiting in queue to be posted automatically.

Planning ahead and using all, or at least more, of the tools at your disposal will help you be more successful at your goals. whatever they are. Plan your work, work your plan, and plan ahead for reworking you plan.

So, as I'm waiting for the sun to raise this Saturday morning, I'm writing a few posts and outlining a few other ideas so I can stay ahead of the game and be more productive and efficient with this blog.

I'm also doing my laundry while I write. Multitasking, baby, multitasking.

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