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Daily Journal
     May 14, 2021      #13-134 KDJ

Small Town Big Internet Highway

Autopista de Internet de una ciudad pequeña

By Wade LeBeau, VP Fabulous Fiber

A small town in Illinois (Kankakee) has access to the Internet Superhighway by means of Fiber Optic Connection.  Typically, smaller towns have cable, DSL, and some wireless access available.  Nothing beats the reliability and speed of light; no need to worry about overloaded networks or the weather, fog/rain, or other elements that may slow the signal of wireless/cellular services.

Going down the road to bring in fiber to your small town has some challenges, but when planned correctly and having a good fiber partner (Carrier) will make the project fly.  I can still remember the first bore we made and how the boring machine was underground boring while walking above ground following the boring head with the tracing unit.  We started as a fiber repeating site, this is the easier way to get fiber into your town.

The top-level timeline:
Initial meeting 8/11/11
Fiber walk-through 10/25/11
First bore Tuesday 4/17/2012 3:12 PM
Northeast Avenue north towards Court Street.
10-years later and the network uptime for Fabulous Fiber is 99.9%.

Fiber optic access is shielded and passes light over glass tubes about the size of a piece of human hair.  We used a fiber splicing unit to fuse the fiber optic ends together.  fi·ber-op·tic: Consisting of or using thin flexible fibers with a glass core through which light signals can be sent with very little loss of strength.  "high-speed fiber-optic broadband"  Definitions from Oxford Languages.

While you are boring your fiber try to sign up clients, maybe a membership; cheapest to connect when the boring company is on-site; more expensive to call back.  This fiber service offer is made during the initial installation period to buildings passed by the initial fiber placement. Members can start a service contact at any time by initiating a one-year contract for Internet over fiber.  On-Net building is GigE, high-end clients and see symmetrical throughput of 1GB.

Original fiber mapping.

Original Fiber Mapping

Finding the fiber to connect to is normally along railroad tracks, highways, and there are fiber maps that show you where the fiber is and who is the carrier.  To help offset cost check with your local municipality and other business that may want fiber.  There should also be considerations for FOH (Fiber to the Home); with breakthroughs in technologies, this has become a lower-cost option with easier installation.

Fiber access speeds are symmetrical, usually a few hops to the closest Carrier Hotel (Where the carriers meet.).  Our fiber-optic networks can reach speeds exceeding terabits (1 terabit = 1012bits = 1000000000000bits = 1000 gigabits.) to the Internet.  When we look at the centralization of the connection we compare it to the closest way to get to the Internet.  We are less than to milliseconds (A millisecond (from milli- and second; abbreviation: ms) is a thousandth (1/1,000) of a second.); that’s very fast.  And we carry data, voice, TV, and many more protocols.  There are 2-separate diverse fiber connections into the Data Center for redundancy.

The On-Net fiber buildings are assets to the City and give clients the ability for high-end fiber connections.  Clients’ connections are easy with the least amount of gear required.

This fiber project is near the top of the projects I have been involved with.  As the technologies change, fiber is still a solid source for Internet access.  If you want to connect buildings together, fiber is your answer.  We are pushing our fiber in new directions; I’m excited to see where it lands.

See our website:

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