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Of course, to take up TBG's point, if we actually had world leading internet infrastructure then we might be in a position to let transport rot.

But we don't - the early days of the UK internet saw a lot of activity in the M62 corridor and also in Nottingham - but as bandwidth requirements rose, the data centres drifted south...

World-class internet interconnection touches the UK in London - and basically nowhere else...

by Metatone (metatone [a|t] gmail (dot) com) on Wed Jun 1st, 2011 at 03:12:58 AM EST
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One plan discussed in Finland was to set up office centres next to schools which would both be provided with best broadband access. The offices would be places where outworkers from different companies could gather. Office space would be flexible (all you need is your laptop) FCFS, and there would be a cafe/lunch restaurant, copying/office printing services, a library and so on.

You can't be me, I'm taken
by Sven Triloqvist on Wed Jun 1st, 2011 at 03:57:00 AM EST
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Don't get me wrong, I don't mean to suggest that there's no internet outside of London.

My focus is on the extremely high bandwidth infrastructure that cutting edge applications require. That's an area where government planning and investment could affect the whole business landscape.

by Metatone (metatone [a|t] gmail (dot) com) on Wed Jun 1st, 2011 at 04:22:40 AM EST
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Absolutely.

You can't be me, I'm taken
by Sven Triloqvist on Wed Jun 1st, 2011 at 05:31:50 AM EST
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That's an area where government planning and investment

You must be referring to another country. British government doesn't do planning and investment

keep to the Fen Causeway

by Helen (lareinagal at yahoo dot co dot uk) on Wed Jun 1st, 2011 at 06:50:19 AM EST
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The one thing the Tories are doing right is pushing rural Internet. Wiltshire is getting £5 million for a local roll-out, and Somerset is getting something like £15m.

But for cutting-edge hosting, there's no real need to keep a server at home. You can hire or co-locate in London and get all the usual bandwidth and benefits, with remote management. For a lot of applications it's cheaper to do that than it is to buy a custom server and pay for a spare high speed broadband line.

Industrial data centres will usually have a leased line anyway, so they're not so dependent on public broadband.

It does mean they won't be based in the Hebrides, but there's no technical reason why they can't be based in the Midlands.

I know someone who ran a dating site on a cheap PC she kept in a spare bedroom. Initially it was connected to a couple of ISDN lines.

She happened to live in London, but she could have done it anywhere.

She sold the site a few years ago for half a million.

by ThatBritGuy (thatbritguy (at) googlemail.com) on Wed Jun 1st, 2011 at 07:29:21 AM EST
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