[RFI] InfoWorld

Jim Jarvis jimjarvis at comcast.net
Sat Jan 10 19:28:44 EST 2004


There has been substantial thread on towertalk concerning
the InfoWorld.  As a result, I approached the magazine's
editor in chief, and have had a response from the reporter,
who wants to spend time with me next week.

My e-mail is reproduced, below, for benefit of anyone who
hasn't seen it.  And thanks to N0UN who moved me to
subscribe here and stop polluting towertalk with this
noise.  (heh...saw yours and raised you one, John)

Jim, N2EA


Dear Ms. Heichler:

I am writing to raise your sensitivity on a topic of serious
concern.  There is a great deal of power industry hype at
present regarding a "new" technology, broadband over power
lines, or BPL.

This was the subject of a recent article by your Washington
correspondent, Grant Gross.  Unfortunately, Mr. Gross fell
victim to power industry hype, and outright lies by some of
their representatives.  The result is highly misleading to
the investment community, and to your readership in general.

The first point, completely missed in both of Mr. Gross's stories
on the topic, is that the power industry ALREADY HAS BPL.  It is
subject to restrictions on radiation.  They're asking that those
restrictions be relaxed, permitting increased interference.

The second point, completely missed by Mr. Gross, due to apparent
reliance on power-industry handouts, is that other nations have
evaluated BPL and elected to ban it on technical merit.

Austria has recently joined the ranks of Japan and the UK to
stop their BPL trials.  vide infra for details:

Against that background, consider the following quotations from
Mr. Gross's most recent article:

"Our experience in the field contradicts what (the ARRL is) alleging,"
Kilbourne said. "We're entirely satisfied that there won't be any


"(Interference) just doesn't exist," Birnbaum said. "They based a lot
of their assumptions on outdated noise flow analysis."

If you can figure out what 'noise flow' is, let me know.  Gobbledygook.

The final point is this:  If BPL isn't working within present
noise restrictions, and the power industry is asking for a relaxation of
those restrictions...can it be for anything BUT increased noise?  And at
what price to society?  Public safety, general business, emergency response,
air traffic control and navigation are only a few of the affected services.
Amateur radio plays a very minor role in that equation.

More importantly, I believe IDG/InfoWorld has a responsibility to fully
inform its readers, not mislead them.  You're in a technology driven field.
What is the merit of the underlying technology?

Does it make sense for the power industry to invest billions in broadband
data transmission over transmission lines designed to carry power, when
that same industry very clearly demonstrated last year that it can't
supply power itself?

The disagregation of power suppliers from power distributors...selling the
plant off...transfers a lot of deferred maintenance to companies without the
economic base or regulatory supervision to demonstrably maintain service in
long run.  And THESE are the people whom the FCC suggests will bring us a
new technology?  I don't buy it.  I don't think once-burned dot-com
investors will
buy it either.  Not in today's climate.

Might I suggest assigning Mr. Gross a research piece on the underlying
of BPL?  Not only does BPL not present compelling technology, it's far from
compelling investment.  I'd be happy to point him to market theory which
explain the relationship between market share and ROI.

With best regards,

Jim Jarvis, BS, MBA
International Business Development
Salesforce Development Programs
Strategic Marketing Analysis
410 439 1073 office
443 618 5560 cell
jimjarvis at comcast.net

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