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Started With The BoM

Today was the first day I started reading the weather observations for the Balranald BoM (Bureau of Meteorology) site. It's an early start each day for a 9am reading. So I set my alarm to go off at 8.30am. It doesn't take me long to get up and get moving.

The day before I had training which took about 2.5 hours, a lot longer than I thought it would take. There is a lot to do. It's just not reading the temps, there is a lot more to it. Once I've completed the readings I then have to return home and enter the details into a computer and send it off to teh BoM. The computer, believe it or not, is running MS-DOS and to send the information to the BoM (Bureau of Meteorology) is doen over a dial up modem, yeah those old things we all used to use to access the internet.

It's only been one day but I must say I am enjoying it, even thou they are early mornings. Normally I'm not up at that time of the morning but it's not as bad as one thinks lol.


BoM Weather Station

About a week a go I saw a advert posted on the the local RSL's Facebook page looking for a new weather station contractor for the local weather station. Knowing I post every night on my personal Facebook page the weather forecast for Balranald and I have my own weather station I decided I would put in for the position.

After a day of sending an email to teh BoM I received a reply back wanting to make a time to call and speak to me. This happened the following day. Yesterday (Thursday 17th August) I received a phone call saying I have the position if I still want it. So I now have training on the 28th of August. This position requires me to be up to do 9am reading and send them in each morning. This should be interesting but, should I say fun. 

This now means I now handle both of the towns important services, the TV networks transmitters and now the towns weather station.

It's good to see I'm finally doing something good in my life. One learns from their mistakes finally.


TV Streaming Services and Boxes

It's been just over a week since I've been connected to the NBN. I've had one issue where I lost connection but it's been fine since then. The only issue I'm seeing is for some unknown reason the modem/router seem to lose connection to some of the computers randomly. I can be doing something on one computer and lose internet on another. This will only happen for about a minute and then you would have get it back.

After about a week I noticed my usage was a little high and seeing when I switched over to the NBN I kept my current plan which was for 500Gb a month. I've now had to up that to 1,000Gb or 1Tb and so far I've used over 30Gb in less than a week of being on the higher plan. When I moved over to this new plan Telstra also supplied me with one of their Telstra TV streaming boxes. With this box they also gave me access to Foxtel for a couple of months free. So for now I now have Foxtel Play. Back in the early 90's when Pay TV for came to Australia I signed up for it and had it for many years. The only time I was without it was when I was first living in Western Australia and then when I came back over to Eastern Australia. I haven't had since about 2007. I did have it back for about a two months with their streaming service via my PS3 but I was having issues with it. Now that I'm on the NBN and have a lot more bandwidth and the fact Telstra have given me a free trail of Foxtel Play I'm giving it a go again and so far I'm enjoying it. I've always loved Pay TV but the monthly costs was something I didn't need. 

I gave my NBN connection a real workout the other day, I had Foxtel and Netflix streaming plus I had Vevo music video channel, which is streamed in HD and all three streamed without an issue. No buffering or anything. I was also still able to still play on FaceBook. This is something I could only dream of doing when I was connected via ADSL2+.

I've been a Netflix customer since they started in Australia. I enjoy a lot of the TV shows they have plus their moves. It would be great to have access to the same Netflix library as the US have but again we can dream. So at the moment I have access to Netflix, Stan and Foxtel, and yes I watch each one of them. They all have something I like to watch. I'm even using the catch up streaming services from our FTA (Free To Air) networks. I love my Apple TV and would love to be able to upgrade to the new one but I think I will wait until Apple releases their new one which looks like will happen in the coming months. The Telstra TV is a fill in for what the Apple TV doesn't have but it would be good if Telstra didn't lock their box down as much as they have. The Telstra TV uses the Roku box which for what I've heard is a great streamer but like I said Telstra have locked their box down. Again Apple does the same thing with their box but their newer Apple TV is a lot better then the version I have.

Anyhow back to watching Foxtel :) 


Music24 Back On The Air

After a lot of pulling hair out I now have Music24 back online.

So you can now enjoy the music and due to the move to the NBN I now have much more bandwidth so I can handle more listeners than the limited 4 I had when I was conenected via ADSL2+


The NBN As Arrived

Today I was one of the lucky ones in my town to be connected to the NBN (National Broadband Network). The service we got in Balranald is their FTTN (Fibre To The Node) service. Before today I was connected to the internet via ADSL2+. I was getting speeds of around the 16Mbps download and around 900kbps upload. I'm about three blocks away from the Telstra exchange and about a block and a half from the nearest NBN node. 

I decided to just stay with my current ISP, Telstra. Teh plan I was on was NBN ready. So all I had to do was sign up for the NBN and I didn't have to change plans or email address. I might still change my plan, I will have to see how my usage goes. I did sign up for the highest plan, 100/40mbps. I knew I would have to sign up for the fastest speed to get a good speed at my place.

I'm getting around 68mbps download and 36mbps upload. I was hoping to get a little faster than I am but I'm happy with the speed. It will allow me to upload things much faster and be able to watch HD videos (Netflix) and still be able to do things on my computer without the video quality dropping back.

I did not think I would ever see the NBN getting here in my life time but it's here and I'm happy. I just hope they look into upgrading their VDSL service so download and uploads are improved even more. I still think they should have stayed with the original plan of FTTP (Fibre To The Premises). Then the NBN would have worked way beyond most peoples lives. In saying that I'm glad I've lived to see the NBN here in Balranald.