Mapping our installation

Today marks the completion of the first challenge. Beaming internet connectivity into Gellideg from Merthyr Valley Homes.

We have tested speeds and the results show an impressive, almost symmetrical, dedicated connection of 15mb up and 18mb down, with minimum latency (the time it takes for a packet of data to travel from MVH to Gellideg).

Tomorrow sees Roger and Victor from Routek start on challenge two; connecting our first row of houses ahead of a short break for Christmas.

At this stage I thought I’d share a simplified engineers map with you to show the estate and which houses we will connect as part of our prototype - 42 properties in total.

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Bear with me as I try to explain…The yellow arrow indicates the internet line coming from MVH going into the Gellideg Foundation (pictured below). This connection is then to be shared with the houses using a mixture of wireless and wired technology.

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The green lines on the map indicate the Local Area Network (LAN), a ‘mesh’ we are creating to connect houses to one another.

We will then connect this mesh/LAN to the Gellideg Foundation (shown above). This will enable us to share the internet across the mesh with each of our homes.

The first terrace to be connected is the second block of red houses from the top, as shown on the map.

We will start by adding a wireless aerial (Primary Node) on the end of the terrace (this is indicated with a green circle). This Primary Node will connect to the Gellideg Foundation wirelessly to access the internet.

The Primary node will share the connection with the rest of the terrace using a cable that runs along the top of each house and into each of the residents’ homes. This model will more or less be repeated for each terrace shown in red.

Finally, you should also see the pink star, top right? This marks the first Digital Champion (Ian Wright) to be connected into the network.

Our plan is for the engineers to show Ian how to configure a node and connect his house. Then, hopefully, in the new year Ian can take that experience and share with Tom, Digital Champion #2, supporting him to connect his home into the network (with a bit of help from our engineers while they are here, if needed).

Our hope is that by the time our advisors from Routek leave Wales, we are in a position to extend and maintain the network ourselves - but we’ll see how that goes ;-)

I must say, as a team we are feeling rather nervous but are certainly excited to give it a go.

If my explanation doesn’t make sense in any way, a key for the map is shown below.

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