Transplant Athlete
Wednesday, October 08, 2008
  Logic Puzzle

I have a dilemma, it's actually a logic puzzle, but it uses an arcane branch of logic practiced only by Verizon Tech Support monkeys in India. The electrician wired my house with Coax for cable, but didn't give me any guidance as to what cables go to what rooms. So, I have 6 cables that appear in my utility room and two in my bedroom where I want the TV. I put connectors on one of the cables in my bedroom, then I went to my utility room and eventually plugged each wire into my Verizon Fios router.

I tried quick and dirty, I tried rebooting the router, I tried rebooting the Set Top Box (STB), but nothing was working. I went online and asked the Verizon Virtual Agent, but it told me to rephrase my question.
I asked again and it said, "If you are interested in Verizon Fios, First see if it is available in your area." And it gave me access to pages that would check for service in my area.
I asked it, "What is the meaning of life?" and it said, "If you are interested in Verizon Fios, First see if it is available in your area."
I then typed in "54" and it got confused.
I typed in "42" and it said, "Let me get you some help"
I should have asked it where Wonka hid the last golden ticket...

Here's the logic puzzle.
According to the monks at Verizon. The "Coax LAN" indicator on the router will light up green whenever a coax cable is plugged in to the box. Out of 6 wires that I plugged in to the router (plus a short spare I had lying around) only 2 light up. What does that mean? If a cable gets plugged in but there's no light is it really a cable? Or do we assume it has changed, morphed into something different, something beyond itself? I posed the question to the Verizon Virtual Agent and it replied, "How about a nice game of Chess?"


I got on the phone with another Verizon Tech Support Monk who kept asking me if I was plugged in to the wall. It goes from the TV, to the STB, to the router. Why is the signal not getting through. I haven't done anything fancy, I even bypassed the splitter.
Verizon Monk: Your system wasn't set up to run straight from the router, you need to wire it through the splitter.
So, I'm wondering why a splitter is necessary to the wiring diagram, but I rewire it anyway. Still nothing. That's when the Monk asks me if I"m plugged in to the wall. Huh? I haven't put any wall plates in, I'm running everything direct right now to make sure it works before I put the wall plates on.
Verizon Monk: But it has to be plugged in to the wall plate.
I'm clearly not getting it until he says the TV feed does not come through the router. It comes through a coax connection from the street. The router only supplies the interactive functions.

AHA! That was the missing piece. The splitter needs to be plugged in to the router and to this dedicated coax line from the street, before splitting off to the STBs and the TVs. Verizon advertises 100% Fiber Optic. To Quote Inigo Montoya, "I do not think that means what they think it means."


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1) I want a new keyboard, this one has coke on it now
2) you deserve more than the vz tech support can give
3) they clearly are confused... the tv comes over the fiber (which may, on the ONT break out as a coax to the router then STB)

good god :( Also, if you need to track down cat5 links I have a cable tester with remotes...
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I've gone through kidney failure twice. The first time in 2000, my mother donated a kidney; and again in 2008, I'm on dialysis waiting for a breakthrough in immuno-suppression medicines before seeking a new kidney.

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