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This is the TBTF Log, the place where I report important breaking news in the most timely way possible.

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2000-11-27

2:54:32 pm
  • updated Backhoe fade at sea. A week ago one of the world's longest undersea fiber cables was cut, and Australian ISP Telestra bore the brunt of the outage. The cable, called SEA-ME-WE 3 (South East Asian - Middle East - Western Europe 3), was severed between Singapore and Jakarta. (Note: the above-linked map is baffling until your visual perception flips and you read purple as landmass and white as ocean.) SEA-ME-WE 3 provided Australia with 20 Gbps to Asia and western Europe. Only the week before, the new Southern Cross Cable Network (note: requires Shockwave) had come online, linking Australia's east coast with the US at 100 Gbps. Telestra is not yet connected to the new cable.

    Yesterday ZDNet reported that repairs would be more elaborate than expected, because whatever cut the cable caused its severed ends to whiplash in different directions and took out a repeater.

    SubHoe The original coverage in The Age speculated that a ship's anchor may have cut the cable. TBTF knows better, and now at last the truth can be told. We have obtained this exclusive photograph of the cable-cutting culprit.

    here Updated 2000-11-29, 9:06 am: TBTF Irregular Eric Scheid, an Aussie who is still suffering the aftermath of the cable cut, notes this updated story:

    "The damage was more extensive than we imagined." ... Sand dredgers had been working in the area about 70km off the coast of Singapore last Monday.

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