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How did my grandfather bring down part of a cell network in 1999?


swintec
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Back in 1999 my grand parents went on their annual 'get away from winter' from maine to florida.  They would drive down with their camper.  This particular trip, after they got settled in they were paid a visit by one of the cell phone companies at the time.

 

Turns out, his cell / car phone had been preventing thousands of users from using their devices for awhile.

 

I can only find one story about this now but I also seem to remember that as they drove south they were jamming everything along the way, beyond maine to florida.

 

Link for reference: http://www.deseretnews.com/article/674585/One-mans-cell-phone-jams-tens-of-thousands-of-calls.html

 

Couple of questions...

 

how would this happen or was that at a time when cell service was at its infancy so these types of problems were still being dealt with?

 

would it take 10 days to sort this out now a days?

 

could this even happen now a days?  seems to be a great security issue if so.

 

The better question is, the phone worked perfectly up here in maine at the time without any issues.  Were cell networks such a hodge podge of systems back then that consumer equipment could not work reliably across the nation and not take out a network?

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I pose a theory that whatever channel the tower was broadcasting in, was simply full. There may have been only one channel for tx at a time in the network at the tower. The phone for whatever reason, was constantly feeding into that channel and that smoked the server for anyone else trying to get in. I am in no way certain of this, yet I am very intrigued. 

 

Maybe kinda like this, the 99 version of DOS?

9dGl3jF.gif

Again, it was 99, so I would also suggest this may have been simple ping flooding. Due to possible roaming attempts to connect and incompatibility, or simply a glitch in the phone. Would need some more specifics, but these are some what ifs of course. 

4LSPiVx.jpg

Wonder I will, this should be cool to see broken down. 

:popcorn:

 

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Sprint PCS came out in 98, CDMA digital right from the start. At the time AT&T, Verizon were all still the baby Bell regional cellphone networks and were analog. It took an act of Congress in 2000 to force them to go digital. Tmobile wasn't up then either, at the time, still a bunch of other companies. Sprint started out as a digital cell network from the get go.

 

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Sprint PCS came out in 98, CDMA digital right from the start. At the time AT&T, Verizon were all still the baby Bell regional cellphone networks and were analog. It took an act of Congress in 2000 to force them to go digital. Tmobile wasn't up then either, at the time, still a bunch of other companies. Sprint started out as a digital cell network from the get go.

 

well, since they lived up here in maine much of the year this is where they got the phone and established service.  No idea who the provider was.  I remember AT&T and names like Cellular One.  Affected company, as stated in the article was GTE.

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Eww, analog? That must be around the same time they were using leaches to cure headaches and thought the sun circled the Earth.

So I know this post was a joke but worms actually have medicinal uses.  Leeches (yes leeches are worms) have some great anitcoagulant properties and they are used occasionally medicinally with skin grafts and some other things.  Also there is some pretty amazing research that has been going on recently that shows some worms can help with digestive problems and are good for your digestive tract (no not the tape worm for all you anorexic folks).  Like I said I know that post was a joke and funny but thought you'd like that fun fact about worms. 

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