I love it when "rural" and "IT" come together. Reminds me of a job listing I came across when I was on the beach a few years ago.
It was for the government of the state in which I lived at the time. It was listed in the IT area. Essentially, the responsibility was to test and maintain computers and their webcams in transmitter sheds at the top of the tallest, most remote mountain peaks in the state. They were part of some kind of state-wide radio network, presumably for forest rangers, firefighters, BLM, and similar types of agencies.
I didn't apply because the job listing included requirements about the ability to handle strenuous hiking, previous experience camping for a week or more at altitude in winter, and various types of outdoorsy skills which I simply don't possess. All I could imagine was spending a week walking up a mountain with a couple of servers strapped to my back in deep snow. Not my scene.
And sadly, because it was a gub'mint job, it couldn't pay extra for the hardships involved.
There are (were) an amazing number of old, reliable, remote systems around that need attention. My first job was with a guy who used to program and maintain the 'computers' that ran the California canal locks and pumps. They were paper-tape operated mostly-mechanical systems installed when the canal was dug.
Oh yeah, I used to work with a guy who left our suburban telecom equipment installation company, to take a position maintaining remote cell-site equipment up north. Got a company truck and a company snowmobile.
The WISP last mile, small ISP industry sees a lot of the venn diagram overlap between tech and rural. Lots of places out there in remote parts of the American west which have only one wisp available, or none, and will benefit greatly from starlink.
You see lots of creative stuff out there. Small solar powered hilltop sites. 60cm dish antennas bolted to trees.
Unfortunately in some parts you deal with the theft and vandalism. Acquaintance of mine deals with this a lot in Arizona on mountain tops. Sometimes folks stealing gear and selling it on eBay for whatever they can get.
Back in the 90s and early 2000s the theft of copper was getting pretty bad in some parts of the country/rural areas. Folks could spot an outage and guess it was due to vandals but they could never catch them. Lots of metal yards would look the other way and buy it no question asked, but it was difficult to prove folks stole it.
So they would get in a helo with a FLIR camera and cruise the country side looking for heat blooms and be in contact with the NOC for any outages popping up. They'd eventually find folks using a 55 gallon drum with a fire where they'd pull the copper over it to melt off the cover and call in the sheriff to go after them.
There's better ways to do that without so much rotation that a 5.x GHz based PTP link will lose alignment - one low cost solution is a 16' long, 6x6 pressure treated timber set directly into a hole in the ground, with a 3" sch40 steel pipe bolted an additional 10' on top of that.
Government jobs can provide hazard pay. They just don't always. They should also provide compensation for having to work weekends and holidays or non-standard shifts. I'm not sure of how every state works, but at the federal level in the US federal employees are actually hourly workers, even working a standard desk job. There is a cap on the total compensation they can get in a year (see secret service members who maxed out their pay with OT taking Trump on trips in his first year), but if you hit that you're making pretty good money.
Of the states I have worked in as a state employee or knew people who did, it has been mixed. Some hourly some salaried, some have both. White collar jobs (which IT would fall under) were often salaried so that may present issues in getting proper compensation for a job like you describe.
Good stuff. This author builds businesses off kind of serendipitous domain name purchases.
Find a domain, build something useful on it, grind for a while, you have a business. He also wrote:
I Sell Onions on the Internet  - He buys the vidaliaonions.com domain and works with local onion farmers to sell them. Has been linked at least a couple times on HN.
Want to build a side business? Just buy a great Domain Name  - I like this idea because it can give you a steady stream of ideas, puts some constraints on you, and you'll probably be a lot more committed if you plunk down a few hundred or thousand dollars for a domain!
I saw the onion article and ordered 5lbs of Vidalia onions from vidaliaonions.com on a lark because I had never had one. Never again, maybe I just don't have a taste for them, but loved the site and was very happy with the service and product in principle. :D
> Now, sure, from the outset, I could have viewed this idea from a defeatist attitude, that being, “What? I’m gonna try to compete with Indeed, SimplyHired, Monster, and the like? They’re VC backed heavyweights… I have no chance.”
It's _something_ to hear others battle with a similar set of demons as myself. How easy it is to get in one's own way. What do I have to lose?
This guy's story reminded me of the person selling onions via the internet (vidaliaonions.com).  Turns out it's the same guy!
I really like these descriptions of long-tail businesses that connect people with lower and lower economic friction, it fulfills the original wondrous promises of the Net that filled my head when I was first exposed to it.
looking at a domain now... but, it’s listed as for sale on Domainist - a site which (despite me registering, and it accepting the registration), never sent me the confirmation email needed to proceed with the offer.
The thing I like about these small humble internet businesses is that they’re so close to people. Not that I’m complaining about working as an engineer on growth projects, but I often times think that each human connection / conversation is just as rewarding as the zillionth install.
I occasionally check random common nouns as domain names. Somewhat surprised that burrito.com hasn't been used by somebody to redirect to a third party food delivery service (Uber eats, doordash, skip the dishes etc) as a portal for finding Mexican food delivery near your location.
Without any content or a portal on the site, I wonder what the traffic numbers really look like right now. How many persons are manually typing burrito.com into the browser address bar every day? I've no idea.
The content on AppalachianTrail.com is disappointingly shallow to put it mildly.
The second most popular article on the site, about carrying a firearm on the AT, can be boiled down to "the laws are complicated, here's a lawyer joke and 2 links".
Regardless of your stance on guns, an article making an honest attempt to address the question of carrying one might, just maybe, talk about the laws of each of the 14 states the trail passes through and address the question of the various federal jurisdictions the trail passes through as well. Maybe you'd also try to find some hikers who have tried to carry guns and interview them.
The food and water articles are similarly shallow. You could write a chapter or more on each.
The article on menstruation is just outright copied from another blog, with attribution, to be fair.
And there's nothing about the current COVID-19 situation.
Honestly, it's a lot of low-effort unmaintained content that doesn't add much, if anything, to what you can find with several minutes of googling. It's the kind of site that I assume is peppered with ads (or maybe affiliate links, I didn't look too hard) to make a couple of bucks.
Anybody looking for actual information about the AT would be better served by any of the following:
author here.. oddly, I sold AppalachianTrail to fund my purchase of DudeRanch. If I still owned AT, I woulda hiked the whole thing, recorded the experienced on the website, and then maybe hired some ex-hikers to provide guided recommendations for the trail for a small fee. Something like that.