Dave Michel’s Notable News Feed

TalkingPointz300To paraphrase Douglas Adams, “The internet is big. Really, really big. I mean it’s just mind-bogglingly big. ” It’s amazing that we can find anything at all. It’s especially nice when smart people help us to find things.

Over the past number of months Dave Michels has evolved his Pin Drop Soup blog into something more. It’s now just one aspect of his TalkingPointz web site. Dave has started offering his keen insight into the world of telecom in the form of reports detailing the product offerings and strategies of various large telecom vendors. Dave’s reports present the kind of info that you’d expect from a large consulting firm, but priced to be accessible to a small business.

Another part of the evolution of the site has been the development of a really smart news feed. Beyond the traditional blog roll, Dave has gone to a lot of trouble to aggregate RSS feeds from a myriad of Telecom and UC sources.

Dave’s news feed is a fine example of what you can do using Yahoo Pipes. I wish I’d thought to do it, but then I wouldn’t have known about much of the enterprise UC content that Dave brings to the table.

Go now. Subscribe. You’ll be glad that you did.

Recommended Reading: The Master Switch By Tim Wu

the master switch-200A few weeks ago I finished reading “The Master Switch: The Rise and Fall of Information Empires” by MIT Professor and outspoken network neutrality advocate Tim Wu. Professor Wu starts with a historical examination of various industries that he considers to be “information industries.” This starts with the telegraph, telephone, movies, radio and television before moving onward to consider the internet.

In each case he traces the evolution of the business, key innovations, notable rivalries, competitive pressures, corporate alliances and government involvement. Each little tale is entertaining and informative on its own, revealing something of the great men and companies of an earlier era.

Continue reading “Recommended Reading: The Master Switch By Tim Wu”

Telecom Factoid: This was state-of-the-art when the standard for “Toll Quality” telephony was defined

Yes, sir. That little beauty to the right was the current state-of-the-art in 1937. That’s when what we call “toll quality” calling was supposedly set down as a standard.

In fact, I find it hard to believe that the entire realm of telecom has lived with the paltry 300 Hz – 3.4 KHz pass-band of telephony for the past 74 years. It’s beyond embarrassing. It’s a flagrant violation of Moore’s Law.

That’s the curious thing about “standards” they have a lifespan like most things. In the early portion of that lifespan they provide a forward-looking goal, something that we can strive to achieve. However, in the trailing portion of their life span they restrain us, and keep us from achieving even greater things.

Add in a dash of not-quite-real-competition-because-of-monopolist-tendencies and you have a recipe for paralysis.

It’s the 21st century. We should demand better. Whiskey Tango Foxtrot!

ITExpo West in Austin TX, Sept 13-15, 2011

itexpo_logoThis blog and it’s related projects are just a hobby for me. It chronicles some of the things that I do in the context of my home office. That makes it work related, but only tangentially.

One of the great frustrations of my blogging is that I don’t generally get to attend the various conferences and conventions that track my personal interests. I’d love to attend things like CES, Enterprise Connect or the CTIA show. Those are just a few amongst many that appeal. Sadly, there’s little justification for this within the scope of my working life. NAB is about the only trade show I’ve attended consistently.

However, in an unexpected move TMC has selected Austin TX as the site for ITExpo this fall. That makes the show a lot more accessible to me. Combine the convenience of that location with a one-day-only $99 registration offered a short while ago…well…I found that I simply couldn’t resist.

The $99 registration is no longer available, but an early-bird $199 registration offer remains valid until the end of March.

Perhaps we’ll setup a VUC special session from ITExpo. At very least it will present the opportunity to meet with some interesting people. Will you be there?

T-Mobile & Sprint/Nextel May Wed?

The blogging great Om Malik has a rumor about Deutsche Telecom considering buying Sprint/Nextel to combine with it’s US T-Mobile operation. Om and his readers point out some very valid technical concerns about merging the two companies. Combined they support five (yes, 5!) different sorts of networking architectures. I hope the powers that be see the mistakes in this plan before its too late. Otherwise T-Mobile could be in trouble.