29 Years of the Digest ... founded August 21, 1981
The Telecom Digest for April 06, 2011
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Date: Mon, 4 Apr 2011 19:52:54 +0000 (UTC) From: danny burstein <firstname.lastname@example.org> To: email@example.com. Subject: Re: Does FiOS support rotary phones? Message-ID: <firstname.lastname@example.org> In <email@example.com> Eric Tappert <firstname.lastname@example.org> writes: >Besides, providing premises power requires copper; fiber doesn't >transmit that level of power very well, so a separate copper plant >would have to be maintained. That would make FiOS an additional >infrastructure, not a replacement infrastructure. I've got to wonder a bit about that, at least from a pure, technical, side. Back in the 1980s I remember articles in Science News about the (for then) super high efficiency solar cells coming out of Bell Labs research. (Yes, children, once upon a time there was this company, in New Jersey!, that did lots of ground breaking research). It wouldn't work for a commercial complex with multiple phone systems in place (which have generally required local utility power anyway [a]), but I wouldn't be surprised if, given a few nudges in teh right direction, we'd have phones and related equipment that could, indeed, be powered by the laser/fiber light stream. And... we'd also have seen quite a bit of improvement in small sized, high density, storage cells - that would "charge up" from the laser between calls. And the consumer premises equipment ("CPE") would be far more energy efficient than what's now in common use. [a] typically there'd be a couple of phone sets which had "power failure pass through", getting direct dial tone from the CO. -- _____________________________________________________ Knowledge may be power, but communications is the key email@example.com [to foil spammers, my address has been double rot-13 encoded]
Date: Mon, 04 Apr 2011 17:00:13 -0700 From: AES <firstname.lastname@example.org> To: email@example.com. Subject: Re: Does FiOS support rotary phones? Message-ID: <siegman-4A6399.firstname.lastname@example.org> In article <email@example.com>, Eric Tappert <firstname.lastname@example.org> wrote: > Besides, providing premises power requires copper; fiber doesn't > transmit that level of power very well, so a separate copper plant > would have to be maintained. I believe undersea fiber optic cables actually carry something like several kW of power over kilo-mile distances via copper that's embedded in the fiber optic cable, in order to power the EDFAs (Erbium Doped Fiber Amplifiers) that are spliced into the cable every 50 km or so. So, the fiber cables for FTTH could certainly contain a copper pair or two to deliver low-power AC or DC all the way to the premises end. Wouldn't significantly increase the size or flexibility of the cable, I'd guess. Would add noticeably to the cost of the cable, however, along with the cost of spllcing or connectorizing the cables -- and somebody would have to be responsible for supplying the power. I'd bet that if one were installing the communication infrastructure in some large green-fields development, it might make overall economic sense to run a single cable containing a PON fiber plus a few pairs of copper to every premises, using the fiber for all forms of large-scale communications and data, and the copper to supply backup or emergency power for crucial parts of the whole infrastructure, plus a few low-data-rate communications applications such as various monitoring and alarm systems and maybe meter reading.
Date: Mon, 4 Apr 2011 18:38:16 -0700 (PDT) From: Lisa or Jeff <email@example.com> To: firstname.lastname@example.org. Subject: Re: Does FiOS support rotary phones? Message-ID: <email@example.com> On Apr 4, 3:24 pm, Eric Tappert <e.tappert.spam...@worldnet.att.net> wrote: > Not having to change the batteries was the major reason to go to > central office battery in the early days. Saved a bundle on > maintenance costs, even more than the invention of the switch hook > saved (not turning off the phone was a major cause of battery > rundown...). The change was maintenance cost driven, not at all due > to customer convenience during power outages. Sending a craftsperson > out to change the batteries was expensive then and prohibitively > expensive today. Another disadvantage of local battery was the lack of supervisory signals on the switchboard. Subscribers were supposed to ring off when done but most forgot. There was an army technical manual, "Fundamentals of Telephony" that had an excellent explanation of the differences between local battery (hand cranked) and common battery (switchhook signal) telephone sets and switchboards. If memory serves, common battery required a more complex switchboard than local battery. A local battery indicator was a tiny shutter drop released by the subscriber's magneto. No lamp, no relays, so a simpler switchboard. Also, I believe local battery permitted longer loops than common battery, and probably the wire didn't have to be in as good condition. Lastly, when I was a kid experimenting with No. 6 dry cells they lasted forever, so I don't think service visits to change the battery were required very often. I don't know when local battery ceased to be a _significant_ type of commercial telephone service. Anyone know? I do know some railroads and street railways used it for internal communications well into the 1970s. They had modern-looking telephone sets--it looked like a 500 set except with a handcrank where the dial would go and the handset had a push-to-talk button. I don't think FIOS would work with local battery phones <g>. (Interesting on how we've gone full circle with a local battery). However, an enthusiastic salesperson just might tell you it would to make a sale, just as one told me DSL would work fine on a party line. Not long ago someone posted an ad from a company in India that made local battery telephone equipment. Unfortunately, it didn't have pricing or a US dealer. But there's a lot of old local battery phones available. ***** Moderator's Note ***** There are usually military-surplus "field" phones on Epay. My brother has a TA-312 model, for which he was able to obtain, believe it or not, an official government-issue touch tone pad, which fits over the top of the phone and has a plastic barrier to remind users not to crank the magneto. Go figure. Interestingly, when I just did a search for "field phone" there, the search produced listings for "Spirit of Saint Louis" "field phones" that look like children's toys but are claimed to be actual telephones: maybe something from the steampunk crowd, but YMMV. They're definitely not local-battery sets. Bill Horne Moderator
Date: Tue, 5 Apr 2011 10:52:07 -0400 From: Bill Horne <bill@horneQRM.net> To: firstname.lastname@example.org. Subject: Re: Does FiOS support rotary phones? Message-ID: <20110405145207.GA27851@telecom.csail.mit.edu> On Mon, Apr 04, 2011 at 06:38:16PM -0700, Moderator wrote: > There are usually military-surplus "field" phones on Epay. My brother > has a TA-312 model, for which he was able to obtain, believe it or > not, an official government-issue touch tone pad, which fits over the > top of the phone and has a plastic barrier to remind users not to > crank the magneto. Go figure. I had done a seach for "field phone" on Ebay, and I was about to redirect my browser to another page when I noticed an ebay listing for a ta-263/pt field phone. The listing says it comes with two linesman's whistles, and has a picture of them. Somebody, please make my day: tell me the frequencies of those whistles. Ghod, please, let one of them be 2600. I'll laugh for a whole day. Bill -- Bill Horne (Filter QRM for direct replies)
Date: Tue, 05 Apr 2011 00:27:37 -0400 From: Bob K <SPAMpot@rochester.rr.com> To: email@example.com. Subject: How long does it take to port a phone number? Message-ID: <4D9A9A39.firstname.lastname@example.org> I recently switched from the telephone company I had been using for a very long time (since before dial!) to the local cable company. Part of this changeover was the porting of my telephone number to the new provider. The release of the telephone number to the cable company took longer than I thought it should. To be specific, it was exactly 3 weeks. The telephone company said it always takes at least 7 to 10 days to port a number, but mine was longer since I had a freeze on the porting of the number. I was given a number to call to release that freeze when I placed the order for the new service, did that, and received a confirmation number. So, that should have lifted the freeze right then and there. I've tried to get an answer from the from the phone company on why so long, and they insist that length of time is necessary. I finally mentioned to them the FCC mandate they port a number within 1 business day, and their response to that was I should contact my congressman and have that changed! It is interesting the reason the FCC reduced that time to 1 business day was because carriers were using delaying tactics to discourage people changing carriers. I wouldn't think my telephone company would do anything like that, but then I could probably go on with other problems I have had with the change. Any thoughts? ....Bob ***** Moderator's Note ***** Bob, I think you should write your congressman! Tell him or her that the ILEC has been hiring untutored, arrogant, irresponsible salesdroids who think that not being caught in a lie is the same thing as telling the truth. Oh, and by the way, it took that long to port your number because they had to re-hire a retired CO guy as a consultant in order to figure out why your coils has SSP markings on them. ;-) Bill Horne Moderator
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