30 Years of the Digest ... founded August 21, 1981
The Telecom Digest for October 26, 2011
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Date: Tue, 25 Oct 2011 09:02:16 -0400 From: Monty Solomon <email@example.com> To: firstname.lastname@example.org. Subject: Using Credit Cards to Target Web Ads Message-ID: <email@example.com> Using Credit Cards to Target Web Ads By EMILY STEEL OCTOBER 25, 2011 The two largest credit-card networks, Visa Inc. and MasterCard Inc., are pushing into a new business: using what they know about people's credit-card purchases for targeting them with ads online. Their plans, if implemented, would represent not only a technological feat-tying people's Internet lives with shopping activities-but also an erosion of the idea of anonymity on the Web. It's an effort by the two companies to profit by selling access to the insights they gather about people with every credit-card transaction. The technology is still evolving. According to ad executives briefed on some of the ideas, a holy grail would be to show, for instance, a weight-loss ad to a person who just swiped their card at a fast-food chain-then track whether that person bought the advertised products. Currently, Web ads generally are based on a person's online behavior but not information tied to his or her identity or activities in the brick-and-mortar world. ... http://online.wsj.com/article/SB10001424052970204002304576627030651339352.html MasterCard's Talks with Madison Avenue http://blogs.wsj.com/digits/2011/10/24/mastercards-talks-with-madison-avenue/ Visa's Blueprint for Targeted Advertising http://blogs.wsj.com/digits/2011/10/24/visas-blueprint-for-targeted-advertising/ Excerpts from the MasterCard Documents http://blogs.wsj.com/digits/2011/10/24/excerpts-from-the-mastercard-documents/ ***** Moderator's Note ***** Does this mean that if I buy dinner at Runway 69 in New York, the airline will offer to have a naked flight attendent serve me on the way home, or just that I'll be offered a different movie? Bill Horne Moderator
Date: Tue, 25 Oct 2011 17:40:20 +1100 From: David Clayton <firstname.lastname@example.org> To: email@example.com. Subject: Re: Cell Phone/Cancer Message-ID: <firstname.lastname@example.org> On Mon, 24 Oct 2011 16:03:32 -0700, Thad Floryan wrote: > On 10/23/2011 10:49 PM, David Clayton wrote: >> On Sun, 23 Oct 2011 11:52:27 -0400, Randall Webmail wrote: >>> [...] >>> >>> http://tinyurl.com/3b4hp7b >>> (Link is to Fortune magazine article). >> >> Interesting graph, I'd like to see the points on the time scale when >> cell phone users began migrating from old analogue services to digital >> ones, especially since digital systems are supposed to use less power >> generally as well as using more base stations as the networks were >> rolled out (which means less Tx power because of the closer base >> stations). >> >> Perhaps "cell phone use has skyrocketed over the last twenty years", but >> overall radiation exposure may well have not tracked on the same curve >> to to these other factors. >> >> The "jury" may well and truly still be out on this issue. > > FWIW, GSM cellphones can transmit using up to 2+ Watts (33 dBm) and as > high as 8 Watts (39 dBm) per: > > > http://www.analogzone.com/hft_1206.pdf > > > which is a document from Agilent Technologies (formerly H-P) describing > how to control transmit power levels in a cellphone. > > Think how hot a 4 Watt nightlight feels to the touch. :-) > Yeah, but the point is that the overall average power by all these users will be significantly reduced by a good tower network - and until we know all of these factors then it is very tough to compare TX levels now to ones 10 or 20 years ago even in the same locations. Cell phone use and TX power/radiation absorption levels right now may (or may not) be significantly different to times past and probably times to come, so it may well be extremely difficult to use the past to make future projections of risk - the technology just changes too much. The nature of a GSM "pulse" of 8W peak may be significantly different to an older analogue phone transmitting basically continuously at a different power level. I don't know if all of these studies take these things into account. I do wonder how much the "experts" in human physiology that create these reports are also expert in the changing nature of the radiation sources they are studying? > What was surprising for me to learn just now is the 35 km coverage radius > of GSM cellphones; I suspect that's where the higher transmit power levels > come into play. That distance limit is due to the speed of light, where the return signal only has a certain period to get back to the tower to remain in the TDM slot. Some GSM proposals have doubled that range by using the next slot as well. -- Regards, David. David Clayton Melbourne, Victoria, Australia. Knowledge is a measure of how many answers you have, intelligence is a measure of how many questions you have.
Date: Tue, 25 Oct 2011 09:02:16 -0400 From: Monty Solomon <email@example.com> To: firstname.lastname@example.org. Subject: Apple's Lower Prices Are All Part of the Plan Message-ID: <email@example.com> Apple's Lower Prices Are All Part of the Plan By NICK WINGFIELD October 23, 2011 Something unexpected has happened at Apple, once known as the tech industry's high-price leader. Over the last several years it began beating rivals on price. People who wanted the latest Apple smartphone, the iPhone 4S, were able to get one the day it went on sale if they were willing to wait in a line, spend at least $199 and commit to a two-year wireless service contract with a carrier. Or they could have skipped the lines and bought one of the latest iPhone rivals from an Apple competitor, as long as they were willing to dig deeper into their wallets. For $300 and a two-year contract, gadget lovers could have picked up Motorola's Droid Bionic from Verizon Wireless, or they could bought the $230 Samsung Galaxy SII and $260 HTC Amaze 4G, both from T-Mobile, under the same terms. Apple's new pricing strategy is a big change from the 1990s, when consumers regarded Apple as a producer of overpriced tech baubles, unable to compete effectively with its Macintosh family of computers against the far cheaper Windows PCs. But more recently, it began using its growing manufacturing scale and logistics prowess to deliver Apple products at far more aggressive prices, which in turn gave it more power to influence pricing industrywide. ... http://www.nytimes.com/2011/10/24/technology/apples-lower-prices-are-all-part-of-the-plan.html
Date: Tue, 25 Oct 2011 17:43:40 +1100 From: David Clayton <firstname.lastname@example.org> To: email@example.com. Subject: Re: Telegraph turns 150 Message-ID: <firstname.lastname@example.org> On Mon, 24 Oct 2011 08:02:47 -0700, HAncock4 wrote: > LOS ANGELES - Long before there was an Internet or an iPad, before people > were social networking and instant messaging, Americans had already gotten > wired. > > Monday marks the 150th anniversary of the completion of the > transcontinental telegraph. From sea to sea, it electronically knitted > together a nation that was simultaneously tearing itself apart, North and > South, in the Civil War. > > > http://www.msnbc.msn.com/id/45007641/ns/technology_and_science-tech_and_gadgets/ > By coincidence I am just about to finish watching the DVDs of that magnificent Ken Burns documentary of the Civil War, and the telegraph system was mentioned in the closing episodes of 1865. That war certainly pushed a lot of technological innovation of that age. -- Regards, David. David Clayton Melbourne, Victoria, Australia. Knowledge is a measure of how many answers you have, intelligence is a measure of how many questions you have. ***** Moderator's Note ***** I've written about this subject before, but it bears repeating: the greatest innovations that resulted from the telegraph were not technical, but social. The ability to communicate by wire gave rise to the commercial credit industry, to the modern system of livestock and produce sales, and to meteorology as we know it today. The telephone succeeded so well because telegraph-based commerce had laid the groundwork for all the services that telephone users could take advantage of. FWIW, I think Edison chose to use 110 Volts for the commercial power network in the U.S. because he had been a telegrapher, and telegraph lines were powered by 110 volt battery plants. Bill Horne Moderator
Date: Tue, 25 Oct 2011 07:37:41 -0700 (PDT) From: Wes Leatherock <email@example.com> To: firstname.lastname@example.org. Subject: Edison's powrer network (Was Re: Telegraph turns 150 Message-ID: <1319553461.472.YahooMailClassic@web111724.mail.gq1.yahoo.com> --- On Tue, 10/25/11, Telecom Digest Moderator wrote: > FWIW, I think Edison chose to use 110 Volts for the commercial power > network in the U.S. because he had been a telegrapher, and telegraph > lines were powered by 110 volt battery plants. With all due respect, I don't think Edison envisioned a commercial power network, because it could not be achieved with his direct current system. Nikola Tesla laid the groundwork for long distance power transmission by conceiving alternating current, especially polyphase A.C. which became the basis for a national power network, along with many other advantages. Wes Leatherock email@example.com firstname.lastname@example.org ***** Moderator's Note ***** I meant "system", but it was a network in the sense that any commercial company needs to have a combination of people, plan, and ability that makes it into a "network" of commercial interests. I know that Edison didn't envision a power grid: he once said that the only way to move electricity from city to city was to charge batteries and load them onto railroad flatcars. My point was that he used the same voltage he was familiar with from his days as a telegrapher, and we in the U.S. are still using it, although it has been converted to AC. Bill Horne Moderator
Date: Tue, 25 Oct 2011 07:24:56 -0700 (PDT) From: Wes Leatherock <email@example.com> To: firstname.lastname@example.org. Subject: Re: Telegraph turns 150 Message-ID: <1319552696.71867.YahooMailClassic@web111718.mail.gq1.yahoo.com> --- On Tue, 10/25/11, David Clayton <email@example.com> wrote: > By coincidence I am just about to finish watching the DVDs of that > magnificent Ken Burns documentary of the Civil War, and the > telegraph system was mentioned in the closing episodes of 1865. > > That war certainly pushed a lot of technological innovation of that > age. Indeed it did. For the first time, a war was conducted almost in real time with direction from the command in Washington. Troops were moved around in response to information from the field, and in conjunction with railroads to move those troops it had great effect on the outcome of many battles, and of the war. Wes Leatherock firstname.lastname@example.org email@example.com
Date: Tue, 25 Oct 2011 03:32:02 -0500 From: firstname.lastname@example.org (Rob Warnock) To: email@example.com. Subject: Re: Cell Phone/Cancer Message-ID: <Yf2dnWanu6uf6TvTnZ2dnUVZ_rWdnZ2d@speakeasy.net> Thad Floryan <firstname.lastname@example.org> wrote: +--------------- | FWIW, GSM cellphones can transmit using up to 2+ Watts (33 dBm) | and as high as 8 Watts (39 dBm) per: | | http://www.analogzone.com/hft_1206.pdf | +--------------- Remember that a standard-rate GSM voice call only transmits for one 576.9 [micro-second] slot out of the eight in a 4.615 [milli-second] frame, which is a duty cycle of only 12.5%. [Actually, due to the allowed switch-on/switch-off times, as noted in Figure 1 of the document you reference, the phone might transmit at (nearly) full power for up to 578.8 [micro-seconds]/frame, for an effective duty cycle of 12.54%, but now we're just quibbling.] So the heating effect is only one-eighth of 2 (or 8, for 850/900 MHz) Watts, namely, only 0.25 (or 1.0) W. For half-rate GSM voice calls [which only use one slot every other frame], the heating effect would be smaller by another factor of two, that is, only 0.125 W (or 0.5 W). The phone companies use half-rate whenever they can get awy with it, since it doubles the number of calls they can handle in a given channel. Furthermore, the cell phone's output amplifier is controlled down to the lowest power which gives good signal-to-noise at the receiving cell tower [but not less than +5 dBm or 3 mW], so most of the time the heating effect is much smaller still. And that doesn't even account for the fact that only a small fraction of the power transmitted from your phone goes into your head, else you wouldn't be able to talk to the other end!! Most of it needs to be radiated out into the world! So there's another factor of *at least* 2 -- and probably 4-10 -- reduction in the heating effect. In short, while knowing what the absolute worst-case peak instantaneous transmit power your phone emits is good to know, by itself it gives an unrealistically exaggerated impression of the energy that will be absorbed by the body. -Rob +--------------------------------------------------------------+ Rob Warnock <email@example.com> 627 26th Avenue http://rpw3.org/ San Mateo, CA 94403
Date: Tue, 25 Oct 2011 12:38:16 -0400 From: Curt Bramblett <CurtBramblett@cfl.rr.com> To: firstname.lastname@example.org. Subject: dugout phones--the plot thickens Message-ID: <email@example.com> Ironically, it was the dugout phone connection that got the credit for Texas' win last night: http://www.nytimes.com/2011/10/25/sports/baseball/napoli-moves-rangers-one-step-closer.html?_r=1&ref=sports Seems that the bullpen did not hear St. Louis' manager's call for another pitcher. Twice! So how hard is it to get phones that can be heard above the noise?
Date: Tue, 25 Oct 2011 13:46:21 -0700 (PDT) From: HAncock4 <firstname.lastname@example.org> To: email@example.com. Subject: Re: dugout telephones Message-ID: <firstname.lastname@example.org> On Oct 24, 10:25 am, Curt Bramblett <CurtBramblett.remove-t...@and- this-too.cfl.rr.com> wrote: > Can someone here add some insight to this: >"Eric Gagne, then the closer for the Los Angeles Dodgers, made the >dugout phone at Pac Bell Park in San Francisco an outlet for his >frustrations, snapping the cord in half while swiping at the receiver >and in the process earning himself a $500 repair bill from the Giants." How does a cut cord and broken handset cost $500 to repair? Anyway, I would think such dugout phones would be part of the stadium's PBX, with a restriction against making outside calls (a standard long time PBX feature). I've seen pictures of dugouts and there were often two wall phones. Phone service would be necessary not only to call the bullpen, but also stadium security, stadium management offices, team management offices, the locker room, PA announcer, and first-aid. (Actually, I would think such phones should have outside capability in case of an emergency; I'm surprised league regulations would prohibit it.) Because of noise, it may be helpful to have volume control handsets. These have been available since the 1950s and easily available today. The standard telephone set ringer is pretty loud on its highest setting, but they also make extra loud auxillary ringers (gas stations and school gyms used to have them). "While landlines in homes collect dust and serve increasingly decorative functions, the attitude among baseball clubs is a familiar one in a sport tied tightly to old-fashioned ways: why change what works? " While wireless has increased its presence, I strongly doubt there would be enough wireless bandwidth to support every household if all homeowners dumped their landlines all at once. Likewise for the business world. Also, maybe the future will be different, but at this writing the conversation reliability and quality on a wired landline phone, even on an older Western Electric "G" handset, is far superior than that of wireless.
Date: Tue, 25 Oct 2011 18:35:48 -0400 From: Bill Horne <bill@horneQRM.net> To: email@example.com. Subject: The Lightsquared debate continues - unabated Message-ID: <CAFY5RQK4Qs4oKZjDs-Fi0PzKhyp1yuoEQdn4P-qoAcYt0ygcMw@mail.gmail.com> The blogspot "The Hill" has some more debate about Lightsquared Corp's plan to coexist with the GPS system: http://thehill.com/blogs/congress-blog/technology/189041-lightsquared-harms-gps The author might not be a disinterested party, as the comments mention, but I'm curious what others think. Bill Horne (Filter QRM from my email to write to me directly)
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