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Accounting and Routing in the Internet

Accounting Traffic in the Internet Today

[the full article can be seen at http://www.internetsociety.org/sites/default/files/BGP-for-regulators.pdf]

Business Model Changes

In the past, voice traffic was transported over a dedicated voice infrastructure, and the data network infrastructure was established in parallel so that voice and data traffic did not interfere with each other. Traditional voice accounting and performance functions are standardized within SS7 (Common Channel Signaling System No. 7), the global standard for telecommunications, defined by the ITU-T. The success of data networks led to the development of techniques to encapsulate voice traffic in IP packets, and thus Voice over IP (VoIP) was born. Read More »

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The Confessions of a Destruction Engineer

By Steven Shepard, Contributing Columnist

I sat on a plane the other day with Walter Axe, 99 years old and a happily-retired former telephone company engineer, on the way to see his newest great-granddaughter. During the three-hour flight, Walter regaled me with stories of his life in the Bell System.

He joined the company in 1931, fresh out of the Army. He dug ditches, put up poles (often using teams of horses), ran wire, worked in the switch room, and ultimately ended up in Illinois, where he found himself in, as he describes it, “the best job in the world.” Intrigued, I asked what the job was.

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Of Dogs and Toilets: The Law of Unintended Consequences

By Steven Shepard, Contributing Columnist

Wikipedia defines it as “A perverse effect contrary to what was originally intended.” It turns out that the law of unintended consequences is alive and well, and has been for years in the world of telecommunications.

Consider the story of the woman who called the telephone company back in the 1940s to report a problem. The problem, it seemed, was that every time the phone rang, her dog shrieked and barked and did the canine equivalent of St. Vitus’ dance.

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How Worldwide Growth of Telecom Services Creates Opportunities

It’s been over three months since we started our guest columnist series around the VNI Service Adoption research.  This research forecasts the end user adoption rate for 20+ telecommunication services such as SMS, mobile banking, online gaming, location-based services, and various types of video conferencing.

Our goal is to explore how the use of technology, and specifically telecom services, impact people’s lives and communities worldwide. Technology is an enabler, the cool gadgets and networks and shiny objects are not necessarily meaningful on their own. It takes intelligence and creativity of many people to bring it to fruition and provide a context which empowers individuals to dream of achieving bigger outcomes.

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Collaboration: Face-to-Face, Computer-to-Computer

By Shirley Bloomfield, Guest Columnist

In this day and age, there’s no reason that we can’t be face-to-face all of the time.  In the rural telecom business, we are all about using the newest technology to facilitate our meetings, discussions and outreach.  Video conferencing capabilities make it possible to communicate computer-to-computer bringing you face-to-face.  For our organization, what started as an experiment for communicating with members has blossomed into using video technology for so much more.

Our live Web events have become a popular way for us to reach members with critical policy information in a format that enables them to see us and ask questions.  We are able to actually participate in a dialogue using technology—in real time—with our member telecom companies all across the country.  It creates an important connection and delivers on our promise of innovating to support our mission.

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