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Tom Keating
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June 2004

You are browsing the archive for June 2004.

Vonage gets the hammer

June 29, 2004

Some interested news today. Empirix has announced that Vonage is going to use its Hammer line of VoIP testing tools to stress test their equipment. I'm a huge fan of Empirix's testing tools. We have had a Hammer in TMC Labs for several years now for testing TDM and VoIP products.

Windows CE lab

June 28, 2004

Computer Telephony without Telephony Boards

June 25, 2004

I just read a news release from Uniqall that discusses Moore's law and the affect that VoIP has had on eliminating the need for hardware telephony boards (i.e. Dialogic/Intel) and instead using software-based host media processors for all of the media processing.

This is similar to Intel's NetStructure Host Media Processing (HMP) which is also software-based and uses the Pentium chip for processing. Anything to make you upgrade to the latest and greatest Pentium, right?

Skype goes Linux

June 25, 2004

1.21 gigawatts? 1.21 gigawatts? Great Scott!

June 25, 2004

The Ghost in the Machine...

June 25, 2004

Do you hear your PC dialing out when you're not even trying to connect to the Net? Do you hear mysterious touch tone digits being dialed at 2 in the morning? Are you wondering perhaps if there is a ghost in your machine? (btw, if interested in a thought-provoking book, check out 'The Ghost in the Machine')

Or perhaps when you try to connect to the Internet over your dial-up modem, it won't connect for some reason?

Bob Bemer, a computer legend dies

June 24, 2004

Ever since 6th grade I have been fascinated with computers. One of the first things I learned was the ASCII chart (American Standard Code for Information Interchange). I knew that the alphabet started with decimal 65 (letter 'A') and ended with decimal 90 (letter 'Z').

Special characters such as a space was 32 and a carriage return was 13.

Free city-wide WiFi for Spokane

June 24, 2004

Comdex cancels show!

June 23, 2004

Wow, I'm in utter shock that Comdex has cancelled their Fall Las Vegas show. I've been to that show many times over the years. Sure it has had its up and downs, especially with the .com bubble burst, but it is still considerd "the IT show" to attend for staying informed on general IT-related stuff.

You can check out their news release on Comdex's web site, which simply calls it a "postponement" by stating "MediaLive International, Inc. today announced that COMDEX® Las Vegas 2004 has been postponed in order to reshape the event with the cooperation of information technology (IT) industry leaders.

Spam sending PCs kicked offline

June 23, 2004

Almost nobody hates spam more than I do. I have like four layers of anti-spam protection running on my PC, including RBL (realtime black lists), iHateSpam, CloudMark, and an anti-spam software installed on our Exchange Server.

I wrote a column about my "spam rage" recently, which you can check out here.

Recently, major ISPs have announced plans to TURN OFF Internet access to any zombie PCs sending out spam.

Yahoo Messenger adds new VoIP capabilities

June 22, 2004

Anyone that currently uses Yahoo! Messenger knows it already has a "push to talk" capability that lets you talk PC-to-PC to someone on your buddy list.

Well, at SuperComm 2004, Yahoo announced it would be supporting "click to call" over the PSTN for making PC-to-phone calls. Two possible PSTN providers include SBC Communications and Verizon Communications, which utilize Sylantro's VoIP infrastructure that Yahoo also uses.

With Yahoo's strong presence in the IM space, seeing them getting into VoIP with PSTN access capabilities will surely cause some heads to turn, especially Microsoft (Messenger) and AOL (Instant Messenger).

Indoor 3G wireless from LGC Wireless

June 21, 2004

Xbox Live Brings VoIP to the Masses

June 18, 2004

There have been quite a few news stories on Microsoft's XBOX Live service doing fairly well.

Microsoft has more than 750,000 customers paying an average of $50 a year to access Xbox Live and logging approximately 500,000 hours of online game play each day. Not too shabby to think of 500,000 VoIP hours or 30,000,000 VoIP minutes per day!

I should mention that I have an Xbox connected to my 65" Mitsubishi TV set with full Dolby/DTS 7.1 surround sound and a subwoofer that makes the walls shake when I blow something up in a game...

Invores Systems integrates with Asterisk open source IP-PBX

June 17, 2004

Invores Systems has a SIP-based VoIP VoiceXML gateway platform called EXpress2.0™ that they have integrated with Asterisk's open source IP-PBX.

Asterisk is certainly making waves in the VoIP space due to the fact that it is open source and I welcome third-parties offering solutions to Asterisk's platform.

I have no doubt that the old days of proprietary PBXs and complex integration (ala CTI) are nearly gone.

Standards in the PBX/telecom world are here to stay - they finally caught up with the data/network world.

SIPphone vs. Skype

June 11, 2004

Review: SIPphone

I'm a fan of ExtremeTech's website - they're got some great artiles and reviews - but they're latest comparison review of Skype vs. SIPphone leaves a lot to be desired.

The reviews of both Skype and SIPphone were OK, but they made a major mistake by stating on this link, "You can't use the SIPphone to call a regular landline or cell phone, you can only call other SIPphones."

This isn't true, as the SIPphone CAN dial landline (PSTN) numbers including cell phones. You just have to buy prepaid "SIP minutes" from the SIPphone website.

Skype's Proprietary gamble...

June 2, 2004

Stuart Henshall has an interesting take on Skype's move to allow PSTN dialing while sticking with a proprietary protocol over using SIP. Check it out:
Skype Softphones?" href="">Unbound Spiral: 5 Million Skype Softphones?

Also, another blog from Alec Saunders has an interesting take on Skype and their use of a proprietary protocol. Here's Alec's blog entry:

"Stuart Henshall describes the impact of the PSTN interconnect that Niklas Zennstrom has been talking about. The impact is that there are suddenly 5 million softphone users who are dialing their friends at calling card rates, and urging them to get on Skype.

Voiceglo Linux-based Telephone using a Wi-Fi Router

June 2, 2004

I thought this bit of VoIP news was quite interesting:
Voiceglo Introduces Linux-based Telephone in a Wireless Wi-Fi Router

Basically, Voiceglo Internet PBX integrates with any Wi-Fi (wireless fidelity) router and can be used with cordless phone systems, analog phone systems, digital phone systems and Wi-Fi- capable PC’s.

If I understand this product correctly, it sounds like this product essentially is IP-Centrex for the small business/SOHO environment. You hook up one of these boxes to your WiFi connection and then you get up 2 – 10 lines in small homes and businesses and up to 254 lines (per Wi-Fi router) in larger scale PBX deployments. Voiceglo acts as the ITSP providing the termination to PSTN phone numbers and charging just $24.99 per month for unlimited calling in the United States and Canada.

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