First Coffee Extra Special Edition

David Sims : First Coffee
David Sims
| CRM, ERP, Contact Center, Turkish Coffee and Astroichthiology:

First Coffee Extra Special Edition

By David Sims

Yes, that’s right campers, an Extra Special edition of First CoffeeSM, because… well, didja hear the one about the guy who wasn’t allowed to board an American Airlines flight from San Francisco to New York WHICH WAS NOT FULL, so he had to… oh, you have?

The music is the greatest rock album of all time, The Rolling Stones’ Exile On Main Street, which sounds like a runaway freight train joyriding between Chicago and New Orleans at night with Hank Williams, Keith Richards and Robert Johnson passing a whiskey bottle around the locomotive as the ghosts of Mississippi Delta blues guitarists and white Southern Baptist gospel shouters trade off at the throttle.

“What? How can that clown say…” Okay okay, insert any caveat or disclaimer you want here. The Beatles’ Sgt. Pepper’s Lonely Hearts Club Band is much more important and influential (sitars, anyone?). No album in rock can touch Dylan’s Blood On the Tracks for songwriting. The Beach Boys’ Pet Sounds is the only note-for-note perfect rock album. The Clash’s London Calling set the new rules. Rod Stewart’s Every Picture Tells A Story is the most honest rock record ever made.

Yeah, yeah, yeah. When Charlie Watts kicks in his killer snare about the fifth measure of “Rocks Off” all argument tumbles away like drunken bums off a speeding freight train.

Exile On Main Street is British lovers of American music sloshing around the back roads of America buying drinks for every backwoods shouter and picker they see. It’s a freeway crash of rock, country, blues and gospel at the Wild Turkey distillery with a whiskey bottle smashed over a guitar amp turned up to eleven.

It’s proof that Americans need outsiders to interpret our own musical heritage, to help us stop treating it as museum pieces and Ken Burns documentaries but more like guys you’d like to have a drink and jam with at the after-hours club out Route 27. It’s being taken to see what Mississippi Delta Sunday morning gospel musicians do in the juke joints on Saturday nights. It’s the song of the sinner who’d want to be a saint if only the music were better, the girls prettier and the communion wine stronger. It’s the old, weird America, a tanker-truckload of the Rev. Billy Joe’s Kentucky Rock And Roll Gospel Whiskey.

But mostly, it’s kids in Kalamazoo and Connecticut, California and Kokomo cutting the cellophane and realizing an hour later that you don’t have to be the most talented, the most professional, the most technically adept, the most showy or the most trendy to rip true joy out of this life, that the secret is just to do what you love doing because that’s what you do, thrash away and not worry as long as you’re sure you had fun doing it.

And that, my friends, is what rock’n’roll is all about.

By the way, anyone who wants a trenchant, well-informed and well-written – ah ye stars, how infrequently do those two go together – opinion on the Siebel/Oracle merger and the general state of Big Software need look no further than new SoundBite veep Chris Selland’s excellent blog entry. First CoffeeSM hopes his daughter Zelda is as cute as Chris’s, and if she ends up looking more like her mother than her father she has a decent shot at Terminal Cutehood.

You know, actually, First CoffeeSM hopes Zelda grows up looking like the back side of an Iowa barn after a mud storm, let Chris deal with (wait until you see the picture) what will obviously be a gorgeous 16-year old daughter. Fathers of attractive teenage girls understand.

Legerity, Inc. has announced its new VeriVoice Test Suite software for the VE880 VoicePort Series of devices.

In combination with the VE880 VoicePort products, Legerity’s new VeriVoice Test Suite – a subscriber line test software package for VoIP equipment – is a product for VoIP line test and self test, which company officials claim “minimizes the cost of ownership for service providers.”

Since, as company officials point out, “VoIP service providers are expected to provide traditional carrier class voice quality and reliability to consumer equipment in a wide geographical distribution,” Legerity is marketing the automated, remote testing capability of the VeriVoice Test Suite as eliminating “the need for costly truck rolls, which minimizes maintenance costs, improves reliability of service, and decreases the mean time to repairs.”

The VeriVoice Test Suite software currently consists of two distinct test packages corresponding to two different levels of coverage. The first test package consists of outward looking line tests, while the second test package consists of both outward looking line tests and inward looking self tests. The outward looking tests, or drop tests, are intended to check the customer equipment and copper pair leading to it while the inward looking self tests check the VoIP equipment itself.

Integrated circuit vendor Infineon Technologies AG has announced that its revenues in VoIP Customer Premises Equipment products grew at the rate of 300 percent from 2003 to 2004, which is, admittedly, much higher than the 70.2 percent average for the total market of $102 million.

Okay, so that’s about what a .293 career hitter signs for, still, it’s a growing market.

The worldwide number of residential VoIP users is expected to be approximately 5 million in 2004 and to increase to 200 million subscribers in 2010, Infineon claims in the most optimistic claim First CoffeeSM’s seen. Experienced in Plain Old Telephone System applications, Infineon ranked as the world’s fifth largest supplier of VoIP ICs in 2004, up from number 10 position in the previous year.

Industry observer Jennifer Hagendorf Follett is reporting that today Microsoft said it is jumping into the hosted VoIP arena through a new partnership with Qwest Communications International that “will create a suite of services aimed at the SMB market.”

She says Avaya is teaming with Sprint to develop and deliver hosted VoIP services to North American businesses, while “AOL said it is launching VoIP services for consumers.”

Microsoft’s deal will combine their Solution for Enhanced VoIP Services with Qwest’s OneFlex VoIP services “to create a bundle of VoIP, e-mail, Internet access, collaboration, presence, IM and desktop services,” the companies said.

Follett cites Michael O’Hara, general manager of service provider business at Microsoft who says the two companies are now “working to develop a channel strategy and training efforts around the service suite, which is expected to debut in early 2006.”

In related news, AOL is readying the launch of its consumer-focused TotalTalk VoIP services on October 4.

This is all over everywhere right now, First CoffeeSM saw it from Peter Sayer that Opera Software is finally giving away a genuinely free PC version of its Web browser, Opera, without any licensing fee or even forcing users to watch banner ads.

It’s now as free as Mozilla Firefox, First CoffeeSM’s preferred browser. Thank you, Michelle, for turning First CoffeeSM on to that.

So no more paying $39 to not have to watch the ads, although the premium support still does cost $35 a year. Maybe now Opera will increase on that one percent of the PC market they command, huh?

Not to poke fun, since the Norwegian-made Opera is great as a mobile browser. It’s used by Nokia and Motorola, as well as several Japanese and Chinese phones. It might well be the most widely-used mobile browser in existence.

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