The news as of the first coffee this morning, and the music is Stan Kenton's 1945 recording of "Artistry in Rhythm:"
Had us a nice American music festival yesterday here in Istanbul, in honor of the Fourth, started out with Aaron Copland's Appalachian Spring, moving on to Miles Davis' Kind Of Blue, a selection of '30s and '40s swing and some Bob Dylan. Say whatever you want about American politics or this and that, but we're the greatest country ever for our music alone.
Take the past hundred years. We have, just for starters, Duke Ellington, Elvis Presley, B.B. King, Hank Williams, Frank Sinatra, Bob Dylan, Billie Holiday, Johnny Cash, Aaron Copland, Bill Monroe, Leonard Bernstein, Chuck Berry, Ella Fitzgerald, The Carter Family, Lerner and Lowe, Aretha Franklin, Cole Porter, John Coltrane, Miles Davis, Benny Goodman, John Cage, Louis Armstrong, Muddy Waters, Mahalia Jackson, Philip Glass, Robert Johnson, Bing Crosby, James Brown, Charlie Parker, Rodgers and Hart and Hammerstein, Woody Guthrie, Jerome Kern, The Ramones, Kronos Quartet, Bessie Smith, Jimi Hendrix, Tommy Dorsey, The Beach Boys… plus it's worth noting that Keith Richards lives in Connecticut. And you have… who, exactly?
Oki Electric Industry Co., Ltd. and DIS Solution Co., Ltd. have announced that Intelligence, a Japanese recruitment agency, has selected Oki's CTI server, CTstage 4i for .NET, for their IP contact center system.
The system will start with 125 seats, with plans to increase that number according to the business expansion. DIS Solution, a strategic IT partner of Intelligence, was in charge of system integration.
Since 2003, Intelligence has been using a PBX-based contact center system with 50 seats, the main function of which was to respond to inquiries from job seekers and register data for temporary staff. As the business grew, Oki officials say, the contact center was expanded to 100 seats and "Intelligence looked into improving the system efficiency so it could expand the scale further and provide high-level functions such as counseling services for job seekers."
"We are pleased with Oki's CTstage 4i-based IP contact center system. We believe it can improve our business efficiency at our contact centers, which is an important channel for maintaining customer contact," said Hiromu Nishida, Manager of Contact Center, Corporate Support Division at Intelligence.
One of the reasons Intelligence decided on Oki's system, Nishida said, was simply because nothing succeeds like success: They have the No.1 market share in Japan. "The system also will enable us to connect with other Windows-based systems and easily develop a contact center system," he added.
The system manages the operators' workload depending on traffic density by collecting and analyzing various incoming call logs. An efficient inquiry service can be achieved by using the computer and telephony in an integrated system, which enables operators to talk on the phone while displaying callers' information on their PCs.
While the previous contact center system was based on telephone lines, Oki's system is based on an IP network that lets Intelligence flexibly allocate people and equipment, resulting in faster response to various situations.
Founded in 1881, Oki Electric Industry Co., Ltd. is Japan's first telecommunications manufacturer.
I bet America's second tier of musical talent -- e.g. Hilary Hahn, Patsy Cline, Tom Waits, Van Cliburn, Howlin' Wolf, Dizzy Gillespie, Janis Joplin, Earl Scruggs, George Gershwin, Lang Lang, NWA, Sarah Vaughan, Stephen Sondheim, Lou Reed, Al Dimeola, Lionel Hampton, John Williams, Count Basie, Jimmie Rogers, Bill Evans, Sam Cooke, Aerosmith, Thelonious Monk, Willie Nelson, Louis Jordan, Hair, Elmore James, John Lee Hooker, Stevie Wonder, Oscar Peterson, Steve Reich, The Supremes, Scott Joplin, the Stanley Brothers, John Adams, The Grateful Dead, Bix Beiderbecke, W.C. Handy, Gene Krupa, Otis Redding, Stanley Clarke, Frank Zappa, Charles Mingus, Samuel Barber, Phil Spector, Art Tatum, Nirvana, Eminem, Carol Kaye, et al -- is still better than your first tier. Plus it's worth noting that Itzhak Perlman lives in New York.
Face to face meetings no longer dominate our working lives and have been replaced by virtual meetings in companies across Britain, according to independent research amongst 3,000 IT managers conducted by Vanson Bourne, commissioned by storage, voice and networking distributor, Zycko.
69% of respondents across all industries "frequently" use either voice or video conferencing in their work. The financial services sector is the most frequent user (68%), however, 65% of IT managers in manufacturing and 56% working in retail, distribution and transport industries also claim to frequently use the technology.
Only 9% of companies questioned have never attended a virtual meeting.
"UK business executives are fed up of wasting money and time travelling to face to face meetings. Advances in technology, such as the advent of virtual whiteboards and improved call quality have encouraged companies across the UK to adopt virtual meetings. Businesses are benefiting from faster decision making, greater collaboration with global colleagues, increased employee productivity, money savings, as well as the knowledge they are reducing the environmental impact of carbon emissions through air travel," commented Phil Marshman, director of VoIP at Zycko.
The survey revealed that 57% of IT managers are reviewing their voice and data requirements in 2006 and that 73% would embrace IP convergence to reduce business operational costs.
You know, I'd put America's third tier of musical talent up against your first tier, although here's where Great Britain might be able to start making an argument -- Carole King, Chicago, John Corigliano, Paul Simon, Garth Brooks, James Taylor, Dave Brubeck, Michael Jackson, Cab Calloway, Run-DMC, Leonard Slatkin, Taj Mahal, Dick Clark (yeah that's right, I said Dick Clark, you got a problem with that you don't know a whole lot), The Neville Brothers, Tony Bennett, the Allman Brothers, Wynton Marsalis, Marvin Gaye, Lorin Maazel, Bruce Springsteen, The Producers, George Crumb, Mose Allison, John Prine, Les Paul, Buddy Rich, R.E.M., Willie Dixon, Charles Ives, Ned Rorem, Anita Baker (such a voice), Elmer Bernstein, Rent, Little Richard, Tod Machover, Quincy Jones, Loretta Lynn, The Eagles, Ma Rainey, Prince, Buck Owens… plus it's worth noting that Johnny Hallyday is French.
Broadband Network Systems Ltd, together with partner PTC Ltd, has secured a deal to provide H.264 SD live encoders and decoders to Vietnam to enable the first broadcast quality video transportation in the country.
The Envivio H.264 SD live encoders and decoders will be used for the commercial launch of broadcast quality video transport from Hanoi to Ho Chi Minh City by an undisclosed top Vietnamese telco.
"As the fastest growing economy in Asia after China, Vietnam is rapidly emerging as a regional economic power with consumer entertainment needs to match," said Jeffrey Soong, CEO of Hong Kong based BNS, who called offering H.264 broadcast quality video transport a "significant milestone in transforming Vietnam's entertainment landscape."
Hell, Wayne Newton'd probably be on the stamps in your country.
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