Recently, I ran into Chris Botting at an event where everyone was telling me about how there is a move from hardware to software and the trend is revolutionary. I told Chris, that he is responsible for this revolution yet most people aren’t aware of why.
You see Chris founded a company called PakNetX back in the late nineties and when he came to my office two decades ago, he showed me a CD which contained an ACD. Until that point, an ACD or automatic call distributor was a huge, hulking piece of iron which allowed you to press a number on your phone in order to connect with the right department (1 for accounting, 2 for sales, etc.). Actually a few years earlier thanks to the PC operating systems opening up and CTI integration, we did start to the the ACD migrate to computer servers.
By the way, the reason he used a CD and not the internet is because at the time, few people had the bandwidth to download the software. Software delivery over the internet was just beginning to happen.
The point is, Chris was two decades ahead of his time. We now have NFV – where software replaces huge hulking central office machines.
PakNetX was sold to Aspect and Chris eventually went to work for Cisco. You can follow him here. He is a true visionary and deserves a lot of credit for being two decades ahead of where the market is heading today.
Here is a review our in-house TMC Labs did of his product in 1998. How time flies!