32 Years of the Digest ... founded August 21, 1981
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The Telecom Digest for May 2, 2014
====== 32 years of TELECOM Digest -- Founded August 21, 1981 ======
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Date: Wed, 30 Apr 2014 22:20:10 -0700 From: Thad Floryan <email@example.com> To: firstname.lastname@example.org. Subject: Re: Mobile payment systems fail to take off with consumers Message-ID: <5361D98A.email@example.com> On 4/28/2014 9:02 PM, Monty Solomon wrote: > Mobile payment systems fail to take off with consumers > > By Brian X. Chen | NEW YORK TIMES > APRIL 28, 2014 > > SAN FRANCISCO - Millions of Americans use smartphones for tasks like > hailing a taxi or checking in for a flight. But for buying something > in a store? That mostly remains a tech entrepreneur's dream. It's also every burglar's and robber's wet dream given how many smartphones are being stolen each day with the number increasing apparently daily as I read in the Silicon Valley newspapers. > For years now, the promise of a mobile wallet - in which paying in > person can be as simple as hitting a button on a phone - has led to a > host of US startups trying to cash in. > [...] > The hurdles have left all the payment companies scrambling to find > the code for a profitable business model. And now, a feeling is > growing that mobile payments systems will not replace traditional > wallets, at least anytime soon. Which is probably for the best given the Target breach as a for-example. As I've posted here before about FAS: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Federation_of_American_Scientists they provide a "secrecy" mailing list and they also archive everything the US Government doesn't want us to know, such as the very informative Congressional Research Service's reports, military documents, and more, and they make such material freely available for download. The CRS' report on the Target breach as a FAQ is here at 500kB, 34 pages: http://www.fas.org/sgp/crs/misc/R43496.pdf The Secrecy News Blog is at: http://www.fas.org/blog/secrecy/ To SUBSCRIBE to Secrecy News, go to: http://blogs.fas.org/secrecy/subscribe/ Secrecy News is archived at: http://www.fas.org/sgp/news/secrecy/index.html And as I posted here about 3-1/2 years ago, Stanford experimented with a "mobile wallet"-like payment system described here (short article): http://www.stanforddaily.com/2010/10/11/bling-comes-to-campus/ Bling comes to campus By Matt Bettonville Monday, October 11th, 2010 AFAICT, the "Bling" is nonexistent today. Such systems seem inherently foolhardy and risky to me especially given how so many people are inattentive to what's happening around them as they use cellphones and text while walking and driving. Thad
Date: Thu, 01 May 2014 14:47:30 -0500 From: firstname.lastname@example.org (Hal Murray) To: email@example.com. Subject: Re: Teletypes and computers--50th anniversary of BASIC language Message-ID: <eeSdnYDAF6lPOf_OnZ2dnUVZ_j2dnZ2d@megapath.net> NPR had a story on it this morning. Including a sound byte of clattering teletypes. Dartmouth Celebrates 50 Years Of BASIC Computer Language http://www.npr.org/2014/05/01/308569793/dartmouth-celebrates-50-years-of-basic-computer-language Audio is 5 minutes. > ROCKMORE: It spread so quickly that the telephone company had > to start putting in new trunk lines in Hanover, so that everybody > who wanted to get on the computer could get on the computer. -- These are my opinions. I hate spam.
Date: Thu, 1 May 2014 11:02:25 -0700 (PDT) From: HAncock4 <firstname.lastname@example.org> To: email@example.com. Subject: Legacy "message unit" telephone service still available Message-ID: <firstname.lastname@example.org> To my surprise, Verizon in NJ still offers message rate service using message units. Message units date way back as a way to bulk bill customers for calls made. Panel and No. 1 crossbar switches had message registers for each line that would count up local calls. These would be recorded and posted to the customer's bill. In a few places, suburban calls (short-haul toll) were billed via message units as well. This directory listed some basic POTS telephone service rates. There may also be premium plans with unlimited long distance not shown. Some excerpts from the phone book: Subscriber Line charge $6.30/month. . Flat Rate service: $16.45/month. . Message Rate service, 75 units: $14.90/month. . Low use message rate, 20 units: $12.70/month. The local calling area has a radius of about 20 miles. Calls beyond that are regional toll calls, billed at 25c/minute daytime, 17c/minute evening-weekend, and 15c/minute late night. The regional calling areas are roughly 50 x 100 miles in size; beyond that requires a long distance carrier. Regional Toll calls also still have optional operator services. This include collect (reversal of charges), person-to-person (charges do not start until the desired person or extension is on the line), third number billing, and time and charges (immediate notification of length and cost of call). Operator handled calls have an additional charge of $3.00, except person-to-person which is a $4.50 additional charge. [Given that a call is at most 25c/minute, it would seem very unlikely to utilize operator services at these rates.] I've tried searching for legacy local calling plans in other cities but I've had no success. The carriers appear to only show their premium modern plans on the web. At one time local telephone directories were available in the library, but they generally do not publish phone books these days, and libraries don't carry them. Some years ago, I had the impression that certain cities, like New York and Chicago, offered only message rate local service, not flat rate. There may have been premium packages with large message unit allowances, but there was still always an upper limit. Would anyone know more about that? In the 1970s, Bell proposed Usage Sensitive Pricing, where local flat rate service would be replaced by message rate service, even in places that were only flat rate. Computerized AMA systems had been developed for step-by-step and they could accomodate message rate billing. [public replies, please] [moderator pro tem's note: Most of the old tariffs are still around, available if you ask for them. Verizon's tariff library is on line at the Verizon Global Wholesle web site. VZ-NJ's local calling areas are usually much less than 20 miles though, typically limited to contiguous rate centers.]
Date: Thu, 1 May 2014 20:51:50 +0000 (UTC) From: David Scheidt <email@example.com> To: firstname.lastname@example.org. Subject: Re: Legacy "message unit" telephone service still available Message-ID: <email@example.com> HAncock4 <firstname.lastname@example.org> wrote: :Some years ago, I had the impression that certain cities, like New York and :Chicago, offered only message rate local service, not flat rate. There may Chicago metro area used (I don't know the current status, I don't have a land line!) to have only metered calls. There were three zones, A, B, and C. A was closest, which was things within 7 miles (I think that's the right distance), wire center to wire center. Those calls were billed per call, not per minute. B and C were further out, and were billed at per minute rates, or maybe call set up + per minute rate. In the mid-ninties, which was the last time I had a chicago area land line, it cost much more for me to call a band C number than it did to make a long distance call, and only slightly less than using a cell phone. There were some premium plans that lowered that rate, but I don't remember the details. Distance was calculated on the historical wire center locations, not the actual location, so for instance, it was a zone B call for me to call my office from home. Both numbers had been consolidated on the the same swtich. -- sig 107
Date: Fri, 2 May 2014 01:31:29 +0000 (UTC) From: tonypo <email@example.com> To: firstname.lastname@example.org. Subject: Re: Teletypes and computers--50th anniversary of BASIC language Message-ID: <email@example.com> On Wed, 30 Apr 2014 11:26:56 -0700, HAncock4 wrote: > Dartmouth is celebrating the 50th anniversary of the development of the > BASIC computer language in 1964. > > Users typically accessed the computer through dial-up phone lines and > ASCII Teletype terminals; this was a pioneering application. > > A terminal room photo: > > https://www.flickr.com/photos/dartmouthflickr/13566198805/in/ > set-72157643275728555/ > > (I believe the units pictured are the heavy duty model 35; along with > the built-in dial-up modem.) In my case I cut my teeth on Digital Equipment Corp (DEC) LA34's and VT100's: http://terminals.classiccmp.org/wiki/images/thumb/0/09/DEC_LA34.jpg/270px- DEC_LA34.jpg http://vandermark.ch/pdp8/uploads/Hardware/Hardware.TTY/vt100.jpg That was my first year of college. The system was a PDP-11/70. I'd already gotten the chance to play around with a PDP-11/34 and knew all the commands for it. But then my next years courses had me taking PL/I and that was batch mode on punch cards. How I hated that.
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