Ain't Progress Wunnerful?

Ain't Progress Wunnerful?

Post by Jim Gottli » Tue, 03 Apr 1990 17:53:54




Quote:>     In addition to all the changeover annoyance, the new system has a
>real human-factors botch: no tones are generated at the phone when
>dialing.  Tones are generated after the call connects, but only for a
>fixed, short duration, so any remote device that needs long tones
>(like many answering machines) is difficult or impossible to access.
>How could Northern Telecom let such a stupid mistake out the door?

Northern Telecom isn't the only one guilty.  It's one of my main
complaints about modern phone systems (my other is that they normally
do not generate a CPC [disconnect supervision] signal on analog
ports).

The Japanese telecom companies are especially guilty of this (the one
notable exception being Panasonic's KX products).  I have asked them
why they do this.  They point to the spec that says that touch-tones
must only be 100ms minimum duration.  Yes, that's fine for dialing
into a dial-tone on a clean phone line, but not enough to interrupt an
announcement on an answering machine or voice mail system.  The fact
that such systems are virtually non-existant in Japan would explain
their ignorance.  I hope that as interactive voice systems become more
prevalent here that the PBX and KTS makers will mend their ways.  I
figure that all it will take is for the engineer of a company to not
be able to access some service he wants to call.

But that fails to explain why a company like Northern Telecom would do
this, except that maybe it has historically been done that way.  AT&T
does get it right in their systems.  Mitel Supersets also work
correctly, because they have a real tone-generator in the set.

A work-around to this is to set the touch-tone length (usually it is
an option on PBXs) to something like one second.  The drawback is that
dialing an 11-digit number will now take a long time to outdial.

Jim Gottlieb                                    Info Connections, Tokyo, Japan

Fax: (011)+81-3-237-5867                        Voice Mail: (011)+81-3-222-8429

 
 
 

1. Ain't Progress Wunnerful?

     Texas Instruments in Dallas is in the process of junking its
aging Centrex service in favor of some Northern Telecom device (I
think a DMS-100), with NT Meridian phones, purveyed by GTE.

     Frankly, I'm not sure what TI is getting out of the deal.  The
system has the same old features (forward on busy/no-answer, hold,
transfer, 3-way, etc), just with individual buttons.  There's the
expense of new phones, new wiring, and training for all users.
There's the hassle that standard answering machines, modems, and the
like won't work with this system.  There's the apparently gratuitous
change from 4-digit to 5-digit extension dialing (we can only get to
the one exchange, so why have 5 digits?).

     In addition to all the changeover annoyance, the new system has a
real human-factors botch: no tones are generated at the phone when
dialing.  Tones are generated after the call connects, but only for a
fixed, short duration, so any remote device that needs long tones
(like many answering machines) is difficult or impossible to access.
How could Northern Telecom let such a stupid mistake out the door?

     The most telling comment may be from the GTE lady running the
phone class.  It seems that they have the same system in their office,
with the same difficulty in checking remote answering machines.  Their
solution: their Fax machine is on an outside line, so they go over and
use its phone.

     I do not have much hope that the problem will be resolved.


                               {smu,texsun,cs.utexas.edu,rice}!ti-csl!pf

Texas Instruments Computer Science Center
PO Box 655474 MS 238, Dallas, Texas 75265

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