Glossary

 

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A

Accelerated Life Testing: The unique Motorola ALT is a proprietary process developed to simulate five years of field stress in several weeks. Motorola pagers are subject to this test in design, at pre-production and during their product life cycle.

Access: (1) Point at which entry is gained into a circuit or a network. May be switched or dedicated. (2) Ability to obtain data from a storage device or peripheral. (3) Type of connection between CPE and network.

Access Area Code, Prefix, Suffix: Number dialed to access pagers via PIN number. Also known as overdial number.

Access Charge: A fee paid by long-distance carriers to local telephone companies for use of local facilities, and by telephone subscribers to obtain access to local networks.

Access Code: Preliminary digits a user is required to dial to be connected to a particular trunk group, channel or line. (2) A short sequence of digits allowing a user to access a specific facility, service, feature or function of a telecommunications network or computer system.

Access Line: A communications line (e.g. circuit) interconnecting a frame-relay-compatible device (DTE) to a frame relay switch (DCE).

Access Method: (1) A technique for moving data, voice or video between main storage and input/output devices. (2) In local area networks, the technique and/or program code used to determine use of the communications medium by granting access selectively to individual stations.

Access Rate (AR): The data rate of the user access channel. The speed of the access channel determines how rapidly (maximum rate) the end user can inject data into a frame relay network.

Account Code: Up to five-digit code entered after completion of dialing. Used to identify the caller.

Account Type: May be commercial, corporate, government, or residential.

Activated: This means a pager number has been assigned (programmed to) the capcode on a pager and the pager is now capable of receiving messages.

Airtime: The primary service offered by a paging company. Airtime includes the ability of the pager to receive a signal through the paging company’s system. Customers pay for airtime in order for their pager to work.

All Trunks Busy (ATB): A single tone interrupted at a 120 impulses per minute (ipm) rate to indicate all lines or trunks in a routing group are busy.

Alternate Route-A: Secondary communications path used to reach a destination if the primary path is unavailable.

Alpha Dispatch Service: Service to send a dispatch message to an alphanumeric pager by one of two methods:

    1. Use paging software to send messages to an alphanumeric pager.
    2. Use an operator dispatch service to have a live operator take a message from the caller and send it to the alphanumeric pager.

Alpha Entry Device: A keyboard that plugs into a phone line and allows the user to send alphanumeric messages to an alpha pager

Alphamate: A stand-alone unit that sends alpha pages via an analog telephone without using a separate PC or modem.

Alphanumeric Paging: A type of paging wherein the pager can receive and display both letters (alpha) and numbers (numeric).

American National Standards Institute (ANSI): Devises and proposes recommendations for international communications standards

Analog: A transmission method employing a continuous (rather than pulsed or digital) electrical signal that varies in amplitude or frequency in response to changes of sound, light, position, etc., imposed on a transducer in the sending device; opposite of digital.

Analog Paging: The first paging system. In existence prior to digital (microchip) technology.

ANI – Automatic Number Identifier. Used to gain access (dial tone) to automatic mobile telephone systems.

Analog Signal-A: Signal in the form of a continuous varying physical quantity such as voltage – which reflects variations in some quantity; or loudness in the human voice as opposed to digital.

Answer Supervision: (1) An off-hook signal indicating when the called party answers: used to read calls for billing purposes. (2) A signal generated by the originating switch (hardware answer supervision) or by the’ switch which terminates the call (software answer supervision, when FGA or WATS is used to terminate the call).

Archie: A search tool for finding files and programs located on FTP servers. The Archie system is comprised of a number of Archie servers located across the United States and the world. Each Archie server indexes the files available on FTP servers in its area. The Archie servers share their indexes with each other; thus, the complete index is accessible from any of the servers. Archie severs can be accessed via a Telnet, e-mail or an Archie program.

ARPAnet: The predecessor to the Internet. Developed by the U.S. Defense Department’s Advanced Research Projects Agency in the late 1960’s, ARPAnet was an experimental network that initially linked scientists engaged in defense research. ARPAnet was intended to link together different computers in dispersed geographical locations. The network was designed to survive breakdowns along any of its connections by sending information as packets. If a connection broke down, the packets could be automatically re-routed.

ASCII (pronounced AS-key): American Standard Code for Information Exchange. Although now widely used to denote plain text – that is, text without formatting and independent of any type font – ACII is actually a data code now used universally in communication applications by minicomputers and personal computers to represent 128 possible character combinations, including upper- and lower-case letters of the roman alphabet, the space character, the numerals 0 through 9, punctuation marks and other non-alphanumeric characters found on a standard keyboard, plus several “control codes” that denote invisible characters like the carriage return and tab. ASCII is also sometimes known at TTY, denoting its legacy in the teletype industry.

ASCII value: The number, variously expressed in decimal, octal or hexadecimal notation, that defines a combination of eight bits – seven bits that define a character and an eighth that can be used for a rudimentary form of error correction known as “parity checking.”

ASCII table: A table that lists the ASCII value for any character, in decimal, octal or hexadecimal notation, sometimes in all three.

Attenuation: Reduction in power level due to line resistance, leakage or induction which results in the received signal being lower in volume than the original transmitted signal. [In optical fiber systems there are other causes of attenuation, such as absorption, scattering and losses into radiation modes. It is usually expressed in decibel (dB).)

Authorization: cocte-(1) Code that identifies the customer, and is used for billing purposes and validation by the switch. (2) An identification number that the customer enters when placing a call.

Automatic Callback: The telephone number of the last recorded incoming call may be automatically redialed. The feature must be activated before another incoming call or call waiting indication is received.

Automatic Call Distributor (ACD: A switching system designed to queue and/or distribute a large volume of incoming calls to the next available “answering” position among a group of attendants.

Automatic Number Identification (ANI): The number identifying equipment at local dial offices and sent to message accounting apparatus; the final four numbers of a seven-digit phone number.

Automatic Route Selection (ARS): Device (or software) which chooses the lowest cost route for long-distance calls over specific line or services, including WATS, leased, specialized non-Bell common carriers (MCI, Sprint) or direct distance dialing (DDD). Synonym: Least Cost Routing.

Availability: (1) The degree to which a system or resource is operable and not in a state of congestion or failure at any given point in time. (2) The percentage of total trunks in a group which can be accessed by a particular switch.

Avatar (pronounced AV-uh-tar): A work adopted by computer users to denote the digital manifestation that humans take on when entering virtual worlds. The word is Sanskrit for the earthy incarnation a god takes on Earth. Vishnu, the Hindu god responsible for maintaining the existence of the universe, has 10 important avatars, including Krishna, the philosopher king, and Varaha, the boar who rescues the planet after it is inundated by the oceans. The 10th avatar of Vishnu, Kalki, will arrive in the future to destroy the world with fire and begin a new age of purity on the planet.

AVI: A video compression standard developed for use with Microsoft Windows. Video clips on the World Wide Web are usually available in both AVI and QuickTime formats.

 

B

Background Bit Error Ratio (BBEtt): (1 ) The ratio of the number of bits in error to the total number of bits received, exclusive of error bursts, over a special measurement period. (2) The error performance of the system under normal operations and does not include error bursts caused by line switching, maintenance, activity, etc. An end-to-end BBER is not specified for digital private line because of the varying error distribution of access connection.

Background Errors: Errors that occur during the normal operation of the system. They generally occur one at a time or few at a time.

Backup: The provision, logical or physical, of facilities to speed the process of restart and recovery following failure. Facilities may include duplicated files of transactions, periodic dumping of core or backing storage contents, duplicated processors, storage devices, terminals, telecommunications hardware or the switches to effect a changeover.

Backward Explicit Congestion Notification (BECN): A bit set by a frame relay network to notify an interface device (DTE) that congestion avoidance procedures should be initiated by the sending device.

Band Width: Technically, the difference, in Hertz (Hz), between the highest and lowest frequencies of a transmission channel. Typically used to refer to the amount of data that can be sent through a given communications circuit.

Base Station: A permanent radio station consisting of a receiver (satellite dish), transmitter and radio tower. Used to send paging signals directly to a pager. Another widely used term in transmitter.

Basic Service: As referred to herein, are those combined end-to-end services and functions, offered as a complete service package by the underlying local service carrier, necessary to provide a minimum level of local service to subscribers, pursuant to minimum regulatory and subscriber service requirements.

Baud (pronounced BAWD): A unit commonly used to describe the speed of modems. The baud rate technically is the number of times a modem signal changes per second. In the old days of 300 baud modems, each signal change represented one bit of information. Therefore, the baud and transfer rates of a modem – measured in bits per second, or bps – were the same. Modern modems transfer up to 12 bits of information for every signal change. A 28.8 modem is actually working at 2400 baud, but each signal change carries 12 bits of information. Therefore the data transfer rate is 28,800 bits per second. Over the years baud and bits per second have been used interchangeably, although that is technically wrong.

Basic Coverage Area: The minimum geographic area in which messages will be received. Refer to your coverage maps for a visual representation.

Baud Rate: Baud rate is a measure of the speed of electronic transmissions. A lower baud rate means slower signal transmission and a slower system. Different paging formats (see FORMATS) operate on different pre-determined baud rates. Also known as bits per second.

BBS: Bulletin Board System. A dial-up computer service which allows users to post messages and files. BBSs often serve specific interests or geographical areas. Some BBSs are connected and provide access to the Internet.

Beeper: Used synonymously with pager. A pager is a one-way FM receiver capable of being signaled. There are various types of pagers available capable of providing an audible alert (beep), a visual alert (i.e., blinking light), a voice message, or a numeric or alphanumeric message displayed using an LCD (liquid crystal display) or LEDs (light emitting diodes).

Bell Operating Company (BOC): Any of the 22 local Bell telephone companies owned by AT&T before divestiture. The independent BOCs provide primary access to Sprint and other interexchange carriers. See RBOC.

Billing Cycle: A recurring period of time between traffic cutoff dates which precedes customer billing. Cycles are typically 30 days.

Binary: A number system based upon twos rather than tens and that uses only two characters, zero (0) and one (1).

Bit: An abbreviation for “binary digit.” Usually represented as either a 0 or a 1 – connoting off and on, respectively – bits are the basic language of computers. A group of eight bits forms a byte.

Bit Rate: The rate at which bits (binary digits) are transmitted over a communications path. Normally expressed in bits per second (bps). [The bit rate is not to be confused with the data signaling rate which measures the rate of signal elements being transmitted.]

Bits per Second: (BPS) Another measure of the speed of electronic transmissions. In the past the baud rate and bits per second have been the same. Modern technology has allowed this difference to be split (ex: Flex paging operates at 3200 baud but with 6400 BPS).

BITNET: Because It’s Time or Because It’s There NETwork. An international computer network devoted to research and education. BITNET is connected to the Internet and e-mail is freely exchanged between the systems.

Black Box: A generic term used to identify functional equipment segments, as opposed to circuitry, that make up each segment of a telecommunications system.

Blocked Calls: All attempted calls that are not connected. Two most common reasons for nonconnections; all lines to the central offices are in use; all connecting paths through the PBX/switch are in use.

Blocking: (1) Engineering principle involving average time a user will wait while a call searches for the most economical route; opposed to queuing where a call waits for the most economical route. (2) Inability to establish a new call because of the inaccessibility of facilities in the system being called. Measured under grade of service using “P” factor.

Bona Fide Request: A service or interconnection request to a telecommunications service provider that demonstrates a good faith showing by the requesting party that it intends to purchase the services requested within a reasonable time from the date of request.

Boolean: A query strategy for searching databases. Boolean searches use connectors such as “and” or “or” to expand or narrow a search. For example, to retrieve information about cats and dogs, searchers type in the word “and” to insure they receive information about both groups.

Bot: Short for “robot.” Describes programs, usually run on a server, that automate tasks like forwarding or sorting e-mail.

BOC: Bell Operating Company. Local Bell Telephone Companies divested from AT&T.

Bps: Bits Per Second. See baud.

Bridge: A device that supports LAN-to-LAN communications. Bridges may be equipped to provide frame relay support to the LAN devices they serve. A frame-relay-capable bridge encapsulates LAN frames in frame relay frames and feeds those frame relay frames to a frame relay switch for transmission across the network. A frame-relay-capable bridge also receives frame relay frames from the network, strips the frame relay frame off each LAN frame, and passes the LAN frame on to the end device. Bridges are generally used to connect local area network (LAN) segments to other LAN segments or to a wide area network (WAN). They route traffic on the Level 2 LAN protocol (e.g., the Media Access Control address), which occupies the lower sub-layer of the LAN OSI data link layer.

Broadband: (1) A transmission facility having a bandwidth of greater than 20 kHz and, therefore, capable of higher-speed data transmission. (2) Analog transmission technique used with data and video transmissions that provides multiple channels for users through frequency division multiplexing.

Broadcast: Transmission to a number of receiving locations simultaneously. [Normally associated with a multi-drop line, where a number of terminals share the line.]

Browser: Software that looks at various types of Internet resources. Browsers can search for documents and obtain them from other sources.

BTW: By The Way. An acronym frequently used in e-mail messages.

Buckets: (1) In Sprint billing software, an electronic file or folder in which records are kept until invoice processing occurs. (See Suspense File.) (2) In data, a storage unit.

Buffer: (1) A high-speed area of storage that is temporarily reserved for use in performing the input/output operation into which data is read or from which data is written. (2) Used to accumulate data into blocks of sufficient size to be handled efficiently by a processor or terminal. Synonym: I/O area.

Bulletin Board: An electronic message center accessible through computer-aided communication lines.

Burst: A sequence of signals in data communication counted as one until in accordance with some specific criterion or measure.

Burstiness: In the context of a frame relay network, data that uses bandwidth only sporadically; that is, information that does not use the total bandwidth of a circuit 100 percent of the time. During pauses, channels are idle; and no traffic flows across them in either direction. Interactive and LAN-to-LAN data is bursty in nature, because it is sent intermittently, and in between data transmissions the channel experiences idle time waiting for the DTEs to respond to the transmitted data user’s input of waiting for the user to send more data.

Busy Hour: (1) The peak 60 minutes during a business day when the largest volume of communications traffic is handled. (2) When phone lines are most in demand and/or most used.

Byte: (1) the representation of a character. (2) A group of eight bits makes a byte. Typically a 16-bit “word” is itself divided into two bytes for handling. (3) Unit of measurement used to rate storage capacity of disks; usually the smallest addressable unit of information in a data store or memory. One thousand bytes is a kilobyte; one million bytes is a megabyte.

 

 

C

Call-By-Call Selection: The ability to switch calls to individual trunks, rather than trunk groups, and to transmit necessary information to the specific trunk-type necessary to complete the call.

Call Detail Record (CDR): Computer record containing data unique to a specific call. [This information is processed as a unit and contains such details as originating switch, terminating switch, call length and time of day.] (2) Processing of call-specific information – start time, elapsed time, number dialed, date, and other pertinent customer data – to provide call detail reports and invoices.

Caller ID: Caller Identification – a service enabling subscribers to identify callers prior to the establishment of communications.

Call Forwarding: A special telephone company service which allows calls to be automatically forwarded from your telephone to another telephone or device (such as a pager or a voicemail). Individuals should contact their local telephone service provider to additional information.

Call Hold: Enables the subscriber to put a caller on hold.

Call Screening: (CLASS service) – Affords subscribers the ability to block specified calls.

Call Waiting: (Custom Calling Feature) – Call Waiting enables subscribers to place a party on hold and take an incoming call on the same line.

Caller Identification: (CLASS service) – This feature allows subscribers to be able to identify the calling party. As noted above, however, when offering caller ID services, LECs must offer a one time free blocking of telephone numbers to called parties. The Caller ID with name option displays the caller’s name as well as telephone number.

Camp (or camp-on): A PBX feature where a telephone line is busy and the incoming call is placed in a waiting mode until the line is available, at which time the call is automatically put through.

Capcode: The capcode is a series of numbers that identifies the pager as a unique and individual entity. No two capcodes on a given frequency are assigned to the same pager except under special circumstances. This code distinguishes the pager from thousands of other pagers on a paging system. It is much like a particular pager’s individual permanent “radio station” setting.

Cathode Ray Tube (CRT): A vacuum tube display in which a beam of electrons can be controlled to form alphanumeric characters or symbols on a luminescent screen, for example, by use of a dot matrix.

Carrier: (1) A company authorized by appropriate regulatory agencies to provide communications services. (2) A continuous frequency capable of being modulated or impressed with a second information carrying signal.

Cellular System: A method of mobile telephone service which divides radio communication service areas into small “cells” or districts. The cellular approach utilizes low-power transmitters which allow uninterrupted communications through sophisticated switching equipment linking the cells. This system, by reusing frequencies and standardizing service and equipment, will substantially improve mobile telephone service.

Central Office (CO): (1) Location of telephone switching equipment where customers’ lines are terminated and interconnected. (2) Switching center that provides local access to the public network. Sometimes referred to as: End Office, Local Dial Office, Wire Center or Switching Center.

Centrex: CO-Arrangement in which the Local Exchange Company’s service-providing switch is located in its central office.

Centrex-K: Type of private branch exchange service where incoming calls may be dialed direct to extensions without operator assistance. Outgoing and intercom calls may be dialed by extension users.

Centrex Services: Centrex services consist of a variety of custom calling features which are equivalent to those available in private branch exchange (PBX) equipment. They may include call holding and three way calling features. CENTREX services are resident in the LEC central office, and serve as cost effective alternatives to PBX equipment in many instances.

CERN: (pronounced SURN) – The Web was created in 1991 at CERN, a particle physics laboratory in Geneva, Switzerland.

Channel: Generically refers to the user access channel across which frame relay data travels. Within a given T1 or E1 physical line, a channel can be one of the following, depending on how the line is configured.

Unchannelized: The entire T1/E1 line is considered a channel, where:

The T1 line operates at speeds of 1.536 Mbps and is a single channel consisting of 24 T1 time slots.

The E1 line operates at speeds of 1.984 Mbps and is a single channel consisting of 20 E1 time slots.

Channelized: The channel is any one of N time slots within a given line, where:

The T1 line consists of any one or more channels. Each channel is any one of 24 time slots. The T1 line operates at speeds in multiples of 56/64 Kbps to 1.536 Mbps, with aggregate speed not exceeding 1.536 Mbps.

The E1 line consists of one or more. Each channel is any one of 31 time slots. The 31 line operates at speeds in multiples of 64 Kbps to 1.984 Mbps, with aggregate speed not exceeding 1.984 Mbps.

Fractional: The T1/E1 channel is one of the following groupings of

consecutively or non-consecutively assigned time slots:

N T/1 time slots (NX56/64Kbps where N = 1 to 23 T1 slots per FT1 channel).

N E/1 time slots (NX64Kbps, where N = 1 to 30 time slots per E1 channel).

Channel Bank: (1 ) A part of the carrier system that performs the first step of modulation. (2) A multiplexer that modulates a group of channels into a higher frequency band and, conversely, demultiplexes the higher frequency band into individual channels. It can break a signal into the equivalent of 24 analog voice grade and/or 56 kbps digital channels.

Channel Termination Charge: Fee associated with a T1 for the circuits feeding into a telco central office.

Channel Service Unit (CSU): An ancillary device needed to adapt the V.35 interface on a F.R. DTE to the T1 (or E1) interface on a frame relay switch. The T1 (or E1) signal format on the frame relay switch is not compatible with the V.35 interface on the DTE: therefore, a CSU or similar device, placed between the DTE and the frame relay switch, is needed to perform the required conversion.

Character: (1) Any alphabetical letter, digital or special symbol. (2) In data transmission, the representation of a letter number or symbol by a specific code made up of binary digits.

Churn: Cancellations or disconnects of paging service.

Circuit: A path for the transmission of electromagnetic signals; includes all conditioning and signaling equipment. Synonym: facility.

Circuit Switching: (1) A method of communications, where an electrical connection between calling and called stations is established on demand for exclusive use of the circuit until the connection is released. (2) A switching system that completes a dedicated transmission path from sender to receiver at the time of transmission. See also: packet switching, store and forward, message switching.

CLASS: Custom Local Area Signaling Service: A group of enhanced service features that provide multiple call processing capabilities.

Class of Service (COS): (1) Telephone service distinctions which include: rate differences between individual and party lines, flat rate and message rate, and restricted and extended area service. (2) A subgrouping of telephone customers or users for the sake of rate distinction or limitation of service.

Class of Service (COS): (1) Telephone service distinctions which include: rate differences between individual and party lines, flat rate and message rate, and restricted and extended area service. (2) A subgrouping of telephone customers or users for the sake of rate distinction or limitation of service.

CNN: Cable News Network. Available on alphanumeric pagers, the CNN news feed broadcasts news and information in specific categories. This service is offered at no additional charge to all Spring alphanumeric pager users.

COAM: (koh-am) Indicates that a customer owns their pager. Short for Customer Owned And Maintained.

Coaxical Cable: Cable consisting of an outer conductor surrounding an inner conductor, separated from each other by insulating material. It can carry a much higher bandwidth than a wire pair.

CODEC: Equipment containing a coder plus a decoder. Used to convert analog signals to digital form for transmission over a digital medium and back again to the original analog form. Required equipment for videoconferencing.

Collocation: The ability of service provider to locate equipment in the underlying carrier’s premisses. Virtual collocation enables service providers to interconnect networks and equipment from physically separate locations as if networks and equipment were physically located in the same premisses.

Com: A domain name suffix denoting commercial entities such as corporations.

Comite Consultatif International Telegraphique et Telephonique (CCITT): International Consultative Committee for Telegraphy and Telephony, a standards organization that devises and proposes recommendations for international communications. See also American National Standards Institute (ANSI).

Committed Burst Size (Bc): The maximum amount of data (in bits) that the network agrees to transfer, under normal conditions, during a time interval Tc.

Committed Information Rate (CIR): The committed rate (in bits per second) at which the ingress access interface trunk interfaces, and egress access interface of a frame relay network transfer information to the destination frame relay network transfer information to the destination frame relay end system under normal conditions. The rate is averaged over a minimum time interval Tc.

Committed Rate Measurement Interval (Tc): The time interval during which the user can send only Bc-committed amount of data and Be excess amount of data. In general, the duration of Tc is proportional to the “burstiness” of the traffic. Tc is computed (from the subscription parameters of CIR and Bc) as Tc = Bc/CIR. Tc is not a periodic time interval. Instead, it is used only to measure incoming data, during which it acts like a sliding window. Incoming data triggers the Tc interval, which continues until it completes it commuted duration.

Common Carrier: Government-regulated, private company that furnishes the general public with telecommunications services and facilities; for example, a telephone or telegraph company.

Common Control Switching 7 (CCS7): (1 ) A digital communications channel dedicated for the processing of signaling and call setup information between processors in the switched network. (2) An international standard for network signaling via data links operating at 56kbps. Synonym: Signaling System 7.

Communications Satellite Corporation (COMSAT): A United States company created by an act of Congress in 1962 to provide communications via satellites. COMSAT leases satellite circuits to many American companies and is active in international communications through partial ownership in the International Telecommunications Satellite Organization (INTELSAT) and the International Maritime Satellite Organization (INMARSAT).

Compression: (1) Techniques to reduce the number of bits required to represent information in data transmission or storage, thereby conserving bandwidth and/or memory, (2) Application technique.

Computer-Aided Design (CAD): Automation of the performance of various operations according to graphic design specifications through the use of a special computer and peripherals.

Computer-Aided Manufacturing (CAM): Automation of the performance of various operations according to manufacturing specifications through the use of a special computer and peripherals.

Conditioning: (1) To bring to a standard. (2) Addition of equipment to voice grade lines to provide for data transmissions at specified minimum values of line characters, in ranges from C1 to C4 (the best). [Common carriers often recommend no conditioning for lines transmitting at 1200 baud; C1 for 2400 baud, C2 for 4800 baud and C4 for speeds above 4800 baud.]

Conference Call: A connection established among three or more stations in such a manner that each of the stations is able to communicate with all others.

CONNECT: Direct: A secure, robust, distributed processing application that processes requests for file transmissions and will initiate jobs either local or remotely on multiple OS platforms.

Contour: Antennas are designed to direct radio signals within a specific area. The outline shape of the total area covered by a signal is known as a service contour. When that shape is made to scale, and overlaid on a topographic or geographic map, it will show the coverage area relative to important landmarks.

Control Unit (CU): Central processor of a telephone switching device.

Country Code: A one-, two- or three-digit number used for international dialing. The first digit is always the world-zone number. Subsequent digits further define the geographic area.

Coverage Area: The defined geographic area covered by a transmitter or transmitters on a given frequency.

CPNI: Customer Proprietary Network Information – Confidential information regarding an end-user’s calling patterns and usage.

Cradle Indicator: A yes or no value which determines if a pager requires programming in order to add the mail drop feature.

Crosstalk: Transmission noise caused by energy “leaking” from one channel to another on the same facility. [In analog voice communications, crosstalk makes conversation on one circuit accidentally audible on another.]

Crystal: The operating frequency of a pager is determined by the crystal. A multitude of units can have crystals on the same frequency.

Customer Owned and Maintained (COAM): User provided and serviced communications equipment and its associated wiring.

Customer Premises Equipment (CPE): All telecommunications equipment (except pay phones) and, usually, wiring that is located at the users building.

Custom Greeting: An option whereby the pager user can record a greeting in his/her own voice. When the pager number is called, this greeting is heard by all callers. Can be used to give instructions or just to let the callers know they have reached the right pager. Custom greeting is standard with Voicemail.

Cyberspace: The whole universe of information that’s available from computer networks.

Cyclic Redundancy Check (CRC): A computational means to ensure the accuracy of frames transmitted between devices in a frame relay network. The mathematical function is computed, before the frame is transmitted, at the originating device. Its numerical value is computed based on the content of the frame. This value is compared with a recomputed value of the function at the destination device.

 

 

D

D4 Framing Format: (1) Division of DSI-level circuit into 24 equal channels. [Each channel carrier digitizes voice and signaling information in eight-bit bytes. A D4 frame consists of 192 (8X24) information bits. In addition, to identify each of the 24 channels, a framing bit is added in the 193rd position. Each byte is updated 8,000 times per second. Thus, the transmission speed of a DSI circuit is 1,544,000 Hz (193 X 8,000).] (2) Monitors the DSI signals for either framing errors or bipolar violations (BPVs). BPVs are eliminated when the bit stream passes through interfaces such as a multiplexer. Automatic Protection Switch or the Digital Cross-Connect System (DCS). Since non end-to-end performance monitoring is available using BPVs, the line must be taken out of service to test for large errors.

Daemon: A program that runs without human intervention. A daemon (pronounced DEE-man) waits silently, springing into action when some condition occurs (for example, when a file lands in a particular directory, or when a Web request is made through a particular communication line). Most server software runs as a daemon, so you’ll see references to a Web server as an “HTTPD” program, for Hypertest Transfer Protocol Daemon.

Datacast: News service that is programmed and broadcast on a pager (now a standard feature for alphanumeric pagers). For example: sports, weather, news, trivia, horoscope, or business. Mail drop information is required for Datacast.

Data Communications Equipment (DCE): Term defined by both frame relay and X.25 committees, that applies to switching equipment and is distinguished from the devices that attach to the network (DTE).

Data General: The company that makes most of our UNIX processors.

Data Link Connection Identifier (DLCI): A unique number assigned to a PVC end point in a frame relay network. Identifies a particular PVC endpoint within a user’s access channel in a frame relay network and has local significance only to that channel.

Dataphone Digital Service (DOS): A communications service of the Bell System in which data is transmitted in digital rather than analog form, thus eliminating the need for modems. See acronyms list for other uses of DDS.

Dead Area: Area where the signal from a transmitter does not reach. Can be caused by geographic variations (ex: a valley) or by building features (ex: a sub-basement room or metal-lined room like an x-ray department).

Decoder: A device in the pager that changes the encoded signal into an alert.

Dedicated Access Line (DAL): A non-switched circuit or path connecting the customer’s telephone equipment to an IXC switch with no intermediate switching functions by the Local Exchange Company (LEG).

Dedicated Line: A permanently assigned path to specific data terminals which is not part of a switched network. Synonym: private line.

Deregulation: (1) A 1983 Federal Communications Committee ruling which freed interexchange earners from the need to file rate changes or seek authority from FCC to expand. AT&T was not deregulated because of its economic power and market dominance.

Dial Access: (1) Connection through the public switched telephone network. (2) Means of providing a terminal switched access to a service, network or computer.

Dialing Parity: The ability of competing providers to enable subscribers to place calls by utilizing dialing patterns equal to those used by the incumbent LECs.

Dial Tone: An audible signal indicating that automatic switching equipment is ready to receive signals required for a connection.

DID Number: Direct Inward Dial – refers to the ability to contact a pager without going through a third party or without having to enter a PIN number after dialing an 800 number.

Digerati: A digital play on the word “literati,” digerati refers to people who consider themselves the hip, knowledgeable elite at the vanguard of the digital revolution.

Digital Paging: Digital technology uses a series of ones and zeros to communicate information. The paging terminal converts telephone line input into digital information and transmits it to the pager. The pager converts the information back into a readable format.

Digital Technology: Method of storing, processing and transmitting information through the use of electronic or optical pulses that represent binary digits or bits (0 and 1).

Digitizer: Device used to convert an image to a series of dots that can be read, stored, and manipulated by the computer. [A digitizer often scans video input, while a scanner usually scans hard copy input.]

Direct Distance Dialing (DDD): A toll service that permits customers to place their own long distance calls without the aid of an operator.

Direct Inward Dialing (DID): A PBX or Centrex feature in which incoming calls are completed to extensions without the assistance of an operator.

Direct Inward/Outward Dialing: By establishing direct inward/outward dialing lines, subscribers may have direct access to a local line independent of lines routed through a PBX. This service effectively enables subscribers to bypass their PBX if their lines are routed through one.

Direct Outward Dialing: PBX or Centrex feature that allows a station user to gain access to the public switched network without the assistance of an operator.

Discard Eligibility (DE): A user-set bit indicating that a frame may be discarded in preference to other frames if congestion occurs, to maintain the committed quality of service within the network. Frames with the DE bit set are considered Be excess data.

Disconnect: A term to indicate that a pager has been taken out of service and the customer is no longer being billed.

Discreet Alert: When pagers are in the silent position, the pager will receive pages but will emit only a short beep (or chirp).

Dispatch Service: A group of operators who take calls and dispatch messages to alphanumeric pagers. (Not an answering service – an answering service takes and holds messages; knows office hours; etc.). Dispatch services typically have access through a computer to our paging terminals.

Display: The “screen” of the pager. Also knows as an LCD. Also sometimes used in reference to numeric pagers (i.e. display pager).

Distinctive ringing: (CLASS service) – Subscriber’s may obtain separate telephone numbers which are assigned to a single line. A distinctive ring is heard for each number to enable the subscriber to determine which number is being called.

Diverse Routing Service: Allows subscribers to designate one or more alternative service routes to protect against potential service outages due to network failures on a given route or trunk group.

Domain Name: A name representing a space in the overall addressing scheme used worldwide on the Internet. Top Level Domains (TLD’s) are used to separate similar organizations and to simplify organizing addresses. The current most widely used TLD’s are .com(Commercial), .edu(Educational), .net(Networks), .jp(Japan), .k(United Kingdom), .de(Germany), .us(United States), .au(Australia), .ca(Canada), .mil(U.S. Military), .org(Organizations) and .gov(U.S. Government). These domain names are commonly used as URL’s (Universal Resource Locator) on the World Wide Web (WWW), e.g. www.customer.com.

Downlink: The satellite-to-ground transmission.

DSI: Digital Signal level one. One 1,544 Mbps digital signal comprised of 24 voice grade lines, each with 64 kbps capacity. (See T1)

DSI Drop and Insert Arrangement: DSO-level channels are connected to and terminated at intermediate points between the originating and terminating locations within a network.

DSIfan-Out Arrangement: DSO-level circuits are routed to several different locations form the single DSI termination.

DSI Private Line: An 1.544 Mbps leased, owned or otherwise dedicated circuit available through the LECs interexchange carrier (POP-to-POP or inter LATA) or alternate carriers.

DS2: Digital signal level two. One 6.312 Mbps channel, equivalent to 96 voice grade lines, each with 64 kbps capacity.

DS3: Digital signal level three. One 44.736 Mbps channel, equivalent to 672 voice grade lines, each with 64 kbps capacity.

DS4: Digital signal level four. One 375.176 Mbps channel, equivalent to 4,032 voice grade lines, each with 64 kbps capacity. Typically used in interoffice transmissions.

DSO: Digital Signal level zero. One 64 kbps capacity path, equivalent to one voice (analog) circuit.

DTMF: Dual Tone Multiple Frequency. Means Touch-Tone, an AT&T trademark.

Dual Address: Also known as dual tone or duo tone. Two different phone numbers are used to activate their own unique alert. It allows you to now for instance, whether to call home or hour office.

Dual Tone Multifrequency (DTIWF): Type of signaling which emits two distinct frequencies for each indicated digit. Synonym: touch tone dialing.

Duplex Operation: A two-frequency mobile radio system. In a full duplex radio operation, conversations can take place just like a regular home telephone; that is, you can talk and listen at the same time.

 

 

E

Echo: A distortion that occurs when a signal is reflected or otherwise returned (on the same wire on which the speaker us speaking) with sufficient magnitude and delay as to be perceived by the speaker. Typically, a problem on satellite circuits.

Edu: A domain name suffix denoting educational institutions.

Egress: Frame relay frames leaving a frame relay network in the direction toward the destination device. Contrast with Ingress.

e-mail: Electronic mail. Messages sent from one person to another via computer networks.

EIA: Electronic Industries Association – A recognized standardization for industry equipment and performance.

Electronic Key Telephone Set (EKTS): Any key telephone with a built-in microprocessor which allows access to PBX-like features as well as access to multiple CO lines and uses two-to four-pair wiring.

Electronic Mail: (1) The electronic transmission of letters, messages and memos form one computer to another. (2) A computer-aided method of communication where an individual sends an on-line message to another individual via dial-up or dedicated access. See Bulletin Board.

Electronic Tandem Network (ETN): (1 ) A private network in which the network switch functions as a PBX and automatically connects the calling office to the called office through tandem-tie trunks.

E& M Signaling: Method of receiving and transmitting signals. (Originally stood for ear and mouth).

Emoticon: (pronounced ee-MOE-ti-con) Shortened form of “emotion icons.” Sideways “smiley-face” symbols created with ASCII characters to express emotions and physical characteristics. Emoticons, also knows as smilies, are often used in e-mail messages and newsgroups postings.The characters : – ) form an emoticon which means “what I’ve just said was meant in fun.” Other examples of emoticons include: 😎 (a happy person with glasses), B-)~ (a happy person with horn-rimmed glasses who is drooling, B*)~ (a happy drooling person with horn-rimmed glasses who has just been to a bar), :-@ (a screaming person), (%-@ (a screaming person who has been staring at a computer screen for 15 hours, etc.).

Encapsulation: A process by which an interface device places an end device’s protocol-specific frames inside a frame relay frame. The network accepts only frames formatted specifically for frame relay; hence, interface devices acting as interfaces to an frame relay network must perform encapsulation.

Encoder: A device that generates signals to a pager.

End Device: The ultimate source or destination of data flowing through a frame relay network, sometimes referred to as a Data Terminal Equipment (DTE). As a source device, it sends data to an interface device for encapsulation in a frame relay frame. As a destination device, it receives de-encapsulated data (i.e., the frame relay frame is stripped off, leaving only the user’s data) from the interface device.

End Office (EO): A switching center where subscriber lines are terminated and where toll calls are switched through to the terminating destination.

End-to-End: In end-to-end signaling everyone dials a common number to access the terminal. Additional digits unique to each pager must then be dialed end-to-end to alert the pager.

Equal Access (EA): (1) The concept – enforced by the 1984 Modified Final Judgement (MFJ) – that all Interexchange Carriers (IXC) must have the same access to the local BOC facilities as AT&T enjoys; provided as Feature Group D interconnection. (2) The arrangement whereby the BOCs provide turn side connections to an End Office (EO), Automatic Number Identification (AMI), answer supervision, dial pulse or DTMF signal recognition. [Customers may subscribe to the IXC of their choice.]

Eriang: (1) A unit if traffic intensity. (2) One eriang is the intensity at which one traffic path would be continually occupied.

ERMES: European Radio Messaging. A high speed paging coding scheme used in Europe.

ERP : Effective Radiated Power. The power measured in watts radiated from an antenna after (1) subtracting the loss incurred from the transmission line and auxiliary equipment, and (2) adding the gain obtained from the design of the antenna.

Error Burst: Results of an event that causes a lengthy stream of consecutively transmitted bits to be defective. Retransmission is the normal correction procedure in the event of an error burst.

Error Rate: Ratio of the number of signal elements (or data) incorrectly received to the total number transmitted. (2) The probability of an error occurring during the transmission of a message.

Error-Free Seconds (EFS): Ratio of the number of seconds in which there are no bits in error to the total number of seconds in the measurement interval.

Escalert Alert Tone: Motorola term for a series of interrupted beeps which increase in volume until the pager is reset. This allows the pager to be used in a variety of noise environments.

Ethernet: A common way of networking computers in a local area network or LAN (such as the same building or floor).

Excess Burst Size (Be): The maximum amount of uncommitted data (in bits) in excess of Bc that a frame relay network can attempt to deliver during a time interval Tc. This data (Be) generally is delivered with a lower probability than Bc. The network treats Be data as discard eligible.

Exchange (EX): (1) A room or building equipped so that telephone lines terminating there may be interconnected as required. The equipment may include manual or automatic switching equipment. (2) A telephone switching center; an aggregate of traffic-carrying devices, switching stages, controlling and signaling means at a network node that enables subscriber lines and/or other telecommunication circuits to be interconnected as required by individual callers. (3) The territory served by an exchange, within which local service rates apply; also known as the exchange area or local service area.

Extended Coverage Area: More extensive than the Basic Coverage Area. Can include multiple cities (ex: In Texas includes DFW/Houston/Austin/San Antonio). Not available in all areas.

Extended Group: Used to connect numerous pagers together so they all respond to a single message. Can be done by programming the paging terminal to “copy” the message to all designated pagers. This option is not used because it taxes the paging terminal too much (see Group Call).

Extended Superframe Format (ESF): Use of the Cyclical Redundancy Check-6 (CRC-6) Code to measure actual logic errors rather than format errors. [ESF permits circuit performance to be measured in-service and real-time, regardless of the electrical/physical characteristics of the transmission facility and network. Error data processed and stored in the ESF CPU is available on demand for the last 24 hours in 15-minute intervals, making it possible to sectionalize problems.]

E1: Transmission rate of 2.048 Mbps on E1 communications lines. An E1 facility carriers a 2.048 Mbps digital signal.

 

 

F

Facility: A transmission path between two or more locations without terminating or signaling equipment. [Addition of terminating equipment would produce either a channel, a central office line or a trunk. Various types of signaling would also be used depending on the application.]

Facsimile: (1) A system for the transmission of a picture, drawing or other document by converting it into coded electrical signals which are subsequently converted into a replica of the original image eat the receiving end. (2) The replicated image of picture, drawing or document. (See fax.)

Facsimile Transmission: An electronic means for transferring a precise reproduction.

Fault Tolerance: The level of ability within a program or system to operate properly even if errors occur.

Fax: (1 ) Abbreviation for facsimile. (2) Reference to either the service or the actual machines by which a copy of a document or picture may be transmitted. (3) A verb meaning to send and electronic image.

FCC: Federal Communications Commission. The governing body over all communications companies.

Feature Groups: The different types and qualities of public switched network connection between local telephone companies and long distance companies.

Feature Group A (FGA): (1 ) A service that uses off-network access lines (ONAL). (2) A level of dial-up service in which subscribers have to dial a full local subscriber number to connect to the IXC, then have to key out (using DTMF) their personal authorization code followed by the distant number required.

Feature Group B (FGB): (1) A dial-up service that gives no hardware answer code which means call timing may be inaccurate. (2) A service that uses off network access trunks (ONAT) which eliminate most-off network access line difficulties and greatly improve transmission quality (for local offices).

Feature Group C (FGC): (1) A dial-up service that uses off-network access trunks which eliminate most-off network access line difficulties and greatly improve transmission quality (for local tandem offices).

Feature Group D (FGD): (1) A dial-up service employing a coding method to enable telephone customers to choose their long distance network and use the same number of digits whichever carrier chosen. (2) Uses off-network access trunks (ONAT). See Equal Access.

Federal Communications Commission (FCC): Government agency established by the Communications Act of 1934 which regulates all interstate communications.

Federal Telecommunications System (FTS): A government communications system administered by the General Services Administration (GSA), covering all 50 states plus Puerto Rico and the Virgin Islands; provides services for voice, teletypewriter, facsimile and data transmission.

Fiber Optics: (1 ) A means of providing high-speed transmission, using light to send images through a flexible bundle of glass fibers. (2) The use of light as the primary medium in an actual application.

Fiber-Optic Transmission System (FOTS): A means of sending data by coded light pulses through small diameter glass fibers. Information is transferred by modulating the transmitted light. These modulated signals are detected by light-sensitive semiconductor devices (photodiodes).

Fiber-Optic Cable: A bundle of thin filaments of glass or other transparent materials used as the medium for transmitting coded light pulses that represent data, images or sound.

File Server: In the context of frame relay network supporting LAN-to-LAN communications, a device connecting a series of workstations within a given LAN. The device performs error recover and flow control functions as well as end-to-end acknowledgment of data during data transfer, thereby significantly reducing overhead within the frame relay network.

5/6 Tone: Paging code format utilizing 12 tones transmitted 5 or 6 at a time sequentially. If 6 tones are used, it indicates dual address operation.

Finger: A software tool for finding people on the Internet.

Flame: An online insult usually delivered by way of e-mail or a newsgroup posting. Flame exchanges often develop into long-running flame wars, which can then degenerate into holy wars.

Flat Rated: A rating methodology whereby subscribers pay an established rate for service each month, regardless of actual usage.

Flex: The newest paging format. Faster and more accurate than other formats. Will allow many more users per frequency.

Foreign Exchange (FX): A circuit that connects a subscriber in one exchange with a central office in another exchange.

Foreign Exchange Line: Line offered by a common carrier in which the user in one central office is assigned a telephone number belonging to a remote central office to minimize long distance charges. [Charges for these lines vary from carrier to carrier.]

Foreign Exchange Service: Offers subscribers access to dial tone and local calling capabilities from a neighboring exchange to which calls would otherwise incur toll charges. This service is attractive to subscribers who generate significant toll calling volumes to specific exchanges.

Format: A paging “language”, or way of sending/receiving pager information. Aside from Flex, systems also operate on Pocsag, Super Pocsag, Golay, and NEC formats.

Forward Explicit Congestion Notification (FECN): A bit set by a frame relay network to notify an interface device (DTE) that congestion avoidance procedures should be initiated by the receiving device.

Frame Check Sequence (FCS): The standard 16-bit cyclic redundancy check used for HDLC and frame relay frames. The FCS detects bit errors occurring in the bits of the frame between the opening flag and the FCS, and is only effective in detecting errors in frames no larger than 4096 octets.

Frame Relay Access Device (FRAD): A FRAD is a converter that permits a device which is designed to be connected to a leased line to use a frame relay connection instead. The FRAD encapsulates messages from the device into frame relay frames and sends them through the frame relay network to another FRAD at the other end which decapsulates the messages and passes them on to the receiving device.

Frame-Relay-Capable Interface Device: A communications device that performs encapsulation. Frame-relay-capable routers and bridges are examples of interface devices used to interface the customer’s equipment to a frame relay network.

Frame Relay Frame: A variable-length unit of data, in frame-relay format that is transmitted through a frame relay network as pure data. Contrast with Packet.

Frame Relay Network: A telecommunications network based on frame relay technology. Data is multiplexed. Contrast with Packet-Switching-Network.

Frequency: Also known as a radio frequency. A measurement of the number of waves that pass a given point in a second (similar to waves in the ocean). The system of measurement was developed by Heinrich Hertz. Paging frequencies are measured in millions of cycles per second, or megahertz (mHz). A frequency of 929.5875 equals over nine-hundred-twenty-nine million cycles per second.

Frequency Division Multiplexing (FDM): Method of transmitting two or more signals by dividing the available transmission frequency into narrower bands and using each as a separate channel.

Frequency Modulation (FM): Transmission method in which the frequency of the carrier wave is changed to correspond to changes in the signal wave.

Fringe Area: The outer limits of a coverage area where signals are likely to be weak and reception is expected to be spotty and intermittent.

FTP: File Transfer Protocol. The standard rules that govern the transfer of files and programs over the Internet. FTP allows files to be moved from one computer to another regardless of the types of computers or operating systems involved in the exchange. FTP is also used as the general name for the programs which employ File Transfer Protocol to move files.

FYI: For Your Information. An acronym frequently used in e-mail messages.

 

 

G

Geographic Area: The defined geographic area covered by a transmitter or transmitters on a given frequency. A geographical area could be as small as a single city or as large as several states.

GIF, gif: (pronounced GIFF – as in “gift” – or JIFF) – Graphics Interchange Format. Developed by CompuServe, GIF is a widely-used method of compressing image file such as photographs and graphics. Image files typically take up large amounts of computer memory and hard drive space and take long periods of time to download. Various groups have come up with ways of alleviating some of these problems by compressing the image data into smaller files. JPEG is a competing image-compression format.  GIF can also refer to an image compressed with Graphics Interchange Format.

Glenayre: A company which manufactures paging terminals.

Golay: An old proprietary paging format developed by Motorola.

Gopher: A menu-based system used in organizing and retrieving files and programs on the Internet. Gopher allows access to files found on FTP servers, as well as to files normally accessed through TelNet, Archie or WAIS programs. Each Gopher server has its own unique menu of files and programs. Gopher servers and menus can be accessed through Gopher programs and some World Wide Web browsers.

Gov: (pronounced GUV) – A domain name suffix denoting government. In Internet addresses, gov denotes non-military government sites.

Grade of Service: (1) A measurement of the quality of telecommunications related to the availability of circuits when calls are to be made. Grade of service is based on the busiest hour of the day. It is measured in either percentage of calls blocked for dial-up access or average delay for manual situations. (2) The probability of a call being blocked by busy trunks; expressed as a decimal fraction. It usually pertains to the busy-hour probability. Referred to as the “P” factor.

Group Call: Allows multiple pagers to respond to a single message. Group call is accomplished by issuing a common secondary capcode to multiple pagers. The paging terminal processes only a single message but each pager with the common capcode responds to the message. This option is used mostly by large accounts.

Group ID: Alphanumeric characters assigned to an affiliate to break up billing data into groups (i.e., cost center, divisions, service type) to eliminate setting up multiple affiliate codes for one entity. If sending out different fulfillment material, use affiliate codes instead of group ids.

 

 

H

Hacker: A person who breaks into a computer network and tampers with the system.

Hardwire: To directly attach or dedicate a cable or line between units of equipment.

Hexadecimal: (pronounced hex-uh-DES-I-mull) – Numbers expressed in base sixteen. Integers larger than 9 are expressed a sequential letters A through F. In hexadecimal, the number ten is written A. The number sixteen is expressed as 10 – that is, one sixteen and no ones just as 10 in the standard decimal system represents one ten and no ones. Why would anyone want to express numbers in base sixteen? Because that’s how many bits there are in a 16-bit word, so using hexadecimal allowed programmers to denote a specific bit in any word as a single digit, 0 through F. Back on the days of eight-bit machines, programmers used octal, or base eight, numbers.

Hierarchical Network: (1) A system in which processing and control functions are performed at designated levels by computers specifically designed for those function. (2) A switching architecture arranged in classes of offices with defined levels of responsibility. [Such as the American Class 1 to Class 5 network or the CCITT international network.]

High Band: In paging communications, that band of frequencies in the range of 150 MHz.

High Level Data Link Control (HDLC): A generic link-level communications protocol developed by the International Organization for Standardization (ISO). HDLC manages synchronous, code-transparent, serial information transfer over a link connection.

Holding Time: The total period a communications channel or facility is in use for each transmission, including both signaling and operating times.

Home Intercom: Acts as an internal for single line subscribers.

Home page: A World Wide Web document. Home page often refers to a person or organization’s main Web page, which provides links to other pages within the person or organization’s Web site.

Hop: A single trunk line between two switches in a frame relay network. An established PVC consists of a certain number of hops, spanning the distance from the ingress access interface to the egress access interface within the network.

Host Computer: A communications device that enables users to run applications programs to perform such functions as text editing, program execution, access to data bases, etc.

Hypertext: Text that links one document to another.

Holy war: An endless debate often carried on over newsgroup message threads. Such debates usually center on fundamental issues of faith for which there is no chance of resolution. For example: Can the starship Enterprise go faster than warp 10? Yes it can. No, it can’t. Yes it can,…and so on.

html: Hypertext Markup Language. The coding language of the World Wide Web.

http: HyperText Transfer Protocol. The set of rules that govern the transfer of most documents traveling over the Web. It’s also the beginning of URL addresses on the World Wide Web. For example, The New York Times URL is http://www.nytimes.com.

Hunting: (1) Automatic routing of calls to an idle circuit in a prearranged group when the circuit called is busy. (2) The movement of a call as it progresses through a group of lines. Typically, the call will try to be connected on the first line of the group; if that line is busy it will try the second, then the third, etc.

 

 

I

Implementation Rate Design (IRD): This California Public Utilities Commission (CPUC) order, expected to be effective 1/1/95, will allow intraLATA competition and Centrex resale in California.

Inactivated: A pager that still has a phone number assigned but that cannot be dialed is inactive. This is done in the paging terminal. When the pager number is called, a busy signal is heard.

InFlexion: High-speed paging protocol that allows two-way transmission of both data and voice.

Inforad: Multi-platform paging software.

Ingress: Frame relay frames from an access device toward the frame relay network. Contrast with Egress.

Integrated Services Digital Networks: ISDN offers the capability to transmit voice and data simultaneously over the same line.

In-band Signaling: (1 ) A type of transmission using an alternate current (AC) signal (usually 2,600 Hz) within the normal voice band. (2) An audible signal transmitted end-to-end on a long voice circuit without intermediate signaling equipment; requires that signaling equipment be arranged for “tone on when idle” operation. Input/output (I/O channel) -1) A general term for equipment used to communicate with a computer. (2) The process of transmitting information from an external source to the computer, or from the computer to an external source. (3) Buffer area for the temporary storage of data.

Integrated Digital Loop Carrier (lDLC): Network terminating equipment which derives multiple voice grade equivalent access lines from high capacity transport facilities.

Integrated Services Digital Network (ISDN): A switched network providing end-to-end digital connectivity for the simultaneous transmission of voice, data, video, imaging and fax over several multiplexed communications channels. Employs high-speed, out-of-band signaling protocols that conform to international standards. Since signaling and communications are separate, the configuration reduces network blockage and provides faster connectivity for users.

Intercept: To stop a telephone call placed to an improper number and redirect that call to an operator or a recording.

Interconnect: (1) Arrangement that permits the connection of customer’s telecommunications equipment to a common carrier network. (2) Industry name for manufacturers, excluding AT&T and Bell companies, who provide telephone premises equipment.

Interexchange (IX): Services or channels furnished between one or more rate centers or local and long distance carriers.

Interexchange Carrier (IXC): A provider of long distance service.

Interexchange Mileage: The airline mileage between two cities. Synonym: Long Haul Mileage.

Interface: (1) A hardware and software link between two devices. (2) The junction or point of interconnection between two systems of equipment having different characteristics. For example, a computer card that allows users to transmit data using a variety of telecommunications modes.

Interface Device: Provides the interface between the end device(s) and a frame relay network by encapsulating the user’s native protocol in frame relay frames and sending the frames across the frame relay backbone.

Interference: (1) Unwanted noise, crosstalk or signal deviations on communications channels that result from natural or man-made occurrences. (2) Anything not properly a part of the signal or call being transmitted.

InterLATA: Any connection or call that originates in one LATA and terminates in another.

Intermachine truck (IMT): Circuit which connects two automatic switching centers.

Interoffice truck (lOT): A direct link between local exchange offices.

IntraLATA: Any connection that originates and terminates within the boundaries of a single LATA.

Intrastate: (1) Activity occurring within one state. (2) Any connection made that originates and terminates within the boundaries of a single state.

Internet: The international network of networks. The Internet came into being between the late 1970s and early 1980s with the development and adoption of TCP/IP. TCP/IP allowed ARPAnet to join with other networks.  Although often thought of as synonymous with the World Wide Web, the Internet encompasses much more than just Web servers and hypertext documents. The Internet includes all of the computers that are linked to it on its various networks and all of the systems used to exchange information between those computers, including Gopher, Telnet, FTP and WAIS.

Interrupt: To disconnect all pagers on an account for non-payment.

IP: Internet Protocol. The network layer for the TCP/IP protocol suite.  A connection-less, best-effort, packet-switching protocol.

IP Address: Internet Protocol address. Every machine on the Internet has a unique IP address which consists of four parts separated by dots (for example: 204.146.46.8). If a machine does not have an IP address it’s not officially on the Internet.

IPT Key: The data connection between the CIS processor and the paging terminal.

IRC: (Internet Relay Chat) – A multi-user chat program. Around the world, many IRC servers are linked to each other. Anyone using these servers can create a “channel,” an area for text messages that can be viewed by users with access to that channel.

ISDN: (Integrated Services Digital Network) – A network that moves more data faster over phone lines. ISDN is quickly becoming available in most of the U.S. It can move data at speeds of up to 128,000 bits-per-second.

IVRU: Interactive Voice Response Unit. A unit that allows you to perform specific tasks using a telephone touch tone keypad or voice recognition.

 

 

J

Jack: A connecting device having springs, which make electrical contact with mating contacts of a plug.

Java: A computer language that allows users to add animation, moving text and interactive games to a Web site. Designed by Sun Microsystems, Java works on a variety of computer systems such as Windows, Macintosh and Unix. Netscape Navigator incorporated Java into the latest version of its Web browser.

JPEG: jpeg, jpg (pronounced JAY-peg). A standardized method of compressing image files created by the Joint Photographic Experts Group. JPEG images are widely used on the World Wide Web. However, some Web browsers do not support the format, and therefore will not display JPEG images.  JPEG can also refer to images compressed with the JPEG format.

 

 

K

Key System-A: telecommunications system with multi-button telephone sets on which more than one outside line terminates, allowing several people to answer or use more than one line. [All hardware is typically located on subscriber premises.]

Key Telephone Set: A multi-button phone used in a key system.

Kbps: Kbps represents “thousands of bits per second”, usually used to describe bandwidth or bit rate.

 

 

L

LAN: (pronounced LAN – as in “land”) – Local Area Network. A computer network that’s located in a concentrated area like a building or floor.

LAN Protocols: A range of LAN protocols supported by a frame relay network, including Transmission Control Protocol/Internet Protocol (TCP/IP), Apple Talk, Xerox Network System (XNS), Internetwork Packet Exchange (IPX), and Common Operating System used by DOS-based Bcs.

LAN Segment: In the context of a frame relay network supporting LAN-to-LAN communications, a LAN linked to another LAN by a bridge. Bridges enable two LANs to function like a single, large LAN by passing data from one LAN segment to another. To communicate with each other, the bridged LAN segments must use the same native protocol.

LCD: Liquid Crystal Display. The “screen” of the pager where messages are displayed.

Least Cost Routing (LCR): Method for automatic selection of the least costly facility for transmission of a call. Synonyms: Most Economical Route Selection (MERS); Route Optimization; Automatic Route Selection; Flexible Route Selection.

Leased Line: Any communication channel leased for exclusive use from a common carrier. Synonym: private line.

Lightwave Communications: The use of light as the primary medium in an actual application. [Lightwave communications is sometimes used in place of “optical” to avoid confusion with image transmissions such as facsimile or television.] See fiber optics.

Limited-Distance Modem: (1) A short-haul modem or line driver. [Since line conditions can be better controlled over short distances, some limited-distance modems operate at higher speeds than modems that are designed for use over analog telephone facilities.]

Line Conditioning: Adjustment and control of the properties of a leased line to bring its characteristics within specified tariff limits; generally improves the frequency response and delay considerations of the line. [Line conditioning services provided by telephone carriers are designated as Type C or D (example C1,C2orC4)j

Line Loading: Use of electrical components to improve the response characteristics of a communications line.

Link: Links are the wireless connections between satellites and satellite ground transmitters or receivers, or between paging terminals and transmitters.

Link Access Procedure Balanced (LAPB): The balanced-mode, enhanced, version of HDLC. Used in X.25 packet-switching networks. Contrast with LAPD.

Link Access Procedure on the D-channel (LAPD): A protocol that operates at the data link layer (layer 2) of the OSI architecture. LAPD is used to convey information between layer 3 entities across the frame relay network. The D-channel carries signaling information for circuit switching. Contrast with LAPB.

Local Access and Transport Area (LATA): A geographical area designated by the FCC for the provision and administration of telephone service to individual customers; designated exchanges group to serve common social and economic communities of interest.

Local Area Network (LAN): An interconnecting system of multiple terminals, workstations, programs, storage and graphic devices within a relatively small geographic area.

Local Coverage Area: Coverage in local metropolitan areas as identified by npa/nxx data.

Local Distribution Area (LDA): An area that includes the rate centers (NXXs) served by an originating city.

Local Exchange Carrier (LEC): (1 ) Provider of local telephone service. (2) The provider of service within a LATA.

Local Loop: (1) The communications lines/services between the telephone subscriber and the LEG switching center. (2) The local connection between the end user and Class 5 central office or end office.

Local Management Interface (LMI): The original interim management protocol, uses DLCI 1023.

Lockbox: The ability to receive all customer payments in one location and post the funds to the appropriate accounts in their local office.

Login: An ID or name used to access a computer system.

Loop Back-A: Method of performing transmission tests on a circuit which does not require the assistance of personnel at the distant end.

Low Band: In paging communications, that band of frequencies near 35 and 44 MHz.

 

 

M

M Main Distribution Frame (MDF): A steel bar framework that is the major cross connect point for COs and TOCs. Used to interconnect loop cable pairs and line equipment terminals on a switching system. Synonym: Main Frame.

Mail Drop: An option available which allows the pager to keep track of several variable messages (for example stock quotes and commodity prices) by assigning each its own address and specific slot in memory. You are informed of the most current information in the special maildrop location. You can check your messages at your leisure, since the maildrop message is renewed periodically and silently.

Mailing list: A subject-specific automated e-mail system that’s also known as a listproc, listserve or majordomo. Users subscribe to it and via e-mail they receive information about the subject of the list and postings about the topic from other list subscribers.

Main PBX: A small, local telephone office or a device with the same functionality directly connected to a tandem switch via an access trunk group.

Marketing Materials: Fulfillment materials such as welcome letters, maps, and information packets.

Mean Time to Repair (MTTR): The average time required to restore a customer’s service after a network failure.

Measured Service: A rating methodology whereby subscribers pay an established rate per minute for each minute of use or pay an established rate per call.

Megahertz: A frequency measurement in millions of cycles per second. 1 mHz = one million cycles per second.

Mem-O-Lert Deferred Paging: The exclusive standard Motorola Mem-O-Lert deferred paging memory feature enables a page to be received without sounding an alert when it might disturb a meeting. At a later time, depressing a switch retrieves stored messages.

Message Protection: In certain Motorola display pager, important messages can be protected in memory until you turn off the pager. New messages will not overwrite protected messages.

Message Telephone System (MTS): (1) Generic name for the switched long distance service offered by all inter-exchange carriers. (2) An offering for which a charge is made in accordance with a measured amount of usage referred to as message units. Also referred to as Measured Telephone Service or Direct Distance Dialing (DDD).

Message Unit (MU): Standard against which charges for messages are measured based on time and distance.

Microwave: Any electromagnetic wave in the radio frequency spectrum above 890 megahertz.

Mil: (pronounced MILL) – A domain name suffix denoting an abbreviation for military. In Internet addresses, mil indicates a site belonging to a military branch or organization.

MiniMail: A voice mail package offering the minimum amount of service at a minimum cost.

Modem: (pronounced MOE-dim) – Shortened form of “modulator-demodulator.” A device that allows computers to communicate with each other via telephone lines, cellular signals or television cables. To send information from one computer to another, a modem converts digital signals from a computer into analog signals that can be sent over telephone lines. On the receiving end, the modem converts the analog signals back into digital ones that can be understood by the computer.

Most Economical Route Selection (MERS): Method for automatic selection of the least costly facility for transmission of a call. Synonym: least cost routing

MPEG, mpeg, mpg: (pronounced EM-peg) – A standard for compressing video images developed by the Motion Picture Experts Group. Video clips on the World Wide Web are sometimes available in MPEG format; however, video clips are more often found in AVI and QuickTime formats.

MUD: (pronounced like the word “mud”) – Multi-User Dungeon. An online role-playing game similar to Dungeons and Dragons. Normally text-based, Multi-User Dungeons allow numerous to people play and interact in the same game scenario at the same time.

Multidrop Line: Communications link with more than one terminal or station connected to it.

Multiplex: (1) To interleave or simultaneously transmit two or more messages on a single channel. (2) A communications arrangement where multiple devices share a common transmission channel, though only one may transmit at a time.

Multiplexer: Hardware device that allows handling of multiple variable speed signals over a single, higher speed channel.

Multiplexing: Process or equipment that combines data from two or more individual circuits onto a higher speed circuit for transmission. Two methods are used: (1) Frequency division where all channels are transmitted at the same time. (2) Time division where several messages timeshare a channel.

Multipoint: (1) Line or channel connecting more than two different service points. (2) Circuit having points served by three or more switches.

Mux: [Abbreviation for multiplexing] The process or equipment for combining a number of paths into a single path or bit stream for transmission.

 

 

N

NABER: National Association of Business and Educational Radio. A trade association which represents the rights and needs of the two-way radio licensees in the Business Radio Service.

Nationwide Coverage Area: An option which offers coverage in most metropolitan areas in the United States.

NDM: Network Data Mover. Former name of a software product from Sterling Commerce, now know as CONNECT: Direct.

Net: An abbreviation for “network.” In Internet addresses, net indicates a computer network service. When capitalized, Net is used as a slang term for the Internet.

Netscape Navigator: A Web browser that’s widely used because of its speed and easy interface.

Netiquette: (pronounced NET-I-ket or –kit) – Internet etiquette. The unofficial standard that govern behavior on the Internet. The rules of netiquette are sometimes obscure and are usually learned only through experience.

Network: A hardware/software system that allows two or more computers to be connected so they share resources.

Network Layer: The logical network entity that services the transport layer in the OSI model. It is responsible for ensuring that data passed to it from the transport layer is routed and delivered through the network.

Network Topology: (1) Describes the physical and logical relationship of nodes in a network. (2) The schematic arrangement of the links and nodes of a network, typically either a star, ring, tree or bus topology, or some hybrid combination thereof.

Newbie: (pronounced NEW-be) – A new Internet user. As used by more experienced Internet users, newbie usually carries derogatory connotations. Newbies are often faulted for not knowing netiquette.

Newsgroup: A broad grouping of online discussion groups. Newsgroups are the Internet equivalent of BBSs. Most newsgroups are distributed through USENET.

Nickel-Cadmium: A rechargeable battery type used with rechargeable pagers.

900 MHz: In paging communications, that band of frequencies in the range of 930 MHz.

NNX (Network Numbering Exchange): Former three-digit location code which represented a central office. Now in NXX form, the available number of CO codes has been increased by permitting 0 and 1 as second digits in some circumstances. (See NXX.)

Node: (1) In network topology, a terminal of any branch of a network or a terminal common to two or more branches of a network. (2) In a switched network, the switching points, including patch and control facilities. (3) In a data network, the location of a data station which interconnects data transmission lines. (4) A point in a standing wave at which the amplitude is at a minimum. Synonyms: junction point, nodal point, vertex, null.

Noise: (1) Unplanned energy introduced onto a communications path, resulting in transmission errors. Undesirable signals bearing no desired information. (2) The unpredictable difference between the observed data and the true process.

Non-Wireline Carriers: A company that provides common carrier communications but is not a telephone company (i.e. wireline carrier). Primarily used to describe the cellular system operator in a city that competes with the local phone company’s cellular system.

NPA (Numbering Plan Area): A geographical boundary within which no two telephones will have the same seven-digit number. “N” is any number between two and nine, “P” is always one or zero, and “A” is any number excluding zero. (2) Area code.

NPA NXX: Numbering Plan Area. Area Code with the numbering convention of N (any number 2 to 9) X (any number).

NPCS: Narrowband Personal Communication Services. Refers to the methodology of gaining more channels and more capacity by splitting the FM channels into channels that are narrower in bandwidth.

Number Retention Service (NRS): Also known as Main Number Retention service (MNR) and Number Retention Service Forwarded (NRSF) A LEG service where a customer’s important, published phone numbers (most often their main business telephone number and fax numbers) are retained when a customer moves from “plain old telephone service” (POTS) to Centrex service.

Numeric Overdial Number: A common number used by all customers to access a paging terminal. When used, the caller must also enter a PIN (see PIN NUMBER) in order to access to user’s pager.

Numeric Paging: The pager receives and displays a series of numbers that were entered by the caller from a touch-tone telephone.

Numeric Retrieval: An optional feature giving the user the ability to call and check the last fifteen numeric messages. Numeric messages are stored in the paging terminal and can be accessed by the user with a special code. Useful for customers who frequently travel outside the covered area or for customers who wish to turn their pager off when not being used.

NXX (Network Numbering Exchange): An American Central Office Code where N is a digit 2 through 9, and X is a digit 0 through 9 (Note: as of January 1995, digits other than 1 or 0 may occupy this position). Previously in NNX form, the available number of codes has now been increased by permitting 0 and 1 as second digits in some circumstances (previously their use was restricted to NPA codes).

 

 

O

OCC: Other Common Carriers. An FCC term used to group communications companies other than those who fit into Wireline Common Carriers (WCC) and Radio Common Carriers (RCC). A discount long distance service is an OCC.

Off-Hook: (1) Condition existing when the receiver or handset is removed from its switchhook. (2) The active state (closed loop) of a single telephone or PBX line loop.

Off-Line: (1) Condition that exists when devices or subsystems are not connected into, do not form a part of and/or are not subject to the same controls as an operational system. (2) A device which is not permanently connected to the processor or to external circuits.

Off-Network Access Line (ONAL): (1 ) A connection from a private switched network to the public switched network. (2) The connection provided by a carrier and used in common by subscribers to enter and/or exit from the switched network.

Off-Premises Extension (OPX): Peripheral PBX equipment located in a building other than the one housing the PBX itself.

On Hook: (1) Condition existing when the receiver or handset is resting on the switchhook. (2) The idle state (open loop) of a single telephone or PBX line loop.

Operating System: Software that controls the management and execution of programs.

Operator Assisted Calls: Direct distance dialing (ODD) calls which require and receive help by telephone company operators. (2) Person-to-person, collect calls, calling card calls from rotary phones, etc.

Org: (pronounced ORG) – A domain name suffix denoting an abbreviation for organization. Internet sites which don’t fall into any other category are given the domain name of org. Org usually indicates that the site belongs to a non-profit, non-governmental organization.

Original Equipment Manufacturer (OEM): (1 ) Producer of a product made for assembly into a final system or larger subassembly by another.

Other Common Carriers (OCC): Specialized common carriers, domestic or international record carriers and domestic satellite carriers engaged in providing private line services (voice, data, audio or video) as authorized by the FCC.

Out-of-Band: (1) Any entity outside an assigned range, scope, or magnitude. (2) Any frequency outside the spectrum used for voice.

Out-of-Band Signaling: Use of a separate data link which is not in the voice circuit to transmit call set-up and AMI information from carrier to carrier, or from carrier to customer.

Outage: (1) Any disruption of service. (2) The point at which a customer releases a circuit for repair, lasting until the circuit is returned to the customer in working condition.

Overflow: (1) Switching equipment which operates when the traffic load exceeds the capacity of the regular equipment. (2) Traffic which is handled on overflow equipment. (3) Traffic which exceeds switching capacity and is lost. (4) The carry digit in a digital computer. (5) Intermediate message storage which serves as an extension of in-transit storage to preclude system saturation; an example, magnetic tape.

 

 

P

P Factor: Grade of service which describes the percentage of blocked calls. For example, P.10 means that 10 percent of all calls were blocked; P.01 means that 1 percent of all calls were blocked.

Packet: A group of fixed-length binary digits, including the data and call control signals, that are transmitted through an X.25 packet-switching network as a composite whole. The data, call control signals, and possible error control information are arranged in a predetermined format. Packets do not always travel the same pathway but are arranged in proper sequence at the destination side before forwarding the complete message to an addressee. Contrast with Frame Relay Network.

Packet Assembler/Disassembler (PAD): (1) A non-adjustable resistance network used to insert transmission loss into a circuit. (2) To fill a block with dummy data, usually zeros or blanks.

PACT Protocol: High-speed paging protocol that allows two-way transmission of both data and voice. Created by Lucent Technologies. A voice-messaging system that uses the same phone number as your pager. The system invites a caller to leave a voice message, automatically pages you, and allows you to retrieve your messages from touch tone phone.

PageMail: A voice mail package offering the most widely used voicemail features

PageMail Plus: An extended voice mail package offering the user an extended retention time.

Pager: A wireless device that operates through radio frequencies to intercept and display coded information.

Pager Protection Plan: Limits user’s liability for the pager when it is lost, stolen, or damaged beyond repair (for leased pager only).

Paging Format: same as Format.

Paging Terminal: A computer that receives information through a phone line, then processes and encloses the information and sends it to the transmitters. In addition to this term, you might also hear the paging terminal referred to as just a terminal.

Parameter: A numerical code that controls an aspect of terminal and/or network operation. Parameters control such aspects as page size, data transmission speed, and timing options.

Pass-Through Charges: Includes all recurring telecommunications vendors’ flat fees as well as one-time charges, such as installation, adds, moves and changes.

Permanent Virtual Circuit (PVC): A frame relay logical link, whose endpoints and class of service are defined by network management. Analogous to an X.25 permanent virtual circuit, a PVC consists of the originating frame relay network element address, originating data link control identifier, terminating frame relay network element address, and termination data link control identifier. Originating refers to the access interface from which the PVC is initiated. Terminating refers to the access interface at which the PVC stops. Many data network customers require a PVC between two points. Data terminating equipment with a need for continuous communications uses PVC’s.

Personal Identification Number (PIN): The last two digits of an authorization code that identify the caller.

PBX Trunk: Connects a customer’s PBX to another PBX, central office (CO), remote CO or Sprint switch. (See private branch exchange).

PCMIA: Personal Computer Memory Card International Association. A standard for peripheral ports which are credit card sized packages for memory and input/output (modems, LAN card, etc.) for computers, laptops, palmtops, etc.

PCS: Personal Communication Services. A new lower-powered, higher-frequency, digital, competitive technology to cellular.

PDA: Personal Digital Assistant. Looks like a palmtop, but only performs specific tasks (electronic diary, personal database, pager, memo taker, etc.).

Personal 888 Number: Toll-free phone number assigned to the customer’s pager with the area code 888.

PIC: Primary Interexchange Carrier – a subscriber’s primary service provider for local, intraLATA and/or interLATA calls.

PIN: A Pager Identification Number. PINs are used by customers who dial the same 800 number (known as a numeric overdial number), then enter the PIN in order to send a message to the correct pager.

PIN Overdial/Overdial Number: The main phone number dialed to allow you to put in a PIN number or access number.

Plan Codes: Codes defined for the different paging features purchased. Also known as package code.

POCSAG: Post Office Code Standardization Advisory Group. A paging format developed in Great Britain that offered faster pager information processing than the then-standard Golay (see Golay). POCSAG was widely used because it existed in the public domain (no royalty fees).

Point-Of-Presence (POP): The physical location within a LATA (local access and transport area) where an inter-exchange carrier’s circuits connect with the lines of the local telephone company serving that LATA.

Point-to-Point Circuit: A private communications link between two terminations which does not connect with a public telephone system.

Port: A port is actually an access that allow interconnection of peripheral equipment to a computer system. An RS 232 port on a paging terminal, for example, will allow you to interconnect to a computer system for billing or other data.

Portable: A small hand-held FM radio capable of two-way communications.

Postal, Telephone and Telegraph (PTT): International administration, usually government controlled, which manages and operates postal and telecommunications services outside the United States. Typically a monopoly operation.

PPP: Point-to-Point Protocol. A protocol that allows a computer to use a telephone line and modem to connect to the Internet. It’s an alternative to a SLIP connection.

Priority Paging: Any address in the BRAVO Numeric Display Pager and the PMR 2000 Personal Message Receiver can be designated as a “priority address.” This “priority” designation overrides the silent condition.

Private Automatic Branch Exchange (PABX): Small, local, automatic telephone office system serving extensions in a business complex and providing access to the public network.

Private Automatic Exchange (PAX): Small, local, automatic telephone office system, normally serving extensions in a business complex, typically without external lines to the public network.

Private Branch Exchange (PBX): Small, local telephone office system – either manually or automatically operated – serving extensions in a business complex and providing access to the public domain.

Private Line: (1) A point-to-point telephone line for the exclusive use of one party. (2) A leased, owned or otherwise dedicated channel.

Pro Wireless Software: Windows-compatible paging software.

Processor: A key element in the paging terminal which helps to determine the format and speed at which the terminal operates.

Protocol: A set of formalized conventions governing the format and relative timing of message exchange in a communications network.

Protocol Conversion: Process of translating communications formats and timing, which would otherwise be incompatible, into messages understood by the network. Performed by a dedicated device, a software package loaded onto an existing system or by a value-added (intelligent) network.

PT: Paging Terminal. The paging data controller which sends out the paging message to the proper capcode address.

Public Switched Network (PSN): Any switching system that provides a circuit switched to many customers.

Public Telephone Service: Public telephone lines are available specifically to provide network access to privately owned public telephones.

Public Utility Commission (PUC): A regulatory authority at the state level.

PUC: The Public Utility Commission. A state regulatory agency that, in some states, has jurisdiction over communications services.

Pulse Code Modulation (PCM): Method of sampling information signals at regular intervals and transmitting the samples as a series of pulses in coded form which represent the amplitude of the information signal at that time.

Pulse Modulation: Method of varying the amplitude, frequency or phrase of information-bearing signals into a series of pulses. Typical methods involve modifying the amplitude (PAM), width or duration (PDM) or position (PPM). The most common pulse modulation technique in telephone work is pulse code modulation (PCM).

 

 

Q

Q.922 Annex A (Q.922A): The international draft standard that defines the structure of frame relay frames. Based on the Q.922A frame format developed by the CCITT. All frame relay frames entering a frame relay network automatically conform to this structure. Contrast with Link Access Procedure Balanced (LAPB).

Q.922A Frame: A variable-length unit of data, formatted in frame-relay (Q.922A) format, that is transmitted through a frame relay network as pure data (i.e., it contains no flow control information). Contrast with Packet.

QuickTime: A video compression standard developed by Apple. The Quicktime standard is one of the most popular formats for video clips on the World Wide Web.

 

 

R

Radio Common Carriers (RCCs): Licensed independent radio paging and mobile telephone companies that provide FCC authorized communications services solely through the use of radio signals.

Radio Frequency: see Frequency.

Rain Fade: A natural interference with satellite reception due to unusually high precipitation.

Random Access Memory (RAM): Portion of a computer storage which can be accessed non-sequentially and is considered the working memory.

RAS: Remote Access Server – a network server that enables and authenticates dial-up access to a LAN in order to access LAN services such as e-mail and Internet access.

Rate Center: Specific geographic location used by LECs to determine interchange mileage for rate determination purposes. [The rate center for an exchange is generally a centrally located point within the exchange area.]

RBOC: Regional Bell Operating Company. Any of the smaller telephone companies that resulted from the breakup of AT&T in the early 1980’s. Examples are: Southwestern Bell, Bell South, Bell Atlantic, NYNEX, Ameritech, and Pac*Tel.

RCC: Radio Common Carrier. A licensed independent radio signal provider authorized by the FCC to provide communication services through the use of radio waves. RCCs are licensed for particular coverage areas.

Read Only Memory (ROM): Portion of computer memory which is programmed electrically by the manufacturer, is unchangeable and is unaffected by a power loss.

Real-time ANI: Delivery of automatic number identification (either the full phone number of the calling party or the NPA & NXX) simultaneously with the call. ANI is used by telephone companies for routing and billing.

Recrystallize: A process whereby the pager crystal is removed and replaced with a crystal on the desired frequency. Used by many smaller paging companies to encourage users to switch to their service.

Reconnect: To restore service to a pager or account that has been interrupted due to non-payment.

Redundancy: (1 ) Duplicate standby equipment or facilities that are activated to insure continuous service or minimize the effect of equipment malfunctions. (2) A repetition of information. (3) Insertion of information which is not new (example: the use of check bits and check characters in data communication.)

ReFlexion: There are two versions of ReFlexion:

ReFlexion 25 – Transmits at 25 kbs

ReFlexion 50 – Transmits at 50kbs.

Regional Bell Operating Company (RBOC): The seven holding companies into which the 22 Bell System local telephone companies were assigned at divestiture: Pacific Telesis, U.S. West, Southwestern Bell Corp., Ameritech, BellSouth, Bell Atlantic, NYNEX.

Regional Coverage: Customers can be provided with coverage in one or two regional areas. The regions include: northeast, southeast, atlantic, central, southern, northwest, and southwest.

Re-homing: network change which involves moving customer services from one switching center to another and establishing the necessary trunking facilities to do so.

Reinstate: see Reconnect.

Remote Access: (1 ) PABX feature that allows a user at a remote location to access PABX features by telephone (for example, WATS lines); individual authorization codes are usually required. (2) Ability of transmission points to gain access to a computer which is at a different location.

Repeat Dialing: The telephone number associated with the last call placed may be automatically redialed. This feature may be activated before another outgoing call is placed.

Repeater: (1) A device which serves as an interface between circuits, receiving signals from one circuit and transmitting them to the other. (2) A one- or two-way device which amplifies an input signal for retransmission. (3) A device that amplifies, reshapes, re-times or performs a combination of these functions on an input pulse for retransmission.

Reminder Chirp: The BRAVO Numerical Display pager will emit a “chirp” every two minutes when there are unread messages. When the pager’s unread memory is full the reminder chirp will accelerate to once every fifteen seconds. If the pager is equipped with vibrate, a reminder vibrate will be emitted. This feature can be optioned out in the code plug.

Remote Call Forwarding: This service allows subscribers to have their calls forwarded to another number automatically at a predesignated time and to a predesignated number, or when programmed by the user. The service is useful when the subscriber wishes to receive calls at locations other than the location where the subscriber’s telephone number has been assigned. The subscriber may invoke and/or program this feature remotely.

Remote Programming: The ability for the carrier to program a pager into the paging terminal when away from the terminal location.

Resale Carrier: Company which leases circuits or services from a major carrier and resells them to individual users.

Retention Time: The amount of time a voicemail message will be stored. Retention times vary according to the parameters set in the paging terminal and the voicemail package selected by the customer (see MiniMail, PageMail, PageMail Plus).

Return Box: Box sent to a customer to use in order to return a pager. Box is shipped with a return label.

Return Envelope: Envelope sent to a customer to use in order to return a pager. Envelope is shipped with a box that the customer has to assemble and a return label.

Return Label: Label shipped to a customer t use on either a return box or return envelope. Label contains the distribution center’s address and pre-paid postage.

RF: Radio Frequency – see Frequency.

RF Link: Wireless low-frequency link between the paging terminal and the transmitter.

Response Time: The time interval that occurs between the caller hanging up and the pager going off.

Ringback: Signal used by the operator at the receiving end of an established connection to recall an operator at originating end. Synonym: Audible Ringing Tone

Ringdown: A circuit or a method of signaling where the incoming signal is actuated by alternating current over the circuit.

Rotary Dial: A mechanism having a 10-hole finger wheel which when wound and released causes pulsing contacts to interrupt the line current and operate the central office selecting equipment in accordance with the digit dialed.

Rotary Hunt: Method in which incoming calls seek out an idle circuit in a prearranged multi-circuit group and find the next open line to establish a through circuit.

Route Advance: Feature of Sprint 800 Service which automatically assigns an alternate communications path when the primary path is busy; calls are routed to DDD lines.

Route Optimization: Method for automatic selection of the least costly facility for transmission of a call. Synonym: Least Cost Routing.

Router: A device that supports LAN-to-LAN communications. Routers may be equipped to provide frame relay support to the LAN devices they serve. A frame-relay-capable router encapsulates LAN frames in frame relay frames and feeds those frame relay frames to a frame relay switch for transmission across the network. A frame-relay-capable router also receives frame relay frames from the network, strips the frame relay frame off each frame to product the original LAN frame, and passes the LAN frame on to the end device. Routers connect multiple LAN segments to each other or to a WAN. Routers route traffic on the Level 3 LAN protocol.

 

 

S

Satellite Link: The satellite transmission equipment (satellite uplink), the actual satellite, and the satellite signal receiving equipment (satellite downlink).

SCA: Sub Carrier Authorization. Sub carriers are portions of a commercial radio station’s primary frequency allocation normally used to transmit Musak or similar limited service transmission. The FCC has authorized FM radio stations to sell paging services using these SCA frequencies.

Scheme: The baud rate of a pager (P = 512, R = 1200, T = 2400, and X = Flex).

Search engine: A mechanism for finding documents on the Internet. For example. WAIS, Yahoo and Alta Vista are search engines.

Selective Signaling: The use of electrical pulses or tones to select which pagers(s) will receive transmissions within a radio paging system.

Semi-Duplex Operation: A method which is simplex operation at one end of the circuit and duplex operation at the other.

Serial Number: Series of numbers and letters on equipment used for identification and inventory tracking.

Server: A computer system that manages and delivers information to users. One server can have several different software programs running on it.

Service Group: One or more access lines (DAL or T1) used to terminate calls from one or more 800 service numbers; a group of lines built as one trunk group from a DMS-250 switch. A call placed to an 800 number routed to that trunk group can be completed on any of the lines in that trunk group.

Severely Errored Second (SES): One-second interval where the bit error ratio (BER) exceeds 10

Shielded Pair: Two insulated wires in a cable wrapped with metallic braid or foil to prevent signal interference and provide noise-free transmission.

Signature file: A footer added to the bottom of e-mail messages.

Silent Alert: A pager option that eliminates the “beeping.” On some pagers a vibrating mode may be selected. On some pagers a vibrating mode or a non-alert mode may be selected.

Simplex: One-way data transmission, with no capability for changing direction.

Simplex Operation: Refers to a “push-to-talk” single frequency mobile radio communications system; you can either talk or listen but you cannot do both simultaneously.

Simulcasting: The simultaneous transmitting of a paging signal from all transmitters in a given area. Eliminates the possibility of a pager getting two signals for the same message.

SLIP: (pronounced SLIP) – A protocol that allows a computer to use a telephone line and modem to connect to the Internet. It’s an alternative to a PPP connection.

Slow Busy Signal: Telephone lines are all in use. Callers receiving a slow busy should hang up and try the call again later.

SMR: Specialized Mobile Radio. A “private” trunked mobile radio system to which multiple users have access. A system owner bills out airtime usage to subscribers who have purchased their own vehicle radios The systems may be interconnected to the public telephone facilities. An internal network is formed by the subscribers and conversation can only take place between subscribers. Not a duplex system.

SMSA: Standard Metropolitan Statistical Area. A city of 50,000 or more population, together with the surrounding area a defined by the Census Bureau of the U.S. department of Commerce. Recently renamed MSA (Metropolitan Statistical Area).

Software: (1) Any of the routines, programs and instructions required to use computers. (2) A written statement of the procedures to be used and the format of the data at every step.

Spam: The act of spewing out large numbers of electronic messages via e-mail or newsgroups to people who don’t want to receive them. Spamming is considered a gross breach of netiquette. The term is believed to be derived from a Monty Python skit in which the word “spam” is repeated over and over again. Its relation to Spam, the much-maligned pork luncheon meat, is uncertain.

Speed Number: A one-, three- or four-digit number that replaces a seven- or ten-digit telephone number. Numbers programmed into a PBX, the switch in the carrier’s office, or individual smart telephones.

Speakerphone: Telephone equipped with a speaker and a microphone that allows hands-free conversation.

Speed Calling: Subscribers may program abbreviated dialing patterns to avoid having to dial several digits when dialing frequently called number.

Spectrum: A complete range of frequencies or wavelengths of electromagnetic waves that are divided among various types of users (i.e., common carrier, government, land mobile, maritime, amateur).

Standard Industrial Classification (SIC): U.S. government code that categorizes commercial enterprises. The first two digits place an organization in one of the 13 major groupings; two additional digits show the primary line of business and size.

Star-LAN: A local network design and specification within IEE 802.3 standards subcommittee; characterized by data transmission over two-pair, twisted-pair wiring.

Star Network: A network topology in which each station is connected only to a central station by a point-to-point link; all stations communicate through the central station.

Station Message Detail Recording (SMDR): A computer generated report showing internal usage on a telephone system; usually includes extension number, trunk number used, phone number dialed, time of call, duration and operator involvement.

Statistical Multiplexing: Interleaving the data input of two or more devices on a single channel or access line for transmission trough a frame relay network. Interleaving of data is accomplished using the DLCI.

Subscriber: The person(s) subscribing to a pager or mobile service.

Super POCSAG: see POCSAG.

Switch: An electronic device which opens or closes circuits, changes operating parameters or selects paths either on a space or time division basis.

Switched 56/64 kbps Data Transmission: Provides users with the end-to-end capability to transport high-speed data (up to 64 kbps) over the public network.

Switched Line: One of a series of lines that can be interconnected to all other lines through a switching center; a line on the public telephone network. Contrast with leased line.

Synchronization: Process of adjusting a receiving terminal or switch clock to match the transmitting system’s master clock.

Synchronous: Having a constant time interval between successive bits, characters or events. Synchronous transmission uses no redundant information (such as the start and stop bits in asynchronous transmission) to identify the beginning and end of characters; thus it is faster and more efficient than asynchronous transmission.

Synchronous Data Link Control (SDLC): A link-level communications protocol used in an International Business Machines (IBM) Systems Network Architecture (SNA) network that manages synchronous, code-transparent, serial information transfer over a link connection. SDLC is a subset of the more generic High-Level Data Link Control (HDLC) protocol developed by the International Organization for Standardization (ISO).

Syntax: Rules governing structure in a programming language. T1 – (1 ) A 1.544 circuit with the equivalent of 24 analog lines. (2) The basic 24-channel 1.544 Mbps pulse code modulation system used in the United States.

 

 

T

T-1: A phone line connection that can transfer data at 1.5 million bits-per-second. It I frequently used to connect LANs to the Internet.

T-3: A phone line connection that can carry data at 45 million bits-per-second. This is more than enough to do full-screen video.

Talk Back Paging: A service generally employing a small portable radio equipped to receive a page. The user can immediately respond with a short verbal message using the transmitter contained in the portable.

Tandem: A switching arrangement in which the trunk from the calling office is connected to a trunk at the called office through an intermediate point; serves to interconnect central offices when direct interoffice trunks are not available.

Tandem Switching: The use of an intermediate switch or switches to interconnect circuits from the switch of one serving central office to the switch of a second serving central office in the same exchange.

TAP: Telecator Alphanumeric Protocol. A seven-bit messaging protocol that allows message transfer from a computer to a pager.

Tariff: Regulated rate charged for paging by the PUC in some states.

Telco: Local telephone company; local exchange carrier.

Telecommunication Lines: Circuits, trunks cables and other links that are used to transmit messages from one location to another.

Telecommunications: The transmission of voice, video and/or data through a medium by means of electrical impulses; all aspects of electronic information transmittal.

Teleconference: Three or more people connected by telephone and capable of maintaining a continuous connection.

Telegraph: A device which interrupts or changes the poarity of DC current signaling to convey coded information.

TCP/IP: Transmission Control Protocol/Internet (working) Protocol. A standard set of rules which allows computers on different networks to communicate with one another. The Internet came into being with the development and adoption of TCP/IP.

TDP: Telecator Data Protocol. Eight-bit protocol for sending messages and binary files to a pager.

TELCO: Abbreviation for telephone company.

Telocator Network of America (TNA): The national trade association representing cellular and paging common carriers in the U.S. Associate members include mobile communications equipment manufactures and other industry professionals.

Telephone Relay Services: Telecommunications services to facilitate communications for the speech and hearing impaired, including translation services enabling communication between text and speaking callers.

Telemation: A cold-calling system developed by Database Systems used to market pagers.

Telnet: The Internet protocol which allows a computer at one location to connect with and act as a terminal of a computer at a different location. Unlike FTP which involves the transfer of files between computers, Telnet involves primarily the transfer of commands from the terminal emulator to the host computer and responses to those commands from the host to the terminal.  Telnet also refers to the terminal emulation programs which utilize Telnet protocol.

TERM: Short for terminate – meaning to discontinue or cancel service.

Terminal: see Paging Terminal.

Three Way Calling: (Custom Calling Feature) – This option enables calls to conference an additional party onto an existing call utilizing one line.

Tie-Line: A private line communications channel provided by communications common carriers that links two or more points together.

Time Division Multiplexing (TDM): (1 ) Sharing a single facility among several data paths by dividing up the channel capacity into time slices. (2) Equipment which enables the transmitting of signals over a single common path by transmitting them sequentially at different instants of time.

tn3270: A Telnet program and protocol used to log in to IBM mainframe computers.

TNPP: Telecator Network Paging Protocol. A protocol used to send page messages from terminal to terminal on LANs and WANs.

Token Ring: Local network access and topology in which a supervisory frame or token is passed from station to station in sequential order. Stations wishing to gain access to the network must wait for the token to arrive before transmitting data. In a token ring, the next logical station receiving the token is also the next physical station on the ring.

Toll Call: Any transmission on the public switched network to a point outside the local service area.

Toll Restriction: Prevents callers from placing toll calls from predetermined lines.

Tone Only Pager: An obsolete type of pager that did not contain a display screen.

Touch Tone: (1) Refers to DTMF signaling equipment. (2) Frequently used to describe telephone equipment with pushbuttons.

Traffic Overflow: Condition that occurs when the number of calls to be processed exceeds the capacity of a particular trunk group, and calls are redirected automatically or manually to another trunk group.

Transmitter: see Base Station.

Transmitter Site: The location of a paging transmitter. Can be on a tower on a plot of land or a location on a building. A transmitter site can contain numerous transmitters.

Trunk: (1 ) Group of circuits that carry call traffic in and out of the switch. (2) Circuit or channel connecting two exchanges or two switching devices. (3) Circuit capable of being switched at both ends and provided with the necessary terminating and signaling equipment. [Trunk differs from a line which is a circuit, one end of which does not terminate on a switching machine.]

Trunk Group: Arrangement of communications channels into an identical group.

Trunk Line: A communications line connecting two frame relay switches to each other.

TVI: Television Interference. Some lowband paging channels are very close to the frequencies used in TV receivers. TV viewers in the vicinity of the interfering transmitter may hear voice messages or beep signals come from their TC speakers, interfering with audio and distorting video.

Twitch Games: Action game requiring lightening-quick reaction times, dexterity and caveman intelligence.

Two-Tone: One of the early paging code formats utilizing two distinct tones transmitted in sequence.

Two-Way Circuit: (1) A circuit in which information signals in both directions are carried by the same two-wire path. (2) A short-distance channel using a single send-receive pathway, usually two copper wires, connecting a telephone to a switch.

TX: Abbreviation for Transmitter. Also know as XMTR.

 

 

U

UHF: Ultra High Frequency. In paging, those frequencies between 300 and 3000 mHz.

Unassigned: Pager that has no programming (i.e. no contact numbers assigned).

Uniform Call Distributor (UCD): Device located at the telephone office or with a PABX which distributes incoming calls evenly among stations or agents.

UNIX: A computer operating system that is designed to be used by many people at the same time. UNIX is the most widely-used operating system for servers on the Internet.

Uplink: The ground-to-satellite transmitter.

URL: (Uniform Resource Locator). This is the protocol for identifying documents on the Web. All Web addresses have a URL. For example, The New York Times is http://www.nytimes.com.

USENET: (pronounced USE-net). A world-wide system of thousands of discussion areas, called newsgroups, with comments from hundreds of thousands of users. Most Usenet machines are on the Internet.

 

 

V

Value Added Network (VAN): A public data communications network that provides basic transmission facilities (generally leased by the VAN vendor from a common carrier) plus additional, enhanced services such as computerized switching, temporary data storage, error detection and correction, electronic mail service and packet switching.

VHF: Very High Frequency. In paging, those frequencies between 30 and 300 mHz.

Vibra-Page Silent Alert: An optional feature available in most Motorola pagers. When the pager is placed in the “Silent” mode, a vibrating alert is provided instead of a beep.

Veronica: (Very Easy Rodent Oriented Net-wide Index to Computerized Archives). A frequently updated database with the name of almost every menu item on the thousands of gopher servers.

Very Severe Burst (VSB): Interval between 2.5 and 10 seconds in which the background error rate (BER) exceeds 10^; can alternatively be defined as three to ten consecutive severely errored seconds (SES).

Videoconferencing: Two-way telecommunications service with live transmission (pictures and speech) of conference participants transmitted between two or more locations.

Videotex: An interactive information network that enables a home user with a telephone line, a decoder and television to access a mainframe computer which then displays both text and graphic information.

Virtual Banding: (1) A means of assigning calls to bands determined by originating and terminating NPAs, rather than by assigned circuits. (2) A method of rating calls based on distance sensitive pricing developed for NPA-to-NPA pairs.

Visual Alert: Term used to describe a pager that signals with a blinking light.

VMPEGL: (Pronounced VEE EM-peg). An application for playing MPEG video files.

Voice Activation: Method in which spoken messages, rather than electrical signals from a telephone keypad, initiate call processing.

Voice Grade: (1) An access line suitable for voice, low-speed data, facsimile or telegraph service. (2) A line that generally has a frequency range of about 300 to 3000 Hz.

Voice-Grade Channel: Typically a telephone circuit used for voice communications and accommodating frequencies from 300 to 3000 Hz. Up to 10,000 Hz can be transmitted.

Voice Grade Facility (VGF): Circuit designed to DDD network standards, making it suitable for voice, low-speed data, facsimile or telegraph service.

Voice Mail: A voice mail option will enable local subscribers to have access to low cost voice mail services without the need to purchase equipment.

Voiceprint: (1) Technique for verifying an individual’s identity by his or her speech pattern. (2) An individually distinctive pattern of certain speech characteristics that can be mapped electromagnetically; the verbal equivalent of a fingerprint.

Voice Recognition: System of sound sensors that translate the tones of the human voice into computer commands to access or accomplish some service.

Voice Response Unit (VRU): Device that accepts a coded request for data, composes a coded response and interprets the coded response into locations of stores vocabulary as output.

Voice Storage: System designed to store voice paging messages on congested paging channels until the terminal can transmit.

VRML: (Virtual Reality Modeling Language) – A computer language that allows users to create three-dimensional programs. In a VRML application a user can click on any object to travel to another art of the program or to visit another Web page. It is pronounced VER-mull.

 

 

W

WAIS: (pronounced WAYS). Wide Area Information Service. A search engine that indexes large quantities of information and makes the indexes searchable.

Warm Line: A telephonic line which remains active exclusively for the purpose of contacting emergency services or the service provider when service is otherwise disconnected.

WATS Access Line (WAL): A line class marked as a WATS line, provided from an equal access end office. The WATS access line provides the same service and features as a normal business line (unless mixed interstate and intrastate usage is prohibited by the state regulatory body), but incurs access charges which are different from those incurred for a normal business line.

WAV: (pronounced WAVE). An audio file format.

Wide Area Coverage: see Extended Coverage.

Wide Area Telecommunications Service (WATS): A special direct distance dialing (toll) service whereby a subscriber installs a dedicated line arranged for either inward or outward calls (not both) between the customer’s premises and a specific geographic area. Monthly charges are based on the size of the area in which the calls are placed, not on the number or length of calls.

Web browser: A program used to navigate and access information on the World Wide Web. Web browsers convert raw html coding into a graphical display. Some browsers are also able to navigate Gopher sites, connect with FTP servers and display different types of image files.  Popular Web browsers include Netscape Navigator, Microsoft Internet Explorer and Mosaic.

Web goddess, webgoddess: A female Web master.

Web master, webmaster: The person in charge of maintaining the content found on a Web site, or of keeping the site up and running.

Web site: A collection of World Wide Web pages, usually consisting of a home page and several other linked pages.

Webzine: A magazine on the World Wide Web. See zines.

Wideband: Facilities or circuits where bandwidths are greater than that required for one voice channel.

Wire Center: Physical structure that houses one or more central office switching systems.

Wireline Common Carriers (WCCs): Telephone companies who provide communications utilizing wires. These include AT&T, the ell Operating Companies (BOC) and hundreds of independent telephone companies. WCCs can also provide FCC authorized radio paging and mobile telephone service.

Word: A group of bits, used to designate various information within a computer. An 8-bit word is called a byte.

World Wide Web: A system of finding and accessing Internet files and programs utilizing hypertext. The World Wide Web allows users to navigate the Internet by following links from documents on one computer to documents on others. The Web employs html, allowing files to be viewed in a graphical format.  The World Wide Web was developed by CERN in the early 1990s and has quickly become one of the most popular Internet applications.

WWW: See World Wide Web.

 

 

Z

Zinc/Air Battery: For use with some Motorola pagers. These batteries are available from Motorola. They have a longer shelf life than standard batteries since they are not activated until the tab affixed to them is removed.

 

 

X

X: A series of CCITT recommendations for data transmission over public data networks.

X.21: A CCITT recommendation which specifies a general purpose interface between data circuit-terminating equipment for synchronous operation on public data networks.

X,25: A CCITT recommendation which specifies an interface between data terminal equipment for terminals operating in the packet mode on public data network. Typically used for burst data applications.

X.25: A packet-switching protocol widely used over TCP/IP networks. Packet switched services are rapidly being replaced by Frame Relay networks.

XMTR: An abbreviation for transmitter.

 

 

Y

Yahoo: A popular Internet search engine, used in conjunction with the Internet World Wide Web application. It is used to locate web sites hosting information or services that users of browsers such as Netscape or Internet Explorer have an interest in.

 

 

Z

Zine: Short for magazine. Generally, zones have a narrower focus, a stronger personality and a lower circulation than traditional magazines.

Zones: The contents of a contiguous section of domain space, usually bounded by administrative boundaries as specified by the IETF Request for Comment process (RFC 1033 and as modified by subsequent RFC’s).

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