CATV. See CATV.
The type of cable used. Also called the media. Examples are coaxial, UTP (Unshielded Twisted Pair), STP ( Shielded Twisted Pair) and fiber. Factors including cost, connectivity and bandwidth are important in determining cable type. Choosing cable is getting more and more complex. Our tip: Choose and buy well in advance of when you'll need it. The cable you want will not always be in stock.
Room under the main distribution frame in a central office building. Cables from the subscribers lines come into the building through the cable vault. From here they snake their way up to the main distribution frame. The cable vault looks like a bad B- movie portrayal of Hell, replete with thousands of dangerous black snakes . Cable vaults are prime targets for the spontaneous starting of fires. They should be protected with Halon gas, but usually aren't because some parts of the phone industry think Halon is too expensive.
Expressed in lbs per 1000 (without reel weight included). Affects sag, span and size of the messenger in aerial applications.
CableB2B is a trademarked term for an initiative led by CableLabs to develop interoperable interface specifications to support the automation of B2B (Business-to- Business) communications between CATV operators and Internet content providers. The B2B message set is anticipated to include specifications for service availability and order management, provisioning, network management, and customer care. See also CableLabs.
Cablecasting. Non-broadcast radio or television programming transmitted by a cable television system to its subscribers. Cablecast programming may be originated by the cable operator itself ("origination cablecasting" or "local origination") or by an access organization.
The point where a marine cable connects to terrestrial facilities.
CableHome is a trademarked term of CableLabs for a project to develop interface specifications to extend high quality cable-based (i.e., cable TV-based) services to network devices within the residence. The initiative addresses issues of device interoper- ability, QoS (Quality of Service), and network management. See also CableLabs.
Cable Television Laboratories, Inc. A research and development consortium of cable television system operators established in 1988, CableLabs membership includes system operators in North, Central, or South America, and the Caribbean. CableLabs plans and funds research and development projects to help member companies and the cable industry take advantage of opportunities and meet challenges in the telecommunications industry. A good deal of emphasis is placed on digital cable and cable modem technologies. Current projects include CableModem (formerly known as DOCSIS), PacketCable, OpenCable, CableB2B, and CableHome. www.cablelabs.com. See also the definitions for the above projects.
CableLabs Certified CableModem is a trademarked term for a cable modem initiative previously known as DOCSIS, a project led by the MCNS (Multimedia Cable Network System Partners Limited), which consisted of leading CATV operators. The DOCSIS project, now spearheaded by CableLabs, the research and development organization supporting the CATV industry, was aimed at developing on behalf of the North American CATV industry a set of necessary communications and operations support interface specifications for cable modems and associated equipment. The project led to the deployment of HFC (Hybrid Fiber-Coax) cable television systems in support of high-speed bi-directional data transfer, as well as entertainment TV. Activities are in phases, with the interfaces to be addressed including Cable Modem to CPE Interface (CMCI), Cable Modem Termination System-Network Side Interface (CMTS-NSI), Operations Support System Interface (OSSI), Cable Modem Telco Return Interface (CMTRI), Cable Modem to RF Interface (CMRFI), Cable Modem Termination System-Downstream RF Interface (CMTS-DRFI), Cable Modem Termination System-Upstream RF Interface (CMTSURFI), and Data Over Cable Security System (DOCSS). Overlaying the CableLabs Certified infrastructure is the PacketCable project, a set of interoperable interface specifications for delivering advanced, real-time multimedia services over two-way cable plants. PacketCable will use IP (Internet Protocol) technology in support of multimedia conferencing, IP telephone, interactive gaming, and a wide range of multimedia services. For more detail see CMCI, CMTS-NSI, OSSI, CMTRI, CMRFI, CMTS-DRFI, CMTS-URFI, and DOCSS. See also CableLabs and MCNS.
An opening in a work surface that allows access to cords or cables from below, or mounting of an electrical receptacle or telephone jack. Cableways typically come with removable plastic grommets.
The combination of all cables, wire, cords, and connecting hardware installed. A term used to refer collectively to the installed wiring in a given space.
CRP. One of the five reference panels of the Australian Communications Industry Forum, the CRP is responsible for the formulation of telecommunications cabling standards and management of the cabling industry licensing arrangements.
Carrier Access Billing System. Basically, when a company has a network in a CLEC environment, other companies can use that network for their own traffic. The CABS system allows each company to bill the others for the balance of traffic which they passed.
Carrier Access Billing Specifications - Billing Output Specifications.
Carrier Access Code. The digits you must dial in North America to reach the long distance carrier of your choice. Those digits fit the following format 101X-XXX.
Customer Administration Center. A type of terminal used by a PBX user to maintain and troubleshoot his PBX.
Connection Admission Control is defined as the set of actions taken by the network during the call setup phase (or during the call re-negotiation phase) in order to determine whether a connection request can be accepted or should be rejected (or whether a request for re-allocation can be accomplished).
Call Appearance Call Handling.
From the French "cacher," which translates "to press or hide," especially in terms of tools or provisions. In the context of computer systems and networks, information is cached by placing it closer to the user or user application in order to make it more readily and speedily accessible, and transparently so. At the same time, information which is cached places less strain on limited computer I/O (Input/Output) resources and limited network resources. Let's consider two specific definitions, the first of which relates to computer systems and the second of which relates to computer networks. Let's also consider a combination of the first two, in the context of the Internet.
In the context of a computer system, cache memory generally is a partition of SRAM (Static Random Access Memory). Since much of computing is highly repetitive or predictable in nature, and since solid state components (silicon chips) are much faster than mechanical disk drives , the speed of information access can be enhanced if certain information can be stored in RAM. That information typically is in the form of program information, memory addresses, or data. Thereby, the information can be stored in anticipation of your need for it, and can be presented to you faster than if the computer needed to access the hard drive through the execution of an I/O function. The cache memory sits (logically and, perhaps physically) between the CPU and the main memory (RAM). Caching works because of a phenomenon known as the locality principle which states that a von Neumann CPU (i.e., one that performs instructions and makes database calls sequentially, one after another) tends to access the same memory locations over and over again. A cache works like this. When the CPU needs data from memory, the system checks to see if the information is already in the cache. If it is, it grabs that information; this is called a cache hit. If it isn't, it's called a cache miss and the computer has to fetch the information by accessing the main memory or hard disk, which is slower. Data retrieved during a cache miss is often written into the cache in anticipation of further need for it. Let's assume that you open a CD-ROM application with hyperlinks . As the system can reasonably assume that you will exercise the hyperlink options, the information associated with them can be stored in cache memory. If you do, indeed, exercise those options, it's a cache hit and the data is there waiting for you. The cache also will hold information that you recently accessed, in anticipation of your wanting to back up, or access it again. Caching can take place through partitioned or segmented cache memory, which can be in the form of L1 (Level 1) primary cache and L2 (Level 2) secondary cache. L1 cache memory is accessed first, L2 second, the main memory (RAM) and then hard drive last. Also, one cache might hold program instructions and the other might hold data. Generally when the cache is exhausted, it is flushed and the data is written back to main memory, to be replaced with the next cache according to a replacement algorithm. The cache freshing and flushing mechanism is designed differently by different vendors . It behaves slightly different. However it mainly depends on main memory type, like write back or WB, write through or WT, write protected or WT, write combining or WC and uncached or UC. See also Cache Memory.
In the context of a computer network such as a LAN, or the combination of the Internet and World Wide Web, data can be cached in a server which is close to you. In anticipation of your imminent request for that data in a logical sequence of data access, it will be transmitted from the main server to the remote server. Thereby, the data is accessible to you more quickly than if it had to be transmitted across the entire network each time you had a need for it. Should you access a certain set of data frequently, it might be permanently stored on a server in proximity, and refreshed by the main server from time to time in order to ensure its currency (i.e. that it remains up to date).
In the context of an Internet client/server application, caching really shows its stuff. First, the network uses distributed cache servers to house the WWW information that users in your region use frequently. As you access a Web site, your speed of access and response is improved because the data is housed on a server closer to you. The data then is loaded into cache memory on your client computer workstation. As you move forward, from page to page and link to link, your client caches the information provided by the cache server, with all of this happening in anticipation of your next move. As you move backward, the same thing happens, in anticipation of that next move, as well. Just in case you don't believe the client side of this story, go to Internet Explorer or Netscape, and click on cache. (The fastest way to regain space on your hard disk is to flush the cache which these programs dump to your hard disk.) For detailed explanations of specific caching protocols, see also CARP, HTCP, ICP, NECP, Squid, WCCP, WPAD, and WREC.
Managing a cache so that data is not lost or overwritten. See also Cache.
A chip, such as the Intel 82385, that manages the retrieval, storage and delivery of data to and from memory or the hard disk. Cache controllers may reside in either clients or servers. See also Cache.
A cache engine is a carrier-class, high-speed dedicated Internet appliance that performs Web content caching and retrieval. When a user accesses a Web page, the cache engine locally stores the page's graphics and HTML text. When another user later requests the same Web page, the content is pulled from the cache engine. This process improves download time for the user and reduces bandwidth use on the network. Here is a an explanation of a cache engine from Cisco, which makes one. How does the cache engine work? The cache engine communicates with a Cisco router, which redirects Web requests to the cache engine using the Web Cache Control Protocol (WCCP), a new standard feature of Cisco IOS software. The WCCP also enables load balancing of traffic across multiple cache engines and ensures fault-tolerant, fail-safe operation. What are the benefits of Web caching? By reducing the amount of traffic on WAN links and on overburdened Web servers, caching provides significant benefits to ISPs, enterprise networks and end users. Those benefits include cost savings due to a reduction on WAN usage and dramatic improvements in response times for end users. The cache engine also provides network administrators with a simple method to enforce a site-wide access policy through URL filtering. See also Cache.
When the data you want is actually in cache. Thus you don't have to access your hard disk and your computing is faster. See Cache, Cache Miss and Cache Memory.
Available RAM (Random Access Memory) or SRAM (Static RAM) that you set up to allow your computer to "remember" stuff ” so the next time your computer wants that information, it can find it fast from RAM, instead of searching through a slower hard disk I/O (Input/Output) process. This high speed cache memory eliminates the CPU wait state. When the CPU reads data from main memory, a copy of this data is stored in the cache memory. The next time the CPU reads the same address, the data is transferred from the cache memory instead of from main memory. Novell's NetWare, for example, uses cache memory to improve file server access time. In NetWare, cache memory contains the directory and file caches, along with the FAT (File Allocation Table), the turbo FAT, the Hash table, and an open space for other functions. See also Cache.
When the caching software guesses wrongly and you have to read your data off your hard disk rather than reading it from the cache in memory. In short, a cache miss occurs when a processor looks for data in cache memory and finds that it is not there. As a result, it needs to look to the main memory for the missing data, slowing operation. See also Cache, Cache Hit and Cache Memory.
Sometimes spelled cacheing. A process by which information is stored in memory or on the server in anticipation of the next request for information. See Cache for a full explanation.
Computer Aided Dispatch.
Computer Aided Design. A computer and its related software and terminals used to design things. A CAD system might be as simple as computerized drafting tools or as complex as detailed layouts of integrated circuits. CAD systems often have terminals on peoples' desks and a central maxi-computer in the company's main computer room. CAD terminals are often run over LANs (local area networks) or through telephone systems. The terminals are often moved, thus having universal wiring and a universal switching system ” a LAN or a phone system ” is extremely useful.
Computer Aided Design/Computer Aided Manufacturing. See CAD.
In October 1994, Jeff Bezos wanted to name his new Web venture "Cadabra" ” as in "abracadabra." But his attorney convinced him that this magical moniker sounded a bit too much like "cadaver." Reluctantly, Bezos went with his second choice: Amazon.com.
Calling Area Data Base. An MCI definition. An MCI System that stores reference data for various MCI Systems and reconciles MCI Calling Areas with those of Bell.
When Mary, later Queen of Scots, went to France as a young girl (for education & survival), Louis, King of France, learned that she loved the Scottish game "golf". So he had the first golf course outside of Scotland built for her enjoyment. To make sure she was properly chaperoned (and guarded ) while she played , Louis hired cadets from a military school to accompany her. Mary liked this a lot and when she returned to Scotland (not a very good idea in the long run), she took the practice with her. In French the word cadet is pronounced 'ca-day' and the Scots changed it into "caddie".
The shell of an optical disc. Protects it from grubby fingerprints , and includes write protection devices. AKA case.
In voice processing, cadence is used to refer to the pace and rhythmic pattern of tones and silence intervals generated by a given audio signal. Examples are busy signals and ringing tones. A typical cadence pattern is the US ringing tone, which is two seconds of tone followed by four seconds of silence. Some other countries , such as the UK, use a double ring, which is two short tones within about a second, followed by a little over two seconds of silence. See also Ring Cadence and Ring Cadence Acceptance.
Code Abuse Detection System.
Computer Aided Engineering.
When an employer gives a worker the choice of setting up an office (desk, chair , computer) at home or at a central office. See Hoteling.
An antenna having conductors arranged cylindrically.
Compound Annual Growth Rate.
Computer Assisted Instruction. Commonly known as CBT (Computer Based Training). See CBT. See also CAD for a discussion on telecom needs.
Common Air Interface. A standard for the interface between a radio network and equipment. A CAI allows multiple vendors to develop equipment, such as radio terminal devices (e.g., cordless phones, cellular phones and PCS terminals) and base stations (e.g., cellular antenna sites), which will interoperate . The yield is a competitive (read less expensive) market for equipment. The British CT2/Telepoint system incorporated one of the first CAI standards. See also CT2.
Central America / Latin America.
Carrier Access Line Charge. A per minute charge paid by long distance companies to local phone companies for the use of local networks at either or both ends of a long distance call. This charge goes to pay part of the cost of local telephone poles, wires, etc. See Access Charge and Carrier Common Access Line Charge.
Communications Assistance to Law Enforcement Act. Passed in 1994, CALEA is a U.S. law granting law enforcement agencies the ability to wiretap newer digital networks. The act also requires both wireline and wireless carriers to enable such wiretapping equipment. See DCS1000.
A call center term for directing calls according to the day of the week and time of day. See also Source/Destination Routing, Skills Based Routing and Endof-Shift Routing.
To test and reset a measuring or timing device against a standard to make sure it is functioning correctly.
Everyone has a different definition for "call." My definition is simplest: Two people or two machines are on a phone line speaking to each other. That's a call. This definition by Bellcore (now Telcordia Technologies) of a call: An arrangement providing for a relation between two or more simultaneously present users for the purpose of exchanging information. The ATM Forum's definition: A call is an association between two or more users or between a user and a network entity that is established by the use of network capabilities. This association may have zero or more connections. Here are some more formal definitions:
In communications, any demand to set up a connection.
A unit of traffic measurement.
The actions performed by a call originator.
The operations required to establish, maintain, and release a connection.
To use a connection between two stations.
The action of bringing a computer program, a routine, or a subroutine into effect, usually by specifying the entry conditions and the entry point.
Also called Abandoned Calls. Call Abandons are calls that are dropped by the calling party before their intended transaction is completed. The call may be dropped at various points in the process. The point in the call at which the call is abandoned will have varying impacts on a computer telephony system. Many callers upon hearing an automated system will hang up. For systems that expended significant energy in setting up to answer a call, a large percentage of call abandons can negatively impact the call capacity of the system.
A control signal transmitted by the called equipment to indicate that it accepts an incoming call.
A computer, a magnetic storage device (floppy or hard disk), software and some mechanical method of attaching itself to a telephone system. A call accounting system is used to record information about telephone calls, organize that information and upon being asked, prepare reports ” printed or to disk. The information which it records (or "captures") about telephone calls typically includes from which extension the call is coming, which number it is calling (local or long distance), which circuit is used for the call (WATS, MCI, etc.), when the call started, how long it lasted, for what purpose the call was made (which client? which project?). A call accounting system might also include information on incoming calls ” which trunk was used, where the call came from (if ANI or interactive voice response was used), which extension took the call, if it was transferred and to where and how long it took.
There are 12 basic uses for call accounting systems:
Controlling Telephone Abuse. It's the 90-10 rule. 10% of your people sit on long distance calls all day to their friends and family. The others work. Some people still think WATS calls are free. Knowing who's calling where and how much they're spending is useful. Often they appreciate being told they're spending money. Big money...and they stop.
Controlling Telephone Misuse. I figured once you could call between two major cities for five cents a minute and $1 a minute. That's a 20-fold difference! Often you need different lines. Often a company has different lines. Sometimes the phone system makes the dialing decision. Sometimes the person makes the dialing decision. Whoever's doing it can be wrong. A call accounting system is a good check to see if you're spending money needlessly.
Allocating telephone calling costs among departments and divisions. Telephones ” voice, data, video and imaging ” are some of your biggest expenses. They're a cost that should be allocated to the products you're making, or the departments or divisions in your company. Telephone costs can determine which product is profitable. Which isn't. Item: A software company recently dropped one of its three "big" software packages because phone calls for support got too expensive.
Billing Clients and Projects back for telephone charges incurred on their behalf. Every lawyer, government contractor, etc. does it. Makes sense.
Sharing and Resale of long distance and local phone calls, as in a hotel/motel, hospital, shared condominium , etc. Someone's got to send out the bills. And it's not the phone company. In fact, with a call accounting system you can be your own phone company!
Motivation of Salespeople. The more phone calls they make the more they sell. This rule is as obvious as the nose on your face. You WANT salespeople to make more calls? Hang a list of all their calls on the wall. Give prizes to those who make the most! Or those who make more than last week. Or those who set a new record.
Customer Service Measurement. An auto dealer wanted to know how long it took after a caller left a voicemail until the call was returned, so a report was created by the nice folks at www.CallAccounting.com that captured the ANI of the caller and looked for an outgoing call with that same number. It was called the "Elapsed Time To Return Calls" report. Management can now monitor the efficiency of their reps in returning calls from propspects.
Personnel Evaluation. Which employees are doing better at being productive on the phone (however you define "productive"). You want them to get on and off the phone fast? Or you want them to stay on and coddle your customers? You can now correlate phone calls with income ” from service or just straight sales.
Network Optimization. Two fancy words for figuring which is the best combination of MCI, AT&T, MCI, Sprint, Wiltel, etc. lines. And which is the best combination of all the various services each offer. A rule of thumb: There's a 20-fold difference in per minute telephone calling costs between any two major cities in the US. And ” amazing ” you won't hear any difference in quality, despite the huge difference in price. I think it's the biggest price difference in any product anywhere . It's amazing.
Phone System Diagnostics. Is the phone system working as well as it should? Are all the lines working? Are all the circuit packs (circuit cards) working? Call accounting systems can tell you which lines you're getting no traffic on. Or which line carried the 48- hour call to Germany (it's happened ). Either way, you can figure quickly which lines are working and which aren't.
Long Distance Bill Verification. Was the bill we received from our chosen long distance phone company accurate? Mostly it isn't. In fact, there's no such thing as an accurate phone bill. That's an oxymoron. Using your call accounting systems to check your long distance gives you some peace of mind. It's cheap peace of mind. Everyone should have one.
Tracing Calls. True story: Every third or fourth Friday afternoon a large factory in the south received bomb threats. They'd clear the factory, search the factory and not find anything. By the time they'd checked, it was too late to start up production. One day they checked their call accounting records. The calls were coming from a phone on the factory floor. The whole thing was a ruse to get an afternoon off...And now that many phones give you the number of who's calling, call accounting systems are turning out to be great for checking the effectiveness of regional ad campaigns , figuring the profitability of direct mailings and even figuring the profitability of individual customers.
Call accounting systems often are in the form of a module of a much more comprehensive system which typically includes modules for directory/personnel management, inventory management, cable and wire (i.e., connectivity) management, traffic analysis or network optimization, and bill reconciliation. Such systems commonly make use of a RDBMS (Relational DataBase Management System), upon which all modules rely for access to a common set of data. Thereby, a single point of data entry is provided, and all data is continuously synchronized. Note that call accounting addresses only voice calls. Network accounting software addresses the management of data traffic. See also Network Accounting.
An MPLS traffic engineering tunnel with a higher priority will, if necessary, preempt an MPLS traffic engineering tunnel with a lower priority. Tunnels that are harder to route are expected to have a higher priority and to be able to preempt tunnels that are easier to route. The assumption is that a lower-priority tunnel can find another path . See MPLS.
A telephone operator or person acting as a telephone operator can announce a call to the called party before putting the call through. All modern phone systems have this feature.
The name for a central office based answering service, provided by your local phone company. The major advantage of this service is that if you're speaking on your line and another call comes through, it won't receive a busy, it will hear your melodic voice asking if you'd like to leave a message and it will take your message. Once the machine takes the message, it will put some sound on your phone line, which you'll hear next time you pick up. That sound will alert you to the fact that you have a message in your mailbox.
An attempt to make a telephone call to someone. Tally up call attempts and compare them to completions and you'll have some idea of corporate frustration and, thus, the need for more lines or more phone equipment. The measures in this in call attempts, calls answered , calls overflowed, and calls abandoned.
A security procedure in which a user dials in to access a system and requests service. The system then disconnects and calls the user back at a preauthorized number to establish the access connection. Same as dial-back. See also International Call Back.
The ability to prevent all or certain calls from reaching to or from a phone.
A preventive maintenance measure in which signs are posted near buried cables advising people to phone before digging in the area.
A phone system has a bunch of people answering and making calls. The calls are coming (say in response to an ad). The calls are going out, courtesy of a dialing machine (perhaps a predictive dialer). The idea is to keep the calls at a constant level. The idea is to blend incoming with outgoing calls. Some predictive dialers have call blending. Others don't. They need a dedicated workforce. Call blending automatically transfers staff members between outbound and inbound programs as call volumes change. Some predictive dialers let you choose which workstations will be used for call blending, to avoid training of every staff member.
A name for an enhanced custom calling service, one of several known as CLASS services. Call Block helps you avoid unwanted calls by rejecting calls from a list of numbers you specify. Depending on the specifics of the LEC offering, the caller may get a message indicating that you are not accepting calls at the present time. Call Block does not work either for numbers outside your local calling area or for calls connected through an operator. See also Class.
A feature that allows the calling party to prevent the calling number from being transmitted and displayed on the Caller ID equipment of the called party. Call Block can be provided, as a matter of course, on all your outgoing calls, although you can override Call Block on a call-by-call basis in order to transmit your number. You might choose to do this in order to receive better service from an incoming call center. You can request Call Block from your LEC. You also can invoke Call Block on a call-by-call basis, typically by pressing *67 before placing an outgoing call ”this feature also is known as "Cancel Calling Number Delivery."
Check into a hotel. Dial a 0+ call. You're connected to an Alternate Operator Service company. But you know their rates may be high. You ask to be connected to AT&T or MCI, or whoever is the carrier of your choice. Sadly, the AOS cannot connect and neither can (nor will) your hotel's operator. This is called "Call Blocking." The FCC has barred the practice. But it continues. See also Call Splashing.
An AIN (Advanced Intelligent Network) service allowing the user to block calls to specific numbers or country codes. Also known as Call Control Service. Content Blocking, a variation on the theme, allows the blocking of calls to either all or specified 900 numbers. While contemporary PBXs and Electronic Key Telephone Systems have such capabilities, not all users enjoy the benefits of working behind such a system. Additionally, PBX systems typically provide the ability to block only all 900 numbers, although some such numbers might have legitimate application.
A common feature setting on ISDN switching equipment made in North America. It is properly titled "Call-By-Call Service Selection". This feature enables a single ISDN-PRI trunk group to carry call traffic to more than one facility or service. Rather than dedicating an entire ISDN-PRI trunk group to a single service, Call-By-Call Service Selection allows the customer to run various multiple services, such as ACCUNET, SDDN, MEGA800, etc., over a single trunk group . This can reduce costs and lower the chances of blocked services. Note: Call-By- Call Service is only available on ISDN PRI network using Country Protocol option 1 (U.S.).
A British term. A paper record, used in manual telebusiness systems, to record the results of a call.