Electronic Commerce. Buying and selling over the public Internet, the public Web and corporate Internets. Predictions for the amount of ecommerce should not be underestimated. According to Peter Drucker writing in the October, 1999 Atlantic Monthly Magazine, "In the new mental geography created by the railroad , humanity mastered distance. In the mental geography of ecommerce, distance has been eliminated. There is only one economy and only one market." Peter Drucker continued , "One consequence of this is that every business must become globally competitive, even if it manufactures or sells only within a local or regional market." See the Internet and the World Wide Web.

Economy Of Scale

As throughput gets bigger, so the per unit cost comes down. This is the argument used by economists to justify monopolies ” namely that the per unit costs of one supplier are far lower than having two suppliers. The economy of scale argument is used to justify having only one water company in town. It makes more sense in that industry than in the telephone industry.

It was once used in the telephone industry to justify one combined local phone company/long distance phone company/one supplier of terminal equipment. This argument does not really apply to telephony as technological breakthroughs have brought down the cost of getting into the telephone industry and have allowed smaller, competitive companies to become cost effective. Some large telecommunications monopolies, in fact, are experiencing diseconomies of scale. In this case, their cost of per unit business starts to rise as they get very large. Diseconomies of scale are caused by bloated bureaucracies and inertia in management decision making.


  1. Enhanced Call Processing. An Octel term for an interactive customized menu in its voice mail system which provides levels of call routing. See Enhanced Call Processing.

  2. Extended Capabilities (Parallel) Port. An upgrade to the original parallel port on a PC, which gives you: Transfer rates of more than two million bytes per second; bidirectional 8-bit operation )a standard parallel port has only 4 input bits); support for CD-ROM and scanner connections; 16-byte FIFO buffer; support for run length coding data compression. See also USB.


See Electronic Communications Privacy Act.


Exchange Carriers Standards Association. See Exchange Carriers Standards Association.


European Competitive Telecommunications Association. ECTA aims and objectives are to assist and encourage market liberalisation and competition, represent the telecommunications industry to key government and regulatory bodies, maintain a forum for network and business development throughout Europe, assist new market entrants through pro-competitive policies, and continually reflect the dynamic nature of the telecommunications industry.


The European Telecommunications and Professional Electronics Industry.


The ECTF (Enterprise Computer Telephony Forum) is an industry organization formed to foster an open , competitive market for Computer Telephony technology. Participants include industry suppliers, developers, system integrators and users working to achieve agreement on multi-vendor implementations of Computer Telephony technology based on international defacto and dejure standards.

According to its own words, "the ECTF facilities the development, implementation and acceptance of Computer Telephony (CT) solutions by bringing together suppliers, developers, systems integrators and users. The Forum discusses, develops and tests interoperability techniques for dealing with the diverse technical approaches currently available. The ECTF incorporates and augments existing industry standards and publishes CT interoper- ability agreements."

Principal members of the ECTF are: Aculab plc; Amarex Technology, Inc; Amtelco; Amteva, Inc.; Aspect Telecommunications; AT&T; Brite Voice Systems; Brooktrout Technology; CallScan Limited; Centigram Communications; Cintech Tele-Management; COM2001 Technologies; CSELT; Deutsche Telekom AG; Dialogic Corporation; Digital Equipment Corporation; Ericsson Business Networks AB; Excel Inc.; Fujitsu Limited; Hewlett- Packard; IBM Corporation; InterVoice; Lernout & Hauspie Speech Products; Linkon Corporation; Lucent Technologies; Mitel Corporation; Natural MicroSystems Corp.; NEC America Inc.; Northern Telecom; Periphonics; Rhetorex; Rockwell Telecommunications; Siemens AG; Sun Microsystems; Tandem Computers; Texas Instruments; Trident Data Systems; Unimax Systems Corporation and Voicetek Corporation.

The ECTF has a Web site at Membership inquiries ” 510-608-5915 or

ECTF definitions

Enterprise Computer Telephony Forum M.100 Revision 1.0 Administration Services "C" Language Application Programming Interfaces See M.100 and ECTF.


European Council of Telecommunications Users Association.


  1. CallED party. The ED receives a call from the ING, or callING party, to set up a data transfer. ING and ED apply to any type of data transfer, including both voice and data.

  2. Ending Delimiter.


  1. Electronic Directory Assistance. A method by which companies can get access to telephone directories electronically using an X.25 packet switched connection.

  2. Electronic Design Automation.


Error Detection And Correction.


Enhanced D-Channel Handler.


The European Digital Dealers Association. An European association of DEC resellers . EDDA members include VARs, systems integrators, leasing companies and service organizations.

Eddy Current Losses

Losses in electrical devices using iron, due to the currents set up in it by magnetic action.


Erbium-Doped Fiber. See EDF.


Erbium-Doped Fiber Amplifier . An OOO (Optical-Optical-Optical) technique for boosting signal strength in fiber optic transmission networks. As a purely optical technique, EDFAs generally are considered to be an improvement over the earlier OEO (Optical-Electrical- Optical) technique used in regenerative repeaters. EDFAs accept an attenuated (i.e., weakened) optical signal and pass it through a section of fiber doped (i.e., infused with) with erbium, a rare-earth element. The light signal stimulates, or excites, the erbium. As the erbium atoms drop from their excited state, they emit extra energy, which serves to amplify the attenuated light signals. A single EDFA can serve to amplify multiple wavelengths in the 1550nm (nanometer) range in which DWDM (Dense Wavelength Division Multiplexing) operates. The advantage is the elimination (or at least reduction in the number) of regenerative repeaters, which are costly, power hungry, and generally problematic . EDFAs, however, cannot amplify wavelengths below 1525nm. Also, they are limited to no more than 10 spans over a distance of roughly 800km, at which point regenerative repeaters must be used to correct for accumulated noise. EDFAs increasingly are used in conjunction with Raman amplifiers . See also Dynamic Gain Equalizer, DWDM, Raman Amplification, Repeater, SONET and Wavelength.


Electronic Data Gathering Archiving and Retrieval. A database of corporate disclosure, transaction, and financial status data maintained by the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC).


  1. Enhanced Data for GSM Evolution. Currently being standardized by ETSI (European Telecommunications Standards Institute), EDGE is touted as the final stage (as if anything is ever "final") in the evolution of data communications within the existing GSM standards. EDGE is intended to support data transmission rates up to 384 Kbps. EDGE is also anticipated to be used with IS-136 TDMA networks in the US. See also ETSI, GSM, IS-136, and TDMA.

  2. Edge in Internet usage doesn't mean the edge of the Internet. It actually means the edge that's closest to you. The idea of "edge" Internet computing or networking or service is to put a server near you and have it serve you quickly with special services you want ” like voice, like software, etc. One vendor sent me their "definition" of edge. I include it for your amusement : "It's where mission-critical Internet content and applications can be assembled in real-time, customized, and delivered to end users with unfaltering performance and reliability."

Edge Appliance

A speciality computer which does special tasks . Typically it sits on a network and performs tasks for many users. Some of the various appliances and what they do include:

  • Security appliances ” firewall, intrusion detection, intrusion prevention, packet inspection.

  • Management appliances ” network management, network operations management.

  • Performance enhancement appliances ” SSL accelerators, XML accelerators.

  • Traffic management appliances ” packet shapers, packet inspection, routers/switches.

  • Load balancers ” performance/traffic monitoring, traffic routing. + Storage appliances ” NAS, iSCI, specialized storage management.

Edge Concentrator

See IP Edge Concentrator.

Edge Connector

A connector made of strips of brass or other conductive metal found at the edge of a printed circuit board. The connector plus into a socket of another circuit board to exchange electronic signals.

Edge Device

  1. A physical device which is capable of forwarding packets between legacy interworking interfaces (e.g., Ethernet, Token Ring, etc.) and ATM interfaces based on data-link and network layer information but which does not participate in the running of any network layer routing protocol. An Edge Device obtains forwarding descriptions using the route distribution protocol.

  2. A physical device which sits on the edges of the Internet under the control of an ISP (Internet Service Provider) and allows the ISP to provide its customers with ancillary services, such as voice mail, fax forwarding, video downloading, etc. For an example of an edge device maker, see

Edge Effect

A video term. The overemphasizing of well defined objects from the addition of black or white outlines to the vertical edges of the objects. Examples of this phenomena are, trailing white, leading black around the outline of a figure in movement within a scene.

Edge Router

A new device for Internet Service Providers which will forward packets at high speed, do tunneling, authentication, filtering, packet accounting, traffic shaping and address translation. With such a device, service providers will be able to save money and create different services ” combining features in different ways. Edge routers sit at the edge of the Internet ” just at the connection by the local phone company to the Internet.

Edge Site

A remote network site. A site at the edge of the network.

Edge Switch

A Broadband Switching System (BSS) which is located at the edge of the network. Conceptually equivalent to a Central Office in the voice world, an edge switch is the first point of user access (and the final point of exit) for a broadband network (i.e., Frame Relay, SMDS and ATM). Edge switches are interconnected by "Core Switches," which are the functional equivalent of Tandem switches in the circuit-switched voice world.


Electronic Document Handling.


Electronic Data Interchange. A series of standards which provide computer-to-computer exchange of business documents between different companies' computers over phone lines and the Internet. These standards allow for the transmission of purchase orders, shipping documents, invoices, invoice payments, etc. between an enterprise and its "trading partners ." A trading partner in EDI parlance is a supplier, customer, subsidiary, or any other organization with which an enterprise conducts business. EDI is used for placing orders, for billing and paying for goods and services via private electronic networks or via the Internet. According to studies, it costs about $50 to process a paper-based purchase order and about $2.50 to process the same order with EDI. Internet-based EDI can lower the cost to less than $1.25. EDI software translates fixed field or "flat" files that are extracted from applications into a standard format and hands off the translated data to communications software for transmission. EDI standards are supported (i.e. have been adopted) by virtually every computer company in the country and increasingly, by every packet switched data communications company. The formats used to convert the documents into EDI data are defined by international standards bodies and by specific industry bodies. See also Electronic Data Interchange and IES. www.edi- info


A Verizon definition. A template used to capture and format Order data into an EDI message. There is a different map for each Pre-Order transaction and each LSR Order form. Pre-Order EDI maps are contained in the Verizon EDI Guide for Pre-Order Local Service Requests (Pre-Order LSR).

Edison Battery

A type of storage battery in which the elements are nickel and iron and the electrolyte is potassium hydroxide. An old type of battery.

Edison Effect

A discovery attributed to Thomas Alva Edison, the Edison Effect initially was called the " Ether Effect." Technically, it is known as thermionic emission. During Edison's studies (1882) of the light bulb, William J. Hammer, one of Edison's engineers , noted that the heated filament in his incandescent lamp blackened the inside of the bulb. The phenomenon is due to the fact that the heat in a filament supplies some electrons with at least the minimal energy to overcome the attractive forces that hold them in the structure of the metal. These free electrons are thrown off, and coat the inside of the glass bulb. Quite uncharacteristically, Edison never pursued the study of thermionic emission. Some years later, he admitted that he didn't even understand Ohm's Law at the time. Note: The electron wasn't discovered until some 15 years later. The subsequent study of the Edison Effect eventually led to the development of the vacuum tube and conventional electron tubes, such as the picture tube inside your TV set. By the way, "incandescent" comes from the Latin "incandescere," which translates as "to become hot." That's exactly what happens. The filament becomes hot. Tungsten is commonly used in light bulb filaments because it conducts electricity, but also gets hot. As the electricity passes through the filament, electrons in the tungsten filament vibrate. As they do so, they convert electrical energy into thermal energy. The filament becomes hot and glows , thereby giving off light. That's why incandescent light bulbs are hot to the touch. See also Edison, Thomas Alva; Luminiferous Ether; and Ohm's Law.

Edison, Thomas Alva

One of the most prolific inventors of all time, Edison (1847-1931) is best known for inventions such as the practical incandescent light bulb, the phonograph, the motion picture projector, the stock ticker, and the electric vote tabulating machine. At the age of 15, Edison was publishing the "Grand Trunk Herald" from a freight car, which also served as his laboratory. During this time, he saved the life of an executive of the rail company, was rewarded with lessons in telegraphy, and became a master telegrapher. He went on to invent a method of automatically transmitting telegraphs over a second line with the need for an operator. With the $40,000 he earned from his telegraphy invention, the stock ticker, Edison opened his legendary research laboratory in Menlo Park, New Jersey, where inventions included the microphone and the carbon telephone transmitter. In 1877, his team invented the first practical incandescent light bulb, which was based on DC (Direct Current). George Westinghouse and others improved on this work, basing their inventions on AC (Alternating Current). In 1889 Edison formed the Edison Electric Light Company, which later became General Electric. Edison died on October 18, 1931. Three days later, at the request of President Herbert Hoover, millions of Americans turned off their electric lights in tribute. See also the two previous definitions.


Editing is a familiar process of changing the content of files to achieve more effective communication by cutting, pasting, cropping, resizing, or copying. Multimedia editing can be done on all types of media: voice annotations, music, still images, motion video, graphics and text. Tools for editing vary from simple tools for email voice annotations to more sophisticated tools for video manipulation. See also Electronic Mail.


A software program used to modify programs or files while they are being prepared or after they are (allegedly) complete. You can use an editor to write in. I wrote this dictionary using an editor called The Semware Editor. This program is much faster and far more flexible than a word processing program like Microsoft Word. But it can't do all the fancy layout, bolding, underlining, etc. that Word can do. An editor produces only ASCII text. The editor that comes with Windows95 is called Notepad. I use my editor to write in, because when I'm finished with this dictionary, I send it to sophisticated desktop publishing software called QuarkXpress. And that's where the layout for this book is done. I believe that the two functions ” of writing and desktop publishing ” are different and shouldn't be combined in one tool.


The MS-DOS line editor that came originally with DOS and which you can use to create and edit batch files and other small text files. It's not very good. There are far better editors around, including The Semware Editor.


Electronic Document Management. EDM unites the disparate workflow, document management and imaging.


An imaging term. Engineering Document Management System.


Extended Data Output Random Access Memory. A much faster form of DRAM (Dynamic RAM). EDO RAM speeds access to consecutive locations in memory by assuming that the access to next memory will target an address in the same transistor row as the previous one, and latching data at the output of the chip so it can be read even as the inputs are being changed for the next memory location. EDO RAM reduces memory access times by an average of 10 percent over with standard DRAM chips and costs only a little more to manufacture. EDO RAM largely has been replaced by SDRAM (Synchronous DRAM). See also DDR-SDRAM, DRAM, Flash RAM, FRAM, Microprocessor, RAM, RDRAM, SDRAM, SRAM, and VRAM.


Electronic Data Processing. Also DP, as in Data Processing. Basically, a machine (also called a computer) that receives, stores, operates on, records and outputs data. The word "electronic" was added to Data Processing when the industry moved away from tab cards ” the 80 column "do not spindle," etc. ” and was able to accept data electronically, instead of electromechanically as with the tab cards. People in the industry used to be called EDPers. Now the term MIS ” Management Information System ” is more common.


  1. Enhanced Digital Announcement Machine.

  2. Enhanced Dynamic Random Access Memory. A form of DRAM (Dynamic RAM) that boosts performance by placing a small complement of static RAM (SRAM) in each DRAM chip and using the SRAM as a cache. Also known as cached DRAM, or CDRAM.


See 1962.


Extended Digital Subscriber Line. The ISDN EDSL combines 23 B-channels and one 64-Kbps D-channel on a single line. Also called the Primary Access Rate.


European Digital Signaling System no. 1. The European variant of the SS7 (Signaling System 7) signaling and control protocol for use over the ISDN D (Delta) channel. EDSSI was developed by ETSI (European Telecommunications Standards Institute). See also ETSI, ISDN, and SS7. The ITU-T specifications Q.921 and Q.931 DSS1 (Digital Subscriber Signaling 1) are the baseline international specifications used throughout the world. The European specification from ETSI represents a modified form of Q.931, known as EDSS1 (European Digital Subscriber Signaling). Due to the early acceptance within the industry, EDSS1 is the common variant of Q.931. See Euro-ISDN.


See Extended Definition TV.


An Internet address domain name for an educational organization.


The answer to the question "What do you get when you cross educational material with interactive video?" A term coined by "someone who obviously knows nothing about either education or entertainment," says Laura Buddine, president of multimedia games maker Tiger Media. But it is becoming popular in residences and it's typically played on PCs with CD-ROM players. See also MMX.

Edwards, Elwood

Elwood Edwards' voice is heard more than 27 million times a day (which comes to more than 18,000 times per minute). He is the man behind those special 3 words (not "I love you") but "You've got mail!" which you hear all too often on American Online.


End to End signaling. Punch DTMF are sent through the lines to signal the end of a conversation. A tone code is also used to access long distance carriers, to signal your answering machine, or to access your voice mail.

EE Credit

End-to-end credit. Used to manage the exchange of frames by two communicating devices, and set the maximum number of frames that may remain unacknowledged .


European Economic Community. See EC.


Entry Emulator High Level Language Applications Programming Interface. An IBM API subset of HLLAPI.


Either End Hop Off. In private networks, a switch program that allows a call destined for an off-net location to be placed into the public network at either the closest switch to the origination or the closest switch to the destination. The choice is usually by time of day and is usually done to take advantage of cheaper rates.


An enhanced extended link (EEL) consists of a combination of an unbundled loop, multiplexing/ concentrating equipment, and dedicated transport. The EEL allows new entrants (CLECs, etc.) to serve customers without having to collocate in every central office in the incumbent telephone company's territory.) This service is very neat, and opens up a great deal of opportunity for CLECs... Basically, the EEL: - consists of a loop and interoffice transport at very attractive rates to the CLEC... - applies in those cases where CLECs reside in a different central office (CO) than their end users.

So, for example, I could serve a customer outside of my CO by ordering from the ILEC:

  1. local loop from customer prem. to the nearest CO (a CO which I am NOT collocated in!)

  2. an interoffice transport to a CO which I DO reside in

...this is a great service for fat pipe (DS3 and up)... I can serve large customer need OR I could mux together small customer need (T1, etc) and run the traffic over the large pipe (i.e., DS3) from non-collocated CO to a CO in which I am collocated... yes... serving customers outside of my "normal" wirecenter/territory.


European Electronic Messaging Association. See also Electronic Messaging Association.


Equipment Exceeds Operator Capability. A silly way of saying User Error.


Electronically Erasable Programmable Read Only Memory. A read only memory device which can be erased and reprogrammed. Typically, it is programmed electronically. It is also erased electronically, unlike EPROM, which is erased electromagnetically with ultraviolet light. EEPROMs don't lose their memory when you lose power. EEPROM used to be often used in PBXs and were the way manufacturers of older style PBXs upgraded their software. In other words, every time they sent you a software upgrade, they'd send you a bunch of chips. You'd pull out a bunch of chips on one of the main boards in the your PBX. And you'd replace them with the new chips. When you don't have a disk drive (and in the olden days disk drives were very expensive), EEPROMs were the only way to go. EEPROM Setup in a computer allows it to recognize certain system board configurations during initialization. You, the user, can then choose options such as the type of memory chips installed and base memory size without changing jumpers on the system board. See EPROM.


Escrow Encryption Standard. A security system proposed by the U.S. Department of Justice for the U.S. government's data communication. It involves inserting into all new federal computers a special encryption chip whose output would be reasonably secure but could be tapped by law enforcement agencies.


Expanded Electronic Serial Number. Due to the limited numerical combinations and the increasing use of mobile/portable telecommunications devices, the Telecommunicaion Industry Association has mandated that the telecommuncations industry expand the Electronic Serial Number of such communications devices from 32-bit to 56-bit. It is predicted that the growth in device numbers will exceed the space available for devices that include pagers , digital/cellular telephones, PDAs and the like. A need has been determined to modify telecom switches, operational and billing systems, and associated counterparts to expand the ESN capabilities to accomodate a larger format for these devices as their numbers grow. New 56-bit ESNs sometimes called EESNs will debut in 2005. See also ESN.


End-to-End Transit Delay Negotiation.


Entrance Facility (also called TEF or Telecommunications Entrance Facility). Services provided by a facility that is used to carry traffic between the access customer's POP and the exchange carrier's serving wire center.


Engineer, Furnish and Install.


eFax (as in electronic facsimile ) occurs when someone faxes to a phone number, which belongs to another company, which accepts the fax, then sends the fax to your email. Many companies now provide this service for free in the hope that they'll accompany your emailed fax with advertising, which they hope they'll sell for money. So far, it seems to work. I happily use a service from There's also a company called efax, see


Explicit Forward Congestion Indication: EFCI is an indication in the ATM cell header. A network element in an impending -congested state or a congested state may set EFCI so that this indication may be examined by the destination end-system. For example, the end- system may use this indication to implement a protocol that adaptively lowers the cell rate of the connection during congestion or impending congestion. A network element that is not in a congestion state or an impending congestion state will not modify the value of this indication. Impending congestion is the state when a network equipment is operating around its engineered capacity level.


Event Forwarding Discriminator. A wireless telecommunications term. Software that contains a discriminator that determines if a notification should be forwarded on to a particular destination.


See Electronic Frontier Foundation.

Effective Radiated Power

An FCC term for "the product of the antenna power input and the antenna power gain" expressed in watts.

Effective Ground-Fault Current Path

As per NEC, effective ground-fault current path is an intentionally constructed , permanent, low-impedance electrically conductive path designed and intended to carry current under ground-fault conditions from the point of a ground fault on a wiring system to the electrical supply source.

Effectively Grounded

According to the TIA/EIA-607, effectively grounded means intentionally connected to earth through a ground connection or connections of sufficiently low impedance and having sufficient current-carrying capacity to prevent the buildup of voltages that may result in undue hazard to connected equipment or to persons.

Efficiency Factor

In data communications, the ratio of the time to transmit a text automatically and at a specified modulation rate, to the time actually required to receive the same text at a specified maximum error rate.


Ethernet in the First Mile. See 802.3ae.


Ethernet in the First Mile Alliance. An alliance developing a new Ethernet standard designed to use existing infrastructure (i.e. copper wire) to provide higher speeds over ” speeds as fast as 100 megabits per second. The standard is being dubbed 802.3ah by the IEEE. See 802.3ah.

Newton[ap]s Telecom Dictionary
Newton[ap]s Telecom Dictionary
ISBN: 979387345
Year: 2004
Pages: 133 © 2008-2017.
If you may any questions please contact us: