Blackberry Storm vs. iPhone 3G

These Two Smartphones are getting the intro media blitz...

but two new worthy contenders are also out, the Samsung Saga and the HTC Touch Pro, that may rise to the surface.


from jon4lakers of jon4lakers.com on his YouTube channel:

Blackberry Storm vs. iPhone 3G


Blackberry Storm: Initial Impressions



"Your Life's Work: Telephone and Telegraph" 1940's film

Telephone and Telegraph Traditional Jobs and Gender Roles

This 1946 occupational film by Vocational Guidance Films, Inc. has excellent clips of women working on cord switchboards. It also clearly demonstrates the expected gender roles in the work force and occupations of that era. The social progress to keep in mind is that women were considered an integral part of the economy and employment, although in restricted roles, after WWII as opposed to attitudes prior to the war.

Another viewpoint to note is the underlying assumption in the film that people are necessary to build the economy (after WWII) and the acceptance of fair exchange of labor in return for secure and stable employment.

This film was made in an era when rebuilding the economy was a priority and that building telecommunications infrastructure was considered an integral and necessary part of that. In this era, when we suddenly find ourselves in desperate need of rebuilding our economy, the current discussion is once again on infrastructure.

Rebuilding roads and bridges are necessary and would be helpful but are part of an oil and petroleum based old economy. Building out the gaps in the digital network, creating and securing seamless inter-connected networks across the continent, seems a more forward way to accomplish turning the economy around by fully bringing it into the digital age. The US has in the past pulled itself out of economic crisis by advancing science and technology, supplemented by services created by the advances.

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Listen to the "excellent opportunities available" in the "twin fields of telephone or telegraph communications...for secure life long employment."

Gender roles clearly defined: "girls...with ability and experience may be promoted to a supervisor" (and the tone is the opportunity ended there). The job description for operators, both telephone and telegraph, state "a high school diploma may be required."

although "in the early days operators were men and the service was crude"


"job opportunities for men lie in...trained technicians."
"men are also needed at the switchboards that control the circuits...as well as general executive duties"
"excellent opportunities are provided for young men to acquire business training."





TelCove (Level3) Central Office Tour

a 2006 Central Office...beyond telco PSTN

A good overview of a Central Office adapted to the new environment in a non-bell telco environment. This tour was recorded prior to Level3's acquistion of TelCove and integrated into the backbone fiber provider that interfaces with the Public Switched Telephone Network.



Road Trip!

Tomorrow begins a road trip to New Mexico including a visit to the Telephone Museum of New Mexico in Alburquerque.

With camcorder in hand and my traveling partner's digital camera, hopefully we'll be able to get some good images.

110 Fourth Street NW Albuquerque, NM 505.842.2937

The building as it is today and in below in 1906


Networking Telegraph, Fax, Telephone, Radio, Print in the mid-1950s for business and social advances

This Western Union video indicates how the telegraph network was still a vital backbone in the mid-1950s to "serve the communications need of America." Interesting to note the use of the telephone to call Western Union to send a telegram. This is an indication that even with the advances of Operator Toll Dialing, Universal Service and Direct Distance Dialing, for basic functional messages, the telegraph was still the least expensive and most effective method. Faxes also passed across the telegraph network.

Use of the telegraph network then was very much like text messaging (SMS) is used today in the sense that it operated over a legacy network that had been outdated for its original intention but was quickly put to use as an adjunct to the new. Text messages are transmitted over the traditional analog paging network and not on the digital cellular voice/data network.

The analogy is the telegraph backbone, although no longer the primary method of transmitting information was still in use for useful low-cost functional purposes for decades. The analog wireless network backbone is used today for text messaging, paging from cellular phones and other purposes and is also likely to remain in use for a long time.



Quote of the Day

From HeadwatersNews

"I ran a business before I ran the business of the state of Montana. And I like running a business, not getting calls from somebody telling me I'm off to some place to do something else."

Montana Gov. Brian Schweitzer, responding to Colorado U.S. Ken Salazar's suggestion President-elect Barack Obama select either Schweitzer or Wyoming Gov. Dave Freudenthal as his interior secretary.
- Seattle Post-Intelligencer


How Phone Phreaks Launched Hacking...

and started social engineering.

The five video series below is from ca 2000 and tells the story of Capn Crunch and his Blue Box and the development of phone phreaking culture. There was a natural progression from phreaking the phone system to hacking massive corporate computers. Watch the videos to see how John Draper, aka Capn Crunch, was the hero of Steve Wozniak and Steve Jobs and their origins as hackers, and the origins of social engineering. This social behavior, using impersonal technology to manipulate personal behaviors, is manifested today on the internet, especially through online social networking sites.

My parents accomplished their goal of redirecting my behavior in their own inimitable way by convincing me to become one of the first teenage male operators in over 75 years. I had progressed from "playing with the phone" as a kid to an adolescent "breaking into the phone" and that could lead to serious consequences. So...I never got very far as a phone phreak because suddenly I virtually had the keys to the kingdom when I sat at the old cord switchboard where I learned and legitimately used all the codes on a regular basis. As heavily monitored as it was, it was the source of the information I was seeking.

It's amazing how much you could figure out how to reach the most far flung places across the globe, just by sitting at a lowly cordboard with plain tandem trunks, working with only a few people in the middle of the night...in a state with one area code in a Toll Center designed only for standard North American calls. With subtle inquiring questions at the right time, to gain insight and information, on how the networked was designed and worked.

What the telephone network personally meant to me was connection and communication with the big, wide world and I saw it as a big impersonal system I learned to use effectively to get out of where I was. I was intrigued by the massive network and what could be done with it to connect people by shrinking geography through telecommunications. It was the old social network and almost everything that has occurred with the internet with social interaction, online networking and connection to government and commerce, was preceded on the telephone network.

Phone phreaking had a mentality that naturally leant itself to hacking and the beginning of social engineering started on the Public Switched Telephone Network (PSTN). The evolution from the PSTN to the internet was natural and the social behaviors of the internet were already in society on the PSTN for decades.


Computer History Museum

In many ways the post WWII analog telephone system that developed has been more properly recognized by computer historians as the beginning of contemporary interaction online. It often seems telephone historians are more interested in either the progression of technology in a purely factual manner or basking in the aura of a bygone era. The fusion of the idea that the old PSTN socially networked people and was pivotal in the transition of society to the digital Information Age and the internet has yet to be fully explored by telecommunications historians.


John Draper inspired Steve Wozniak and Steve Jobs

The Blue Box

video 1 of 5


Inventing Hacker Sensibility
video 2 of 5


The Counterculture of Hacking
personal computing and the transition from phreaking to hacking
video 3 of 5


video 4 of 5


Phreaking: from wireline to pc to wireless
video 5 of 5