The telephone looms large in our lives, as ever present in modern societies as cars and television. Claude Fischer presents the first social history of this vital but little-studied technology--how we encountered, tested, and ultimately embraced it with enthusiasm. Using telephone ads, oral histories, telephone industry correspondence, and statistical data, Fischer's work is a colorful exploration of how, when, and why Americans started communicating in this radically new manner.
Studying three California communities, Fischer uncovers how the telephone became integrated into the private worlds and community activities of average Americans in the first decades of this century. Women were especially avid in their use, a phenomenon which the industry first vigorously discouraged and then later wholeheartedly promoted. Again and again Fischer finds that the telephone supported a wide-ranging network of social relations and played a crucial role in community life, especially for women, from organizing children's relationships and church activities to alleviating the loneliness and boredom of rural life.
Deftly written and meticulously researched, America Calling adds an important new chapter to the social history of our nation and illuminates a fundamental aspect of cultural modernism that is integral to contemporary life.
Imagine a blackout lasting not days, but weeks or months. Tens of millions of people over several states are affected. For those without access to a generator, there is no running water, no sewage, no refrigeration or light. Food and medical supplies are dwindling. Devices we rely on have gone dark. Banks no longer function, looting is widespread, and law and order are being tested as never before. It isn't just a scenario. A well-designed attack on just one of the nation's three electric power grids could cripple much of our infrastructure--and in the age of cyberwarfare, a laptop has become the only necessary weapon. Several nations hostile to the United States could launch such an assault at any time. In fact, as a former chief scientist of the NSA reveals, China and Russia have already penetrated the grid. And a cybersecurity advisor to President Obama believes that independent actors--from "hacktivists" to terrorists--have the capability as well. "It's not a question of if," says Centcom Commander General Lloyd Austin, "it's a question of when." And yet, as Koppel makes clear, the federal government, while well prepared for natural disasters, has no plan for the aftermath of an attack on the power grid. The current Secretary of Homeland Security suggests keeping a battery-powered radio. In the absence of a government plan, some individuals and communities have taken matters into their own hands. Among the nation's estimated three million "preppers," we meet one whose doomsday retreat includes a newly excavated three-acre lake, stocked with fish, and a Wyoming homesteader so self-sufficient that he crafted the thousands of adobe bricks in his house by hand. We also see the unrivaled disaster preparedness of the Mormon church, with its enormous storehouses, high-tech dairies, orchards, and proprietary trucking company - the fruits of a long tradition of anticipating the worst. But how, Koppel asks, will ordinary civilians survive? With urgency and authority, one of our most renowned journalists examines a threat unique to our time and evaluates potential ways to prepare for a catastrophe that is all but inevitable.
The U.S. telecommunications industry has undergone dramatic changes in recent years that have touched almost every American home and business. The average American can dial almost anywhere in the world directly, store and forward a message, or transmit a fax in less than a minute; often for less than the real cost of a 500-mile telephone call tweny-five years ago. The combination of telecommunications breakthroughs, competition among new and old carriers, and the AT&T breakup has transformed the telephone industry and provided customers with a new array of equipment and services.
Robert W. Crandall examines the effects of the AT&T breakup and weighs the costs and benefits to the residential and business consumer. On balance, he finds that the efficiency gains from opening up the telephone industry have more than offset the possible efficiency losses, which may be caused by the sacrifice of economies of scale and scope or the absence of fully compatible equipment and services. The replacement of regulation with competition has led to greater productivity in the telephone industry, a more efficient rate structure, and lower equipment prices.
Crandall traces the telecommunications evolution from its early beginnings as pairs of copper wires up through the historic 1982 decision to divest. He investigates the impact of technological changes, competition, and the advent of divestiture on the quality of service, local and interexchange service rates, productive efficiency, and income distribution. He also focuses on problems that linger after the breakup in the increasingly competitive but highly regulated sector.
On January 8, 1982, the AT&T divestiture consent decree was announced. A company with $150 billion in assets--more than General Motors, General Electric, U.S. Steel, Eastman Kodak, and Xerox combined--the country's second largest employer with over a million employees, and the nations most widely held security with over three million shareholders, was to be broken up on the first day of 1984. Many economists, government officials, people in the telecommunications industry, and media observers predicted dire consequences for "the best telephone system in the world."Years later, some experts claim the divestiture has been a great success. According to present AT&T Chairman and CEO, Robert Allen, long-distance rates have dropped, local rates have not increased as dramatically as predicted, more households are on the network, other long-distance and equipment companies now effectively compete wit hAT&T, and consumers have received more choices in products, better values, and lower prices. Others are far less positive in their evaluation of divestiture's effects. After the Breakup: Assessing the New Post-AT&T Divestiture Era describes the current state of telecommunications and how the industry has changed in the first decade of divestiture. Drawn from a major project organized by the Center for Telecommunications and Information Studies at Columbia University's Graduate School of Business, this volume offers an objective account of divestiture.
For almost a century, a relatively smooth cooperation characterized transatlantic communication; problems mostly involved technical compatibility and were resolved by technologists of the monopolistic telephone organizations on either side of the Atlantic. In recent years, however, the nature of international communications, its institutions, and its collaborative arrangements have radically changed. There now exists a great variety in the patterns of ownership and usage of telecommunications across different countries. This has led to a disequilibrium in the world telecommunications market that raises complex questions: Can evolving domestic deregulation be reconciled with an international regulatory regime? How does international trade regulation affect multinational governmental cooperation and private collaboration? Is competition viable in all sectors of the international telecommunications industry?
Foreword by Werner Vogels,
Vice President and Corporate Technology Officer, Amazon
The AWS exam has been updated. Your study guide should be, too.
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NOTE: As of October 7, 2019, the accompanying code for hands-on exercises in the book is available for downloading from the secure Resources area in the online test bank. You'll find code for Chapters 1, 2, 11, and 12.
It is important to understand what came before and how to meld new products with legacy systems. Network managers need to understand the context and origins of the systems they are using. Programmers need an understanding of the reasons behind the interfaces they must satisfy and the relationship of the software they build to the whole network. And finally, sales representatives need to see the context into which their products must fit.
This book approaches the subject with a clear grasp of the underlying concepts, and appreciation for the politics and choices that shape them, and a nonpartisan perspective the permits an objective overview. Because of a lack of understanding, participants in the telecommunications/computer industry often take stands counter to their own interests. Further-more, allies in one area may be competitors in another. The volume presents an accurate account of the hard questions faced by these companies, their regulators, an their customers. The author focuses on issues that remain constant regardless of their shape at a given time. Also illustrated are some concepts, such as local service, that are sheer invention, reflecting politicalaand economic choices.
The convergence of telecommunications, mass media and computer technologies has brought spectacular developments of ubiquitous intelligent interconnected systems. In the course of these evolutionary changes, debate and policy has swung again towards privatization, deregulation and increased reliance upon competition. Nevertheless, the underlying and powerful role of new information continues to bring so much restructuring and organizational change, that a reassessment of ideas about competition in this dynamic context, is essential. The aim of this volume is to provide an update of research and policy debates in this important field. An international perspective is provided with contributions from academic, business and governmental communities. The volume will be invaluable to researchers in telecommunications and information activities; decision-makers in industry, government and regulatory fields; consultants; and information service providers.