[techbooks] REVIEW: "Telecom Made Easy", June Langhoff
- BKTLCMME.RVW 990331
"Telecom Made Easy", June Langhoff, 1997, 0-9632790-7-6, U$19.95
%A June Langhoff 71022.2131@...
%C 796 Aquidneck Avenue, Newport, RI 02842-7246
%I Aegis Publishing Group Ltd.
%O U$19.95 800-828-6961 fax: 401-849-4231 aegis@...
%P 400 p.
%T "Telecom Made Easy, Third Edition"
According to the book jacket, this is for very small companies with
less than five phones installed. The text seems to hit the target
Chapter one is a standard promotional piece for modern
telecommunications services. Basic (very basic) user premises
equipment is reviewed in chapter two, concentrating on wiring and
connections. For those with no background in telephony, these
explanations are clear and detailed, although for anyone with some
experience the material gets a bit tedious. A variety of phone
services, such as Caller-ID and 900 numbers, are briefly described in
chapter three. Chapter four looks at phone "lines," or the basic
service that you get. The section on ISDN (Integrated Services
Digital Network) has a number of points in it, but still may not give
the reader enough information about how, actually, to connect to and
use the service. A wide range of features for "basic" phone sets are
listed in chapter five. Private branch exchanges (PBXs) and other
types of phone systems are discussed in chapter six. Chapter seven
not only describes the various types of mobile phone service, but also
offers tips on security and saving money.
Voice mail is covered in chapter eight, and answering machines in
nine. Chapter ten deals with pagers. Online services get a look in
chapter eleven. The chapter obviously has its origins in commercial
services and BBSes, with the Internet as an afterthought, but for all
of that the information, though brief, is well thought out. Even the
section on viruses isn't bad, until it gets into MS Word macro viruses
("a group of viruses commonly named the Microsoft Concept virus") and
protection. The material on modems, in chapter twelve, has lots of
tips, but lots of gaps as well, unfortunately. Installing a modem is
still a tricky business. Fax is fairly straightforward, and so is
chapter thirteen. Chapter fourteen deals not only with telecommuting,
but with communicating, and computing, on the road.
Chapter fifteen "shows us the money" on phone bills. From my
perspective, the advice is pedestrian, but then, I'm a Scot. A
miscellany of LANs, disaster recovery, and other topics finishes off
in chapter sixteen.
Sprinkled throughout the text are boxes with tips or "A Day in the
Life of ..." descriptions of use by diverse small businesses or
operators. At the end of each chapter there are suggested books for
further readings in the topic. I'd never heard of most of them, and
of those I had, a number were in the mediocre range.
For those just starting out in business, or starting to get to the
point of needing more telecommunications services, this work should be
a good introduction. In addition, consultants may wish to keep copies
around for small business customers in order to get them over the
initial hurdles, and keep common questions to a minimum.
copyright Robert M. Slade, 1999 BKTLCMME.RVW 990331
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http://victoria.tc.ca/techrev or http://sun.soci.niu.edu/~rslade
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