Book Review - Telecom For Dummies by Stephen P. Olejniczak
So where was this book when I started working for Enron Broadband??? I could have used it... Telecom For Dummies by Stephen P. Olejniczak.
Part 1 - The ABCs of Telecom Service: A Buyer's Scoop on Telecom; Making (And Living with) Telecom Decisions; Getting Around the Telecom Neighborhood
Part 2 - Reviewing Telecom Products and Prices: Understanding Dedicated Service Requirements; Meeting Toll-Free Service, the Red-Headed Stepchild of Telecom; Getting the Non-Accountant's Guide to Your Phone Bill
Part 3 - Ordering and Setting Up Telecom Service: Ordering Regular Phone Lines and New Long-Distance Service; Ordering Dedicated Service; Ordering Toll-Free Service; Activating Your Dedicated Circuit and Toll-Free Numbers
Part 4 - Taking Care of Your Telecom System: Maintaining Your Telecom Services; Troubleshooting Switched Network Issues; Troubleshooting Your Dedicated Circuits
Part 5 - What's Hot (Or Just Geeky) in the Telecom World: Transferring Data, Not Just Voice Content; Riding The Internet Wave - VoIP
Part 6 - The Part Of Ten: Ten Acronyms and What They Really Mean; Ten Troublesome Telecom Traits to Avoid; Ten Places To Go for Hints and Help
Appendix - Making a Loopback Plug; Index
This is one of those Dummies titles that may sound a little strange at first, but quickly starts delivering the goods. The audience here is anyone who is responsible for maintaining the phone system in an organization. This could be a new technician just starting to learn the ropes, or a small business owner who needs something more than just one phone line to run their business. The author starts out with the basics of the technology and terminology, and he quickly demystifies many of the acronyms that are so common in this business. He then builds on that solid foundation to walk you through the process of determining your telecom needs and how you need to order them. And of course, when things go wrong (and they *will*), you'll have some great advice on how to troubleshoot things on your end, as well as what you'll need to know in order to help the phone company resolve things expeditiously.
Although I didn't deal directly with the network while at Enron Broadband, I built computer systems that helped people run said network. Knowing this information would have made my job infinitely easier, and I wish I had been able to have a book like this back then. I'm sure you can find all this information in other books, but I doubt it would be as clear and concise (as well as being fun to read). If you have any responsibilities for the phone system at work, this is the place to start reading...