Stories by Daniel Briere and Christine Heckart

Plug In, Log On and Break Out of the Mold

While the 1960s brought us the "tune in, turn on and drop out" mentality, the 2000's telecom version is "plug in, log on and break out" of the old ways of doing things. Everything is being reinvented today.

Internet mobile phones? Ready, set ...wait!

We love to hear about the latest gadgets as much as the next WAN geek, but we're sceptical about the likelihood of Internet-capable mobile phones being anything more than expensive torture devices - at least for the next five years or so.

"Whhaazzuuhhp" with Broadband Wireless?

Unless you've been working too hard, you've heard a few funky fellows muttering this on a TV beer commercial or heard guys in your office screaming it to each other between cubicles. If you are really with it, you may have seen the Superfriends e-mail with Batman, Superman and even Wonder Woman pondering, "Whhhhaaaazzzzzzuuuuuuhhhhhhp?"

Expect Bigger Roles for Optical Networking

Wait, there's one more Oscar: For best performance in a supporting infrastructure role, we nominate the optical networks of next-generation service providers Qwest Communications International Inc., Williams Communications Group Inc., Level 3 Communications Inc., Enron Corp. and BroadWing Inc..

IP VPNs May Spell End for Frame Relay

Frame relay has been around since we were all drooling over Intel Corp.'s "high-power" 486 chip in 1991. In the ensuing nine years, we've seen four new generations of microprocessors, each twice as fast as its predecessor. While speed increased exponentially, price per bit dropped just as dramatically.

Internet cell phones? Ready, set . . . wait!

We love to hear about the latest gadgets as much as the next WAN geek, but we're skeptical about the likelihood of Internetcapable cell phones being anything more than expensive torture devices - at least for the next five years or so.

Beat Those "Stuck in the Boonies Blues"

Living in a rural locale definitely has advantages - more trees, fewer cars, fresh air. However, it also has disadvantages. Finding The New York Times on Sunday can be hard, and sushi bars are few and far between. Most difficult - for those with home offices - is that broadband connections are just about nonexistent.

Guest column: Success through failure?

Failure is not an option! How many times has this overused phrase been uttered in a 'rally-the-troops' company speech? Or how about this tried-and-true ditty: "This product is the future of our company!" This self-serving, win-one-for-the-gipper bravado has become a mainstay in the corporate technology world today.