TELECOM Digest OnLine - Sorted: My First Post

My First Post

Neal McLain (
Thu, 24 Mar 2005 00:15:44 EST

As of this year, I've been a reader and intermittent contributor to
this list for ten years. I guess I'm still a newbie compared to many
of the other readers, but I've learned a lot from this list during the
past decade. Thanks to all of you readers for the information you've
contributed, and a special thanks to PAT for his efforts!

My first post, dated March 24, 1995, is at
In re-reading it now, I find it interesting to note how things have
changed -- especially my statement that "an area code and a central
office code can't be the same." I guess 847-847-XXXX proves that
wrong, even though it may be confusing to non-Chicagoans.

Neal McLain

[TELECOM Digest Editor's Note: As long as I am digging up old postings
for today's issue, I decided to get yours out and review it also. It
is reprinted below. And thank you also, Neal, for your many
contributions over the years. You have been a good friend over the
past decade also. Your kind words very much appreciated.

Date: Fri, 24 Mar 95 23:16:21 CST
From: (TELECOM Digest (Patrick Townson))
Subject: TELECOM Digest V15 #169

TELECOM Digest Fri, 24 Mar 95 23:16:00 CST Volume 15 : Issue 169

Inside This Issue: Editor: Patrick A. Townson

Book Review: "The Information Superhighway: Beyond the Internet" (R Slade)
800 Numbers, and FLOWERS Again (Judith Oppenheimer)
Outsourcing of International Telecom Services (Victor Prochnik)
Re: Your 500 Number and International Access (Tony Harminc)
Re: X.25/ISDN Prices: Global Information Wanted (Andy Lochridge)
Re: Interesting Telemarketing, Sad Actually (William Wood)
Re: Keypad Letter Pattern (was Re: U.S. 800 Users Alert) (Mark Brader)
Re: Recommendations Wanted on Voice Mail Systems (Paul Hanson)
===> New Area Code Assignments (Neal McLain) <===
800 Service Costs and ISDN Rates (Arthur Greenwald)


Date: Fri, 24 Mar 95 22:30 CST
From: Neal McLain <>
Subject: New Area Code Assignments

A recent issue of TELECOM Digest raised a question about how "new" (since
1/1/95) area codes are assigned.

A partial answer certainly has to be this: an area code and a central
office code can't be the same. And, if at all possible, an area code
shouldn't be the same as any nearby central office code in any adjacent
area code.

Consider how these requirements affect the selection of the new area
code when an existing area code is split:

- Avoiding a conflict with any existing central office code means that the
new area code must be selected from the list of presently-unused central
office codes. That list is likely to be fairly short: if an area code
needs to be split, it's already running out of central office codes.

- Avoiding a conflict with any existing central office code in any nearby
community in adjacent area codes makes that short list even shorter.

A case in point: the 205/334 split in Alabama:

- 334 is not used as a central office code anywhere in Alabama. Thus,
there will be no 205-334 or 334-334.

- With one exception, 334 is not used as a central office code in any
nearby city in any adjacent area code: 404-334 doesn't exist;
601-334 is in Greenville; 615-334 is in Decatur; 706-334 is in
Ranger; and 904-334 is in Tallahassee.

- The one exception which proves the rule: 912-334 is in Georgetown,
Georgia, right across the Chattahoochee River from Eufaula,
Alabama. This will no doubt cause some confusion for the 900 or
so residents of Georgetown.

That confusion notwithstanding, it seems obvious that Bellcore and the
local telephone companies went to considerable effort to select the
code which would cause the least amount of confusion.

Neal McLain

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