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Volume 28 : Issue 13 : "text" Format

Messages in this Issue:
  CallerID-compatible distinctive ring decoder firmware 
  Teen sends 14,528 text messages in one month 
  Re: Restoring a 302-type telephone 
  Re: Mysterious credit card charge may have hit millions of users 
  Re: Mysterious credit card charge may have hit millions of   users 
  Re: Restoring a 302-type telephone 

====== 27 years of TELECOM Digest -- Founded August 21, 1981 ======
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Date: Mon, 12 Jan 2009 01:14:15 -0500 (EST)
From: Dan Lanciani <>
Subject: CallerID-compatible distinctive ring decoder firmware 
Message-ID: <>

Distinctive ring service (also called multiring, ringmate, ringmaster, etc.)
allows you to have one or two additional telephone numbers associated with
a line.  Calling a number results in a unique ring pattern.  For purposes
of other than just listening to the rings you typically use a small box
that tries to figure out which number is ringing and routes it to a specific
RJ11 port.  The SR3 by Multi-Link is such a box; there are several others.

For some years I've used various work-arounds to combine CallerID and
distinctive ring services.  Distinctive ring call routers normally do
not connect quickly enough to pass the original caller ID signal (though
some do for some ports some of the time).  Recently I wanted a front-end
for some Voip FXO ports that would route on distinctive ring and pass
CallerID all of the time.  I tried Command Communications' latest product
which buffers and resends the CallerID information after the second ring.
It works, but the extra ring delay is noticeable and it also does a double-
click of the relay when the port answers.  This requires additional delay
to avoid cutting off the beginning of the voice-mail greeting and the click
is heard by the caller.

Looking at the ring patterns used here (typical for a 5ESS I think) it
seemed to me that it should be possible to make the routing decision
during the first ring cycle and connect the line such that it sees at
least half of that ring and the CallerID information.  To test this theory
I wrote replacement PIC firmware for the Multi-Link SR3.  I used this
device because I had one handy, the PIC was in a socket, and it was relatively
simple to understand the device's operation.  (My SR3--actually a modified
SR2--is pretty old.  I've ordered a new one to be sure they are compatible.)

The result of my effort is replacement firmware that supports most of the
normal features of the device (I do not generate the busy tones yet) and
routes calls as described above.  I've just put this into service and it
appears to work so far.  If anyone else is interested the firmware source
is available on my home automation page:

I used a PIC16F628 because that's what I stock, but the program is trivial
and could run in a much simpler device.

				Dan Lanciani


Date: Tue, 13 Jan 2009 17:22:34 +1100
From: David Clayton <>
Subject: Teen sends 14,528 text messages in one month 
Message-ID: <>

Wouldn't your thumb fall off?


Teen sends 14,528 text messages in one month

January 13, 2009 - 8:41AM

An American teenager sent almost 500 text messages a day last month,
leaving her father with a phone bill of 440 pages.

Reina Hardesty, 13, sent 14,528 text messages in December - about 470 text
messages a day, at an average of a message every two minutes if she was
awake for 15 hours each day, the New York Post said.

Her father, Greg, said he was shocked to receive a 440 page phone bill
last month.

"First, I laughed. I thought: 'That's insane, that's impossible'," Mr
Hardesty told the Post.

"And I immediately whipped out the calculator to see if it was humanly

"Then I thought maybe AT&T made some mistake on the bill."

He asked his daughter: "Who are you texting, anyway? Your entire school?"

Reina said she messaged a core group of "four obsessive texters" - all
girls between the ages of 12 and 13.

"Well, a lot of my friends have unlimited texting. I just text them pretty
much all the time," she said.

At a karaoke birthday party, Reina texted her best friend, who was sitting
right next to her while others were singing, the Post said.

She also texted her friends to brag about the high number of text messages
she had racked up when her parents got the bill.

Fortunately for her parents, Reina's phone plan allows unlimited texting
for $US30 a month.

Otherwise the phone bill would have been about $2900, the Post said.

Reina's parents have since placed restrictions on her phone use,
forbidding her from texting after dinner.

The average number of monthly texts for a 13- to 17-year-old is 1742, the
Post said.


Date: Mon, 12 Jan 2009 20:25:00 -0800 (PST)
Subject: Re: Restoring a 302-type telephone 
Message-ID: <>

On Jan 9, 5:17 pm, wrote:
> >       That was near the twilight days of 302 telephones.
> I suspect the Bell System
> continued installing 302 sets well into the 1950s.  

I remember being in or seeing pictures of school buildings built new
in the mid-1950s and the school office was equipped with 302 sets.
So, they were still installing them in new installations even after
the 500 set came out.  Perhaps a more prestigious new office or
residence got newer sets.

In the early 1950s some areas with rapid development had shortages and
had to wait for telephone service.  I suspect those people were happy
to get any set at all just to have service.  I don't think the Bell
System had the luxury of throwing out a massive inventory of 302 sets
in those days, but rather reconditioned them back to service.

Heck, I'm told that in the early 1950s plenty of people still had
candle stick phones.   At one time they were cheaper than handset
phones.  Certainly plenty had 202 set (the "French" handset phone).
Many payphones of the 1950s had two piece transmitter/receiver.

One upgrade the Bell System did make was to put on "F" units (the 302
transmitter and receiver) on candle stick and 202 sets since the
quality was far superior.  Many 202 sets had an E base but an F

Privately owned/operated  internal telephone networks seemed to stick
with AE 40 gear for many years, never getting upgraded to say an AE


Date: Tue, 13 Jan 2009 00:40:55 -0500 (EST)
From: Dan Lanciani <>
Subject: Re: Mysterious credit card charge may have hit millions of users 
Message-ID: <>

|Mysterious credit card charge may have hit millions of users
|By Mitch Lipka, Globe Correspondent  |  January 11, 2009
|The Boston Globe
|Several Internet complaint boards are filled with comments from 
|credit card customers from coast to coast who have noticed a 
|mysterious charge for about 25 cents on their statements.
|The charge shows up on statements as coming from "Adele Services" in 
|Melville, N.Y. There is no business by that name listed in Melville, 
|or registered to any business anywhere in New York, for that matter.

This is silly.  The banks know where the money is going.  Why make
it seem like a mystery?

|Two theories of what is going on have advanced on message boards and 
|among consumer advocates: Someone is trying to find out whether an 
|illegally obtained credit card number will work before making a 
|bigger charge, or they're trying to rip off tiny amounts from tons of 

If the latter then the perpetrators would need to get the money out
of whatever account is associated with their merchant service.  Why
aren't the banks scrutinizing that account and its owner?

|The latter theory has more credibility at the moment. The Better 
|Business Bureau in Louisville reports that, at least so far, those 
|who have been hit with the small charge have yet to get slammed with 
|a bigger charge. The bureau speculates that the number of possible 
|victims could be in the millions.

Speculates?  Can't they get someone to actually investigate?


|***** Moderator's Note *****
|The first wave has started: after this, the deluge. The banking system
|we all depend on is, as I have said before, totally incapable of
|verifying customer or merchant identities without face-to-face

Banks have little financial incentive to verify business customers.
In a successful scam the bank gets its cut.  If a charge is disputed
(and the consumer prevails) the bank gets a dispute fee.  As many
people like to summarize the Uniform Commercial Code: the bank wins.

				Dan Lanciani


Date: Tue, 13 Jan 2009 21:57:06 +0000 (UTC)
Subject: Re: Mysterious credit card charge may have hit millions of   users 
Message-ID: <gkj2ni$44c$>

Dan Lanciani <> wrote:
> |Mysterious credit card charge may have hit millions of users
> |
> |By Mitch Lipka, Globe Correspondent  |  January 11, 2009
> |The Boston Globe
> |
> |Several Internet complaint boards are filled with comments from 
> |credit card customers from coast to coast who have noticed a 
> |mysterious charge for about 25 cents on their statements.

You know, the transaction fees and whatnot generally add 
up to about 25 to 30 cents per transaction.  

Seems to me like Adele Services would be losing money 
on every transaction, unless they got some sweetheart
deal from their card processor, and even then it would
be only a couple of cents per.  Now, if someone has 
figured a way to inject small charges into the system
and not get charged the processing fees I'll bet the
credit card companies will be all over them in a big
hurry.  The return of the salami slice . . .

Bill Ranck
Blacksburg, Va.


Date: Tue, 13 Jan 2009 22:33:11 GMT
From: "Tony Toews \[MVP\]" <>
Subject: Re: Restoring a 302-type telephone 
Message-ID: <> wrote:

>In the 1950s, even into the 1960s, many smaller towns had five digit
>numbers.  They got a seven digit ANC number to be addressable by DDD,
>but for local use continued with five digits (into the 1980s until ESS
>came along).  Those places obviously never had a named exchange.

Thompson, Manitoba had a 677 exchange when the town was first built in
the very early 1960's but the locals only dialed a four digit number.
Some time in the mid to late 60s a 778 prefix was added.  You only
needed to dial the 8 for the 778 phone numbers and continued to dial
four digits for the 677 numbers.  The government owned Manitoba
Telephone Systems (MTS) is the telco.

Tony Toews, Microsoft Access MVP
   Please respond only in the newsgroups so that others can 
read the entire thread of messages.
   Microsoft Access Links, Hints, Tips & Accounting Systems at
   Tony's Microsoft Access Blog -


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