Earlier this week, US Telco Verizon unveiled a Groundbreaking FiOS Internet Service. Claims the press release : " Verizon has changed the definition of "fast" with the introduction of a new, symmetrical Verizon FiOS Internet service for consumers, featuring an upload and download speed of up to 20 megabits per second (Mbps)."
Wow. 20Mbps on fiber, that's quite a breakthrough. For the US. Because, not willing to play the Arrogant Frenchie, but... we've got 20Mbps DSL since years, allowing real TriplePlay services including HD-TV. Okay, DSL is not symmetrical. Guess what : we (well, the lucky guys in Paris or Pau and many other cities across the country) can get full-symmetrical 100Mbps on fiber since months.
Take the city of Pau and its state-of-the-art 'Pau Broadband Country' broadband access network : 40,000+ homes passed, with 6,000+ active subscribers : NeufCegetel offers symmetrical 50Mbps since May this year, whilst enterprises and high-end users enjoy a full 100Mbps connection.
So, for those of you who seek bandwidth hungrily : take a one-way ticket to the 21st Century' (Broadband) Capital : Pau.
Update 10-27-07 : I just replaced the previous photo for the one above. The reason is that the author of the original photo sent me a message today, claiming the copyright. He wanted me to mention his name, blahblahblah. Well, I would, should this famous photo be about a private thing or so. Fact is, the photo shows a public work on a public street, for a public community (a french city somewhere in the Alpes). In summary, the guy shot a picture of something paid by the French citizens, and he wants a copyright on it. Weird, IMHO. Especially at the Age of the Web 2.0.
To reach this modest person, click here, er, nowhere : I haven't seen any "email me" button on his weblog, which is here.
post-scriptum : the photo is mine, means I shot it myself some years ago, somewhere in Santa Rosa, California.
I must apologize : I didn't ask the authorization to PacBell to take this picture. However, it's here for you, with no copyright. Enjoy it, copy it, save it, distribute it : it's free, because I decided to put it here, on my blog, on the Web, on the Internet.
By the way, the PacBell folks did a great job repairing a fiber optics cable this beautiful morning. I wish the French telcos and I&M contractors be able to deliver the same level of quality. But that's another story.
I just received my Mac OS 10.5 aka "Leopard" Install disk. I tell you, the packaging alone is worth the $129 : a gorgious hologram on the front cover, and another splendid one at the back, appearing through icons and apps' windows. At the back of the DVD holder, those simple words : "Designed and engineered by Apple in California". That explains everything. Design in first place, no "inc." after Apple's name, and California, not "USA".
Got this message in my Yahoo! inbox today. You may appreciate the "In other to" not-a-typo. Not sure I'm gonna send my personal data to this "Leila Green" of this strange ".ie" domain (Ireland).
From: "Online Co-ordinator" <email@example.com> Add to Address Book Add Mobile Alert
Subject: Confirm Your Winnings *20/10/2007*
Date: Sat, 20 Oct 2007 10:41:38 +0000
The Irish Lottery
P O Box 1010
11 G Lower Dorset Street,
Dublin 1, Ireland
This is to inform you that you have been selected fora cash prize of £475,318 (GBP) in cash credited to file KTU/9023118308/03. held on the 17th of October 2007 in Uk.The selection process wascarried out through random
selection in our computerized email selection system(ess) from a database of over 25,000 email addresses drawn fromwhich you were selected.
The Irish National Lottery is approved by the Uk Gaming Board. In other to claim your won Amount £475,318(GBP) prize from thelottery board you are required to contact our Claims Agent here in the UK with the details below:
Name Of Claims Agent: MRS. LEILA GREEN
Email address : firstname.lastname@example.org
PAYMENT PROCESSING FORM
9.BRIEF DESCRIPTION OF COMPANY/INDIVIDUAL
SIR. ALAN CLARKSON
Online coordinator for THE IRISH LOTTERY
Sweepstakes International Program.
For those of you who still consider Apple as a small player in the Computing arena, go to Amazon.com and check the most popular items in Software section.
A new type of virus, aka 'Storm', is infecting Windows machines all over the Planet since beginning of this year. Unfortunately, Storm is much more than a good old virus : it's a worm, a Trojan Horse, and a bot, all in one single piece of malicious software. In between 1 million and 50 million PCs are infected, as per the actual estimations. The bad news : Storm has been written by hackers looking for profit. Read the whole story here on Wired, by Bruce Schneier, CTO of BT Counterpane. I'm so happy to run a Mac.
[thanks MDN for the heads up]
Ed. note : unfortunately, I must use a PC at work.
Erick Schonfeld of Techcrunch reports the short speech of Jeff Huber, VP Engineering, Google, at the Web 2.0 Summit yesterday in San Francisco.
Quote Huber : " What we see is applications fundamentally changing. Just like the model for content changed from monolithic sites, now applications are going to be feeds and containers. A lot that you have heard here is about platforms and who is going to win. That is Paleolithic thinking. The Web has already won. The web is the Platform. So let’s go build the programmable Web."
And let's go build the user-programmable test gear : Testing 2.0 !
In a recent post, I mentionned a handful of test & measurement players, silencing numerous companies. The reason is pretty simple : IMHO, Agilent Technologies, Danaher's Fluke+Tektronix, Anritsu, and JDSU are the only companies aimed to survive the forthcoming T&M industry shake-up. We are the verge of a new booming era in the Telecommunications, thanks to the enormous demand for bandwidth worldwide. Hence the mandatory consolidation in some sectors, Test & Measurement being one of the most vibrant.
That's why my take is, lots of the small guys will disappear one way or another. Mergers, acquisitions, banckruptcies, the whole range of possible futures is wide open for the EXFOs, the Spirents, the Ixias, and the one small firm somewhere down the Silicon Valley which I can't mention anymore (hint : they have a very very little useless subsidiary nearby the Leman lake, and their name is the opposite of the moon going dawn). Even the Yokogawas will face the big question someday...
In 10 years from now, I see only three survivors out of the Four-Tops above : Agilent, Danaher, and Anritsu. Don't ask me why : just a bit more than a feeling, from a 25-years presence in this industry. It has to do with their history, legacy, and roots, somehow.
Nevertheless, there is one thing I can tell : I'll do my very best to play a pro-active part in this shake-up, thru the Testing 2.0 adventure. See you in 10 years !
According to Lightwave earlier this week, Danaher Corp. and Tektronix Inc. announced they have reached a definitive agreement under which Danaher will make a cash tender offer to acquire all outstanding common shares of Tektronix for $38.00 per share. The aggregate purchase price is approximately $2.8 billion, including debt, transaction costs, and net of cash acquired.
With the acquisition of a venerable company, Tektronix, which is a reference in the T&M Test & Measurement world together with Agilent Technologies (formerly Hewlett-Packard), the industry landscape is going to change once again. The alliance between Fluke - another pretty strong reference at every Telecoms & Datacoms network installer on the Planet - and Tek is creating a new one-stop-shopping center covering the whole spectrum of typical applications, from lab & manufacturing (Tek) to installation & maintenance (Fluke), from low-end/high quality/mainstream test gear (Fluke) to high-end/high quality/advanced (Tektronix).
Whilst T&M market leader Agilent Technologies has to face three major competitors : JDSU, Anritsu, and the new Fluke+Tek actor now, the French-Canadian firm EXFO is left alone as a small player in front of giants. EXFO, whose role model was HP Test & Measurement (aka Agilent) will most probably be set ready for a merger with another group.
Note that EXFO's stock slipped quite heavily yesterday, and that Tek's
raised rose nicely at the official announcement.
Charts available at Yahoo!Finance here.
post-scriptum : For you who are not familiar with the Telecoms Test & Measurement, I'll publish a brief history of the sector, to show how the T&M folks are still surfing on the ripples of the Internet Bubble' implosion.
I've been playing a bit with Twitter' mashup apps during lunch break : Twittervision and Twittermap. Just amazingly simple tools for displaying any geotagged data on a map.
For those of you who ignore what Twitter is, read this recent post by Guy Kawasaki and follow its links.
post-scriptum : as I'm going to be busier (if running at 120% is possible ;-) over the next couple of months, I'll post more twitters here, thanks to Twitter's SMS feature. Watch the left side bar for updates...
My recent post on the supposed-to-be-real mymt2k.com engine has been spotted by a pretty strange website today : more than 30 hits from Xanga.com (no URL here, I don't want to link with them ;-).
To see what it is, you're forced to log in. I did it. I'm to delete my account right now.
Shall your own blog get listed on this Xanga stuff, stay away.
Note : I'm gonna call Fox Mulder as soon as I click on "Save".
What a great Monday ! Blue sky, sunny weather, a little bit windy over the water, 70°F, and I'm listening to my favorite Classic hits radio station : KFRC. Am I in San Francisco ? No. Lyon, France.
That's one of the beauty of the Internet : soul teleportation. I even get the traffic updates live from the Bay Area. Which I don't really care for the time being, provided that I won't be driving again on the 280 before next year (well, who knows how business will go the next couple of months...). However, I wish I can get KFRC right in my car, whilst being stuck in some of those awful traffic jams here.
Note : I've searched for traffic webcams along the highway here nearby Lyon. Guess what : no chance. Now you understand why I'm so keenly willing to go to San Fran and the Bay Area ;-)
I once took an elevator with a former US President (Bill Clinton, Roissy Charles De Gaulle airport, Feb.2002), but I never got a message from a Nobel Prize until today. Read this :
I am deeply honored to receive the Nobel Peace Prize. This award is even more meaningful because I have the honor of sharing it with the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change--the world's pre-eminent scientific body devoted to improving our understanding of the climate crisis--a group whose members have worked tirelessly and selflessly for many years. We face a true planetary emergency. The climate crisis is not a political issue, it is a moral and spiritual challenge to all of humanity. It is also our greatest opportunity to lift global consciousness to a higher level.
My wife, Tipper, and I will donate 100 percent of the proceeds of the award to the Alliance for Climate Protection, a bipartisan non-profit organization that is devoted to changing public opinion in the U.S. and around the world about the urgency of solving the climate crisis.
Al Gore wins the Nobel. Cool.
France First Lady and the President may split today (link in french, sorry - watch the AFP for more soon). Not cool.
Look, I've got a brand new Dell laptop for my new job. No WiFi built-in : we have to use an external PCMCIA card for that. Each time I commute from the hotel to my office, I've to enter the WEP key...
Another frustrating experience : Skype. Last night, I couldn't send pictures of my new car to the kids because my wife's account was set as "inactive" onto my Skype, whilst she was "online" on her Mac... Or, the Skype button on this blog : it says I'm "not saying", whilst I swear I'm either "online" or "not available" or "away".
The best one : in the train on the way back home last Friday, I wanted to watch a movie on a DVD. Windows Media Player gave me the sound, but no image...
I know why I'm a MacManiac ;-)
Jason Lewis, 39, is back home after a 13-years incredible journey. Together with his buddy Steve Smith, Lewis left the United Kingdom on the 12th of July 1994, for one of the greatest adventures of the Modern Times : a circumnavigation around the World.
Their goal : " to circle the World by means of human power alone, to use the adventure as a classroom learning tool, to encourage World Citizenship between cultures, to promote environmental responsibility, to live fully and enjoy the experience."
More on Smith & Lewis venture Expedition 360 here. on Jason' s arrival on the Greenwich' s Meridian Line here and here
This blog is one-year old since yesterday.
From something that I've imagined as a product, with a marketing plan, a roadmap, deadlines, and all that fancy usual stuff for us Marketeers, aimed at one goal (promote the Testing 2.0 idea), FiberGeneration rapidly became more of a journal. Today, I guess I write and publish things from my soul rather than my brain, which is the role of a personal weblog I assume...
Anyway, this year has been quite an amazing journey, full of learnings, discoveries, and surprises of all kinds. My most memorable souvenir ? The message I received from the daughter of Raymond Loëwy, the day after I posted a top-ten list on his work. Thank you so much, Madame.
This message was waiting for me in my Junk Mail box tonight. Look at the name of the sender.
Subject: Request for Partnership.
Date: October 5, 2007 10:38:12 PM CEDT
Mr Name is Mr. Lee Moon Sun, as former employee of bank of china, I have a legitimate business proposal for you, i will avail you with futher details and modalities of this transaction as soon as i read from you.Kindly send me your name phone number and fax number for more details.
To fight the Dark Ages which seem to come - Global Warming is just one of the many aspects of it, together with the actual riots in Burma and so many other apparently isolated or disconnected events all around the Planet - Human Kind needs to unite.
The previous post is a (very) little contribution to this fight.
Thanks JMP for the heads up.
Ten years after leaving my own firm to do something else, I'm back in the Fiber Optics Training & Consulting business. Since Monday this week, I'm in charge of the creation of a ad-hoc subsidiary at a 20-yrs old / 50-people / fast-growing company here in France.
It's a little bit strange to me : I'm paid to do what I haven't had the chance to achieve with my own firm ten years ago.
The good news is : today, the market is there (thanks to YouTube, Facebook, and MSN), the customers are there, and the tools are there (thanks to the Internet and the Web 2.0).
And thanks to those ten years out of this particular business, I've learned so many different things myself in so many different domains that I'm more capable to run this business successfully than in the 90's.
For instance, this : today, I've been working at Production, assembling and testing fiber patchcords. For the first time since 1983 when I first put my fingers around an optical fiber, I've been shaking. I was afraid of breaking the fiber whilst stripping it. Now I understand my attendees fifteen or ten years ago, when they were shaking and I was saying "come on guy, look at me, am I shaking ?"...
Over the last ten years, I've learned a lot of things, for sure. Maybe the most important one is humility.
According to MacDailyNews last night :
Shares of Apple Inc. today surged $2.869, or 1.87% to close at $156.339 on volume of 29,819,361 shares to set a new all-time closing high.
In after hours action, Apple shares currently stand up $0.07 at $156.41.
Apple's previous 52-week high was $155.00, set on September 26th. Apple's 52-week low is $72.60, set on October 11, 2006.
At market close, Apple's market value stands at $135,958,804,299. For reference, Apple's market value exceeds that of Hewlett-Packard by $4,556,203,539, surpasses Dell by $72,467,192,999, is greater than Sony by $84,476,982,739, and tops the value of Gateway by a mere $135,256,357,339.
I tell you what : I'm a bozo. Back in May 2003, I got a fairly nice severance package from my forever-beloved Agilent Technologies. During a couple of weeks, I hesitated
putting to invest half of it into a bunch of Apple' s shares, which was around $23 at this time. Actually, I wanted to buy 1,000 shares. I did not. Now you understand why I'm a bozo.
MacDailyNews article here, AAPL quote here.