Enum

Enum / Most Commented

Why Do We Care About Names and Numbers?

An article based on the most recent study for the European Commission on the Policy Implications of Convergence in the Field of Naming, Numbering and Addressing written by Joe McNamee and Tiina Satuli of Political Intelligence.

"With relation to the Internet and also IP addresses, the "scarcity" is more complicated: there are not only intellectual property issues with regards to domain names, but there is also an issue of managing the integrity of the system. For any naming or numbering system to work, it is essential that the names and addresses used cannot be confused with any other -- in other words, no one system can have two end-points with the same fully qualified number or name..." more

Choosing Internationalized Email Addresses

Recently I've been working on Email Address Internationalization (EAI), looking at what software is available (Gmail and Outlook/Hotmail both handle it now) and what work remains to be done. A surprisingly tricky part is assigning EAI addresses to users. In traditional ASCII mail, the local part of the address, what goes before the @ sign, can be any printable ASCII characters. more

Success Drivers of New gTLD Applications

Being approved by the Internet Corporation for Assigned Names and Numbers (ICANN) as the owner of a new generic top-level domain (gTLD) extension requires considerable analysis before the application is submitted. You must understand the sources of risk, gauge your risk tolerance, and you must obtain an estimate of the value of your proposed TLD's future revenues (with the effects of potential competitors factored in, a step too many applicants ignore). more

Google Voice Dispute Highlights an Opportunity for Mobile Network Operators

The recent row between Google, Apple and AT&T concerning the removal of Google Voice from the Apple iPhone store highlights the friction existing between network operators and so-called over the top (OTT) application providers. Most observers believe that AT&T initiated the blockade because Google Voice (which offers free or highly discounted calling rates) is a direct threat to AT&Ts call revenue (Google Voice users need only pay AT&T for access to the Internet). more

Will ENUM Deliver?

ENUM (E.164 NUmber Mapping) is a technology that has been around for a little while that has promised much and, so far, delivered little to the average user. As Nominet has recently been awarded the contract to administer the UK 4.4.e164.arpa delegation, I thought it was time that I put my thoughts on this subject down in writing. I'm going to cover the potential of ENUM in the telecoms industry and what it could mean to you, along with how it is currently being used and what potential security issues surround ENUM. more

National Domain Registry Nominet Launches UK ENUM

Nominet, the national registry for .uk domain names, has announced that ENUM, a registry service combining UK telephone numbers and the Domain Name System (DNS) for VoIP calls, is live. ENUM, also known as Telephone Number Mapping, is expected to allow companies and their customers and suppliers to make free or cheaper calls. In addition to the cost savings, other value-added features that ENUM is expected to provide for corporate communications include 'follow me' type function that will allow an individual to choose how (voice, fax, mobile, email, text messaging, location-based services and websites), and when they would like to be contacted throughout the day. more

New .tel Top-Level Domain Goes on Sale

Telnic Limited, the Registry Operator and Sponsoring Organization for the new sponsored top-level domain (sTLD) .tel, has announced that domain name registrations are now being accepted (see previous coverage). "From today until February 2nd, trademark owners can register .tel domains for their brands and company names, providing them with a 'live' comprehensive listing in the first global, mobile-optimized online directory." more

Uniting the Internet and Phone Network, ENUM Project Starts in UK

Enum, or Telephone Number Mapping, aims to do for phone numbers of any kind what the Domain Name System did for the World Wide Web. BBC is reporting that UK's Enum directory has begun and it will be run by Nominet -- the administrator of the .uk top-level domain. more

FreeNum Links Phone Numbers to the Internet

I loved John Todd's ETel presentation (podcast) on FreeNum, a scheme for bringing phone numbers to the Internet. Of course, I love identifiers and addresses and all that they enable, so it was a natural. Suppose you were a university campus and when you looked at your phone bill, you noticed that a lot of calls were to other universities. You've got a VoIP telephone system; they've all got VoIP telephone systems. You might wonder "isn't there some way to route these calls over the Internet and save some serious money?" The answer, of course is "yes" but making it usable is a little harder... more

Infrastructure ENUM

After much initial fanfare a couple of years ago ENUM has matured to a state where it is currently yet another under-achiever in the technology deployment stakes. ENUM initially presented itself as a very provocative response to the legacy telco position of monopolising public voice services through their exclusive control over the Public Switched Telephone Network (PSTN) and the associated controlling position over the telephone number space... The perception was that ENUM was going to dismantle these levers of control and open up the voice market to a new wave of competitive carriers. If the address plan was the key to the PSTN, then ENUM was intended unlock this network and position the new wave of Voice Over IP (VOIP) carriers to take over any residual treasures of the traditional voice market. Events have not played out according to these expectations... more

Help! This is Not an Emergency

I like the drift of the Pulver/Evslin proposal on emergency communications, and wish there was as vigorous a debate going on over here. I just hope we in the UK aren't jerked out of complacency by some major disaster -- although widespread use of pre-paid cellular means the problem of sunken landlines isn't as acute. Yet I can't help but wonder why the poor public has to wait for a disaster before they're given partial control over how their number maps to different destinations and services. Why can't I get a voicemail service from someone other than my connectivity provider? Why is ENUM hostage to the telcos, whose interest lies in ensuring that new services can only come from them? more

ENUM: Mapping the E.164 Number Space into the DNS

Many communications networks are constructed for a single form of communication, and are ill suited to being used for any other form. Although the Internet is also a specialized network in terms of supporting digital communications, its relatively unique flexibility lies in its ability to digitally encode a very diverse set of communications formats, and then support their interaction over the Internet. In this way many communications networks can be mapped into an Internet application and in so doing become just another distributed application overlayed on the Internet. From this admittedly Internet-centric perspective, voice is just another Internet application. And for the growing population of Voice over IP (VoIP) users, this is indeed the case... more

Examining the Reality of Convergence

If there is one word in the telecommunications that has suffered from over-abuse for many years now, it's convergence. The term has been liberally applied to each successive generation of communications technology for their supposed ability to solve a myriad of service delivery problems within a single unifying converged carriage and service delivery solution. Unfortunately, the underlying reality has always been markedly different from these wondrous promises, and we continue to see an industry that deploys a plethora of service delivery platforms and an equally diverse collection of associated switching and service delivery technologies. One can't help but wonder at the collective gullibility of an industry that continues to herald the convergent attributes of each new generation of communications technology, while at the same time being forced to admit that previous convergent promises have never been realized. more

U.S. Moving Forward with ENUM

One of the pieces of infrastructure that makes all kinds of networks work and yet gets very little attention is the directory. Directories are big business. For example, there's directory of telephone numbers run by NeuStar, Inc. NeuStar has annual revenues of $92 million. Now, according to Light Reading, AT&T Corp. and MCI Inc., together with unidentified cable companies, telephone companies, and ISPs are preparing to form a Limited Liability Corporation (LLC) that will run a process to define a new company that will run ENUM. more

What the Net Did Next

During this slow and long lull of domain name policy and ICANN related news stories, I thought it would be a good time to bring an article by BBC News Online technology correspondent Mark Ward to the attention of the CircleID community. In it, ICANN Chairman of the Board Vint Cerf reflects on the history of the Internet and his involvement as somewhat of a "midwife," rather than the "father" title he doesn't like. He also looks to the future and identifies two key, fundamental changes that will shape the next stage of the Internet. As he puts it, they are VoIP and ENUM. more