[PLUG-TALK] Phone caller ID

Denis Heidtmann denis.heidtmann at gmail.com
Tue Feb 12 14:06:57 PST 2013


On Tue, Feb 12, 2013 at 1:53 PM, Keith Lofstrom <keithl at gate.kl-ic.com>wrote:

> On Tue, Feb 12, 2013 at 11:36:31AM -0800, Denis Heidtmann wrote:
> > I recently got a Tracfone cell phone.  When I call my landline (Comcast)
> > from the cell phone the Caller ID says "Dawn Larson".  When I call a
> > neighbor's landline (Century Link) the display says "Portland, OR"  When
> I
> > call a third person's landline (unknown provider) it says "Wireless
> caller".
> >
> > I suspect that the two which do not display "Dawn Larson" are avoiding
> the
> > pain of frequent ID updating and are using some default ID.  I have
> > contacted Tracfone numerous times.  That I am posting this question here
> > should show that the contacts with Tracfone have been less than
> > satisfactory.
> >
> > How long does it typically take to get this done?  The phone was
> activated
> > 5 days ago.  Is there anything which I might do to help the process
> along?
> >  (My searching leads me to believe that in this case Tracfone is using
> ATT.)
>
> The CLID system is archaic.  To save bandwidth back when it cost
> something, they send only the phone number with the call.  At
> the central office switch connected to the recipient's phone,
> the switch looks up the number in an on-site database, and sends
> the recipient the CLID information that it finds in local storage.
>
> The databases used to be updated by sending 9 track tapes around
> the country.  Perhaps some still are.  In any case, all the phone
> companies build CLID databases of all their subscribers, send them
> to all the other phone companies, which assemble the files into
> master data files, sending those to all their thousands of central
> offices.  There, some tape monkey might or might not get around
> to installing them, or accidentally overwrites them, or whatever.
>
> My wife moved her office in CenturySlink land 18 months ago, and we
> are still watching the callerID here in FrontEar shift between her
> business name, her personal name, and "Out of Area" month by month.
>
> In summary, CLID is a barfogenic kludge.  It could take months
> for everybody to get the new data, and then it is just as likely
> that some will lose it again, until the next update.
>
> Rejoice - - - this is just that much more incentive to replace
> POTS (and $$$ texting) with multiple, competing internet-based
> alternatives.  The "natural price" of voice telephone is a few
> pennies a month, and when the right technologies appear, POTS
> will be gone a year or two after.
>
> Keith


In addition to the good information contained above,  barfogenic stands out
as a splendid term of multiple uses, not to be forgotten.

-Denis
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