Webster’s New World Telecom Dictionary

Webster’s New World Telecom Dictionary

By Jim Burton July 21, 2008 Leave a Comment
Webster’s New World Telecom Dictionary by Jim Burton

It’s not often that you find a dictionary that worth reading just for the heck of it, but we now have one for telecom. My old friend Ray Horak has published just such a piece in the Webster’s New World Telecom Dictionary, and it is a must read for seasoned pros and novices alike. With the help of panel of advisor that includes Bill Flanagan as Technical Editor, Ray has put together an absolutely astounding body of information that will help anyone to better navigate the trick waters of telecom.

Calling this book a “Dictionary” is somewhat misleading. The terms are arranged in alphabetical order, and the definitions are certainly spot on, but there’s a lot more here than a set of sterile definitions. Ray gives you not only the definition, but the context. Some of these definitions run for a couple of pages, and provide a clear and objective description of the area that includes the market framework as well as the technical content. As a reference, it is unparalleled including tables for every conceivable set of standards from modems to cables and to anything that the ITU has every identified with a “letter-dot-number” combination.

What real telecom pros will appreciate is the depth of the research and the history that Ray has managed to capture. While “dictionaries” relegate proper names to the back, Ray has included the luminaries in our field from Bell to Metcalfe and Nyquist. For those of us who have been around the field for a while, a casual read will bring back countless memories of technologies long past along with the vocabulary we once used to describe them.

For anyone who has to work in our field, and particularly for those who must describe it to others, I highly recommend Ray Horak’s Telecom Dictionary. It is over 500-pages of thoroughly researched, densely packed, and wonderfully entertaining information for anyone who works in the telecom field.



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