O'Reilly Emerging Telephony Conference - January 31 - February 2, 2006 - San Francisco, CA
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Featured Articles, Photos, Press Coverage, Weblogs, and Podcasts
Washington Post: Could Your VoIP Phone Be Tapped?
The FCC's plan to expand the Communications Assistance for Law Enforcement Act (CALEA) of 1994 has several privacy and civil liberties organizations mounting a legal challenge to prevent VoIP and other internet-based communications from being subject to taps from law enforcement agencies. The FCC's final rule, issued on August 5, 2005, would extend CALEA to all internet-based communications, according to EFF Chairman Brad Templeton, who spoke at O'Reilly's Emerging Telephony Conference. Once the FCC issues a final rule, vendors have 18 months to comply with it. Will the FCC's plans pose a threat to your privacy and security?
VoIP Magazine: Voxeo Brings Cheap Voice Response into the Enterprise
Voxeo Corp., a provider of interactive voice response (IVR) and VoIP services and products, has introduced a software platform that allows companies to develop and run their own IP-based IVR setups at reduced cost. Previewed at O'Reilly's ETel Conference, Voxeo's new offering, called Prophecy, uses speech recognition and synthesis technology that lets it sell the product cheaper than competitive platforms.
[VoIP Magazine]
ETel: Humor Works at Tech Conferences
Bruce Stewart writes, "It was defintely a lively and amusing morning here at ETel, with many of the speakers successfully using humor to make their points and inspire the crowd. Between Brad Templeton's "evil twin speaking to the ILECs" routine, David Isenberg's Seuss-inspired rhyming for Net Neutrality, and Mark Spencer's story about a surprise and unintended telephone call-based DDoS Digium experienced because of a humorous IVR prompt they had put onto a test system, there was a whole lot of laughing go on. Speaking to attendees in the hallway afterwards, there seemed to be univeral appreciation for the humorous approach, it livens up the content and the audience and everyone had a big smiles on their faces as they headed for lunch."
[O'Reilly Emerging Telephony]
VoIP News: Yahoo's Vision of Voice
Speaking at the O'Reilly Emerging Telephony Conference, Jeff Bonforte, Senior Director of Messenger and Voice at Yahoo, says that we are currently at the point where Voice 2.0--the next stage of voice systems and telephony--is actively emerging and becoming part of the everyday landscape. This VoIP News report provides some nice analysis of Jeff's speech at ETel.
[VoIP News]
ETel: Mark Spencer on the "Event"
Since just about every single person here raised their hand when Mark Spencer asked who had heard of Asterisk, he opted to tell a humorous story of how his company Digium came to use VoIP for its incoming toll-free service, rather than describing the open source PBX platform. Bruce Stewart provides the details on the "Event" here.
[O'Reilly Emerging Telephony]
Networking Pipeline: 'FON' Has Fun with U.S. Launch
Started last year by Argentine telecom entrepreneur Martin Varsavsky, Fon was introduced at ETel during Wednesday's "formal" launch of the idea, an intro that was as formal as sneakers at a black-tie dinner. FON is a volunteer-based global network of Wi-Fi hotspots, where people agree to share their internet access with other FON users who can freely access their wireless routers. Networking Pipeline provides this report on FON.
[Networking Pipeline]
ETel: David Isenberg Does Dr. Seuss
"David Isenberg brought down the house here at ETel with his impassioned plea to fight for Net Neutrality, all done in Dr. Seuss-like rhyme." Bruce reports on David's address.
[O'Reilly Emerging Telephony]
Skype Journal: Day One Reflections on Emerging Telephony Conference
Stuart Henshall writes, "So far this conference has fueled more ideas (for me) than any VoIP related conference I've attended in the last two years!" Find out why in his latest blog on ETel goings-on.
[Skype Journal]
ETel Conference: Brad Templeton on CALEA
Brad Templeton, the head of the EFF, had the audience here at ETel in stitches as he used humor and sarcasm to make his case against the impending application of the CALEA wiretapping law to VoIP providers. Read what else Brad had to say in this report from Bruce Stewart.
[O'Reilly Emerging Telephony]
VoIP News: Phil Wolff Talks Skypenomics at the O'Reilly Emerging Telephony Conference
Phil Wolff of Skype Journal gave an overview of Skype, the economics of the company, the mutually symbiotic nature of the purchase by eBay, and some statistics and demographics of Skype users today at the O'Reilly Emerging Telephony Conference.
[VoIP News]
ETel: Dr. Norman Lewis Tries to Save the Telcos
Dr. Norman Lewis, the director of research for France Telecom, gave a rousing keynote at ETel about the problems telcos are facing today. Lewis may work for a big operator, but he clearly sees the writing on the wall for the telcos and gave a frank appraisal of what some of the problems have been and how serious they are. Read Bruce Stewart's full report on Dr. Lewis's speech.
[O'Reilly Emerging Telephony]
Mobile Jones: ETel Blogs
For a perspective on ETel sessions from her 'nearly live blog', check out what Mobile Jones is saying. Among other things, she covers a session on building SIP applications on s60 phones, a demo on the Samsung P207 voice interface to SMS, and keynotes from Yahoo and Tellme reps.
[Mobile Jone]
ETel: OpenZoep Is Open for Business
At ETel, Erik van Eykelen of Voipster showed off OpenZoep, the company's client-side VoIP communications engine, and announced that the code is going to be open sourced under the GPL. OpenZoep (pronounced "open soup") supports free PC-to-PC VoIP calls, instant messaging, and outbound PSTN and SIP calls to free and premium SIP providers.
[O'Reilly Emerging Telephony]
Christine.net: Is Open Source the Panacea for Mobile Application Deployment?
At his ETel session, Fabrizio Capobianco of Funambol talked about open standards as the best way forward for device manufacturers and carriers. But, as Christine Herron asks, is open source the panacea for mobile development? And be sure to check out all of Christine's ETel blogs.
ETel: Spark Parking

At last night's ETel fair Bruce Stewart took a look at a model being deployed by Spark Parking, a startup that has developed ruggedly encased sensors that get placed on the ground of parking spots and transmit information over Wi-Fi to a server that you can interact with via your cell phone.
[O'Reilly Emerging Telephony]

ETel: iotum Demo
Bruce Stewart reports on Alec Saunders demo today at ETel of iotum, his company's "relevance engine." iotum queries apps like your calendar and IM client to help determine how specific calls should be handled, and makes filtering decisions based on who's calling, time of day, what's on your calendar, and so on.
[O'Reilly Emerging Telephony]
ETel: Peter Cochrane's Future
Bruce Stewart writes: "Peter Cochrane gave a glimpse of an exciting future during his ETel keynote, and he's well-positioned to speak to such things. Formerly the CTO of British Telecom's prestigious reseach lab, the UK's first professor for Public Understanding of Science & Technology at Bristol, and a prolific author, Cochrane has been a key figure watching, studying, and participating in the march of technology throughout his life. Cochrane believes the next 20 years will see more change than we've seen in the previous 200, and the next decades will see revolutionary changes in communications technology."
[O'Reilly Emerging Telephony]
O'Reilly Radar: Voipster Launches OpenZoep

Voipster announced OpenZoep today at ETel. They want it to be the de facto client side code for embedding VoIP into desktop apps, web browsers, games, and so on. The wiki has information on the subversion and trac repositories for the source. Surj said, "I can see this becoming the Mozilla of VoIP." Definitely one to keep on the radar. --Nat Torkington
[O'Reilly Radar]

Alec Saunders: ETel -- Day One
Alec Saunders writes of day one at O'Reilly's Emerging Telephony Conference: "This truly is a VoIP hacker-fest." Check out what he had to say about his first day at ETel.
[Alec Saunders .Log]
Skype Journal: Emerging Telephony -- Asterix Hacks Session
Stuart Henshall reviews the ETel Conference's Asterisk Hacks Session for Skype Journal, looking for "a sense of how adventurous the Asterisk community is and where they are going." He sums up some of the projects incorporating Asterisk, including a hack that allows for auto provisioning in a traditional VoIP system; an embedded distribution called AstLinux that lets you experiment with Asterisk and Linux without leaving your current OS; and a demo of Zork, which uses Asterisk to add speech recognition to the game.
[Skype Journal]
VoIP News: Report from ETel -- PolyVox Framework and JabPhone
At ETel this week, the Poly9 Group announced its new telephony development framework-- Polyvox--"a Voice 2.0 web platform that allows users, small businesses, and corporate giants alike to easily create scalable voice apps and services." ETel was also the site for the first demonstration of the power of the platform via another service Poly9 has developed using PolyVox, called JabPhone--a service that allows users of the Jabber messaging system and also Google Talk to call regular external telephone numbers.
[VoIP News]
ETel: Phoning It In - RadioHandi Makes Its Debut
This week at Etel, Brian McConnell be demoing a new conferencing and telecasting platform called RadioHandi, built from the ground up around open standards telephony. RadioHandi will be hosting a live feed of the ETel plenary sessions that will be accessible via a local phone call in over 30 countries, and worldwide via Gizmo, as well as an open feed running Wednesday and Thursday so people can dial in to eavesdrop on the conference proceedings, and also chat with attendees.
[O'Reilly Emerging Telephony]
ETel: VoIP Hacks
Jim Van Meggelen (author of Asterisk: The Future of Telephony) just hosted a session here at ETel that featured some cool VoIP-related hackers. Speakers showed off things like setting up auto-provisioning phones in an enterprise environment, hacking up a click-to-call service, and even playing adventure games over your PBX.
[O'Reilly Emerging Telephony]
Poly9 Blog: ETel Rocks!
Poly9, the company that introduced Jabphone.com at ETel this week, had this to say about the ETel Conference: "The goody good folks at O�Reilly are, in our company�s collective humble opinion, the best [party] serious conference organizers." If you missed Poly9's announcement, JabPhone is a new service that lets you "call your friends� (real world) phones using Google Talk."
BusinessWire: VoIPster Announcements at ETel
VoIPSter, the Amsterdam-based VoIP technology company, made two big announcements today at ETel: first, the development of a new Zoep plugin that adds full telephony functionality to your Firefox browser, at the click of a button; and second, the introduction and launch of OpenZoep--the first open standards-based VoIP engine. And check back here for more big announcements from the ETel Conference.
O'Reilly Radar: JabPhone at ETel
The Poly9 hackers who were at Where 2.0 in 2005, showed up at Emerging Telephony today with Jabphone, a service built on libjingle, Jabber, and Asterisk that lets you call out to regular telephone numbers from Google Talk. I don't know what blows me away more--that these guys are so creative in two very different areas, or that they have another surprise up their sleeve to show off at the ETel Fair tomorrow night. --Nat Torkington
[O'Reilly Radar]
ETel: Ruby on Rails + Asterisk
Kind of like peanut butter and chocolate... RoR and Asterisk seem to go together very nicely, if you're looking for rapid deployment of voice/web applications. Here at ETel, Joe Heitzeberg just gave a very hands-on presentation on RAGI, an open source framework for bridging the Ruby on Rails web application server environment and Asterisk. If you want to experiment with tying voice to web apps or need a rapid voice development platform, you should definitely check out RAGI.
[O'Reilly Emerging Telephony]
RadioHandi: Call the ETel Party Line!
RadioHandi is doing its first public demo of its breakthrough voice community engine at O'Reilly's Emerging Telephony Conference this week. Its platform enables people to create voice communities and message boards about any subject, location, or peer group. The service enables people to call into group chats from any combination of fixed, cellular, and VoIP phones, with unmetered local access numbers in over 30 countries, and global toll-free access via Gizmo. RadioHandi is hosting voice communities and message boards for ETel. You can call in to chat with other attendees, organize informal sessions, and listen to live feeds. Can't make it to ETel? Call in to chat with attendees or eavesdrop on sessions, from virtually anywhere in the world via www.radiohandi.com.
Emerging Telephony 2006 Gets Underway
Dan York blogs about his first day at ETel: "And so it begins... met some great folks at the breakfast, including someone working on a project with Mitel, which was nice to see. I'm currently sitting in a presentation with 75 other people on "Ruby on Rails with Asterisk", which is interesting."
OSDir: From Analog to VoIP: Asterisk Brings Telephony Together Under One Open Source Platform
Howard Wen interviewed Mark Spencer, creator of Asterisk, an open source software platform PBX system, about why there is untapped potential for open source in the telephony market, and how the open source nature of Asterisk brings faster solutions over proprietary PBX systems. Mark will be presenting his keynote on his company Digium this Thursday at O'Reilly's Emerging Telephony Conference.
ETel: Hacking Online Applications for Location Awareness
111-location_aware.gif Based on his work developing a stable wireless mesh platform that allows true peer-to-peer multi-hop network connectivity, Chris Ngan discusses some proof-of-concept applications that demonstrate the power of this network infrastructure and the ease with which text/chat, voice, and video applications can be made location-aware. Chris will discussing these concepts in more detail at O'Reilly's Emerging Telephony conference.
[O'Reilly Emerging Telephony]
O'Reilly Podcast: Surj Patel -- Co-chair, Emerging Telephony Conference
111-future_distro.gif Emerging Telephony Conference co-chair Surj Patel was interviewed recently on Daniel Steinberg's Distributing the Future podcast. Surj talks about some of the cool and innovative new telephony applications we're seeing, and how VoIP is enabling a whole new world of voice applications. He also highlights some of the topics and speakers that we'll see at the ETel conference in San Francisco.
[O'Reilly Emerging Telephony]
VoIP-News: ETel Chairs Interviewed
VoIP-News just interviewed Surj Patel and Nat Torkington, the program chairs for O'Reilly's Emerging Telephony Conference (January 24-26 in San Francisco). They talk about where they think the industry is now, where it's headed, and some of the regulatory challenges it will face.
[O'Reilly Emerging Telephony]
O'Reilly Radar: VoIP Handset on Sale in UK Supermarkets
Over on slashdot: "Tesco, the UK's largest supermarket chain, has announced plans to sell a VOIP handset and connection through their stores. Given that one out of every eight pounds spent on shopping in the UK goes to Tesco, and the UK has one of the highest broadband takeup rates around, is this the end for the classic telecoms providers like BT?"

Death comes slowly to big companies. (Hey, Unisys is still around!) So I don't know that the doomsaying for the telecoms is right. But there's sure a world of hurt -- and a world of opportunity -- ahead in VoIP. That's why we're holding the Emerging Telephony Conference. And why our recent book on Asterisk is blowing off the shelves... (We've sold nearly 10,000 copies since its release in September.) --Tim O'Reilly
[O'Reilly Radar]

O'Reilly Radar: Interview with Surj and Nat
Owen Linderholm interviewed Surj and me for VoIP News. They're also having a contest: best four additions to their wiki between Jan 12 and Jan 16 will get free passes to ETel, our Emerging Telephony conference. We've added Jabber and Google to the schedule, and we're closing the last few slots now. It's shaping up to be a blast! --Nat Torkington
[O'Reilly Radar]
O'Reilly Podcast: Emerging Telephony and Podjacking Distributing the Future
O'Reilly Podcast: Emerging Telephony and Podjacking
Surj Patel, co-chair of O'Reilly's ETel (Emerging Telephony) conference talks to us about voice applications, and we look at both sides of the podjacking story with Erik Marcus and George Lambert. (DTF 01-2006: 23 minutes, 57 seconds)
[O'Reilly Network]
ETel: IP Telephony -- You Ain't Seen Nothin' Yet ETel: IP Telephony -- You Ain't Seen Nothin' Yet
Developers now have the right tools and the right motivation to build a wide range of new desktop applications, telephone services, and corporate phone systems that integrate voice with the Web, IM, WiFi, and more. Ed Stephenson talks with program co-chair Surj Patel about what's emerging in telephony, and what you can expect to learn at O'Reilly's Emerging Telephony Conference.
[O'Reilly Network]
ETel: Hacking Asterisk and Rails with RAGI ETel: Hacking Asterisk and Rails with RAGI
RAGI combines Asterisk's VoIP handling capabilities with the power and efficiency of Ruby on Rails. Joe Heitzenberg will lead a tutorial using his bindings for Asterisk with the Ruby on Rails framework at the Emerging Telephony conference.
[O'Reilly Network]
O'Reilly Radar: Google Talk APIs Released
The march to ubiquity and innovation in IP telephony continues, with the release of Google Talk APIs. Whereas at our Where 2.0 conference, where Google Earth, Microsoft Virtual Earth, and Google and Yahoo local APIs showed up just in time for the conference), the technology announcements are lining up in advance of our Emerging Telephony Conference. It's not that folks are targeting our conference, it's just that we put ourselves in front of an oncoming train. --Tim O'Reilly
[O'Reilly Radar]
ETel: An Interview with Norman Lewis ETel: An Interview with Norman Lewis
We recently talked to Norman Lewis, the director of reseach for France Telecom's Home office and a keynote speaker at our Emerging Telephony conference, about the state of the VoIP industry and the role of telcos in the future.
[O'Reilly Network]