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Top 10 Telecom Definitions of 2007

What did people most look up in SearchTelecom's WhatIs glossary? Easy-to-understand information for industry insiders and the merely curious. Here are your top 10 terms of the year.

Ok, we admit it…we were curious. We wanted to know what telecom terms you and the searching masses have been looking up this year. So we checked on the top 10 most requested SearchTelecom WhatIs definitions, and here's what we found on your hit parade, but we couldn't resist commentary.

The 5 hottest topics on SearchTelecom

Only the most mainstream telecom news makes its way into major newspapers and magazines. Yet the initiatives that go on behind the scenes in the telecommunications industry have a profound effect and often shape the market for years to come.

So we looked back to find out what topics were the headliners for you this year. Here are your top five topic winners:

  • MPLS
  • Routers and Switching
  • Telecom OSS/BSS
  • Mobile & Cellular Carrier Networks
  • IPTV and Video on Demand

Check out our Editor's Choices on these topics.

1. What is a switch? We know you know this one, and we're sure you sent the definition out to all of your friends and relatives who want to understand what you're talking about at cocktail parties. Well done.

2. What is CDMA? Code-Division Multiple Access: No wonder everyone is checking as the game of "Where in the world is CDMA?" continues around the globe. So sad. GSM didn't make the 2007 Top 10. Where will it all end?

3. What is MPLS Multiprotocol Label Switching (MPLS) was one of the year's hottest telecom topics, so the need for a serious definition is obvious. But please, don't send us any more MPLS's this year. We're still regifting the extras we got last year.

4. What is OSPF? Open Shortest Path First (OSPF), not second, first. But what if someone gave you a Version 3 last year and you're still running IPv4? Sorry, it's not backwards compatible.

5. What is BGP? Border Gateway Protocol – like we've said repeatedly, this core routing protocol does nothing less than make the Internet work. If you were looking for the global geophysical service contractor, sorry. We hope you learned something here anyway.

6.  What is a DSLAM? Why does everyone keep checking this one? We've told you again and again, a DLSAM has no place on your coffee table! We suggest a high-quality Transport MPLS (T-MPLS) coffee-table book instead for when the conversation naturally turns to overlay control planes.

7.  What is IPTV? That is indeed the question that must be answered sooner rather than later. Exactly what is IPTV, and how will networks ultimately be architected to provide it?

8.  What is a passive optical network? PONs are a big hit with the "going green" crowd, which puts you right up there with the 2007 trend-setters. And PONs are so much more effective than passive-aggressive networks, which are no fun to be around anyway.

9.  What is OSS? Operational support system (OSS), not Open source software, not Open Sound System. Our OSS isn't a rock-star acronym. It's simply essential, which apparently you know already.

10. What is DWDM? Wavelengths, all those colors. DWDM is the new black. It's great to be in such a fashionable industry.

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