AT&T drops Appleton, WI time/temp service - local guy picks it up [Telecom]

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"Time and t-t-t-temperature
Posted by MWallenfang at 1/13/2009 3:53 PM CST on PostCrescent.com

A Darboy businessman saved a 59-year-old Appleton institution.

People in Appleton have been calling (920) 734-0123 since 1950 to hear
the time and temperature, but AT&T shut down most of its
time/temperature phone lines in Wisconsin in recent years because of
declining use in the age of cell phones and Internet.

Plus, thereís the high cost of upgrading equipment. The Appleton area
time/temp line was turned off around Thanksgiving.

Darboy resident Vern Schmitt missed it, and being a self-proclaimed
phone enthusiast, he got the number from AT&T and reinstated the
service in December.

If youíve called in the last few weeks to confirm just how bone
chilling it is out there, you may have noticed the change.

His company, D-J Telephone Systems in Appleton, picked up the bill for
new equipment and phone lines. In the future, heís thinking about
taking on other sponsors to help with costs.

"It was important to have back as a community service," he said. "I get 1,800
to 3,000 calls a day, depending on conditions."

The bonus with Vernís revamp: you now also now hear the day and date.

I remember dialing that number for temperature information a LOT when I was a
kid.  Kewl that someone has stepped in to keep it going.

Man, that line was in service since 1950 - (memory flow alert!) dial telephone
service was cut in in Appleton in 1949 and from that time until about 1968 or
1969, one only needed to dial the last five digits of the number to connect a
local call dialed from Appleton (733 or 734 numbers).

2-xxxx - Menasha-Neenah ('722')
3-xxxx - Appleton ('733')
4-xxxx - Appleton ('734')
5-xxxx - Menasha-Neenah ('725')
6-xxxx - Kaukauna ('766')
7-xxxx - Greenville ('757' - now part of the Appleton rate center)
8-xxxx - Little Chute ('788')
and a bit later on
9-xxxx - Appleton ('739')

That ended in the late 1960s when the local numbers ran out, with
AT&T/Wisconsin Telephone then adding 731 to Appleton and 729 to
Menasha/Neenah, and the local calling area was expanded to include
Black Creek ('984'), Hortonville ('779'), Sherwood ('989') and
Shiocton ('986') - and we've been dialing the seven digits ever since.

That, too, will end in a couple of years when NPA 274 comes to the 920 area,
requiring that all ten digits of the number be dialed on all calls.

--
___________________________________________  ____
_______________
Regards,                                    |    |\\    ____
                                             |    | |  |    |\\
Michael G. Koerner               May they   |    | |  |    | |   rise again!
Appleton, Wisconsin USA                     |    | |  |    | |
___________________________________________ |    | |  |    | |
_______________


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Re: AT&T drops Appleton, WI time/temp service - local guy picks it up [Telecom]

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This is so funny.  Ever since AT&T dropped both the time and the
weather services (here in San Francisco they were POPCORN and
WE6-1212, I've had a hankering for time and temp.  Time, especially.
Unless one is near a computer it's hard to get good time.  My cell
phone resolves to the minute, and radio and TV stations have so much
digital delay built into them that they can be off 10-20 seconds!

So I wrote some time/temp software and now I'm looking for equipment
to handle it.  Heck, I used to have a 5-line POTS line broadcaster but
no longer have it.  I shouldn't have tossed it.

Anybody have leads to a fairly inexpensive multi-line POTS
broadcaster?


Re: AT&T drops Appleton, WI time/temp service - local guy picks it up [Telecom]

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All those phone companies stopping this service should have secondhand
equipment for sale.

But: if you can live without the solder smell and copper of POTS lines,
building something which tells time in an Asterisk voip pbx is easy.
Incoming numbers via voip are either free or cheap (depending on area
code and arrangements). You just need a reliable broadband connection
and a computer that is always on to handle the incoming calls, and a
bit of scripting to tell time and do a readout of your temperature sensor.

                                         Koos van den Hout

--
The Virtual Bookcase, the site about books, book    | Koos van den Hout
news and reviews http://www.virtualbookcase.com/ |
http://idefix.net/~koos /
PGP keyid DSS/1024 0xF0D7C263 or RSA/1024 0xCA845CB5|

***** Moderator's Note *****

I love the smell of hot solder in the morning!

It smells like ... VICTORY.

Bill Horne
Temporary Moderator

Please put [Telecom] at the end of your subject line, or I may never
see your post! Thanks!

We have a new address for email submissions: telecomdigestmoderator
atsign telecom-digest.org. This is only for those who submit posts via
email: if you use a newsreader or a web interface to contribute to the
digest, you don't need to change anything.


Re: AT&T drops Appleton, WI time/temp service - local guy picks it up [Telecom]
On Jan 18, 7:54†am, Koos van den Hout <koos
+newspost...@kzdoos.xs4all.nl> wrote:

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Maybe, if I knew what it was called.

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Thanks.  I'm looking at their web pages.  This wasn't exactly the
solution I wanted, but it would be far cheaper in the long run.  POTS
lines cost a fortune anyway.  I appreciate the help.


Re: AT&T drops Appleton, WI time/temp service - local guy picks it up [Telecom]

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Would anyone know of such time/temp services still available elsewhere
in the U.S.?  Bell made a half-hearted effort to standardize them at
936-1212 but many places had their own number.  Later, some companies
charged extra for it and it was a 976 number.

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Made it easier for SxS exchanges so new levels and expensive switches
didn't need to be added.  I believe in such cases if someone dialed a
7 first it was simply absorbed (ignored).

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Hard to believe a small town in Wisconsin will require ten digits when
not that long ago five were plenty.


Re: AT&T drops Appleton, WI time/temp service - local guy picks it up [Telecom]
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In Boston, time is 617-637-xxxx and weather is 617-936-xxxx, for any xxxx.
I just called them, both say they're Verizon.

R's,
John


Re: AT&T drops Appleton, WI time/temp service - local guy picks it up [Telecom]
says...
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That's interesting. RI never had a phone company sponsored time/temp,
instead the Providence Journal did ours. It was on 401-776-2700. Just
SIT tones now.

But then my computer gets time via NTP, and weather via Yahoo widgets.


Re: AT&T drops Appleton, WI time/temp service - local guy picks it up [Telecom]
When I was growing up in the San Francisco bay area, we had 936-1212
for weather. I remember at one time the operators went on strike, so
the usual female voice giving the weather became a male voice. One
ended the weather with the word "Peace." This made the papers.

Not quite the same as 936-1212, there's a company "Tell Me," which I
think Microsoft may have bought, that does voice recognition software.
They have an information service that includes weather. The number is
800 555 8355. It really works pretty well. sipphone.com routes #411 to
this.

Harold


Re: AT&T drops Appleton, WI time/temp service - local guy picks it up [Telecom]

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I was able to get time & temperature at 617-637-1212, but 617-936-1212
had a recording of number out of service.  could the incoming lines be
restricted to Boston only?

Any other cities that have the service?


Re: AT&T drops Appleton, WI time/temp service - local guy picks it up [Telecom]
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I just tried 617-936-1212 and it worked fine.  I'm not calling from
Boston, I have a Lingo phone with an Ithaca NY number that is
physically located in the UK.

Regards,
John Levine, johnl@iecc.com, Primary Perpetrator of "The Internet for Dummies",
Information Superhighwayman wanna-be, http://www.johnlevine.com , ex-Mayor
"More Wiener schnitzel, please", said Tom, revealingly.


Re: AT&T drops Appleton, WI time/temp service - local guy picks it up [Telecom]
hancock4@bbs.cpcn.com wrote:

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There must be.  There's at least one company
http://www.timeandtemperature.com/ selling rackmount gear to do just that.

Dave


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