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dlr5288
dlr5288
12/31/2016 4:29:48 PM
User Rank
Platinum
Re: AT&T's Ford Talks OSS/BSS Challenges in MANO
Good points and I agree! Being able to keep up and being flexible and moving along with the times. Not only for the company but the consumers as well.

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Itsmeshawn22
Itsmeshawn22
12/31/2016 4:14:14 AM
User Rank
Platinum
AT&T's Ford Talks OSS/BSS Challenges in MANO
This article is very important/useful because the challenges are very well answered/explained. I believe that is they continue the good work they do with the technology they have they will succeed. If they also write down everything, and also keep documents from day one to the future they will be prepared for any challenge that will come. I really enjoyed this article it is well detailed and explained and also helped me learn more about AT&T and OSS/BSS and also about the MANO.

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dlr5288
dlr5288
11/29/2016 11:52:06 PM
User Rank
Platinum
Re: Operation support systems and business support systems
Very very true. That's why it's important for these companies to document their things from the beginning, that way these things can not happen and extra money doesn't need to be spent.

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JohnBarnes
JohnBarnes
11/26/2016 2:07:21 PM
User Rank
Platinum
Re: Operation support systems and business support systems
freehe,

I will venture a prediction here: eventually there is going to be a major use for data science/big data in legacy system simulation, retrodocumentation, and regeneration. About twenty years ago I used the concept of AIRE (artificially intelligent realization engineering) in my book Mother of Storms; I thought it would come in as a way around patents and a technique for poaching competitor products.  Now I think it will probably be the thing that really solves the legacy problem.

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JohnBarnes
JohnBarnes
11/26/2016 1:56:06 PM
User Rank
Platinum
Re: Operation support systems and business support systems
freehe,

The trouble is, it is recorded -- right there in the code. It's not accessible but it's there. And throwing it away without realizing that's what you're doing is a very real risk.

Another story from long ago consulting gigs: I got to spend some very pleasant time in Puerto Rico because a consumer goods company decided to start printing automated shipping labels that "looked more professional" than the handwritten Magic Marker that had formerly graced their plain brown boxes. They were also promised that this would speed up their shipping and reduce costs.

Well, wrong. Costs exploded and lost unlabelled boxes piled up in the warehouse.

Turned out they had put in a shipping label program and fired a large family of guys who knew everything about shipping in and out of Puerto Rico, replacing them with four laborers who just took labels off the printer and put them on boxes. If a label got torn or came unstuck, since they weren't running the computer that ran the printer (that was several doors away) they had no way to retrieve it, and neither did the guy at the computer who was just running Microsoft Mail Merge on a sequence of spreadsheets. Then, the ones that did get correctly labelled were just piled on the loading dock; the family had formerly lined them up in rows for each truck driver to take to each different shipping outfit (USPS, UPS, Fed Ex, various things at the harbor and airport) and the truck drivers could not stay in the dock all day picking through boxes (especially since there was only room for a few trucks).

By the time we got there and figured out, at consultant rates, what was going on, the family had gone to work for a competitor. Our recommendation to that client was to pay whatever they had to to get them back.

Moral: legacy systems may not be attractive. The small elderly man in the wheelchair who smoked cigars constantly but knew the pickup times at every station in San Juan was kind of ugly, but firing him before you had a system that could do what he could do was the kind of stupid move that makes working people shudder with fear when recent business graduates from good colleges are rumored to be loose in the building.

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freehe
freehe
11/26/2016 1:09:47 PM
User Rank
Platinum
Re: Operation support systems and business support systems
This is why many companies cannot get rid of their legacy systems because they cannot locate the original coders, lost or never had documentation and cannot find or don't want to spend money hiring legacy system developers so they suffer and run a huge risk when the system fails. This results in spending more money than necessary if they had implemented the system and documented it is properly from the beginning. Oh well.

 

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freehe
freehe
11/26/2016 1:07:26 PM
User Rank
Platinum
Re: Operation support systems and business support systems
@JohnBarnes, as always, good and insightful comments.

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freehe
freehe
11/26/2016 1:06:39 PM
User Rank
Platinum
Re: Operation support systems and business support systems
@dcawrey, good point.

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JohnBarnes
JohnBarnes
11/21/2016 10:49:52 PM
User Rank
Platinum
Re: Operation support systems and business support systems
DCawrey,

Not least because legacy systems are very often where the wisdom (or the folly) of long-departed executives has been embedded, usually in an unlabelled way. Long ago I worked on a unit conversion module for a power company consortium that had to understand the cable (but nothing else) is purchased in miles by inches, deployed in amperes, and scrapped in tons. If that module is still out there, it may very well be the only repository of that information left for the company.  On the other hand, in the same company, there was a customer reporting system that relied on the fact that the major regions within the service area happened to be in alphabetical order north to south -- embedded folly if ever there was any! 

There's a lot more in the legacy than just functionality and code that people don't understand very well anymore.

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dcawrey
dcawrey
11/12/2016 4:10:04 PM
User Rank
Platinum
Re: Operation support systems and business support systems
Dealing with legacy systems is important. It's amazing to consider just how much we still rely on things like mainframe emulators. 

There's also the cultural change that has to happen as well. It's not easy, but change is constant - culture can be the thing that stays in stasis the longest. 

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