2002 Top Ten: Uses For Obsolete Networking Equipment
Some, such as ILX Lightwave Corp., took a creative approach to the problem of being overstocked with no buyers in sight. They cut prices to the bone, and the firm's two top executives took part in a silly/humiliating sales challenge (see WDM: Ready to Wear).
Not everyone is so creative. That is, in part, why Light Reading's editors and several of its loyal readers have developed this list of top uses for obsolete optical networking equipment.
With no further ado, here are the top suggestions:
No. 10 (tie): Send it all to Jack Grubman's estate, C.O.D. – John Adler, InterWest Partners
Use it for very, very expensive flashlights. – Alex Greenberg, Nomura International Plc
No. 9: Use the gear as boat anchors or sink it and create stunning artificial reefs. – Kris Shankar and Dana Hartgraves, Metro-Optix Inc.
No. 8: Include DWDM lasers in every box of Cracker Jacks. "Collect all 80 lambda!" – Anonymous
Packet Design LLC's Bill Carrico was the first of dozens who suggested ways to create holiday decorations using laser lights and fiber optic Christmas trees.
"Put some interesting glass or prisms in front of the lasers, mount it to the ceiling, and spin it, baby," writes WiFinder chairman Scott Rafer.
"Every home needs a few racks of CWDM equipment to power the holiday lights in beautiful, synchronous, optical harmony. It's Christmas Wave Division Multiplexing!" writes Warren Packard of Draper Fisher Jurvetson. "I'm sure [fiber optic Christmas trees] are cost effective with cents-on-the-dollar components bought from defunct companies," writes Jim Witham of Genoa Corp. [Editor's note: Jim should know. He works in sales for an optical component startup.]
"I think we can give the gear to midwestern U.S. carriers. They're all going out of business and China, Korea, and Japan will only buy the latest gear right now." – Greg Tarr, GT Ventures No. 5:
"We once used an old Cerent chassis as a punch bowl at the company Christmas party." – Patrick Guadalajara, LayerOne Inc. No. 4: "A service provider told me recently that he was trying to turn up a New Generation Digital Cross Connect but couldn't get it to work. He said the labs were usually cold and that these DXC's were 'the most expensive fan heaters he'd ever bought.' " – Paul Harrison, Xtera Communications Inc.
Use it as a paperweight for your WorldCom Inc. (OTC: WCOEQ) stock certificates. – David Williams, NextWeb Inc.
No. 2: Re-engineer DWDM systems to enable multi-patient Lasik surgery. ("You can do 16, 32, or 64 operations simultaneously!")
Donate some OC192 lasers to UC Berkeley to help alleviate the terrible suffering of graduates that are looking to remove embarrassing tattoos. – Stephen Kamman, CIBC
No. 1: "There is no such thing as obsolete equipment, but rather equipment that has been written off the books and now can be sold for pennies on the dollar." -- Anonymous.
— The Staff, Light Reading