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morye 12/5/2012 | 2:32:06 AM
re: Another LU-LU What is up?
flam 12/5/2012 | 2:32:01 AM
re: Another LU-LU Hmm, let's see:

Rob Pike moved on to Google.

Ken Thompson retired in 2000 to fly planes. Now works for a VC.

Henrik got canned scamming physics.

'nuff said.

gbennett 12/5/2012 | 2:31:27 AM
re: Another LU-LU Comrades,
Apologies for the length of this post, but IG«÷ve been out of Internet contact for a few days and it looks like some of you are picking on my buddy Scott :-)

It may seem obvious to begin with saying that I agree with Scott's analysis, but I would like to stress that Scott and the other LR and Heavy Reading staff actually don't huddle in a corner every few days, wondering how we can find something mean to say about Lucent. No, honestly we don't.

It's true that both LR and Heavy Reading have written stuff about LU that can be interpreted as negative over the years. In December 2003, for instance, I wrote an analysis of the six major incumbent wireline infrastructure manufacturers, and Lucent ended up faring not so well against the others.

BUT...LR has also written a whole bunch of positive articles about LU. No really, we have!!! I havenG«÷t got time to trawl all the articles, but here are a couple...

In this article, Scott Clavenna highlights the value of Service-Aware Switches:


There are several other positive articles in the LR archive about the LU/Springtide box. Just search for "Springtide" and you'll find 'em.

But wait a minute, LU cancelled that product, didn't they? As I understand it, that was a LU decision, not a Light Reading or Scott Raynovich decision (youG«÷re not moonlighting are you Scott?).

And then there was Nexabit. Now I think we're all adult enough to admit that this was just plain wrong from the beginning. In fact Steve Saunders may have been one of the first to highlight this issue as far back as Feb 2000:


It took LU another couple of years (and how many millions of dollars) to finally shoot this particular white elephant.

There are quite a few other examples on wireline, IG«÷m afraid. Like Comrade douggreen in Post 16, I think that LUG«÷s existing wireline customers desperately want to keep buying from LU. And, against all reason, LU keeps giving them reasons not to do so. Since Comrade CoolLightGeek likes to offer hints on reporting and analysis, let me offer him/her a hint on what products LU should have been offering in the wireline core. Since LU acquired Ascend, the #1 carrier-class ATM switch manufacturer in 1999, and carriers around the world seem to love those products (proof being they were market leaders, right?), it would make sense to me that what these customers really wanted was just to carry on buying bigger, faster GX-550s. Boy, now that sure saves a whole lot of time and effort figuring out a product strategy, doesnG«÷t it? In fact the proof of what IG«÷m saying lies in the fact that LU is still managing to hold onto #3 position with the Ascend boxes, even though a follow on product was never released (development started and stopped several times). ItG«÷s taken nearly 5 years for loyal LU customers to finally get tired of waiting for a next gen ATM switch that will never come from LU. My guess is that the kind of folks who bought GX-550s in the past six years or so arenG«÷t the kind of folks who want to buy an IP/MPLS box, even from LU, and even if itG«÷s as good as the JNPR boxes are. IG«÷d like to be wrong on this, and so I really hope that LU will announce some big GX-550 replacement wins in the next few months. But to make that philosophical decision as a customer, I would want to be damned sure that LU isnG«÷t going to change their minds (again), and leave me high and dry. Come to think of it, why would
I buy IP/MPLS boxes from LU anyway? If I wanted IP/MPLS IG«÷d go to an IP/MPLS company.

OK, so wireline is not so good. How about Services? LU is supposed to be putting more emphasis on services these days, isnG«÷t it? True, but so are all the opposition (Cisco, NT, Marconi Siemens and Alcatel), and how many IBMs and EDS's is there room for in this world?

Of course it might have helped LU's services strategy if they hadn't sold off INS in 2002 (a company that had one of the highest populations of CCIEs in the world).

Comrade CoolLightGeek, I assume youG«÷re a LU employee and so from within the recovery must look very promising. But if you compare LUG«÷s performance with its main opposition, it doesnG«÷t G«Ű not on wireline or services. I have a hunch that if we covered wireless, Lucent would come out pretty well (but since I haven't done that research yet, I can't be sure).

When LU stops doing silly things, and does something truly positive, I'm sure that Light Reading will report it with as much vigour as any other story.

For the moment this hypothesis remains to be tested.

CoolLightGeek 12/5/2012 | 2:31:16 AM
re: Another LU-LU Geoff and Scott,
You guys are falling over each other to prove my point. You have more difficulty saying a single insightful positive point about Lucent than the Democratic presidential candidates have in saying something positive about President Bush.
The difference is that everybody understands that the Democrats are expected to be partisan.
I don't expect you to suddenly consider Lucent as overall positive. I do continue to hope that you review your journalist training: it should have had a course along the way that had an insightful instructor or mentor force you to try write or debate from the opposite point of view from which you were passionate about. To do it well, requires effort, clear thinking and intelligence.

Trying to "pile on" additional reasons why you think Lucent is not positive is not helping your case at all.

Is it possible that you never had objective writing or debating training?

I'll admit a bias: when you referred to my as "comrade", my initial internalized reaction was "I'm no communist", but then I thought through it and equating "comrade" with communism is a vestage of the Cold War and unfair to my Russian friends. Feel free to call me:

Comrade CoolLightGeek

Lucent is not the "Darkside of the Force",
its just a telecom company with good and bad points.
gbennett 12/5/2012 | 2:31:06 AM
re: Another LU-LU Comrade CoolLightGeek,

I implied nothing political by calling you Comrade. In fact I've used this salutation for several years instead of trying to guess "Mr., Mrs., Miss, Ms.", and sometimes with unfamiliar names it's hard to know if you're talking to a "he" or "she". Sex makes no differece to the content of the conversation, of course, but the constraints of English grammar sometimes make the "sexless" constructs sound really stupid :-)

Anyway, to your point. What I was trying to say is that it's really hard to find anything particularly complimentary to say about Lucent's wireline business or performance. I'd give them a "D" for effort I suppose. But all that the current management has proven to date is that they know how to lay people off and to sell assets. Right now I don't see anything particularly inspired about the strategy. More importantly, when you benchmark the LU wireline product portfolio against the competition, it comes our very poorly. I genuinely hope that the LU/JNPR partnership can buck the trend of OEM deals historically and will last more then a year or so.

I'm sure LU is doing better on the wireless side, and when I get the chance I'd like to confirm that with some research. If you check out the reporting on our wireless site, Unstrung, I think you'll already see evidence of a more positive spin on LU. But Light Reading is about wireline infrastructure, and in that category LU must do better.

Perhaps in the meantime you could give Scott and me some concrete examples of what you think is positive in the LU wireline story? What are we missing?

CoolLightGeek 12/5/2012 | 2:30:44 AM
re: Another LU-LU Comrade Geoff,

I agree with you that "Unstrung" has had good things to say about LU. My criticism in focused on LR, not US.

I'll give you clues where you need to look for some real positives in Lucent but you have to do the leg work yourself.

LR seems to be realizing (belatedly) that the "Big Six" will continue to define the substantial portion of optical wireline infrastucture market. In fact, you are trying to sell your analysis of six significant North American carriers in LightReading Insider.


To the "Big Six", it is not only about the sleekest new boxes. Its also about evolving their current network (and capital investment) to get to new revenue. It's about evaluating suppliers on much more than the coolest of their features. LR used to do "Movers/Shakers" profile articles. I think its time you give the "Big Six" their appropriate due: let's see you do post-bubble interviews with those that are actually making the optical wireline infrastucture

Here is one more hint at finding positives:
One of your highlight bullets from your LRI report is:
IP/MPLS and next-gen SONET gear remain in highest demand.

I bet if you look hard enough you will find some parts that you would view as significantly positive. You do not always find all the information you need to make reasoned assessments from just looking at press releases.


The goal here is for LR to decide what it thinks are the most significant positives in LU wireline business and to occassional insert them for editorial balance when you want to slam Lucent.
Its the only way you can be perceived as trying to be balanced.
gbennett 12/5/2012 | 2:30:34 AM
re: Another LU-LU Comrade CoolLightGeek,

Why don't you ask your Analyst Relations folks to drop us a line - [email protected]? Analysts are prepared to do the legwork you know, but most vendors have active AR departments who try to promote successful aspects of their respective companies. I've had three such calls this week in fact.

We don't rely on being drip-fed this information, but since you're paying those AR folks anyway, you may as well get them working for you :-)

CoolLightGeek 12/5/2012 | 2:30:34 AM
re: Another LU-LU Geoff,
Lucent AR department probably works different than most companies you deal with, especially when it comes to contracts with the "Big Six".
If a Lucent customer says they do not want to announce a expected contract value, Lucent respects the wishes of the customer and does not allow Lucent AR to publicly offer a market bogey for that contract. Other vendors have been known to preannounce or put out contract size projections without customers condoning it. Competitor ARs love to spin that the LU contracts are not significant as compared to theirs, but the devil is in the details: You will not be drip fed nor force fed these types of details from neither Lucent nor the customer. For this type of information, you have to set a bogey for yourself based on careful analysis of customer geographic regions of vendor equipment, deployment training and actual deployments. None of this actually makes it to press release material, neither in the short term, nor the long term.

Personally, I would suggest that you should be very wary of information that is drip fed or force fed from AR departments. The easy path is not usually the best. If the AR departments from within a company are truly the most significant source of your information critical to the evaluation of the positives and negatives of a vendor, then I would be very skeptical of the analysis. I would hope your information on vendors comes from key customers and market analysts that truly understand the nuances of this complex market.

gbennett 12/5/2012 | 2:30:33 AM
re: Another LU-LU But LU's AR department does, ocasionally talk to analysts, right?
CoolLightGeek 12/5/2012 | 2:30:25 AM
re: Another LU-LU
I know LU AR are talking to most analysts in the industry. I truly expect that there is someone in LR/HR that is already been talking to them.
Do you need help determining who in LR/HR has the responsibility to be in contact with Lucent AR?

Once you find out who your guy/gal is, have them start at:

But I suspect that LR/HR has already been in contact and choose not to believe and thus decided not to pass on to the rest of the LR/HR staff, any of the positives that LU AR choose to highlight. If they did, then I think you and Scott would have been able to spout off at least some of those positives without my help and we would have saved most of this long stream of postings.
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