Sunday, September 5, 2010

Moi? "A really good writer with intelligent mind"

I get such little praise for my work, that I just had to share this old email from Tracy Tsai of Axlon, a company I covered in 1998.

House cleaning is a cool thing:
Subject: Thank you very much for your great story

Dear Julie,
I just want to thank you very much for the great news lines you wrote for PalmPal on the Sep issue of CE pro. When I and my other colleagues including our president, Dr. Shih read the article you wrote on our booth at CEDIA(that's where we get the first copy of the Sep. issue), everyone is very impressed by your fully understanding on PalmPal. I am surprised too myself you could get such thorough and complete understanding on PalmPal by only getting our product information. Our president, Dr. Shih said when he read this, 'She must be a really good writer with intelligent mind and strong technical background that she could write a news like she knows our company and product inside and out.'
You will be happy to note that, after the show, "we're received many inquiries about PalmPal."

Unfortunately, the inquiries couldn't save Axlon, which never quite got off the ground.

PalmPal was a 900 MHz Digital Wireless Key Telephone System and home automation gateway (complete story after the break)

Home Networking News, 1998
Wireless PBX is Hub of Residential RF Network

Axlon Electronics Corp. has developed a wireless (900 MHz) PBX system that can double as the hub of a whole-house RF network. The PalmPal digital wireless key system supports three CO lines and up to 16 wireless extensions. Plus, it offers music-on-hold, Caller ID, 16 voice mailboxes, auto attendant, call transfer and a full range of other services found in most full-fledged PBX systems.

In addition, the wireless base unit has several ports for communications with other electronic systems. An RS-232 interface allows two-way communications with home control systems, and has PHASTLink-compatibility built in for integration with a PHAST Landmark home control system. An additional RS-232 port is used for system set-up via PC.

A LonWorks interface with selectable transceiver allows two-way communications with LonWorks-compatible products on the network. In addition, the base system has a wireless and hardwired I/O for communications with remote interfaces. An IR receiver is available as an option.

The system is programmed via Windows-based software from Axlon.

The wireless handsets have a three-line LCD display, which can be used for system set-up, phone book editing, clock/alarm setting, Caller-ID and similar functions. In addition, it can be used to display any of up to 32 custom home-control messages. Built-in IR transmitters are optional.

Five programmable buttons can be used to trigger macros programmed into the Axlon base unit or connected home controller.

Axlon, based in Taipei, is currently seeking distributors and business partners in the U.S. One of its first partners is PHAST, which plans to offer PalmPal through its existing dealer network. At the CEDIA Expo, both PHAST and Axlon will demonstrate the wireless PBX integrated with the PHAST Landmark.

PHAST is enthusiastic about Axlon’s prospects in the U.S. PHAST’s Dave Hill notes that Axlon is the exclusive distributor of LonWorks chips in Taiwan, “so they have considerable networking expertise.”

Hill expects that the PalmPal handsets will be used as another interface to the PHAST Landmark. “The softkeys on the handsets are directly connectable to any PHAST feature set, and the screen can display anything that PHAST displays,” including temperature, security status, etc., he says.

Also, says Hill, the PalmPal handsets “can serve as an entry point for us, extending Landmark’s intercom functions to the telephone.”

Although Hill denies that PHAST is currently working on voice-activated control of the Landmark, he concedes that with PalmPal’s external audio capabilities tied to the Landmark, “it would certainly be possible.”

According to Hill, target pricing for the PalmPal will be competitive with the Panasonic key telephone systems, given the features.

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