North American Network Operators Group

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Larry the lobster

  • From: Sean Donelan
  • Date: Thu Apr 27 00:58:45 2006

I wonder if Ruth reads NANOG?

I knew that AT&T did this, but I never knew the name of the person
with the job before.


Ruth Gauweiler, a 55-year-old grandmother with a shock of red hair, was
surfing the Internet recently to find out exactly when Madonna tickets
would be going on sale. Ms. Gauweiler didn't want to miss the moment that
ticket sellers opened their phone lines.

An email from Ticketmaster gave her the answer: Friday April 21, at 9 a.m.

So, last Friday morning, deep inside AT&T Inc.'s network control center in
Bedminster, N.J., Ms. Gauweiler stood before a giant digital display
graphing all the AT&T phone traffic in the world. U.S calling spiked at
exactly 9 a.m., indicating a huge and sudden increase in call volume.
"Madonna at Madison Square Garden," Ms. Gauweiler said. "Back on tour."

Ms. Gauweiler's job is specialist for AT&T's global network operations.
Thanks to her vigilance, the phone company knew not to worry that
something big was going to overwhelm the network.

In charge of spotting situations that could trigger "mass-calling events,"
Ms. Gauweiler spends her days patrolling the Internet, TV news networks
and newspapers. She subscribes to every major sports team's email
newsletter to keep abreast of events and regularly surfs ticket-vendor Web