Glossary of Terms


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The telecommunications and fiber industries are full of terms and acronyms. Our glossary of terms attempts to capture some of them.

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Access Distribution Switch (ADS): The lowest level of OHIvey's cascading aggregation model. ADS devices reside in community cabinets designed to serve between 800 and 5,000 households passed.

Access Level Infrastructure: Infrastructure required to deliver services from the community cabinet> to the CAP inclusive.

Access Portal (AP): The transceiver or media converter device that terminates the fiber network at the customer's premises. PON projects call the AP an ONT.

accessUTOPIA: Customized order management system developed by UTOPIA for use by UTOPIA service providers.

ADS: See Access Distirbution Switch.

ADSL: See Asymmetric Digital Subscriber Line.

Advanced Mobile Phone Service (AMPS): A standard system for analog signal cellular telephone service in the United States and elsewhere. It is based on the initial electromagnetic radiation spectrum allocation for cellular service by the FCC in 1970 and first introduced by AT&T in 1983.

Aggregation Point: Aggregation point is used to describe a) a location where multiple fiber runs come together or b) a network location where multiple sites aggregate traffic. The SWCCOG SCAN project envisions a community aggregation point in each participating community and regional aggregation points in Durango, Caolorado and Cortez, Colorado.

American Wire Gauge (AWG): A U.S. measurement standard of the diameter of non-ferrous wire, which includes copper and aluminum - the smaller the number, the thicker the wire. In general, the thicker the wire, the greater the current-carrying capacity and the longer the distance it can span.

AMPS: See Advanced Mobile Phone Service.

Analog Reclamation: In a cable system, refers to repurposing spectrum previously used to carry analog channels for other uses, either digital channels or high-speed data.

AP: See Access Portal.

ARPU: See average revenue per user.

Asymmetric Digital Subscriber Line (ADSL): A technology that transmits a data signal over twisted-pair copper, often over facilities deployed originally to provide voice telephony. Downstream rates are higher than upstream rates - i.e., are asymmetric. ADSL technology enables data transmission over existing copper wiring at data rates several hundred times faster than analog modems using an ANSI standard.

Asymmetrical: Internet connections have two components - a downstream and upstream. When the two speeds are not comparable, the connection is termed asymmetric. Typically, phone and cable companies offer much slower upload speeds than download, in part because the Internet tended to be a download-centric system in the 90's and early 00's. However, users increasingly need faster upstream connections to take full advantage of modern applications.

Asynchronous Transfer Mode (ATM):

ATM: See asynchronous transfer mode

Availability Gap: See broadband availability gap or investment gap.

Available Address: Available addresses refer to addresses with fiber to the curb - including MDUs, businesses, and other premises that may require a premises network deployment.
Take rates are based on number of subscribers divided by available addresses.

Average Revenue per User (ARPU): 'Average revenue per user is calculated by dividing revenues by the subscriber base. Non-service revenues, such as equipment or other sales, are included in the calculation.' from

AWG: See American Wire Guage.

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