Skype is approaching 200 million active users. With one in five users on the service at the same time, that is indicative of a highly desired and useful product.

April 16, 2012

4 Min Read
A Couple of Cheesy Thoughts

By David Byrd

What started as a slow weekend for cooking (pizza delivery on Friday) picked up on Saturday and Sunday. Breakfast Saturday was potato pancakes with Havarti cheese and eggs sunny-side up. The pancakes were made from leftover mashed potatoes, flour, baking powder, cheese and an egg. I got the idea for the pancake as soon as I saw the mashed potatoes made by my wife. The addition of the baking powder created a very light pancake. Dinner was grilled pork chops that had been marinated overnight in water, lemon juice, salt and sugar. Just prior to being done, they were glazed with barbeque sauce, enhanced with just a little bit of rice wine vinegar and Tabasco sauce. I served them with navy beans and grilled asparagus. I made the sauce for the asparagus from an idea submitted by one of the Broadvox VARs. The sauce consisted of one-half cup mayonnaise; one clove garlic, finely minced/puréed; one tablespoon lemon juice; two teaspoons toasted sesame oil; and salt and pepper. It was very good. Sunday began with cheddar cheese and bacon biscuits followed by fettuccine with seafood Alfredo sauce and pan-seared scallops. The seafood Alfredo sauce was made with prosciutto, lump crab, cream and parmesan cheese; a most decadent dish. And the recipe of the week is cheddar cheese and bacon biscuits. I was very surprised by these biscuits. Not only were they flavorful but also light and delicate. It is important to dice the bacon in big enough pieces to require chewing. The flavor is more pronounced that way. Cheddar Cheese and Bacon Biscuits is the recipe of the week. Enjoy!

Last week, two things caught my attention. The first was an announcement by Skype that they had 40 million concurrent users during the week of April 9. I find that a big deal. Skype is approaching 200 million active users. With one in five users on the service at the same time, that is indicative of a highly desired and useful product. Our new CEO, Bruce Chatterley, likes the Skype video calling feature. While I like the feature, it does prevent me from walking around my office during long calls. The first time I used Skype was in early 2003 while in Argentina. I used it to call home and speak with my wife while avoiding the ridiculous hotel international calling fees or consuming my mobile minutes. Later I used it briefly for business when I worked for an Israeli company. Now I use Skype several times a week and find it very useful. If you are an SMB with remote workers, using Skype video and video conferencing is a valuable appliance to maximize interaction and communication.

Since we are in the communications business, I want to share another bit of news. It seems that the idea of giving typewriters to a large group of monkeys and having them produce the constitution or works of Shakespeare may not be too farfetched. Scientists in France have trained baboons to distinguish English words from nonsense words through the recognition of common letter arrangements. The findings demonstrate that visual word recognition can be learned without the awareness of spoken language. The study labeled Orthographic Processing in Baboons found that the baboons could distinguish between words and non-words with 75 percent accuracy. Thats more than guessing!

I wonder how the baboons would do with text messages. LOL. CUL8R.

David Byrd is vice president of marketing and sales for


, and is responsible for marketing and channel sales programs to SMBs, enterprises and carriers as well as defining the product offering. Prior to joining Broadvox, David was the vice president of Channels and Alliances for Eftia and Telcordia. As director of eBusiness Development with i2 Technologies, he developed major partnerships with many of the leaders in Internet eCommerce and supply chain management. As CEO of Planet Hollywood Online he was a pioneer in using early Internet technologies to build a branded entertainment and eCommerce website company partnered with Planet Hollywood. Having over 20 years of telecom sales and marketing experience, he has held executive positions with Hewlett-Packard, Sprint and Ericsson.

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