Recently a family member asked me about my business. As someone who cares, he felt it important that he understand and help others understand what it is that I do. I loved his reply to a cut and paste from my website when I tried to save some time. I thought I could make him understand from text already scripted only containing a few paragraphs. In the end, it required additional text that I wanted to share.
“I’m sure you’re not writing this stuff for me, but for networking purposes, it is important we understand what you are doing, and I’m just not knowledgeable about this stuff. I try to write letters or agreements so that If someone 20 years from now looks at, they can read it and understand purpose without knowing anything about the subject of the agreement. If you think your audience is more knowledgeable and doesn’t need to be educated, then I understand. Just wanted to give you my thoughts”
What does specify means? This is to recommend the correct product to accomplish the end goal. In the data world, not using the correct cable or connectivity can impede the data flow and cause a network to not perform as it should. This is just one of many examples.
What does stamping mean? An RCDD has a stamp with his registration number printed. Some architects, engineers, managers, owners, may require this to represent a sub-contractor has consulted a specialist. It’s not a fire, life, safety, issue what so ever. It’s really an industry accepted registration through https://www.bicsi.org A fire, life, safety professional would be more like a structural engineer. An RCDD is not an engineer and only follows industry accepted standards. A standard is not a code until the authority having jurisdiction adopts this as code. RCDDs are versed in fire retardant cables, grounding and bonding, and many other issues that are part of the National electric code. Standards are formed and approved through standards associations. The organization that sets the standards for structured cabling is the Electronic Industries Association and Telecommunications Industries Association (EIA/TIA). There are different standards for the various situations that cabling can be used for ranging from telephone systems to computer networks. An IEC standard ISO/IEC 11801 provides similar standards for network cables and is accepted internationally.
What does well verse with different systems mean? Manufacturers all have different systems to terminate ends of copper and fiber optic data cables. All preform the same purpose of networking your computerized device back to the main hub of the network. Most are slightly different and don't work with other manufacturers tools. This is a marketing ploy for the companies to get customers using one system, repurchasing over and over. Lots of value for the contractor because as they get better, efficiency improves and labor costs go down. I have been trained in many manufacturers system. The horizontal is a buzz word for the cable in a building vs Long Haul which is cable that connects your building to another building.
What is grounding and bonding? Computers, cameras, and digital devices are subject to surge problems because of the Direct Current 12V or 24V low voltage circuits. An RCDD consults with Electrical contractors making recommendations for proper grounding of an electrical install and further specifies primary and secondary surge products that help reduce the risk of expensive computer equipment failing because of surge sags or spikes of electricity. No one can 100% protect a network from an act of nature.
What does certification mean? Certification is actually a very simple process using an expensive meter. ANSI EIA TIA publishes minimum specification for digital loss within a low voltage cabling infrastructure. An RCDD is versed using three different pieces of test equipment functions. Verification, qualification, and certification. Most contractors own or rent a meter that will measure digital loss from the head end to the work station of a digital network. Loss is electrons that start at a transmitter but don't arrive at a receiver. Everyone experiences digital loss when a cell call drops and voice conversations sound garbled. Same happens in a data network if the signal is slowed because of the wrong or bad data cable, jacks, patch cables and panels. If a RCDDs opinion is the cable install is good and the meter is still showing unacceptable results, then the building owner or contractor can look to manufacturers for defective product. A contractor will want to hand the building owner a test report documenting that when the owner took possession of the building, or the contracted move add or change was completed, the cable was tested and certified by an industry approved piece of test equipment. Sometimes an Architect Engineer or Owner will also want an RCDD to verify the test results and installation. This is where the stamp is used. It’s usually written in the plans and specs at the beginning of contract and submitted by the sub-contractor upon completion.
What does voice mean? Voice is a shortened term for cabling the telephone system uses in your business. Most have gone away from plain old telephone wire which is what has been around since the phone companies began. Voice and data have merged together because of technology called voice over internet protocol. Because of deregulation you can buy phone service from your cable/satellite internet or cell phone provider. This requires special cable and won't work properly over the cable from your grandfathers’ home.
What does data mean? Data is a shortened term for cabling that will carry a digital signal. The signal is commonly referred as Ethernet or fast Ethernet 10/100/1000. Ethernet is simply the protocol that operates the transmission of computerized digital signals. As technology improves, voice and data are less separate because of evolving technologies mentioned above.
What is a permeant utility of the building? Think of your home when you consider a permanent utility of the building. A licensed plumber, electrician, heating and air company installed these mechanics and a building inspector approved the installation. These are now permanent utilities of your home. Building inspectors do not look at how your phones, internet, cameras, alarms, work because they operate at 12v or 24v DC and are not a risk of catching fire. If you want to connect another computer in your home, I can run a data wire from your home office, up your stairs, down your all, under your door, and into your bedroom. Leave it lay on the floor. It will work perfectly and a building inspector won’t say a word. This is not a permanent utility of the building. An RCDD only uses recognized standards and only offers his opinion as someone who has been trained in these standards. The low voltage cable is installed so that any tenant can plug into the cable and any manufactures computerized device can plug into the cable. Thus, a permanent utility of the building.
Can I quit now?