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Use standard short DTMF sequence to handshake
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[heavily edited after getting hit by AHBs (Agitated Halfbakers)]

I recently discovered that faxes are still in use(!), and are necessary for certain legal transactions.

Instead of all the dumb modem handshaking stuff, - those sounds you hear when connecting to a fax - just DTMF (send touchtones) that your a Fax version 5.

- currently, I think, fax technology is at version 3 so we want to upgrade. Use a simple low-cost hardware device (hw interface) for old faxes. It is simple and low cost because creating and recieving touchtones is a very simple process needing minimal hardware. You attach the device to the fax's phone line, which seamlessly causes the fax to work in the new way. If you have a a newer fax machine, you would be able to get emails at the speed of your PC reading your emails (which is much faster than the transmission of current faxes.

Make it cellular hardware instead of connecting it to the phone line, and you got a real winner.

Extra touchtone information can be given once the communication between the two fax machines started, for example the sending-fax machine can ask for more information, like what the reciever's name is and whatever.

Then you can make publicly placed paperless faxes, like faxes at large corporation work-spaces. The low cost extra device would be sold at a marginal cost so you would not need to throw away your old fax machines, although they would gradually blow away, being replaced by this device only.

You can dial in to this fax's number and retrieve your information to your email account, or send it to a different printer.

pashute, Mar 30 2006

Definition of "DTMF" http://searchnetwor...7_gci213922,00.html
For those of us stuck on the basic stuff, DTMF (or Dual Tone Multi Frequency) apparently is synonymous with "touchtone". Could have fooled me. I was expecting something like "Dump The Mutha Faxer", or somesuch. And it may still mean something entirely different from either of these explanations in pashute-land. [jurist, Mar 31 2006]


       I understand most of the words you're using, but not the sentences you're forming with them.   

       What "dumb modem stuff"?
What is a "version 5" fax?
If you had to introduce a verb into the first half of that sentence, what would it be?
What does it mean for a fax to be "aligned"?
What does it mean for hardware to be "cellular"?
What does it mean for a receiver name to be extensible in "real-time"?
What does it mean for a paperless fax to be "public"?
jutta, Mar 30 2006

       I'll just sum up jutta and, for my own confusion, say "What?"
DesertFox, Mar 30 2006

migennes, Mar 30 2006

DesertFox, Mar 30 2006

       6 5 4 5 6 6 6. 5 5 5. 9 9 9. 6 5 4 5 6 6 6, 5 5 6 5 4, 4.
oniony, Mar 31 2006

       i like the idea of a hot water powered fax machine.
...isn't that what hw is? Or have I spent too long looking at adverts for houses?
moomintroll, Mar 31 2006

       The time for improving the fax protocol is long gone, pashute. In the face of competiton from much more flexible communication mechanisms, fax machines derive their usefullness only from the size of the install base. Changes that would require new hardware and only work on some machines are not likely
theircompetitor, Mar 31 2006

       Sorry I didnt get back sooner. First, the idea came up because I discovered that the fax is still here. I needed to do several money and legal transactions, and the only way to get it done was by using a fax. Then when in a store (Office Depot) I noticed the fax machines still being sold.   

       Now to explain the idea. (Also editing the original). Fax machines take a lot of time to synchronize and "handshake" between each other. You know, all those crunching and hissing noises you hear when you call a fax machine. This is so that the two machines know what versions of fax machines are talking to each other. Once they "decided" which is which, they continue on in the "conversation" one sending the image info, while the other acknowledging it. The image information is compressed in a simple manner, so that the transmission does not take too long.   

       We are up to Fax version 3, which I thought was long lost to email technology, but, as I discovered, is still here with us today. The idea is to use a "touchtone" handshake. A low-cost device (piece of hardware - yes hw is hardware) could be added to any fax, and any phone knows how to make touchtone sounds (DTMF - your got me correctly jurist), so you could have a "wireless fax" inside any of the modern phones. A PC can also prduce touchtone sounds. So a) any old fax machine can be upgraded to print out emails including attached images, b) you wont need a clumsy fax machine even if you want to send faxes anywhere, c) old fax machines can be upgraded to work "fast" at a marginal cost. Most important, whoever does not upgrade still works the same. Only SPEED of connecting, "handshaking" and communicating is lost.
pashute, Apr 17 2006

       In Hbrw we dnt hv vwls. Prbbly th rsn I wrt trsly nd ws msndrstd.... srry
pashute, Apr 17 2006

       And still here in 2008. Was just asked to send a fax to bank who cannot use email.
pashute, Nov 18 2007

       Any idea that can link up and give purpose all that old hardware has to be great . All for the widest possible internet .
wjt, Nov 18 2007

       pssss pashute, you don't understand what is happening during that handshake. It's not just noise. Its the two modems testing line capabilities. If certain frequencies are disrupted or unable to be transmitted the machines work around it, and this is established during handshake. SO, if you were to make the inital sound created pleasant (such as DTMF) it would accomplish nothing because the modems must handshake before transmitting/receiving.
evilpenguin, Nov 18 2007

       pssss [evil] I happen to have written the TAPI interface at IBM and completely understand the handshake. Just wanted to say in layman terms that this is way out-dated. If the first tones would be DTMF, we could quickly move on to new technology. This small device is a standalone email client and fax machine connected to your router/ADSL and to the fax (which is regular phone line). Old faxes will just send as usual. New faxes will start with a DTMF sequence, and the other side if its a new fax will recognize this. The sending fax will then, knowing it has a NewFax reciever at the other end, send the fax via email. (Could even be a regular email, that if receiver is oldFax, will be rendered to fax image format).
pashute, May 30 2008

       I never understood the reasons behind modern phones/computers inability to fax without special hardware addons and am assuming it is unwillingness to implement it.   

       There are a lot of internet services offering faxing for free - mostly it is some application on your computer that sends it to the company, who then sends it, for receiving, you get an email with the picture attached.   

       I also do not understand the reasoning behind legal documents needing to be faxed. As the technology long has transcended the need for a real paper copy, and the fax quality is abysmal, forgery gets easier, rather than more complicated.
loonquawl, May 28 2009


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