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3-digit phone # on bottle

Started by Greg G., April 03, 2009, 03:55:44 AM

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Quote"I still don't understand how dialing 2, 3, ..., 9 or 21, 22, 23,....., 49 is > 7 digits."

The question posed is about dialing ONLY FOUR DIGITS to call (all) other subscribers in and exchange without first dialing a prefix.

Since you have to dial a number ahead of the four digits, then they are by definition a prefix. I am only answering his question as to what is practical.

There are  a number of schemes, that are not practical in a regional or national front that could be implemented but would handicapped the bigger routing picture for a number of reasons.

They could be discussed further but a new topic should be started since a discussion about dialing with more than four digits is not on topic and Centrex is even further off the chart.


the question must really be a stickler... I understand what everyone is saying... the whole idea was for convience sake but then this world has gotten too crowded... maybe it would work better if we had designed our cities like villages and left everything small... then 4 digit dialing could work... only allowing for 9999 people to live in 1 section at a time. then, I could be phone number 2097 and you could be phone number XXXX.... and every section would have it own exchange and the exchanges would be numbered from 100 to 999. oh yeh, and you had to live in the same section of town I did to use the 4 digit dialing or you had to dial the regular 7 digit number...  :'( (I must be crazy! ;D)


OK, Enough of this... back to the 3 digit dialing.... What ever happend to..... 411???, 611, etc. I remember when you used to be able to call information at 411... repair at 611 and the central office at a regular number that rarely ever changed... what happend to all that?? now you have to call info at a 1-800 number and repair the same way... what ever happend to simplicity?? thats what all this chatter is about, isint it??? I was told by a friend at church who used to be a CO tech that the CO could be programmed any way you wanted to be.... so, why don't we start all over starting with "1". that could be the first phone number.... what do you all think of that????


411 and 611 still work here when calling from a landline for Directory Assistance and Repair. On a Verizon cell phone, 611 gives you their customer service.

I agree with your CO tech friend.

In Centrex, we reused the same 2 codes for dial dictation that had been used with the 701 PBX by having Bell point those codes to unpublished Centrex line numbers. We had to create different codes (without * or #) for other features because at the same hospital, we were still using many rotary multi-line phones. Call Forward Universal, for example, which was *74, could now be dialed as either *74 or 274. It didn't matter if there was a 274 NNX in Atlanta, because to reach that 274-xxxx you would dial 9 first (or, after about 1996, 9 + 10 digits). Since this was a larger Centrex group shared by Ga. Tech, you had to dial 5 digits instead of 4, but they were all 4-xxxx (for 404-894-xxxx) or 3-xxxx (for 404-853-xxxx) or 6-xxxx (for 404-206-xxxx); that's why 2 was chosen. As long as you don't create numbering conflicts, you can be as creative as you wish.

1=may have been the intial number of the 4-digit code used for dial dictation

2=* as an initial digit for feature codes

3= 404-853- Centrex numbers (3-2477 for example)

4= 404-894- Centrex numbers'

5= not used. Reserved for future expansion of Centrex, where only the 3rd digit of the NXX needed to be assigned as a 5--it could be 805 or 895 or 225, whatever was available at the time.

6= 404-206- Centrex numbers

7=not assigned

8= Old Long Distance State network at Courtland St. 8 + Area Code + 7D or, for state phones, 8 + a 3-digit NXX C.O. code which did not match the NXX  Bell used (For example, to call the Governor's office from Savannah, you could dial 8+222-1776 rather than 9+1+404-656-1776.)

9= Calls to outside (+ 7 digits to 404 and +10 digits to 770 Atlanta Suburbs; later +10 required for all)

0= Attendant at Ga. Tech

In fact, when you program a PBX, you can set up shortcuts in dialing by creating your own dialing plan. We programmed a Nortel Option 11 so that when you dialed 5 + a number between 01 and 48 (522 for example), you reached one of the 48 State Patrol Posts, rather than having to dial 9 + 10 digits for local posts or 91+ 10 digits for long distance locations. Dialing 2xxx translated to 9-404-624-2xxx to reach nearby Centrex lines  that weren't on the PBX. (Note that this resulted in *fewer*digits dialed, not more.)

While Nortel won't allow conflicting codes like 30 and 301, on Mitel, this is not a problem either.

Or, you can submit to the FCC and AT&T and require, from your PBX, 9 + NPA + NXX + xxxx= 11 digits for every local call or 12 digits for long distance calls, even to frequently called locations of your same organization.

It's also a good idea to program the switch to translate 911 to 9911. From a PBX, if dialing 9 gives you an outside line, then if not reprogrammed, it would send only " 11" to the CO.

"C'est pas une restauration, c'est une rénovation."--François Martin.


does anyone know why pacific bell and mountain bell scrapped their 611 number and went to a toll free #?? (pac-bell and centurylink) it seems that ever since all the CO's went digital that these numbers were lost...what were they thinking?? isint a 3 digit number easier to remember then a toll free number? or is this all a result of the "CELL" phone? (I'd put the guy in a cell for inventing that!) see what happens when people are allowed to run amuck!


How do you propose to allow contact with other exchanges when only four-digits are allowable?
If all of the numbers were assigned to the subscribers then you would not be able to dial an access or area code.

Also, Pacific Bell did not "scrap" 3-digit calls including those to 611 repair service. They did assign toll free numbers for those calling from other areas or cellphones since a three digit service code is applicable to only the local exchange from which it is called.

Quote from: Babybearjs on August 19, 2013, 12:45:52 AM
does anyone know why pacific bell and mountain bell scrapped their 611 number and went to a toll free #?? (pac-bell and centurylink) it seems that ever since all the CO's went digital that these numbers were lost...what were they thinking?? isint a 3 digit number easier to remember then a toll free number? or is this all a result of the "CELL" phone? (I'd put the guy in a cell for inventing that!) see what happens when people are allowed to run amuck!


There's no getting around 7- or in many places 10-digit dialing (or even 11 where 1 is required as an initial digit even for local calls), if you are talking about a phone connected directly to a POTS line. Even places like the one the milk bottle came from were changed to area code + 7 numerals once they could be reached directly (DDD=Direct Distance Dialing) from anywhere in the U.S.

However, though not often advertised, in some places, you could still dial less than 7 digits within the same C.O. because it was more economical to add Digit Absorbing Selectors than to have 5 selectors + 1 connector. Even in the late 60s, you could dial 71-xxxx instead of 761-xxxx from my house to reach local numbers.
You could also dial 7653- instead of 753- to reach numbers in West End. The first 6 was absorbed (once but only once) by the 2nd selector.

A family friend's grandmother who lived in the West End area of Atlanta said her number before dials was "West 315." To call her, you would have asked the operator to give you "West 315." In 1931, when a Step-by-Step dial C.O. was installed, her number changed to "RA ymond 0315." When 7-digit numbers were standardized in 1955, it changed to "PL aza 3-0315."

On the other hand, if you are setting up your own phone system, you have the flexibility to create a dialing plan: you can have single digits for room service, 4 digits for other extensions, even have it *translate* abbreviated numbers to whatever the C.O. requires, whether 7, 10 or 11 digits.

If you are programming a PBX, or setting up a Centrex dialing plan, you might choose 9 as the code for reaching a trunk or NAR (for calling outside). In that case, you would not have any extensions beginning with 9. Zero (0) might be used to reach the onsite attendant. This would limit the number of extensions to 8000 instead of 10,000 if you were using 4-digit extension numbers. If you wanted more than 8000, you could use 5-digit extensions.

In the Adamsville Centrex, one of our CSRs allowed Bell to assign numbers in the 404 699-9xxx range. While they could dial some other numbers in the group by dialing 4 digits, they couldn't dial numbers in this range with 4 digits, because dialing 9 indicated you wanted to make an outside calls. To reach these extensions from within the Centrex group, you had to dial 9, 404-699-9xxx.
"C'est pas une restauration, c'est une rénovation."--François Martin.


interesting thread... anyway, Centurylink, also known as qwest, or better yet, Mountain Bell... does not have a 611 repair number... they still offer the 411 information, I think its now 1-411 but the main numbers that are used here are 211, which is a community help line and a 711 number, and of course, 911.... but to get centurylink repair, you have a toll free number.. has the phone company downsized so badly that they only have a dispatch service for all the states they cover now??


Quote from: Brinybay on April 03, 2009, 03:55:44 AM
I forgot all about this.  I found this old dairy bottle several years ago while scuba diving.  I didn't understand at first why only the area code was on there (360 is an area code for part of Western Washington) until somebody told me it was from the days of old crank phones where you told the operator the exchange you wanted.  At least that's what I was told, I'm not sure.

360 was not one of the origiibnal area codes. 360 was added in Washington where all numbers were previosly 206. Eastern Washington was 509.

All original Area codes had a 1 or 0 as the second digit.   

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