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PART I: Finding Out Why, What, Where, Who, and When.
Chapter 1: Why All the Fuss about ATM? An Executive's Summary.
Chapter 2: Just Give Me the Scoop (How to Sound Like an ATM Expert).
Chapter 3: What Makes Up ATM?
Chapter 4: Where Can I Use ATM Locally?
Chapter 5: Where Can I Use ATM in the Wide Area?
Chapter 6: Who Needs ATM? Do I?
Chapter 7: When Should I Use ATM?
PART II: Finding Out How ATM Works.
Chapter 8: Conquering the Basic Bits and Bytes.
Chapter 9: Getting Inside the ATM Layer.
Chapter 10: Looking at ATM's Support Functions.
Chapter 11: Playing Nicely with the Other Kids: ATM's Interoperability Function.
PART III: Investing In ATM: Decisions, Decisions!.
Chapter 12: Evaluating ATM for Wide Area Networks.
Chapter 13: Evaluating ATM for Local Area Networks.
Chapter 14: Considering the ATM Business Case.
Chapter 15: Implementing ATM.
Chapter l6: It Works! ATM Case Studies.
PART IV: The Part of Tens.
Chapter 17: Ten Tips for a Successful ATM Project.
Chapter 18: Top Reasons to Consider ATM.
Chapter 19: Some Reasons Not to Use ATM.
Chapter 20: Ten ATM Web Sites and Information Sources.
Chapter 21: More Than Ten Important ATM Standards.
Chapter 22: Ten Alternatives to ATM.
Chapter 23: Ten Drivers, Influencers, and Supporters of ATM.
Chapter 24: Ten Tips from the Pros: Advice from Those Using the Technology.
PART V: Appendixes.
Appendix A: All About the ATM Forum.
Appendix B: Glossary.
Whatever your level of expertise (or NOT) with ATM, you should only bother reading thisbook if:
About This Book
Like all ...For Dummies books, this book takes a refreshing approach to a difficult technicalsubject. We don't intend to fill page after page with minutia and detail, and we don't expect you toread the book from cover to cover. But we do plan on telling you what you need to know tounderstand ATM and to make an intelligent decision about how, when, why, and even whetherATM is for you and your network.
Look in the Table of Contents and find a topic that interests you. Turn to the index in theback of the book and find your area of interest there. Or just open the book to any page and startreading.
The important point is that you don't need to read the chapters in order. But to help you inyour ATM For Dummies adventure, you find sections in the book with topics like these:
What You're Not to Read
We want to demystify ATM for you, and strip away the hype that surrounds this mosteagerly anticipated and talked-about communications technology. While we aren't going todiscuss the technological issues that large groups of PhDs spend years arguing about, we mustdiscuss some aspects of ATM In technical terms - with an emphasis on technical issues that mosteffect the decision to become an ATM user or ATM avoider. We also include a few tips andconsiderations for implementing ATM networks.
Because ATM is such a complex topic, at times the book's discussions may seem a bitover-technical - but we warn you when that happens (before your eyes glaze over). We clearlymark the affected paragraphs with an icon that identifies the passages as Technical Stuff.And we tell you what's really important to understand and what you can gloss over if you wish.
We don't assume that you have an encyclopedic knowledge of telecommunications andnetworking, but we do assume that you understand the basics - things like the basic makeup andusage of networks. And we do assume that you're knowledgeable about the needs of yourorganization's network and that you want to know whether ATM can meet those needs.
We don't just want you to take our word about ATM either, so interspersed throughout thebook you find editorials, testimonials, and opinions from lots of different people - including otherTeleChoice consultants, ATM vendors, ATM service providers, and real-life ATM end users - togive you a good idea where ATM stands and where its headed.
A word of warning - we've both been up to our ears for a bit too long in thetelecommunications world, the place that spawned the Dilbert cartoons (which often mirror ourworking lives a bit too closely), so if our humor seems a bit skewed to the techie, please oblige usand laugh anyway.And we both have small children (Cathy has three, Alex, Eric, and little Kara) and Chris has one(Ty). We, like many of you, have seen too many hours of children's TV; so if a reference to thepurple dino or any other similar character slips in, don't say we didn't warn you.
How This Book Is Organized
The rest of this introduction outlines the layout and contents of the book. We hope that thisorganization makes finding exactly what you're looking for on the subject of ATM even easier.The book is divided into four main parts, with two supporting appendixes at the end.
Part I: Finding Out Why, What, Where, Who, And When
The only way to get into a complex technology like ATM is to start at the ground floor. InPart I, we'll break down ATM for you - and explain what the pieces and parts are all about, andwhy you should know about them. We'll give you a good overview of ATM, including what it'sused for, and who's pulling the strings that make ATM happen. Part I is the place to get started ifyou know absolutely nothing about ATM.
This part is less technical than the remaining parts of the book and provides a good overviewwithout requiring prior knowledge of a lot of networking terms. We even give you a chapter toread if you just want to be able to converse ill ATMese - that's the secret language known only tothose fully initiated in the deep, dark secrets of ATM. (We'll even share with you the special rightof initiation into ATM's secret club.)
Part II: Finding Out How ATM Works
Part II of the book digs into the components and standards of ATM in more technical detail.Do you like fun networking stuff like protocols. interoperability, service quality, network usage.and so on? Well then, this is the part for you.
Do you hate stuff like that, but still need to get a handle on it? Our goal is to present thisinformation in a way that keeps you from pulling out all your hair and keeps you away from thathuge container of ice cream hot fudge, or your indulgence of choice. (Of course, after yousuccessfully get through the chapters in Part II, you have reason to dig into these delicacies incelebration!) So dig in, discover ATM, and (we hope) have a bit of fun.
You can also use this part as a technical resource to look up technical terms as you needthem. If you don't need to understand a lot about technology in your job, you can skip thissection.Just use it as a handy reference on those rare occasions that you have to understand howsomething works.
Part III: Investing In ATM: Decisions, Decisions!
In Part III, we discuss many risks and benefits that adopting ATM carries with it. Our goal isto give you the tools you need to make a sound decision about using ATM yourself. We coverconsiderations for both your local and wide area networks and include a few practical thoughts onjustifying and implementing your network.
This part adds a bonus: real-world case studies of companies and organizations that are usingATM right now - today! We let you know what trials and tribulations these organizations wentthrough and what payoffs they're getting from their investment.
Part IV: The Part of Tens
Although we're big fans of a well-written chapter that digs into detail and provides athorough explanation of an important subject, we recognize that sometimes a short, quickreference is what you need. This part of the book is designed to be just that - a place to dig upsome quick facts or to find the answers in a nice, easy, distilled format. This is also the part whereyou can find a list of additional resources and references for ATM.
Part V: Appendixes
Just because the appendixes come last doesn't mean you should ignore them. In Part V of thebook, we provide you with detailed information about the ATM Forum (the international bodythat provides a lot of the standards and marketing support for ATM) - including information onhow you can (and whether you should) join the Forum.
We also provide a glossary of ATM terms, so that you have a place to find out the differencebetween a FUNI and a UNI.
Senior Network Analyst
Posted August 15, 2000
This look at ATM (although a bit dated) is an excellent introduction to this technology, taking a look at various ATM standards, how ATM can be used in networks, and competing technologies. The first part of the book gives the 'basics' of ATM and what 'advantages' ATM has over other networking technologies. It also discusses in some detail what ATM 'cells' are, which are the 'main building block' of ATM. Later chapters describe the basic ATM structures, functions and standards. it also discusses ATM protocols. Later chapters explain how to evaluate ATM for either a Wide Area or Local Area Network, and examples of places succesfully using ATM technology. The final few chapters (aka the Part of Tens) contains handy reference information, including tips for succesful ATM projects, Reasons to (or not to) consider using ATM, along with a list of ATM information sources. I also liked the various sidebars located at the end of most chapters in the book, which made the concepts covered in each chapter easier to learn and remember. Most chapters also start off with a table of acronyms that are used in that chapter. I found this also helpful in understanding the information presented. This Dummies book hits its mark. It's a good overall view of how ATM works.Was this review helpful? Yes NoThank you for your feedback. Report this reviewThank you, this review has been flagged.