Info Express, Electronic Customer Support

March 1985

A game changer became apparent with the INFOExpress and AskInfo announcement in 1985.  After that announcement, everybody
in the network world knew of IBM's Business Model to Inter-Network the world. All the competitors of the IBM IN knew they needed
to deal with the prospects of the business world being connected to IBM IN.  Everybody in the networking world could see the
Business Model and see the productivity improvement potential.  After that announcement,  the NSFNET  TCP/IP developers knew
they needed to adopt the commercial Business Model and to develop a version of the NSFNET  that could participate in the
Business Model world.  

The following is a copy of the November 1985 announcement of the first formal IBM Electronic Customer support activity through
the shared inter-enterprise online data network. Before this announcement,  IBM IN used special bids to provide electronic
customer support.   

Some time after this announcement, in a meeting with IBM IN executives, I predicted that within 5 to 10 years, people will have their
electronic  address on their business cards and in advertisements. They all laughed at the time. Later, they added their Email
address to their business cards.

The Business Model of the IBM Electronic Customer Support (ECS) was the leading example. It made it easy to promote the idea
that any  business or government agency could use the same connection to do their form of ECS.  Today's daily any to any
electronic communication  seems logical.  Back then, it was thinking in the future.