Welcome to the home of Noah Brier. I'm the co-founder of Variance and general internet tinkerer. Most of my writing these days is happening over at Why is this interesting?, a daily email full of interesting stuff. This site has been around since 2004. Feel free to get in touch. Good places to get started are my Framework of the Day posts or my favorite books and podcasts. Get in touch.

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The etiquette of telecommunications

The whole article is an interesting look at how everyone says the same thing whenever a new technology comes around. However, this was the kicker for me: “When the telephone appeared in the 1870s, people worried about receiving calls from people to whom they had not been properly introduced. And what should one say when picking up the receiver? Alexander Graham Bell, the inventor of the telephone, suggested “Ahoy, ahoyâ€?. But as in many other respects, his ideas lost out to those of Thomas Edison, who preferred “Helloâ€?, an expression that was rarely used before the telephone but is now ubiquitous.”

I think I’m going to start answering the phone with “Ahoy, ahoy.”

Update (12/19/07): As Jarrett pointed out in the comments, Mr. Burns from The Simpsons answers the phone with “ahoy ahoy” (listen to it here). Also, here’s a bit more on hello from Wikipedia.

December 18, 2007