ESTIMATION ANNOUNCES COMPUTER WINNER

LINTHICUM HEIGHTS, Md. — Estimation Inc. has announced the winner of its free computer giveaway drawing.

Chip Greene, president of Greene & Associates, Macon, Ga., has received a new 800 MHz, Pentium III computer and 17-inch monitor from Dell. Greene's new computer contains the latest version of Estimation's Bidmaster NET Plumbing Series software as well as the new Microsoft Windows Millennium Operating System and Microsoft Works Suite 2001.

Entries for the contest were gathered throughout Estimation's trade-show season this past fall and the winning entry was drawn on Nov. 30.

“The new computer couldn't have come at a better time,” Greene said. “Because the new computer comes with Bidmaster NET Series already installed, I can replace my outdated computer at home.”

Estimation, Linthicum Heights, Md., maintains a growing client base of more than 6,000 contractors throughout the United States and Canada.

AGILENT UPGRADES CABLE ANALYZER SOFTWARE

MARLBOROUGH, Mass. — Agilent Technologies has introduced a new software release, Version 2.1, for the WireScope 350 Cat. 6 cable analyzer. The new software enables the cable analyzer to automate the process of cable labeling. It also introduces auto-cancellation technology that makes possible highly accurate certification of Cat. 6 channels.

Auto-cancellation is a novel method for complete removal of the channel test interface from the measured data and is said to be particularly important for Cat. 6 installations where test margins are slim and where the uncancelled test connections can result in failures. Auto-cancellation algorithm automatically determines the specific compensation parameters for a wide variety of modular plugs used in the channels and is able to remove the contribution of the mated connection at the channel adapter from the measurements.

With the release of software version 2.1, the WireScope 350 also supports Cat. 6 testing with a universal link adapter, Link SmartProbe. In addition, the software allows the cable analyzer to generate labels for patch panels, outlets and cables. The labels can be printed using the ScopeData Windows utility prior to testing or they can be automatically printed right from the cable analyzer as the testing progresses in the field.

In addition to automating the process of labeling, the WireScope 350 provides guidance on the labeling methodology now being defined by TIA (Telecommunications Industry Association) in the emerging TIA606A specification.

“Labeling and administration is a big part of an installation job and there are several points in this process when costly mistakes can be made,” said Fanny Mlinarsky, general manager of the Agilent WireScope Operation. “Our solution streamlines the process of cable labeling, ensuring that the certified cable runs are automatically identified using standards-based cable Ids. Our solution is designed to save installers time and to minimize the possibility of costly mistakes. The built-in software wizards also provide guidance to the standards-based cable identifier structure.”

DEXTER + CHANEY PARTNERS WITH CONEST SOFTWARE

SEATTLE — Dexter + Chaney announced on Jan. 17 that it has partnered with ConEst Software Systems to provide their customers with integrated estimating, job costing and accounting software.

Dexter + Chaney provides Forefront Construction Management Software for electrical contractors; ConEst Software Systems develops bidding, billing and project management tools for the electrical and voice/data/video industries.

Forefront's link to ConEst2000 estimating software allows contractors to easily set up job budgets in Forefront without re-entering their bidding information.

Using Forefront's Esti-Link module, users can automatically set up phase codes, descriptions, units of measure, quantities, labor hours and budget amounts for a job using their ConEst data. The Esti-Link import from ConEst is also designed to assign standard worker's compensation codes to labor codes and standard descriptions.

Esti-Link allows users to transfer budgeting information to Forefront's Job Cost module. If a job's estimate changes due to phase adjustments or buyout information, users can easily re-create their budget in ConEst2000 and import the revised estimate into Forefront.