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Buddy System at Comcast

Comcast Corp. has contracted with ActiveBuddy Inc. to provide an online, "Ask Comcast" help tool for its high-speed subscribers.

The feature allows high-speed subscribers to type in questions or requests for information. An interactive agent delivers answers on service features, troubleshooting and customer-specific computer and service configurations.

Comcast expects Ask Comcast to improve customer service and decrease customer-service costs.

In other technology news, Netifice Communications Inc. -- which provides Internet-protocol virtual private networks to businesses -- has signed partnership deals with Cox Business Services and Road Runner Business Class, offering Cox and Road Runner to Netifice customers.

And Seren Innovations Inc. has signed with Broadband Services Inc. for intelligent mapping tools for its cable systems.