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nordmann
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PostSubject: Technical adjustments / announcements / assistance   Mon 09 Jan 2012, 10:26

Hi - thought it best I start listing any technical tweaks or changes I do. I'm fairly sure the site has more or less the format and function which suits the majority but if anyone has problems viewing or using it by all means let me know, either by a reply here or by private message.

05.02.2012 - Banner changed to random diplay (history matters)

02.02.2012 - Chatbox added to index page and portal page
We'll give it a lash and see how popular it proves. If it turns out to be just more clutter I'll ditch it.

29.01.2012 - Expanded category "Civilisation" to include "Community"

23.01.2012 - Changed default font for post contents to Georgia (size 16px)
23.01.2012 - Set up "approved members" group for ease of future administration

22.01.2012 - Switched main font from Verdana to Helvetica

17.01.2012 - Added portal option to menu (contains list of all recent topic updates, amongst other things)

16.01.2012 - Added ranking to member post counts (allegedly improves search engine accuracy - we'll see)

11.01.2012 - Altered category/forum/post background colouring.
11.01.2012 - Toned down incomplete border displays.


10.01.2012 - Implemented CSS optimization. This should speed up page loading.
10.01.2012 - Eliminated the annoying google-ad from all views.
10.01.2012 - Reconfigured main page style.


09.01.2012 - Set background image to static. Turned on WYSIWYG (bold and italic script etc in replies now shows up as you type, no longer simply as code). Corrected/edited category descriptions.

08.01.2012 - Added "Tumbleweed Suite" sub-category in "the Pub". This was to ensure that non-members are restricted to posting only in the Tumbleweed Suite topic. Corrected/edited category descriptions.

Outstanding tasks:

Advertisement banner not eliminated from andorid/iPhone/Windows Mobile/Opera Mobile

"Host an image" frame broken.



Last edited by nordmann on Wed 09 Nov 2016, 23:15; edited 17 times in total
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normanhurst
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PostSubject: Re: Technical adjustments / announcements / assistance   Mon 09 Jan 2012, 11:14

And maybe a list of what you do in your spare time… Wink
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nordmann
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PostSubject: Re: Technical adjustments / announcements / assistance   Mon 09 Jan 2012, 12:24

Quite a bit, actually silent
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nordmann
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PostSubject: Re: Technical adjustments / announcements / assistance   Mon 09 Jan 2012, 21:56

I'm going to need to take a break for 48 hours. Please, enjoy and use the site (or let it die). It's up to yourselves. I'll check in again on Thursday and if it's proved unpopular I'lll do the decent thing and close it down. Wink


Last edited by nordmann on Tue 10 Jan 2012, 14:41; edited 1 time in total
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Islanddawn
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PostSubject: Re: Technical adjustments / announcements / assistance   Tue 10 Jan 2012, 05:19

Eh?

I think that would be premature, it just needs more time and more contributors. Otherwise you have begun something that has the makings to be truely exceptional, Nordmann. Don't give up on it yet.
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PostSubject: Re: Technical adjustments / announcements / assistance   Tue 10 Jan 2012, 07:57

My sentiments exactly but I couldn’t believe it… or didn’t want to. I suppose looking at it from Nordmanns side, it’s been very lightweight on any sort of contributions today/yesterday, but people are getting back out to work again after the Christmas break, and I suspect my wittering away doesn’t help matters either. Must give it more time mann, it’s not been busy on englistory either and historum has had nothing.
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ferval
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PostSubject: Re: Technical adjustments / announcements / assistance   Tue 10 Jan 2012, 10:41

Don't you bloody dare!
Norm's right, all the boards have been quiet, I've been busy and so is everyone else, the holidays finishing, schools are going back etc.
If there is a problem at all, it's that this board doesn't appear in a simple search for 'history forum' and so passing trade will be limited. Is it possible that adding 'history forum to the title would help?
I notice the link on the top to englistory, would Johnny return the compliment, do you think? Perhaps we should be passing on the link to any friends we have with similar interests? It's not something I've done in the past but I'm now thinking of who I know that might like to join.
Anyway, footfall, as it were, is not always the best guide to quality.

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PostSubject: Re: Technical adjustments / announcements / assistance   Tue 10 Jan 2012, 12:11

Well I found it rather alarming… after reading Nords first message here it would appear everything is tickety boo judging by his message timed at Yesterday at 10:26 am Subject: Technical adjustments and he goes on to list the various tweaks he’s made. Personally I think he’s made such a fine job here and must have put a lot of time and effort into it, I hope my message 2 wasn’t taken out of context… nah, cant have been.

But by Yesterday at 9:56 pm something’s happened to prompt a change of heart and mind… now I didn’t notice it until the early hours of this morning, but couldn’t quite get my head round it.

I think you may well have a point though ferval, I’m jumping now from your message on historum…, possibly the bar could be just a bar, separate from the other bits and pieces, may I quote you (Should there be a single, easy to find and keep up with 'Bar' thread as there was at the Beeb?)… Perhaps there should… I for one have missed a number of postings as the ‘bar’ covers the quiz the first word/last word thingy… your honours list, that silly observation comment I made that was actually posted elsewhere but got lost, and I wish it would stay lost. But there is no specific bar chat room. Having said that, there were often days went by without a comment in the Beebs bars. Or… a bit of paranoia creeping in here, maybe there’s sum wot just don’t like my wittering contributions. Thing is though, there’s some real interesting stuff on historum… I always look to see where it originates from, and then excuse it. But englisorty been very inactive as well… and as I made the observation… there’s an awful lot of ex beebers on there now. If you look down through the members list as I did and carried out a little survey… a lot of those listed members have never posted, and a lot have never revisited. Go take a look.
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nordmann
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PostSubject: Re: Technical adjustments / announcements / assistance   Tue 10 Jan 2012, 14:42

oops - forgot the smiley!



Fixed now.
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normanhurst
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PostSubject: Re: Technical adjustments / announcements / assistance   Tue 10 Jan 2012, 15:16


Ferval… Jonny has already returned the compliment ref the link to us. I’d noticed the trouble I had when first registering here, trouble with that pesky pop up… the one that say press here to download… now pardon me for being stupid but when I first registered I pressed it thinking it was the last step of the download… and my PC crashed. You will see from my first posts here… it took a long time to get back on line and sort things out. Now we’re talking of trying to lure new people in, I wonder how many others have experienced the same thing… I was trying to recruit three people the other night from a chat on Skype, 2 from Aus and one from NZ… I pasted the link… and that was it for two days… they had a hell of a job sorting their gear out, and were not best pleased with me? I was under the impression that pop up had been sorted and I know nordmann had been having a spot of trouble getting it removed, but I just logged out to see it the pesky thing is there, yes it is… I think that could be a right pain in the backside to people trying to have a look at us. All the other stuff is so close to that pop up, a fraction out with the pointy thing on ya mouse and your just one click away from a good few hours of tedium trying to sort it back out.
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PostSubject: Re: Technical adjustments / announcements / assistance   Tue 10 Jan 2012, 15:32

Yes, when I get logged out for no reason (that's still happening sometimes) and have to log back in again, that damn thing appears on the first page but disappears when I log in.
I suppose we should warn people on the invite to steer clear.
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PostSubject: Re: Technical adjustments / announcements / assistance   Tue 10 Jan 2012, 16:04

@nordmann wrote:
oops - forgot the smiley!
Fixed now.

NOT funny Nordmann!

Still mopping coffee out of the keyboard, after spluttering the stuff everywhere on reading your little joke.
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PostSubject: Re: Technical adjustments / announcements / assistance   Tue 10 Jan 2012, 16:50

I hadn't noticed Johnny's link, silly me.
I won't comment on Nordmann's little jest, revenge best served........ etc.
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nordmann
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PostSubject: Re: Technical adjustments / announcements / assistance   Tue 10 Jan 2012, 16:54

Anyone who uses a browser which isn't Internet Explorer? If so, can they log out and check that the google-ad has moved waaaaaaay down to the bottom please?
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PostSubject: Re: Technical adjustments / announcements / assistance   Tue 10 Jan 2012, 17:05

This is about the big add at the top of the page, right?

I've just had a look using Firefox and I still have it at the top of the page, interestingly (or uninterestingly) the add I have is a Greek one. Even so it doesn't bother me, I usually just ignore those adds.
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PostSubject: Re: Technical adjustments / announcements / assistance   Tue 10 Jan 2012, 17:19

Ok - I'm working on it!



(So much for a day off) cyclops
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ferval
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PostSubject: Re: Technical adjustments / announcements / assistance   Tue 10 Jan 2012, 17:38

I'm on Chrome and it comes back if I log out.
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nordmann
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PostSubject: Re: Technical adjustments / announcements / assistance   Tue 10 Jan 2012, 19:16

Can the Chrome and FireFox people please take a gander at the logon page again?
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Ozymandias
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PostSubject: Re: Technical adjustments / announcements / assistance   Tue 10 Jan 2012, 19:45

@nordmann wrote:
I'm going to need to take a break for 48 hours. Please, enjoy and use the site (or let it die). It's up to yourselves. I'll check in again on Thursday and if it's proved unpopular I'lll do the decent thing and close it down. Wink

Nordmann, by all means take a break. I agree with all the others that you should give it time. It probably is a lot of work and hassle but don't throw the towel in just yet.

Might I suggest that having googled 'history forums' the first hit I get is Historum and Res Historica doesn't feature at all. Res Historica is a great name for dedicated history buffs but it might be better to use the English translation 'History Matters' (which has a clever double meaning) if you want to attract passing traffic from google, some of which might stick around. As well as that an English name would be understood by a vastly wider audience.

I'm sorry I've not a lot of time at the moment or would post more. I have so many projects on the go that I find it difficult to commit to the time needed should I get drawn into a debate. Now, when I retire in a couple of years time ...! But that is cold comfort given the current situation.
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PostSubject: Re: Technical adjustments / announcements / assistance   Tue 10 Jan 2012, 19:48

Yippee, that's it gone, I hope permanently. Good work sir, now take your break.
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PostSubject: Re: Technical adjustments / announcements / assistance   Wed 11 Jan 2012, 06:29

Well done, it is also gone from Firefox and Windows too I see. There is a big blank yellow box there now instead, is that what you were after?
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PostSubject: Re: Technical adjustments / announcements / assistance   Wed 11 Jan 2012, 12:10

@Islanddawn wrote:
Well done, it is also gone from Firefox and Windows too I see. There is a big blank yellow box there now instead, is that what you were after?
It all appears hunky-dory to me, a Firefox-person. It's all squeaky-clean , nice to look at and more important, legibility wins over graphic gizmology. And no annoying advertising.
What's, (as they say today), not to like?
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PostSubject: Re: Technical adjustments / announcements / assistance   Wed 11 Jan 2012, 17:34

Latest problem, I've suddenly started getting email notifications of replies in this topic and another, I think I've switched that function off now but I don't understand why it started.
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PostSubject: Re: Technical adjustments / announcements / assistance   Wed 11 Jan 2012, 17:44

Worth checking that little link to the right just under the last message in a topic when you're reading it. If it says "Stop watching this topic" go for it. I think what happens is that if I move a topic or redesign the structure around it (category, forum etc) then it acquires new default settings. However I hadn't moved this one as far as I was aware.

Also - don't type out a long reply and then hit "Stop watching ..." before you hit "Send". You lose everything you've typed.

Learnt that one the hard way.

When you start a topic you should also just doublecheck that it's off too. I keep forgetting to! It seems the profile default doesn't work too well for new topics.
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nordmann
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PostSubject: Re: Technical adjustments / announcements / assistance   Wed 11 Jan 2012, 18:01

Another tip: I got a nasty surprise today when I suddenly discovered that the box in which one types replies, new posts etc would not fully open. This, combined with the observation that no one had posted anything in a while, led me to assume the worst. The bottom bar in the browser (IE7) simply said "Error on page". Flushing cache and cookies etc did not help.

Anyway, after much gnashing of hair and pulling of teeth I discovered that the iexplore.exe process was eating as much memory on my machine as the combined brain retention capacity of a reasonably sized country and that the routine it was struggling with was converting html code into all those little buttons which sit over the box. So, if the same happens anyone else simply "X" out of Internet Explorer completely and start the browser again.
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Islanddawn
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PostSubject: Re: Technical adjustments / announcements / assistance   Wed 11 Jan 2012, 18:25

Ah is that why the email notifications have started yet again, I've re-set the profile default thingy 3 times now and the emails keep coming back after a couple of days. Boomermails they are.....

I also had the problem with sending replies earlier today, but found that closing and re-opening the page fixed the problem.
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PostSubject: Re: Technical adjustments / announcements / assistance   Wed 11 Jan 2012, 23:23

I haven't noticed any problems at all, using Internet Explorer. (The emails come through, but I haven't bothered to turn them off, so don't know if that will work or not. Doesn't bother me specially, might bother my husband.) There's no ads on this page - does that mean you are paying not to have them, Nordmann? I know on some other boards individuals just pay for the rest of us to avoid them. It doesn't seem fair.

Caro.
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PostSubject: Re: Technical adjustments / announcements / assistance   Wed 11 Jan 2012, 23:49

I work with this stuff. I'm basically cheating when it comes to the ads.

I can't see why I should have to pay - until of course the data storage capacity starts going beyond a small SQL database (and believe me, we're nowhere near that). However I have bought credits for about fifteen quid from norwegianforum.net (same people as Johnny Hus's provider - a French outfit actually) and I will use them if needs be to rename the site to reshistorica.com if it's available and the usage merits it. Otherwise I'll use it for something completely apart from this website (which I'm quite proud of, by the way).

My biggest problem right now is trying to get the search engines to trawl me for free. They say they will, but it's just not happening.
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PostSubject: Re: Technical adjustments / announcements / assistance   Thu 12 Jan 2012, 00:15

I should think you would be quite proud of it. I'm quite proud of the fact that I can manage to register onto it!

Thank you for all the work involved.

Cheers, Caro.
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PostSubject: Re: Technical adjustments / announcements / assistance   Thu 12 Jan 2012, 00:32

Thanks for participating. The idea was to provide a "natural" home for those who enjoyed each other's company and debate on the BBC website. In that respect I don't think it's far off the mark.

The biggest problem is recreating the dynamic whereby new input from new members re-invigorated that debate. This can only be achieved through incidental discovery from surfers which is not possible if the site remains invisible to search engines.

Five years ago this site would already have been trawled and made available on that basis as its hit rate and participation level are both quite large. Now it's being trawled and intentionally omitted on the same basis. That pisses me off big time. If I pay Bing, Yahoo and the rest I can "buy" visibility. Google have been fairer - and just today I could see that we had several hits from Japan, Russia, Australia, the States and Kenya on the basis of Google searches. So I know there's nothing too wrong with the metadata (which includes the tag "history forum"). In about a week I'll find out if we're approved by the Open Directory. If they take us on board then we're open to everyone.

Needless to say we have to at least keep the participation level up in the meantime. They measure loss of traffic more exactly than they measure growth.
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PostSubject: Re: Technical adjustments / announcements / assistance   Thu 12 Jan 2012, 00:42

Well then, we need to get busy - they don't asses quality as well do they? I never thought I'd say this but - Cass and or someone like him might be just what we need!
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PostSubject: Re: Technical adjustments / announcements / assistance   Thu 12 Jan 2012, 00:44

@ferval wrote:
Well then, we need to get busy - they don't asses quality as well do they? I never thought I'd say this but - Cass and or someone like him might be just what we need!

No good - I think its number of posts not length that we need.



'Night all!
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PostSubject: Re: Technical adjustments / announcements / assistance   Thu 12 Jan 2012, 00:47

A paragraph at a time and we'd have been top of the league.
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PostSubject: Re: Technical adjustments / announcements / assistance   Thu 12 Jan 2012, 00:47

Should we adopt a twitter style until the score goes up?
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PostSubject: Re: Technical adjustments / announcements / assistance   Thu 12 Jan 2012, 00:48

It's so easy with no 3 minute rule.
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nordmann
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PostSubject: Re: Technical adjustments / announcements / assistance   Thu 12 Jan 2012, 00:53

I can make one, you know.
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PostSubject: Re: Technical adjustments / announcements / assistance   Thu 12 Jan 2012, 04:38

I've noticed whenever I log on that there are usually some guests looking at the site, hopefully some may be encouraged to join and participate. Or they could forever remain lurkers, there are always a few of those too.
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PostSubject: Re: Technical adjustments / announcements / assistance   Thu 12 Jan 2012, 05:45

If we need to increase the number of posts to get noticed, how about another word game in Eagle and Child, Nordmann? They are always fun and generate a lot of quick responses, I'd do it but am having trouble thinking of one to start off. Any ideas?
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PostSubject: Re: Technical adjustments / announcements / assistance   Thu 12 Jan 2012, 06:12

I wish it were that simple. What we want is to excite the attention of a few trawling bots and in fact the traffic already justifies it. Requests have been sent and acknowledged from the agencies concerned. All criteria regarding an "honest" site have been met. So far Google have been in and done their thing and that's fine. However the others haven't. But this is normal - especially in the first few weeks of a new web presence.

Also - too much traffic between a limited number of ip addresses can actually work against a site, but we're too small for that to matter, especially if there's no bot around to care. But these things can take weeks to sort themselves out - so no panic. The "guest" display is misleading. It's measured differently by the server providers themselves and doesn't reflect actual hits from outside. In fact it's 90% of the time simply members who are logged out.

In the meantime the best we can do is contribute content which ideally attracts outsiders' attention. This raises the hit level much more effectively than any other technique and is the kind of traffic which alerts engines.
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PostSubject: Re: Technical adjustments / announcements / assistance   Thu 12 Jan 2012, 06:23

Ok, thanks for explaining. We'll just trundle along as best we can in the meantime. Well trundle is all I'm capable of anyway..............
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PostSubject: Re: Technical adjustments / announcements / assistance   Thu 12 Jan 2012, 09:19

Sorry to be a pest - again but when I go off line, I start getting all the 'notification of replies' emails again and then when I come back on, all the instructions to 'stop watching' have been automatically reset to'watch'.
Not life and death but the inbox I use for these this site is getting filled up.
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PostSubject: Re: Technical adjustments / announcements / assistance   Thu 12 Jan 2012, 09:53

test
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PostSubject: Re: Technical adjustments / announcements / assistance   Thu 12 Jan 2012, 10:39

@Caro wrote:
I should think you would be quite proud of it. I'm quite proud of the fact that I can manage to register onto it!

Thank you for all the work involved.

Cheers, Caro.

I second that - Nordmann is a polymath!

I was in a class yesterday and during a break I was helped to sort out a new avatar. This site was *much* admired by the students around me - a couple noted the name and said they'd join. Just the sort of new posters needed - young, lively and opinionated!!

PS Did I dream it, or was Cass in the bar here very, very briefly the other night? A long post appeared and then disappeared almost at once. The name wasn't Cass - I think it was Cashew (?) - but the length and style of message was definitely his.
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PostSubject: Re: Technical adjustments / announcements / assistance   Thu 12 Jan 2012, 11:24

That I find quite scary… maybe some of Cass’s posts could generate outside interest, but how long before it becomes intolerable and begins to drive people away.

If you took out the quotes and Cass’s high opinion of himself, his posts would contain very little. I always noted just how little of himself there was to his lengthily epistles, did he ever express an opinion that he hadn’t taken from one of his books. The fact that so many and often people tried to stop him, his ego just wouldn’t allow it. I did note one of his last postings before the Beeb sank, he did say he may go away and re-invent himself…, into a Supercass perhaps. I just hope and pray he doesn’t materialise here wearing his knickers over his trousers.
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PostSubject: Re: Technical adjustments / announcements / assistance   Thu 12 Jan 2012, 17:28

@Temperance wrote:


I was in a class yesterday and during a break I was helped to sort out a new avatar. This site was *much* admired by the students around me - a couple noted the name and said they'd join. Just the sort of new posters needed - young, lively and opinionated!

That doesn't read quite as I meant it to. Of course everyone here is lively and has interesting opinions without being in the least bit opinionated! (But alas, we are not young, are we?)

And I hasten to add that the very helpful (if opinionated :) ) young folk at the *lecture* were students, not kids in a school.
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PostSubject: Re: Technical adjustments / announcements / assistance   Sun 15 Jan 2012, 17:53

Nordmann,



I join the others for all the excellent work you have one. And I understand your troubles.

It is just that I have no time enough to post as I want it to do in depth and do research for it on the internet. Have neglected now more than a week my French forum and have still to do my promised work there about the Polish-French Madagascar plan. I only stick on Historum to some two or three threads but already with that...see the "History Science or Fiction?" thread, where Ferval joined me too.

But all the fora are started as you overhere...and became what they are now...will have a look how I can help till you have some 12,000 members...but don't promise...as I explained my trouble last time to Ferval in a thread on the Historum...

Kind regards and with esteem as for the person of Nordmann as for all the work he has already done,

Paul.
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PostSubject: Re: Technical adjustments / announcements / assistance   Sun 15 Jan 2012, 18:53

What's a bot?.There is one arrived on the users list.

Trike.
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nordmann
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PostSubject: Re: Technical adjustments / announcements / assistance   Sun 15 Jan 2012, 19:01

It's a measuring device used by search engines. Site owners can also get an analytical readout from the information gathered. The "bot" or "spider" accesses the website like a human might and investigates the index options. Any changes from its last visit are reported back to the search engine to increase accuracy of response to search requests. I have activated bots for both Google and Bing - others may pop up from time to time if the site gets listed on the Open Directory (a general indexing site which informs all search engines).

I've the option to hide bots from diaplaying as logged on but I prefer to know when they're around. At this stage it is important that the site doesn't fall out of such investigation by the big engines so I feel reassured when I see them popping in.
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Islanddawn
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PostSubject: Re: Technical adjustments / announcements / assistance   Sun 15 Jan 2012, 19:11

I was wondering what bots are, they are always listed with the users currently on-line over on Englistory too.

"Guests" are people reading the board but are not registered? And who are the "hidden"? They sound a bit sinister.
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Triceratops
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PostSubject: Re: Technical adjustments / announcements / assistance   Sun 15 Jan 2012, 19:18

Thanks, Nordmann.

Trike.
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