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Author Topic: A Post From Our Piazza member  (Read 5577 times)
GeneP
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« on: October 28, 2006, 04:57:45 PM »

I appreciate the manuevering in topics that seemingly welcome a broader base of posters.  I got an email regarding the first post to this new section.  I also got a surprise when I arrived here to take a look.  Oh well, stuff happens.  Anyway, if other OP'ers arrive here it might be useful to make a chirp here just so we become aware.

GeneP
« Last Edit: October 29, 2006, 12:07:06 AM by GeneP » Logged
Crafty_Dog
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« Reply #1 on: October 29, 2006, 12:04:16 AM »

Hi Gene:

Looking forward to having you share the Adventure here with us.

Marc
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GeneP
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« Reply #2 on: November 01, 2006, 05:55:05 AM »

At least it appears that way this morning and Eric indicated he was going to shut it down on October 31, 2006.  I'm not aware as to whether he saved a backup for purposes of converting the data to a PDF file or not.  It doesn't appear that he sent out a broadcast announcement.
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DougMacG
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« Reply #3 on: November 01, 2006, 09:50:28 AM »

Thanks for posting Gene.  I also hope a backup is saved.  Technically, I assume the ending of the home page link is separate from wiping out the hard drive and using it for other purposes.  Maybe we can just buy the original hard drive instead of a backup copy.  Sounded like Mark Gerber had ideas about how to extract the info.

All in all, Eric was very generous and patient and reasonable about the shutdown.  Costs of the existing setup going forward weren't reasonable and they participation became too low to reconfigure.  I'm sure he can still be reached through his blog at: http://www.ericmackonline.com/

So far my particpation here has been mainly as a reader.  The format at the moment is more readings than discussions.  That can change quickly as discussions break out; I know they have in the past.  I appreciate Marc's rules post asking for an 'in your own words' introduction to cut and paste style posts.

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thudbear
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« Reply #4 on: November 01, 2006, 11:33:18 AM »

OP . . .R.I.P.
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GeneP
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« Reply #5 on: November 02, 2006, 12:11:15 PM »

As you are aware, since you visited OP near the end, I offered to deal with the data as well and didn't receive a response.  I think when nobody took Eric up on his conversion for pay offer in conjunction with Marc's kindly offer to make this site available (which solved a significant problem for Eric) that his interest waned.  Of course he might also just be busy as proprietors can get sometimes.  I had suggested he send out a broadcast email pointing recently inactive OP'ers to this site.  I didn't get mine.  smiley
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mrgerber
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« Reply #6 on: November 02, 2006, 05:55:33 PM »

Thanks Gene.  I did not have time to carefully read all of the final posts and had the impression Eric had some discussusions with you or others about possibilities for archiving OP and providing a message to members somehow.  I'm starting to realize that he had no interest in doing any of that, which is too bad.

If he would simply copied the OP database files on a DVD (or two -- he never would tell anyone the size) without reformatting, at least we would have had the ability to find some path to a usable archive down the road.  Also, it would only take him a few minutes to transfer the domain name to me so that I could put up a message.  Oh well.

Mark
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DougMacG
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« Reply #7 on: November 07, 2006, 11:24:51 AM »

Mark, Gene, Marc, all:

I sent an email to Eric just now with a friendly thank you for hosting and a specific request based on this discussion.  Will inform you of any reply. My impression so far is that he is busy with other things rather than unwilling.    - Doug 

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GeneP
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« Reply #8 on: November 07, 2006, 01:41:56 PM »

Crafty,

On the outside chance we are able to resurrect historical OP into a PDF file, can you check with your webhost as to whether a large PDF can be posted here?  I attempted to post a PDF that was refused because of size.  The permitted size of attachments was really small.  Thanks.
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admin
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« Reply #9 on: November 07, 2006, 02:38:29 PM »

Hello Gene,

Please contact me regarding posting a pdf to this site. You can reach me at: webmaster@dogbrothers.com

Depending on the size, you may email or FTP it to me and we can add it to the server for your reference.

Please include Re: Dog Brothers Public Forum PDF Post in your subject line.

All the best.
« Last Edit: November 07, 2006, 02:40:04 PM by admin » Logged

Bob Burgee.
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robertburgee@gmail.com
Crafty_Dog
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« Reply #10 on: November 11, 2006, 05:17:17 PM »

Just got this from Doug:

Crafty,  I am forwarding from my cellphone this very cooperative reply I
received from Eric.   I won't be in computer contact for awhile.  I was
intending to post this to the forum, since there are personal numbers
included it might be better to send a copy direct to those who expressed
an interest, especially Mark and Gene.

He makes a mention of chipping in on cost.  If the amounts are
reasonable and we can split it 3, 4 or more ways I will certainly pay a
share.

, , ,

    - Doug

--- begin forwarded text

Date: Fri, 10 Nov 2006 20:18:01 -0800
From: Eric Mack

Subject: Re: Our Piazza
To: Doug 
Cc:

Hello Doug,

Sorry for the delay in getting back with you. Lots going on around here.

I'm glad that I was able to keep OP going as long as I did. I realize
that I've been involved supporting the site one way or another since June of
2000. Six years. Wow!

The last post I saw on archiving (early October) was that someone (You?)
were going to screen scrape the site into something else. A tedious job
to be sure.  There are over 70,000 posts and the file is a few gigs (less
if you purge the index). I then saw the posts that DogBrothers had set up a
new forum and that folks had moved. I kept the site up through 10/31
just in case there were any stragglers. Given the lack of activity at OP, I'm
pretty sure that those who wanted to go to the new site are already
there.  I would imagine that the new site is better, too. The existing site
software was outdated and getting expensive to maintain. One of the
features I always wanted to ad to OP was RSS feeds. Hopefully, the new
DB site has that.

With regard to PDF creation, I offered to look into generating PDFs.
Apparently the new version of Acrobat 8 ($449) has a new "archive from
Lotus Notes:" feature that will generate searchable PDF documents. I
have no experience with this product as I do not have it. I did go to the web
site and the process seems straightforward. I wonder if Adobe's ever
archived a single file this large. In any case, I would be willing to
look into this again, if there is interest and if folks are willing to chip
in. Meanwhile, when I have time to drive down to the NOC to pick up the
server, I'll archive the databases to DVD for safe keeping.  I will not be able
to deal with this for a few weeks, probably not until early December.

Doug, I don't know what my plans are for the domain, however, I do not
plan to sell it at this time. I had prepaid the registration for many years
in anticipation of building up an on-line community. As we know, that never
materialized and I was unwilling to sell ad space to keep OP going. As
it is, I paid for the past 21 months of dedicated server hosting. At this
point, I cannot explore this further, though I may do something in the
future.

I'll try to stop by the new Dog Brothers forum though, practically
speaking, I probably won't do that either until December.

OP has been a fun "experiment," as someone once called it. I've met some
interesting people and it was a privilege to sit as a flay on the wall
and read some of the discussions.

I wish everyone the best.

Sincerely,
Eric Mack

PS. I tried to send an email update to Roger and Gene, however, the
email addresses I have no longer work (  deleted for the forum).
« Last Edit: November 10, 2009, 05:18:01 AM by Crafty_Dog » Logged
GeneP
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« Reply #11 on: November 11, 2006, 05:29:04 PM »

Thanks to both Doug and Crafty for sharing the response from Eric.  At least we know that the database wasn't nuked along with the server that hosted OP.  Perhaps I should email Eric directly as he doesn't seem to be aware of some of the late posts to OP.  It is interesting that he references a failed attempt to email me.  I still keep my old taxtechcpa.com domain alive and the email addressed to me there gets forwarded to my more current email addresses.  I haven't received anything from Eric.  I know Roger's email address has changed from what was likely the one he registered at OP so that doesn't surprise me.

Overall that is encouraging.  Of course we still don't know how big a converted database to PDF file might be, but we do know it would be huge. 
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Crafty_Dog
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« Reply #12 on: November 11, 2006, 06:51:45 PM »

Well, the Adventure continues!  I'm glad to see this moving forward.  When you have the size of the database just let me know and I'll see what we can do.  Where webmaster swears we have laid the groundwork for massive capacity.

Also, lets start seeing some threads/conversations from you guys!  This is your chance to establish the vibration for those yet to come.  cool
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DougMacG
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« Reply #13 on: November 15, 2006, 11:47:51 AM »

Mark, Gene and all others interested,

Please contact me directly with input for replying to Eric.

dmacgibbon at gmail.com
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Crafty_Dog
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« Reply #14 on: November 22, 2006, 06:31:02 PM »

Folks:

At the moment all the threads except two have been begun by me.  Please feel free to get some things going.

Marc
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DougMacG
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« Reply #15 on: November 24, 2006, 06:54:36 PM »

I received the following update 11/20 regarding the archive from Our Piazza.  My hope is that we can receive the DVD backup as is and that someone in this small group showing interest can translate from lotus notes to a more widely accessible format. I personally don't use any Lotus  products or have any expertise there.  Please respond here or to me directly if you can offer any suggestions.  Thank you.    - Doug

--

Doug, the web site is in a Lotus Notes database. It's full text searchable
only when using a Notes client or a Domino Server. It's in the NSF format
and is not readable by other software.

The other option is to load the database <2 Gigs onto a notes client or
Domino server and export it, using a 3rd party tool that would need to be
purchased.

When I get the server back I'll copy the NSF files to a DVD for
safe-keeping.

Eric Mack

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GeneP
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Posts: 12


« Reply #16 on: November 26, 2006, 06:48:50 AM »

Finding a Lotus/Domino site with an administrator interested in helping us is going to be like finding a needle in a haystack.  It would likely be more expeditious to entice Eric to convert.  Adobe 8 is now available (upgrade price is $129), and Eric thought that would work.

It appears only a few of us have registered here, and without a way of emailing the old OP database we are stymied in alerting them of the opportunity.  Traffic at OP had diminished greatly, but some of the relationships would probably survive if there were a way of communicating with them.

It seems that people who register here without enough disclosure get culled.  So some of our people may have unwittingly encountered that.
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Crafty_Dog
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« Reply #17 on: November 26, 2006, 07:01:33 AM »

We have been having a tremendous problem with spambots.  After the one episode where our registered members got sent some nasty porn, my wife has been quite vigilant.  If she has inadvertently culled some real people, please let her know.  I will bring this thread to her attention.
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pretty_kitty
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« Reply #18 on: November 26, 2006, 11:10:44 AM »

I'm using google to flush out the spam bots.  In most cases they use the same userid so they pop up on various forums.  If I can't verify it's a spam bot, and I find nothing on the e-mai address on google, then I personally e-mail the new registrant.   

Might help if I get a side-bar e-mail from the new registrant letting me know they are from OP.

smiley
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Cindy "Pretty Kitty" Denny.
Dog Brothers, Inc.
DougMacG
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« Reply #19 on: November 27, 2006, 11:57:43 AM »

"Finding a Lotus/Domino site with an administrator interested in helping us is going to be like finding a needle in a haystack.  It would likely be more expeditious to entice Eric to convert.  Adobe 8 is now available (upgrade price is $129), and Eric thought that would work."
--

Thanks for the reply and advice Gene.  I will pass the Adobe idea back to Eric. It also looks to me like Adobe can be 'bought' on a 30 day free trial basis which I am willing to try. I am also hoping to hear any further suggestions from Mark G.  I am guessing that Mark is the most likely of our small group to have the technical capability to do this.  I put in request to friends of mine for advice.  No reply yet.

Former OPers might be interested in the archive or in finding people here.  Like you say, I don't know how to reach people.

My thinking at this point is to encourage Eric to preserve the archive and to get a copy even if unreadable, then to share the costs of conversion with those who are interested and willing.  With a little luck maybe Eric will solve the conversion puzzle as he archives without incurring large, new costs. 

After format conversion, all we will get for contact info is name and a past email address. At least an attempt can be made to reach and invite those who may be interested in continuing here.



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DougMacG
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« Reply #20 on: December 07, 2006, 10:46:51 AM »

Keeping you informed of the effort to preserve the archive.

I wrote to Eric: "I asked a few others how to convert from Lotus Notes format to something more universally readable and searchable.  The only suggestion I received was the possibility that Adobe 8 might do it.  I don't know if that's true but I'm willing to try it.  I agree that it is worthwhile to capture the database as is and we can work on conversion after that.


Eric wrote:

"...Adobe 8 won't be able to read the Lotus
Notes Database directly.

You'll have to have Lotus Domino and Lotus Notes installed. Acrobat is only
the capture tool.

You could also get away with only the Lotus Notes Client installed and then
Install Acrobat 8 Professional with that.

I have Lotus Notes installed here.

Let me know.

In any case, I've not picked up the server. It's on my list.

Eric"
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