What's this new Bulletin Board all about?

greenspun.com : LUSENET : Central of Georgia Railway Historical Soc : One Thread

The CG Rwy HS Bulletin Board has new look. What the story?

-- Ron Wright (rcwright@bellsouth.net), January 26, 1998


For some time now I have wanted to provide an interactive forum for people interested in the CG Rwy to exchange ideas. From the start computer savy folks have asked for a bulletin board. Running an interactive bulletin board on a Web site, however, involves so-called server side code, which is code that has to be excuted by the Web host's computer.

Once upon a time I could have huffed and puffed and come up with the code to run to run a bulletin board, but thanks to crackers most Internet Service Providers won't let you post anything but static Web pages anymore.

Recently some buddies of mine, who write CORBA distributed objects for a living and are therefore authorities on these issues, told me about a book they'd been reading by Phillip Greenspun called "Database Backed Web Sites - The Thinking Person's Guide To Web Publishing," which they said was a good read. Well, I bought it and it is a good read, but right there on page 35 is something called LUSENET, which supposedly does all the grunt work to let Web site vistors interact more directly with each other than they have been able to before at the CG site.

I set up the CG forum and linked it in. Now when someone wants to ask a question it is easy, and I don't have to get involved in posting the question. Then when someone wants to answer, well, that is automatic to.

I am grateful to Mr. Greenspun for providing this free service. It reminds me of my days in graduate school when people who knew amazing things like how to do a SYSGEN on a PDP 11/23 would help you out without sticking out their palms for cash every time they turned around. Not that there's anything wrong with wanting cash. It's just refreshing - I even find myself thinking in idealistic terms of what the Web "could be...."

So let's have at it. Post questions, post answers, enjoy.

-- Ron Wright (rcwright@bellsouth.net), January 26, 1998.

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