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  #1  
Old 8th September 2001, 11:11 PM
Marc's Avatar
Marc

 
 
Posts: 24,268
Caution The Elsmar Cove Site and Forums 'Breakdown' & Options - PLEASE READ!

NOTE: This thread is from several years ago. It has been updated to reflect changes to October 2008

(Circa 2000) I recently received an interesting e-mail from 'Energy' about how nice it must be to live in 'The Islands'. I don't. Nor do I have a summer home there. I live about 20 miles north of Cincinnati. I won't belabor the way the name Cayman Systems (aka Cayman Business Systems) came about - That was discussed in some detail in a thread a while ago. The bottom line is the Cayman Islands is where, back in 1989 when I started consulting and contracting, I dreamed I might some day retire to. Not likely to happen, but we all have dreams.

I was able to import all the threads from the old UltimateBB 'system' into this new software, but not the oldest forums - The first forum software was WebBBS. The UltimateBB forums, although technically turned off - still exist. I did not delete them because there are so many outside links to threads in it. So - like the original WebBBS, the Ultimate BB Forums do still exist. In addition, as you look through these forums, you will see that many threads have a 0 in the column that indicates how many times a thread was read. These are the oldest threads in the old software. The old software did not count how many times a thread was read so this software had no information to import to be able to determine how many times a thread had been read. The 'thread views' counter started for every thread on the day the new software came online.

This little bit of history is to help you understand how all this came about. And what is happening. The Cove is a site I set up almost 6 years ago (EDIT: Now, August 2012, over 15 years ago) to help people and, until December 2003, almost everything was free and there was no advertising. I started selling Guide file sets in February 2001 and started the Members and Premium Access in September 2001 essentially because business was down that year and it costs me several thousand bucks a year to keep this site online. And that doesn't include the hours I have to put into maintaining the site every day of the year.

As I'm sure you've noticed by now, this is not the 'typical' company site. I am the company. You might want to look at the Elsmar Cove as an alternative site. This is to say, there is a lot of independence here. And a lot of history, if you look for it. We've had some fights, political 'discussions' and - well, this isn't 'your father's forums'.

If you are new, Welcome! I hope your questions are answered and I hope you will participate - that you will help others when you 'know the answer'. In the end, we're all students.

I do hope this new vBulletin 'Forum' software, once you get used to it, will help you in your search for facts and knowledge. The Elsmar Cove has come a long way in the last 6 years online (EDIT: Now, in 2014, over 18 years online) - and the Elsmar Cove continues to evolve. With your participation and help, we'll be here 10 years from now if we all help each other!

Welcome to the Elsmar Cove!!! Since January 1996, A Refuge from the Storm!

Last edited by Marc; 11th August 2012 at 07:50 AM. Reason: Remove dead links and as a general review.

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  #2  
Old 27th July 2003, 09:47 PM
Marc's Avatar
Marc

 
 
Posts: 24,268
Caution The Elsmar Cove Site and Forums Options - PLEASE READ!

Breakdown of the Elsmar Cove Web Site

Site History:

This site was originally called the Cayman Cove. The site went live on on the internet on 5 January 1996. Quite a bit has changed since then - over 10 years have passed. The Forums are now the main aspect of the site. However, there is still a lot of information in those old site pages. They continue to provide a historical view of what has happened with respect to the standards and such over the years.

The Elsmar Cove Forums

The first forums went online around May 1997 if I remember correctly. The original forums ran on Darryl Burgdorf's WebBBS - a set of perl scripts.

As much as I would like the forums to be entirely free (including free of advertising) as they were in years past, as we all know much has changed on the internet over the last 8 years and where the economy is now. Back around March 2003 I changed the policy of free downloading of attachments. The bandwidth was just too high. Many people would come and contribute nothing, not even a post to help someone with a question they could answer, grab what they could and not return. On 24 January 2004, restrictions on access to attachments in all forums except the "Contribution Access and Guide File Sets" forum were lifted. Since starting advertising with Google's AdSense in late December 2003, advertising revenue has been sufficient for me to lift the March 2003 restrictions on Post Attachments in all forums except the "$ Contributors" forum.

To entice folks to share, the site is currently set up as follows:

Browsing Forums Without Registering - Free
  • You may browse and search all the public forums.
  • If your intent is to simply scan/search for information, there is no advantage to registering.
  • Personal Messaging, Starting New Discussion Threads (to ask questions, for example) and Replying in existing Discussion Threads and several other forum functions are Disabled for security reasons.
  • To download post attachments in the 'business' forums one must first Register, which is Free.
  • To download post attachments in the "Contribution Access and Guide File Sets" forum, one must first Register and also contribute towards site maintenance and bandwidth costs through a Contribution.
Basic Forums Registration - Free
  • Basic Forums Registration is unrelated to, and independent of, Site 'Members' and 'Premium' Restricted Directory Access.
  • Basic Forums Registration is unrelated to, and independent of, Access to Attachments to Posts in Threads in the "$ Contributors" forum.
  • Basic Forums Registration allows one to:
    a. Start New Threads in forums with New Questions, and to
    b. Reply to posts others make in threads.
    c. This also opens up Personal Messaging,
    d. Expanded Calendar functions,
    e. Activate 'Subscriptions' to threads and forums and other software controls and features such as E-Mail notification of New Posts to threads and/or New Posts / threads in specific forums which you choose.
  • Registering does require a VALID e-mail address. This is the only control I have to keep 'troublemakers' and forum spammers out. However, your e-mail address remains hidden from other users, 'bots' and e-mail harvesting site scans. I do not sell, give away or otherwise reveal anyone's e-mail address. Nor do I send unsolicited e-mails such as offers or advertisements.
  • No time limit (accounts do not expire).
NOTE: Definition of Forum Member (Registered Visitor)

'Forum' scripts used to be relatively basic and the term 'Member' is a hangover from the past when if one 'Registered', one was typically defined as a 'Member'. The folks who wrote this set of php scripts use it liberally. The forum software is saturated with references to forum members. Unfortunately this terminology conflicts with 'Member' access to a restricted directory of editable files. When one registers in the forums, technically one can say s/he is a Forum 'Member' but that is not related to the 'Member' restricted access directory. I apologise for the confusion. It was BAD planning on my end when I set those directories up. I did not accurately forcast the future. I'm looking at ways to resolve this conflict of terms. I have changed the terminology within the forums software to reflect that when you Register, you are technically in a user group named 'Registered Visitors' so you are a Registered Visitor, as opposed to being a 'Member'. Semanitcs.

NOTE: Definition of Subscription

There are 2 types of 'Subscriptions'.

In each forum there is a link to 'Subscribe' to that forum. There is also a link in each thread allowing one to 'Subscribe' to that thread. In this context, 'Subscribe' means to receive notification of posts to that forum or thread by e-mail. This is part of the standard system, is free, it is not time restricted and is not related to $ Contribution (Subscription) Access (see below - DO NOT CONFUSE THIS WITH $ Contributions Access to "$ Contribution Access and Guide File Sets" Forum Post Attachments). If you 'subscribe' to a thread or a forum you can ask the software to send you an e-mail notification whenever someone posts to that thread or forum either a) immediately, or b) in a Daily Digest or c) in a Weekly Digest.

$ Contribution (Subscription) Access to Post Attachments is a different entity. In this context, Subscription is a 'Subscription' (Contribution) fee for a defined period during which you have access to download Attachments to Posts in the "Contribution Access and Guide File Sets" forum. See just below for more details.

Participation - Posts 'User Group' - Activated 11 January 2004
One must have 20 posts in the Forums. Posts in forums under the Odds and Ends category (such as the Coffee Break forum) do NOT count towards this total. The change in user group is meant to acknowledge those who participate.

About an hour after you reach the required number of posts, your status will be auto-magically updated by the software cron.

$ Contribution Access to Post Attachments in the "$ Contributor's Forum" - Sometimes Confused with the term 'Subscription'
  • Although Registration is required first, Access to Post Attachments in the "$ Contributor's Forum" is NOT part of Free Registration in the Forums, but rather is an expanded access to extra files. This allows you to access attachments to posts in threads in the "$ Contributor's Forum".
  • There are 3 levels of $ Contributions - Click for Details. Basically it's US$10 for 2 Months, US$18 for 6 Months and US$25 for a year.
  • Some folks have been around for quite a while helping others. Some have contributed attachments as well. If you are one of these people and I have not yet recognized you and given you Courtesy Access, E-Mail Me and I'll upgrade your account. But please - if you've recently joined and/or have no history of helping others, please don't upload 1 or 2 attachments and then ask for Courtesy Access.
'Members' Restricted Directory Access

Most of these are editable files which I am the original author of.
  • This is unrelated to, and independent of, Registering in the Forums. However, I typically open this directory up to $ Contributors for a couple of days or more each month.
  • I apologise for the 'Members' verbiage confusion. When one registers in the forums one can say one is a forum member but technically one is a Registered User. The Restricted Directory Access was set up before Attachments were part of the forums software. Back then, of course, there was no confusion.
  • This is a Restricted Access Directory which contains the files listed in This List.
  • Time delimited. Period is for access for 1 year.
  • Every 3 to 4 weeks I open up this Restricted Access directory to Contributors for 2 to 4 days, so if you are a forum Contributor this directory will open up for a few days every month.
  • If you are registered in the forum, but are not a contributor, if you choose this option you will also be upgraded in the forums to Contributor status for 1 year IF you E-Mail Me with your forum user name and request it.
'Premium' Restricted Directory Access

Most of these are editable files which I am the original author of.
  • This is unrelated to, and independent of, Registering in the Forums.
  • This is a Restricted Access Directory containing the files listed in This List.
  • This directory includes all the files in the Cove Site 'Members' Restricted Directory PLUS all the guide file sets and more.
  • Time delimited. Period is for access for 1 year.
  • If you are registered in the forum but are not a Contributor, if you choose this option you will also be upgraded in the forums to Contributor status for 1 year IF you E-Mail Me with your forum user name and request it.
Guide File Sets

These are editable files which I am the original author of.
  • This is unrelated to, and independent of, Registering in the Forums.
  • These are described Here.
  • Basically these are the master data files for several courses.
  • All the files in all the Guide File Sets are included in the 'Premium' files restricted access directory mentioned above.
  • Time delimited. Period is for access to the restricted directory for 1 month to get all the files transferred to your computer. Requests for extensions will be freely granted at no cost if for some reason you cannot download all the files in that time.
Free Files on the Site - the Original "pdf files" Directory
  • This is unrelated to, and independent of, Registering in the Forums.
  • This is an Unrestricted Access Directory which anyone can enter. At one time all the files were in this directory and were free - including those now in the Premium Directory. And the old forum software did not have an attachments feature (the UltimateBB days). Unfortunately over time the forums and the site has evolved, the site has become more expensive to keep up and in general takes a lot more of my time. There are a lot more users than there were years ago so server requirements continue to rise. While I realize everyone would like everything to be free here as it once was, much has changed since I brought this site online in January 1996.
Don't hesitate to E-Mail Me if you have any questions.

NOTE: Files in the "Premium" and "Members" directories are mostly editable versions of .pdf files I have posted for free. These files are files which I developed in the 1990's and early 2000's. I used to give them away free, but as more and more visitors came along the server costs became too high and I had to take on advertising, but before that I decided to post the .pdf files but charge for the editable files. I don't mind people copying the contents and taking the time to make their own powerpoint presentations, .xls files or whatever, but for those of you who don't want to take the time to make your own presentations obviously getting the editable files is preferable.

Also note that I have not publicly posted associated files (remember, these are courses I developed some years ago) such as daily agenda, tests, forms such as attendee sign off sheets and things like that.

Last edited by Marc; 11th August 2012 at 07:48 AM. Reason: Remove some dead links and as a general review.
Thank You to Marc for your informative Post and/or Attachment!
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  #3  
Old 22nd January 2004, 08:27 PM
Tim Douty

 
 
Posts: n/a
Re: Site and Forums Options - PLEASE READ!

Thanks for consolidating the information. I have been away from the site for some time . It is great to be back!
  #4  
Old 24th January 2004, 08:41 PM
Marc's Avatar
Marc

 
 
Posts: 24,268
Read This! Minimum Post Count to Access Attachments Eliminated

Updated Post 1 in this thread to reflect the change from a 20 post minimum to a 0 post minimum for all registered forum users to download attachments. This applies to all forums EXCEPT the "$ Contributors, Access to Post Attachments and Guide File Set" forum.
Thanks to Marc for your informative Post and/or Attachment!
  #5  
Old 7th April 2004, 02:15 AM
sal881vw

 
 
Posts: 154
I've been registered for just one month now. Connecting to the site is the first thing I do every morning.This is an excellent site, informative, helpful experts and above all it is a meeting place for persons that are continiouslly wanting to improve themselves and their company's commitment to be the best. Well done Marc and to all at The Elsmar Cove.
Thanks to sal881vw for your informative Post and/or Attachment!
  #6  
Old 7th April 2004, 03:07 AM
Claes Gefvenberg's Avatar
Claes Gefvenberg

 
 
Posts: 4,837
Thumbs up

Quote:
In Reply to Parent Post by sal881vw

Well done Marc and to all at The Elsmar Cove.
You said it... I'm hardly new around here, but I'm still amazed by the sheer magnitude of the information exchange. To top that off I have also made lots of friends in the Cove. It's still second to none...



/Claes
Thanks to Claes Gefvenberg for your informative Post and/or Attachment!
  #7  
Old 7th April 2004, 03:33 AM
Greg B's Avatar
Greg B

 
 
Posts: 831
Hi ALL

As I have stated in numerous threads over the past year that I have been a contributor(?) this is the best service on the web. The professionalism ,friendliness and willingness of everyone to contribute always astounds me. No matter what country or background you come from you can always shelter from the storm - in the cove. I always feel welcome and the responses are constructive, honest and realtime (given that I live in Australia). To Marc and all thankyou

PS. Marc - what do the colour codes for our login names signify? (I think I am red)

GregB
Thanks to Greg B for your informative Post and/or Attachment!
  #8  
Old 7th April 2004, 03:51 AM
Marc's Avatar
Marc

 
 
Posts: 24,268
I Say... User Group Name Colours and Brief HTML Colour Intro

Login names are colored by user group. These are set in the software 'preferences'. I can't remember any particular reason why I used the colours I did when I set this aspect of the software up. They can be easily changed.

See: User Group Name Colors and Brief HTML Color Intro

You are in the Contributor's user group ([COLOR=Navy]you have financially contributed, which I very much appreciate[/COLOR]) and on my computer it renders as an orange-gold. Technically Contributors names are [B][COLOR="Orange"]This color - FF6600[/color][/B]

[COLOR="Red"]Registered but Awaiting their Email Confirmation[/COLOR] - #CC0000
[COLOR="Sienna"]Registered[/COLOR] - #663300
Involved - [I][COLOR="Navy"]Post Access[/COLOR][/I] - #330099
[I][COLOR="Navy"]Courtesy Access[/COLOR][/I] - #006600
[B][COLOR="Orange"]Contributors[/COLOR][/B] - FF6600

NOTE: Some Moderators are Contributors so if you see someone you know is a Moderator and is the Contributor color, it's because the Contributor colour is over-riding the Moderator 'user class' as far as the name colour goes.

[B][COLOR="DarkGreen"]Moderators[/COLOR][/B] - #006600
[B][I][COLOR="DarkRed"]Super Moderators[/COLOR][/I][/B] - #660000
[B][I][COLOR="DarkRed"]Administrators[/COLOR][/I][/B] - #990000

Those are the majors.


Check out:

http://www.kencole.org/et2assgn6.html
and
http://www.the-eggman.com/seminars/color_codes.html
and
http://www.tedmontgomery.com/tutorial/colors.html
Attached Thumbnails
Color_Chart.jpg  

Last edited by Marc; 10th June 2009 at 02:37 PM. Reason: Revised to link to the definitive thread.
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