Russ Harvey Consulting - Computer and Internet Services

The Resources Pages

Their nature and history

Site History | Legacy Resources | Contact Guidelines

The pages on this site are NOT a blog.

To understand why, you need to consider the history of these pages and the different approach a blog takes.

Site History

The resources on this site were created over a long period of time, beginning in an era when people were just becoming aware of the Internet.

Launched Before Windows 95

When I first created this site, few businesses and even fewer individuals had a website.

OS/2 Warp 3 provided me with a leading edge operating system that included the tools to get onto the Internet for less than the $150 it cost for Internet software for Windows 3.1.

Help for Clients

I first created a series of related pages on topics that would help my clients understand concepts like proper email address etiquette.

My “Start Page”

Initially, there was no complete listing except on a separate “Start Page” maintained for myself and clients. Links were not intended for public use.

Hosted on Computer

This Start Page was hosted on my clients' computers — updated via floppy disk when I was onsite or by downloading the “update” from the website via dial-up.

High-speed Internet Arrives

When high-speed Internet emerged, I linked people directly to the online “update” page rather than updating their off-line copy.

Shortcomings

At that time, the shortcomings of a site with unorganized resources soon became apparent.

While clients had a directory via the Start Page, it wasn't public.

The Resources Index Arrives

I made the decision to create the resource index page to support the rapidly emerging Internet-connected public.

The OS/2 Sub-site

I mentioned that I was running IBM OS/2 Warp when I launched this website. At the time, this site contained very little Windows content even though the majority of my clients were running some version of Windows.

OS/2 was not as well documented as Windows and over time I developed a sub-site devoted entirely to that operating system.

This was the first time this site was purposely dedicated to providing a resource to the public (I had no local clients running OS/2). It was an independent site that contained the knowledge I obtained attending sessions with much more skilled OS/2 users in government and industry as well from my researching content online.

I later began to incorporate helpful resources that were being abandoned by other users.

The first was the Creative AWE64 sound cards with OS/2 started by John LeMay. I incorporated a newsgroup hosted on my site using tools provided by Islandnet (my hosting service before IslandHosting was launched). Eventually the newsgroup was shut down but I retained the most important details within the page itself.

I later added Frank McKenney's “Applying Service to OS/2 Warp”.

Before the decline of OS/2 popularity, my site was one of the “authority” sites used world-wide.

Today, only a fraction of the content remains. The primary remaining pages are devoted to OS/2's replacements, eComStation and ArcaOS, because most of the other remaining pages are legacy resources where supporting external links have all but disappeared.

Site Maintenance

Unlike blogs which contain one-off posts, most pages on this site are regularly maintained.

Rebuilding Pages

Some pages need to be reorganized over time.

The site is complex and contains so much information that continually-revised pages can lose their cohesion. Sections within the page became isolated making that page poorly organized and the information difficult to locate.

To remedy this, pages are rewritten to flow better and be more consistent. Sometimes that means moving or removing content, updating or replacing links.

When a page has too much content, it is split off into two or more pages.

An example is the Identity Theft content. It was eventually broken into four pages:

I've also split the “Canadian Internet Legislation” page from the Internet at Risk page.

Each time such a change is made, the site's resource index page is updated to reflect the changing nature of the site content.

This makes the concept of “guest posts” unworkable even if I were to launch into the complexities of hosting content written by other people.

Legacy Resources

Over time, some pages are no longer suitable for updating. External references are disappearing or gone. Updating becomes difficult or impossible.

There are two options:

  1. the page is removed from the site; or
  2. the page is labelled as a “legacy” resource.

Legacy pages remaining on the site have the following added to the top of the page:

 
I no longer develop this legacy resource.

 

The listing on the Self-help Resources index page now has Legacy added to its listing(s).

How Legacy is Assessed

The following issues cause me to designate pages as a legacy resource:

Examples of legacy pages are:

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This Site is NOT a Blog

I receive ongoing requests to include “guest posts” on my “blog.”

Not only do these folks appear to have failed to look at my site before sending their request, but they failed to read my site contact policies.

What's Different About a Blog?

A blog is a series of one-time posts that are sorted by date.

Because each post is independent, it can be difficult to locate specific information other than by using any categories and labels provided by the blogger.

Why This Site is Different

Pages on this site are not written, then abandoned.

Instead, the site consists of a series of regular web pages that are routinely maintained until they are designated as legacy resources.

Content is added when I came across information I feel should be included, usually added to a relevant page unless the amount of information or unique topic requires a separate page (e.g., Artificial Intelligence).

Occasional Re-writes Required

I review and edit pages to remove older content and fix broken links. The page is often rewritten to restore a rhythm to the text.

Sometimes this means that content is moved from one page to a more logical location or a new page is generated when the content justifies it.

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Russ' Blog

I didn't build a blog for a long time because of the limitations imposed by blogging software.

I refer to Russ' Rants as my “sometimes” blog, since I seldom post to it. Instead, it became a place to post thought processes, something more suited to a blog.

In March 2007, I posted my first post, “My Web Design Journey”, on Russ' Rants.

This blog is an experiment for me. I've been building sites by hand since 1994 and I've learned the technology as it developed.

I built Russ' Rants to learn the basics of blogging on Blogger (the most popular blogging software at the time). I've experimented with WordPress later, but this remains my only public blog even though it is pretty much abandoned.

I've also built and helped maintain WordPress blogs for clients including editing the Youth for Christ Victoria website (part of a multi-site WordPress blog built by someone else).

While blogs should generally be much better maintained, my blog is an experiment rather than a marketing tool.

Since I can edit this site as I choose and spend a great deal of time working on it, I seldom post anything on my blog.

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Contact Guidelines

If you're planning to contact me, the primary purpose of my site is to provide resources to my clients and to reference when providing my “Help Desk” services and when preparing for a service call.

In addition, I hope that others find these resources useful. I've spent a great deal of time ensuring that the site remains relevant.

Before Contacting Me

Please review my guidelines.

I do NOT:

I rarely respond to link requests.

I will contact you if I need more information but not if your suggestion doesn't fit my requirements.

Read About these Resources for more about how I deal with link suggestions, requests for help and more.

This Site is Responsive

This site is built using techniques that are responsive to screen size.

This allows “aside” to appear to the right of the main content on most devices, but at the bottom of the main content when viewed on narrow screens like smart phones.

As more and more users are viewing the site on narrow devices rather than computer monitors, I've revised large portions of the site to remove the sidebar (aside) but still find it useful on some pages.

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Related Resources

On this site:

 

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RussHarvey.bc.ca/resources/history.html
Updated: June 12, 2024