Time Away is an online journey into Australia's wilderness

Frequently Asked Questions

Q. iServ disappeared recently for about two months. Why?

A. I decided to take a break whilst developing a new website to replace it. The new site would be on a different domain and I really didn't have the time to update iServ anymore. I began to receive messages from people asking me to bring iServ back. I eventually conceded that taking iServ down, particularly at a time where the world's major economies are heading for recession and extreme instability in the Government of New South Wales, was a badly calculated move. On Saturday, 9th November, 2008 iServ was relaunched and is back in operation again. The new project is once again on hold due to time constraints. iServ Directory, Dynamutt Directory and the Australian Chat Forums will not be coming back however, again due to time constraints.

Q. Why does iServ look different than before?

A. iServ's blue theme has been around for about five years. It was time for a change. Whilst previous templates served the site very well it was time to give iServ a new look whilst keeping recognisable features, such as the Paw logo, which has become one of the site's institutions.

Q. I would like to advertise on iServ. What is the going rate?

A. Advertising is currently not displayed on iServ. Google Ads have been terminated due to Google's dividend payments being far too low to make it worthwhile - something I won't have a problem telling them if they were ever concerned with why my account has been dormant for the last year or so.

Q. What sort of database powers iServ?

A. Currently it is Microsoft Access. There will be a migration to SQL Server at some stage during 2009.

Q. What sort of encryption method is used to scramble passwords in the membership section?

A. iServ does not release details about site security. That said, security here is adequate and the site has never been tampered with beyond the occasional lame attempt at a DDoS attack about a year ago.

Q. Why do you pay out on the web browser Firefox so much?

A. Because it is a dreadful web browser. It is a pain in the arse to code for and always has been. Firefox may be fine for generation Y who thinks anything new is COOL but become a webmaster with the arduous task of coding a website to display EXACTLY the same way in all popular web browsers and you will soon concur with me - it's crap. The fact that iServ works in it is as a result of my development acumen and not the abilities of Firefox to render a page correctly. That is why more webmasters like Internet Explorer a lot better. Since it is used by most people - it is the standard.

Q. Will you teach me how to make a website?

A. Sure...

<html>
 <head>
  <title>This is my website</title>
 </head>
 <body>
  <h1>This is the heading of my site</h1>
  <p>This is paragraph one on my new website.</p>
 </body>
</html>

A cont'd. Paste the above code to a text editor like Notepad, save the file as default.html and then upload to the root directory of your website. The page should then display by typing the URL for the site in your browser. You can learn the rest from a good HTML tutorial because I do not have the time to give lessons.

Q. Is that true that you collect old radios?

A. Yes. I have about 100 all up and a cache of spare parts, a selection of books and some rare and valuable magazines relating to old radios. A website I dedicate to this hobby is linked from the bottom of this page, titled Vintage Radio.

Q. What ever happened to iServ's affiliation with Bigpond IRC?

A. With most things that Telstra does, Bigpond IRC is managed by a bunch of visigoths. At the top of the tree is a fat sheila in her 60s who thinks she is the duck's nuts with computers, networking, computer programming, IRC and the all-important people and management skills. Her username is Sammee. She is none of those things. She is an idiot and so are those she 'runs' Bigpond IRC with and I use the word 'run' only because it gets a few laughs. Under her chairmanship, Bigpond went from an active IRC network down to a ghost town and that network's larger rooms are now over run with tumbleweeds.

Q. Does iServ still have anything to do with IRC?

A. Yes. iServ sponsors a server iserv.induced.net which forms part of the network called Induced IRC which is a small but very successful network, enjoyed by many loyal regulars. I'll add that Induced IRC has picked up four channels in the last 12 months from the Austnet IRC Network, due to them removing several servers from their network. Induced IRC appreciates the confidence, trust and anticipation placed in its infrastructure, which is the best of its kind; management team and network structure.

Q. How do I log in to have a look?

A. Visit the Induced IRC website, link is at the bottom of this page, and click the Chat link there. You'll end up at a page with many links to various chatrooms. Pick one and a new webpage will load with a webchat window and you will join the chatroom automatically. You can also connect with an IRC programme by typing /server irc.induced.net at the command line. IRC programmes can be downloaded on the IRC pages here.

Q. When I type 'www.iserv.com.au' my browser cuts the 'www' off. Why?

A. This is called a 301 Redirect and this is used in one form or another by hundreds of websites around the world, though mainly corporate sites.

Q. What the hell is a 301 Redirect and what does it do?

A. A 301 Redirect is a way of redirecting traffic from one site to another, allowing the follow-on of internal links and pagerank to the new site. It makes search engines think that a site is bigger and more important than may be the case and, as such, it is a very popular way of redirecting visitors from one page to the next. A 302 Redirect or even a standard server-side or meta redirect would have the opposite effect, more on that at another time, or do a search. Poke



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Safety in the bush

Danger lurks!

There is nothing more important on a trip into the bush than your personal safety. Time Away covers several matters relating to this subject. Click the link below to get the whole picture.

Vintage Radio

Valve Radio

Explore Australia's broadcasting and manufacturing heritage at Vintage Radio, Australia's most comprehensive informational display of these valuable relics. Here you will find lots of photos, information of historical value and advice on some of the aspects of restoration and even how to go about starting a collection of your own. Vintage Radio also contains a dedicated forum to allow discussions and questions relating to all aspects of antique wireless receivers and transmission of radio in general.

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