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From: email@example.com (Jeffrey Cochrane)
Date: 19 Oct 94 07:27:01
An Intermail (Fidonet compatible) system is now up and running at IPAM (I
believe that stands for Institute for Public Affairs and Management, but am
not sure). IPAM is polled (called by telephone for a computer session) from
GreenNet in London twice a week (Tues, Thurs), and for now relies on polls
from abroad because it has no IDD telephone line.
GreenNet is providing the polling service for two weeks, after which the IPAM
Director has pledged to deposit funds with GreenNet for further polling.
IPAM is currently considering what to do about cost recovery. I have
provided cost estimates to them. There was talk of using MessageTrack
(spelling?) for cost monitoring of points, but I now understand that they do
not have a copy. I have demonstrated the cost features of RemoteAccess, a
bulletin board software, which they are considering. I will provide a
shareware version if they request it.
My computer operates as a point off of the IPAM node. I poll IPAM from a
private residence in Kortright, the faculty residential community of Fourah
Bay College. I am also polled directly from the Baobab in Washington, more
or less as a backup at least until the IPAM and other locally managed
operations are running smoothly. Bob Barad of the Baobab and I can also
experiment more easily with a system that we control, using our results to
suggest ideas for local systems.
An additional point is planned for the Library at Fourah Bay College.
FrontDoor has been installed there, but they are presently experiencing
hardware problems, perhaps associated with the replacement of a single DOS
partition with a two-partition combination of DOS and UNIX. If the UNIX
partition is maintained (there is talk of deleting it), then I will suggest
that UNIX-based communications be explored. There is no staff presently at
the Library knowledgeable about UNIX, and my impression is that they've
discovered it to be more trouble than it is worth.
The Salstinet Project, with Carnegie and other funding, is planning to link
numerous offices on campuses to each other in a Novell-based LAN, using hard
wire as well as dial-up. There is discussion of establishing a second node at
Fourah Bay College, rather than relying solely on IPAM. Most of the LAN
hardware has been purchased. I'm not sure whether they plan to link this LAN
to the FrontDoor system at the Library, or to software resident in the UNIX
partition at the Library.
I am making shareware copies of Fido software available to anyone who asks
for it, and am donating considerable time to pointing out its features and
potential. There is a DOS software engineer working with Salstinet, and he
and I have been discussing software development to utilize the FDServer
features of FrontDoor to make executable files available remotely, the aim
being to make reference resources from the Library computer available from
within faculty (or anyone else's) offices.
I would be happy to pass along further suggestions for system development
that readers of Africana may care to suggest. Keep in mind that I'm an
economist, not an engineer... 8*)
Jeff@Kortright, Sierra Leone