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IFX Group 2001 Web Log

2001 Blog Entries
  1. Notice. (January)
  2. New IPAD News! (February)
  3. New Files. (March)
  4. Site Update. (April)
  5. Performance Perception. (May)
  6. Consolidation. (June)
  7. Musical Boxes. (July)
  8. Downsized. (August)
  9. Close To Home. (September)
  10. The Big Move. (October)
  11. The Other White Powder. (November)
  12. Thank You. (December)

January, 2001 - Notice.

The IFX Group is working on some exciting new projects. We are not able to make any public announcements yet, so please keep checking back here for new information as it becomes available. We believe this will make a very big difference in the future of the IFX Group and one of our most favorite products.


February, 2001 - New IPAD News!

We are very happy to announce that the IPAD-OS development has been restarted again. Expect new versions and abilities to be available in the near future. All information about the new version is at the www.IPADowners.org web site.


March, 2001 - New Files.

The IFX Group has opened up a new file area to support owners and operators of the IPAD-OS. This will be populated with tools and utilities designed to make the life of an IPAD owner easier. We gladly accept suggestions and complaints from any IPAD owner telling us what is needed.


April, 2001 - Site Update.

Almost a thousand new pictures have been added to our collection this month thanks to a short, but much needed holiday to the South Carolina coast. They are available free for your private, non-commercial use. Please contact us if you would like to use our images in your commercial project.

Our local Internet RFC and STD mirrors are back online and the mirror software has been updated to keep things a little more current. Check out our Information section for the link to the index files.


May, 2001 - Performance Perception.

Everyone has many tasks to do every day both in their personal and professional life. Just recently a team of computer scientists found something interesting while searching for the most efficient design for use of processor time in Internet servers. It turns out that always focusing on the job that has the least time remaining until it can be completed always gives the best performance. This is officially called SRPT (shortest remaining processor time) and amazingly enough also applies to corporate employee life.

This can be applied to almost every task that comes across your desk. For example, if you have three tasks that each take twice as long to complete as the next, putting your effort into the shortest one first will have completed tasks hitting your out box much more often than going after the largest task first.

Very few people get all of their tasks for the day put into their in box at the start of every day. There are always new tasks showing up in the middle of other tasks. So if the task you are working on takes an hour to complete and you are more than half way done and another task shows up that takes half an hour, keep working on the current task before starting on the next shortest remaining task.

The result is that your boss will see things showing up in your out box more often than before and you will likely get a raise for your higher productivity. More things done in the same amount of time and more money in your pocket too.


June, 2001 - Consolidation.

We are moving our main servers to a new location and this means our web site and email may not be available 100% of the time. If you are using our IP address, please change to use our domain name or you may not find us. Thank you for your understanding.

We are slowly adding some of our older tools for TBBS to the file areas. Most of these tools are from 1994 through 1997 and are DOS based. Check them out in the DOS section of the Files menu.

We would appreciate any help you may have in the way of comments or suggestions for how to improve our service. Many hours have already been put into gathering, writing and updating the content of this system and we are reaching a point where there is so much that could be done and so few hours to accomplish those goals that we must prioritize our efforts. Please take a moment to see what we already have online and let us know what areas you would like to see expanded.


July, 2001 - Musical Boxes.

The servers have been moved to the new location with temporary (we hope) connections. We are in the process of consolidating some of the test machines that somehow got put into production into a smaller and easier to manage collection. We hope everything continues to work the same, but Murphy is always watching for a chance to join the party. Please let us know if you notice anything not working like it should.


August, 2001 - Downsized.

Bandwidth is an addictive drug. Somewhere in the process of relocating and consolidating our servers we got caught in the shrinking economy of the DSL market. We are now running on much reduced bandwidth, but hopefully it won't show that much. The short term outlook is not promising after spending many hours with many companies trying to provide connectivity to our new location. The hunt continues and we remain fearless in our pursuit of multi-megabit service. (Hint: if you care to make a donation to expanding our connectivity, you will be thanked profusely.)


September, 2001 - Close To Home.

The world has invited the USA to join the reality most of the residents only casually acknowledged before this month. The attention was only for a few minutes when the world news flickered across the TV screens with pictures of far off places. But sad news is depressing. For better or worse we are now in a new era where terrorists can bring their fear to any address. Who knows? Maybe this will encourage a little more interest in what is happening outside.


October, 2001 - The Big Move.

We are very grateful to Lynn Taylor, who yet again has proven that he is worthy of the hero status bestowed upon him by many different communities over the years. He has graciously provided hosting for the IFX Group web site to not only allow us to get back online when we needed it most, but to offer more bandwidth at the same time. Not to take advantage of the situation, our site has been reduced to just the information pages and tools. Rest assured that our media and image collection will be back online soon.


November, 2001 - The Other White Powder.

If the current TV news shows were a movie of the week, the part about people dying from opening letters would have made a fair Halloween special. In another time it would have been the stuff of urban legend. If the real life spam we all receive in the form of junk mail didn't already have a huge physical cost associated with it, what do you think the cost is compared to the success rate now? Is it possible that people are more likely to use latex gloves to toss it in the dumpster just in case something more than another million dollar offer is enclosed? Some good may come of all this. Maybe a few trees will be spared along the way.

It feels like the product that is known to the public as the IPAD-OS, just refuses to die. This is very good news to the many Internet Service Providers and small companies who rely on their IPAD every day. The same feeling of wonder and amazement that struck so many of the BBS system operators back in 1994 still exists today. In 1994 part of the amazement was that such a device could even exist and a belief that Phil Becker, the creator, was a strong code wizard indeed. The beta cycle for 2.8 is nearing the end and the feeling behind the scenes is that of excited preparation for a party. If you have not discovered the IPAD-OS yet, check out the www.ipadowners.org site and take a peek.


December, 2001 - Thank You.

This is the big holiday month where almost every religion has something happening. Here in the western corner of the world it seems that gift gathering is the only common thread. It is interesting to see all of the busy people rushing around trying to pick up the right gift from someone else's basket. Why do we do it? Yes, it is good to help stimulate the economy by spending a little more this season. There must be more to it than just another bottle of Cologne collecting dust in the crowded space behind the bathroom mirror. The best gifts have one or more of the following qualities.

  • A needed gift. This covers all kinds of things such as tools or a replacement for something obviously broken. This is even more important if you were the one who broke the old one. But it will be decidedly more awkward if they find out you broke it before they get the replacement.

  • A consumable gift. Anything to go in, on, over or around the person. Things such as perfume/cologne that you personally really want to smell often, any bath soaps, salts or other fun additives, food, candy or even drink. And not just any food item tied with a bow, something you would like to eat too.

  • The gift of fun. For the younger ones this could mean a popular toy. The older ones may prefer dancing like ballroom, square, salsa, lap, line, etc. or a special event inside the home or out on the town. Painting the town red, is still popular even with the rising cost of paint. Just be mindful of the fumes.

This holiday season has been a good one for the IFX Group as we have witnessed a spirit of giving going obviously against the normal flow of all the corporate getting. We would like to publicly thank the following for their outstanding and very visible spirit of giving back to their customers.

The IPAD Owners Association, Inc. (IOA) has given a gift to customers who purchased an IPAD only to find that the company discontinued it in favor of something new. This could be another case of corporate leaders not knowing the treasures they control and leaving behind the dull chunks of gold as they go. The members of the IOA believed so strongly in the IPAD that they banded together and collectively breathed life back into the project. This is a spirit of giving unique in all of the corporate connections the IFX Group maintains. A very big thank you goes to all members of the IOA for making it possible for the IPAD to live once more. If you would like to become a member, please visit their main web site at www.ipadowners.org.

The most popular programming languages used for IFX Group software come from a small company called PowerBasic, Inc. that was founded by Bob Zale. They make some amazing compilers that fly in the face of the current market trend towards bloated multi-megabyte hello world programs. They have a group of the most dedicated employees willing to help any customer reach their goal. This has sparked a customer loyalty and following that is very much like the IPAD product following that started the IPAD Owners Association. In recognition of this strong customer loyalty, the company has released two free updates to their most popular compilers just to say thanks. This is an amazing feat in an over commercialized world and season. Please visit their web site at the link above and let them know you appreciate what they are doing for their customers by becoming one too.

Our wish this holiday season is first for the highest success to those who are showing gratitude for the customer support they have received this past year. And secondly we wish that you would accept this invitation to seek out these and other companies of like sentiment to support in this coming year. How many other companies would do better and even survive the tightening economy if they shared this vision of thanking their customers and members? Only you can answer this question.