June ECTC Status Report
by Randall Severy
June 1999 was a month of cleanup and preparation for the Electronic
Communications Technical Committee, as the Artemis Project web site
settled into its new home on the CyberTeams dedicated server. Most of the services
on the web site that were suspended during the move last month have
been reconfigured and restarted on the new server. Preparations also got
underway for the Artemis Society's first live webcast as co-sponsor
of the upcoming Lunar Base Development Symposium in Houston in the middle
Note: there will not be an ECTC Status Report next month, as the
ECTC Chairman takes his annual August break from writing status reports
Activity in the ECTC in July and August will be reported in a combined
status report that will be produced in early September.
The ECTC membership grew by four members in July. Brian Coleman,
Jim Burk, Jens Lerch, and Valentin Navarrete all joined the ECTC last month.
You can find the complete ECTC membership listing at
http://www.asi.org/adb/09/01/ectc.html . As always, there is still
a lot of room for new volunteers for ECTC tasks. If you would like to join
the ECTC, you can sign up through Team Director at http://www.asi.org/teamdir
To review the ECTC project list and sign up to help with any of those
projects, use the form on the ECTC task list page at
Here is the latest status information from the individual work
areas within the ECTC:
Five more ASI members signed up for Team Director accounts in June.
A minor update was made to Team Director during the month to fix some
small problems that had been reported previously.
Nanci's sister, Dawna, continued manning the Communications and
Information Center in Nanci's absence.
Electronic Mailing Lists
One of the more eventful times in the migration of the ASI mailing
lists to the new server took place on June 4, when Vik Olliver sent
a test message to the art-3d mailing list on the new server. What started
as a simple test escalated into a runaway infinite loop of e-mail that
overwhelmed poor Vik and inundated subscribers to all ASI mailing lists
with dozens of messages. Before the transfer of the mailing lists to
the new server, the subscriber list for the art-3d list was mangled and
ended up including most of the subscribers from all ASI mailing lists. One
of those addresses was someone running an improperly configured vacation
program, which responded to every message sent to the mailing list,
including its own responses. Over the next 40 minutes, 48 messages
were sent to the art-3d list, 40 of them automated replies from the vacation
program, before the infinite loop was shut down. Vik, as owner of the
list, however, received bounce errors from the many invalid addresses
on the mangled list, and his e-mail account was saturated with several
thousand messages within minutes.
Soon after that crisis was resolved, the mailing list digest processing
was started on the new server and the ASI mailing lists were fully
back to normal. During the month, Bobby Will set up a new mailing list, asi-pubs,
for the Publications Team, and changed the list owner for the
lunar-industries list to Gregory Nemitz.
World Wide Web Server
Most of the cleanup activity following the domain move involved
services running on the Artemis Project web site. By the end of June,
all but one of the services that had been suspended during the move had
been put back in operation, and the one remaining service, the Cronkite
news service, was restarted in early July. The ADB Outline Generator was
upgraded to use the MySQL database server on the new server and a new
version of the WebGlimpse search engine was installed and configured
to provide a search capability on the web site. A problem in WebSite Director
that was causing e-mail notifications to fail was corrected and e-mail
notifications resumed early in the month. Some of the CGI scripts used
in signup forms on the web site were updated to use the new locations
of programs on the new server.
The Artemis Project web site grew by a small amount in June, with
a total of 38 updates published to the site, including 15 new documents,
22 modifications to existing documents, and one moved document. The latest
updates bring the total number of documents on the web site to 2802
HTML documents and the number of GIF and JPEG images grew to 1128 images.
Most of the work in editing and approving the updates was done by Dale Gray,
Gregory Bennett, Candace Bartleson, John Wertz, Randall Severy, David
Wetnight, and Dana Carson. Updates were also submitted by Jim Sealy,
Jr., Robert Lancaster, and Predrag Lezaic.
WWW Conversation Pages
Randall Severy began investigating a product that will provide
web-based access to discussions on the Artemis Project web site. These
discussions will be automatically linked to the ASI mailing lists and
The product mentioned above will also provide newsgroup services on
the asi.org domain that will be linked automatically to the ASI mailing
lists and the web conversation pages.
No progress to report this month.
A lot of activity in June focused on the webcast for the upcoming Lunar
Base Development Symposium. The webcast will hosted on the Artemis
web site, with a special hostname, webcast.asi.org, set up for the
event. An initial test of the live audio broadcast and webcam snapshot capability
that will be used for the webcast took place on Saturday June 26, during
the regular Saturday Artemis Open Forum meeting on IRC. The test was
successful and validated the key components of the webcast infrastructure.
Several people had problems listening to the audio broadcast, and
additional research took place to find client software that is compatible
with the audio server that will be used for the webcast.
The June ECTC IRC meeting was held on June 6th, and was an extremely
productive meeting. A total of nine people showed up for some or all
of the meeting, including several new members. The meeting opened with
the latest status from the server move and then moved into a lengthy discussion
about an Artemis Project category in the new Open Directory service.
Jim Burk, a new ASI and ECTC member, volunteered to lead a team that will
maintain that Artemis Project category. The Web Team portion of the
meeting focused heavily on two key areas, the Internet Site Design
project, and a proposal to put the content of the Artemis Project web site on
an upcoming CD-ROM from the Mars Society.
No progress to report this month.
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Updated Wed, Jul 28, 1999.