Re: FW: OT - The Story of Histonet

From:Connie McManus <>

This is late, but I really enjoyed reading the history of Histonet!  I send
my deepest gratitudes to dr. Margraf,  dr. Hagler and Marvin Hanna for all
the great work done to keep this list alive. 

Connie McManus

At 08:47 PM 5/28/01 -0500, Marvin Hanna wrote:
>Karen Larison from Oregon writes:
>>The histonet serve is a wonderful service, and we get it for free.  I
>>don't know who pays for it, maybe an NIH grant?
>Hi Karen,
>Prehaps some background information on Histonet would be useful.
>Back in January, 1996, Linda Margraf, M.D. and Herb Hagler, Ph.D. from the
>University of Texas - Southwest Medical Center looked around the Internet
>and found a number of listservers for pathologists, like the patho-l list
>from Emory University, but none for histology. While the pathology
>listservers were funded with big unix servers, $100,000 software packages
>and full time network administrators, Histonet had it's humble beginnings
>on a 6100/60 Mac. About a year ago, Herb upgraded the server to a 5400/180.
>The Histonet listserver is made available by the insight and generosity of
>Dr. Margraf, Dr. Hagler and the University of Texas Southwest Medical
>With Dr. Margraf as Histonet's administrator, and Dr. Hagler as the
>computer guru, Histonet has flourished over the last five years as a
>resource for histology professionals worldwide. As some of you are sending
>emails about duplicate messages or Histonet being down, you can bet Dr.
>Hagler is already working on overcoming the system crashes and network
>outages that have caused the problem. His uptime percentages on the server,
>sending as many as 100,000 messages a day, is remarkable.
>After a couple of years, it was apparent that a lot of valuable histology
>information from the contributors to Histonet was being deleted every day.
>There were also many messages asking questions that had already been
>discussed. I was running a specialty search engine for pathology at the
>time, Pathsearch. I determined that the software I was running with it
>could also set up a searchable archive of Histonet. After getting Dr.
>Margraf's approval, I set up the Histonet archives in early 1999. 
>Late in 1999, I had to take the server (Mac 8500) down for some
>self-inflicted system crashes and while I had it down, someone stole the
>pathsearch domain name (OK, I forgot to renew) and then notified me it
>would cost $10,000 to get the domain name back. 
>So, welcome to Histosearch. In early 2000, I put the server back up at
><> as a specialty search engine for histology
>with the Histonet archives located at
>Dr. Margraf, Dr. Hagler or myself do  not receive monetary compensation
>from Histonet, but neither do the many contributors to Histonet, who put in
>many hours to share their knowledge with us. 
>BTW, I have recently added a second computer for just the search software,
>where I also run site search services for web sites. A few people have told
>me they could access the web pages from the server, but not the search
>function (which was on a non-standard port, 8080), beacause some network
>administrators don't allow access to them. The search function should work
>fine now for these people since it now runs on the default port, 80.
>Best Regards,
>Marvin Hanna
>>The histonet serve is a wonderful service, and we get it for free.  I
>>don't know who pays for it, maybe an NIH grant?  And we're asking 
>>those people who provide this wonderful free service to pay for 
>>larger servers so that we can indulge in conversations about flowery 
>>twats?  And we're asking them to pay an employee to edit out these 
>>conversations from the archives?  If we continue to abuse this 
>>wonderful free service in this manner, will it continue to be free? 
>>And do we deserve this free service when we thoughtlessly abuse it 
>>with this endless patter?
>>Sorry folks.  I'm a bit appalled by attitudes of the members of this 
>>list serve.  If this list serve is supported by federal grants, I'd 
>>prefer that my tax money go to educate kids in the ghettos than to 
>>support your need for pleasant conversations.
>>Karen in Oregon
>>>I used to believe myself to be a reasonably patient person but the
>>>number of messages that are off topic (and I realize that I am adding to
>>>it with this one) is getting beyond a joke.
>>>You may not have considered that some email systems have a limit to the
>>>number of messages that can be stored. Once it is full, any new messages
>>>are sent back to the original source and no more messages can be stored
>>>until the box is at least partially cleared. This can easily happen if
>>>we are away from the office for some days.
>>>The problem is not with the original off topic message but rather the
>>>large number of responses. I feel that responses to questions like "what
>>>can we call a lab" could be sent directly" to the individual who asked
>>>the original question. They could then collate these and provide all of
>>>us with one or two emails concerning the responses.
>>>I like the Histonet to include some off  topic items to lighten the
>>>workday but the MAIN purpose of the Histonet was, I thought,  to
>>>exchange histology information.
Connie McManus
Veterinary Diagnostics Lab
Utah State University
Logan, UT

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