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PICList Thread
'The PICLIST Fund FAQ'
1996\09\28@034643 by fastfwd

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Frequently-Asked Questions regarding the PICLIST Fund
-----------------------------------------------------

This FAQ is HUGE... How often are you going to be filling my mailbox
with copies of it?

   Approximately once every two weeks while the Fund is open, then
   never again.  The PICLIST generates 20-50 messages per day, so
   this FAQ should represent only a very small percentage of the
   total list traffic.

Why do we need the PICLIST Fund?

   The PICLIST was started in early 1994 by Jory Bell, who's been
   operating, maintaining, and (occasionally) moderating it since
   then.  If you subscribe to other internet mailing lists, you know
   that this one is particularly well-run; Jory's managed to make
   the list a truly valuable resource for all of us, and we all owe
   him a huge debt of gratitude.

   Lately, however, a number of issues have arisen:

       1.  The free MIT list-server that Jory has ben using may go
       away, necessitating a switch to a commercial server.

       2.  List-administration and -maintenance requirements have
       grown along with the PICLIST membership (currently, over
       1000 people subscribe to the list), and Jory's old hardware is
       starting to become overloaded.

       3.  We'd all like to add new peripheral services to the
       PICLIST. An FTP site, web page, etc., would all be nice.

   The Fund exists in order to give list-members a way to donate
   money to the PICLIST.  The Fund will be open for donations for
   six months, then it'll be closed and all the collected money
   will be given to Jory.

Who's the custodian of the Fund?

   I am.

Why you?

   Why not?  Someone had to do it.

I thought the PICLIST was free.  Does this mean that we'll now have
to pay money for access?

   NO!

   Everyone CAN contribute, but no one HAS to.  Donations are
   ABSOLUTELY voluntary; you won't gain any personal privileges if
   you donate, and you won't lose any if you don't.  No one will
   think any less of you if you choose not to contribute to the
   Fund, and if you don't contribute, the list (for as long as it's
   operational) will continue to be available to you for free, as it
   always has been.

   Jory has no intention of transforming the PICLIST into a
   fee-based service; the Fund has been set up for one-time
   voluntary donations only.

What will the money be used for?

   I don't know yet, and neither does Jory... Until we have an idea
   of how much money there'll be, it doesn't make much sense to
   decide how to spend it.

   If you have any specific suggestions, however, please send them
   to me in private e-mail (Jory's busy enough already) and I'll
   pass them along to him.

   All we know right now is that we want to ensure that the PICLIST
   can survive without depending on the generosity of any one
   individual or corporation.  If we can also expand the PICLIST to
   include auxiliary services like a list-member FTP site for
   distributing code samples, list archives, etc., that'd be great,
   too.

   One thing that you CAN be sure of is that ALL of the money will
   go to Jory... I'm donating the time and effort required to
   maintain the Fund; NO PORTION of the money is going to me.

What if we donate our money and the list disappears anyway?  Will
there be any refunds?

   No.

So how do we know that Jory won't just take the money and run?

   We don't.  The money in the Fund will be given to Jory WITH NO
   STRINGS ATTACHED, so there are NO GUARANTEES as to the use to
   which he'll put it.

   If this makes you uncomfortable, try to think of your donation
   as an expression of gratitude for information you've ALREADY
   received from the list.

   If you STILL feel uncomfortable, please don't donate.

How do we know that YOU won't take the money and run?

   I guess you don't, really... But keep in mind that I run a
   business whose success depends largely on my personal
   reputation.  It wouldn't make much sense for me to risk that
   reputation for a sum of money that I expect will amount to less
   than what my business generates every couple of weeks.

   To ensure that contributors can track their donations, I'll be
   doing the following:

       1.  Whenever a donation is received, I'll assign a
       "contribution number" to it and notify the contributor in
       private e-mail that his donation has been received.

       2.  Every two weeks, I'll post a summary of the Fund
       activity. This summary will detail EVERY donation, including
       the contribution number and (unless you've told me otherwise)
       each contributor's name.

   Also, I'll be happy to tell any potential contributor how to get
   in touch with an officer at the bank where the PICLIST Fund
   account is located... Just send me private e-mail.

How do I donate to the Fund?

   I've set up an account at a local bank specifically for the
   PICLIST Fund.  The bank doesn't want to receive checks directly,
   so if you'd like to contribute, please send checks only (I don't
   want to deal with cash or credit cards) to the following address:

       The PICLIST Fund
       c/o Fast Forward Engineering
       1984 Casablanca Court
       Vista, CA  92083-5043
       USA

   IMPORTANT:  Checks must be made out to "Andrew Warren and Jory
               Bell"; BOTH of our signatures will be required in
               order for any funds to be withdrawn from the account,
               so this shouldn't make anyone nervous.

               Please include your e-mail address with your check.

               If you want your donation to be anonymous (as far as
               the rest of the list is concerned), please include a
               note to that effect.

Is my donation tax-deductible as a "charitable contribution to a
non-profit organization"?

   No.  For income-tax-reporting purposes, Jory will probably
   report it as "gift income".

How much should I donate?

   The short answer is, "As much as you feel is appropriate."

   I've given some thought to this, though, and I've come up with
   some suggestions based on a three-tiered "contributor level":

    LEVEL:    AMOUNT:               EXPLANATION:
   ---------------------------------------------------------------

   FRIEND      $10    If you're a Student, you should be able to
   (Student)          afford $10.  This is less than the cost of
                      one audio compact disc or a tank of gasoline,
                      and it's not much more than the quantity-one
                      retail price of a PIC16C84.

   FRIEND      $30    If a Student can afford $10, anyone with a job
   (Employed)         should be able to afford $30.

   PATRON:     $50    A decent programming reference book costs at
                      least this much.  If you've received as much
                      useful information from the list as you might
                      reasonably expect to find in the average
                      textbook and want to show your gratitude, this
                      is the way.

   GOD:        $75    Many of us have actually profited financially
                      from the list, either through help that other
                      list-members gave us with our commercial
                      products or through sales of development
                      software and hardware that we've advertised on
                      the list.  If you fall into this category, a
                      $75 donation shouldn't significantly affect
                      your balance sheet.

   Note that contributing at a particular level doesn't actually
   MEAN anything... Sorry, but you won't receive a commemorative
   T-shirt or coffee mug even if you donate at the "God" level.

I don't live in the USA.  Can I contribute with a check drawn on
funds other than US dollars?

   Yes.

I have more questions about the Fund.  Should I send them to Jory
Bell?

   Probably not.  Jory and I are in contact, but he's not involved
   in the day-to-day running of the Fund.  It'd be best to send
   your questions to me IN PRIVATE E-MAIL.

-Andy

Andrew Warren - spam_OUTfastfwdTakeThisOuTspamix.netcom.com
Fast Forward Engineering, Vista, California
http://www.geocities.com/SiliconValley/2499

1996\09\28@093342 by Philip Lalone

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On Sat, 28 Sep 1996, Andrew Warren wrote:

> Why do we need the PICLIST Fund?
>
>     The PICLIST was started in early 1994 by Jory Bell, who's been
>     operating, maintaining, and (occasionally) moderating it since
>     then.  If you subscribe to other internet mailing lists, you know
>     that this one is particularly well-run; Jory's managed to make
>     the list a truly valuable resource for all of us, and we all owe
>     him a huge debt of gratitude.

       Instead of a charity drive, why not try to find someone willing to
dedicated their hardware and bandwidth to the list?  If people want to
send Jory money for what he's done, that fine, but I highly doubt it'll be
enough to help him get all the items listed, and to keep it, the money
will have to keep coming.  Microchip comes to mind, they have a nice
domain, and it would be quite appopriate if they did take over the list,
that is, if they were willing.

                                       Philip Lalone
                                       Alpha-X Development

1996\09\29@160119 by fastfwd

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     ===                                            ===
     ===  PLEASE SEND COMMENTS/QUESTIONS ABOUT THE  ===
     ===  PICLIST FUND TO ME IN -PRIVATE- EMAIL.    ===
     ===                                            ===

Philip Lalone <.....PICLISTKILLspamspam@spam@MITVMA.MIT.EDU> wrote:

> Instead of a charity drive, why not try to find someone willing to
> dedicated their hardware and bandwidth to the list?

   Many people have offered, and Jory may decide to take one of
   those offers.  In general, though, I think we'd all like to
   ensure that the survival of the list desn't rely on anyone's
   generosity.

> If people want to send Jory money for what he's done, that fine,
> but I highly doubt it'll be enough to help him get all the items
> listed, and to keep it, the money will have to keep coming.

   Jory has no plans to make the list a fee-based service.

   It's interesting... I've received a lot of email already from
   people who are donating, and I don't think ANY of them have
   mentioned the new services that Jory might choose to add to the
   PICLIST.  As I recall, all of them just thanked Jory for the work
   he's done so far.

   As I said in the Fund FAQ... If you don't feel that the Fund will
   make a difference, and you don't feel that you've already
   received enough from the PICLIST to warrant a donation, then
   please don't donate.

> Microchip comes to mind, they have a nice domain, and it would be
> quite appopriate if they did take over the list, that is, if they
> were willing.

   It's important for the list to remain an independent forum... I
   don't think you'll find much support for the idea that it'd be
   "quite appropriate" for Microchip to "take over the list".

   There's already another internet mailing list devoted to PICs...
   But it's owned and moderated by a commercial vendor of PIC
   development toys (excuse me, I mean "development tools").  As a
   result, its content is nowhere NEAR as good as what's here on the
   PICLIST.

   -Andy

Andrew Warren - fastfwdspamKILLspamix.netcom.com
Fast Forward Engineering, Vista, California
http://www.geocities.com/SiliconValley/2499


'The PICLIST Fund FAQ'
1996\11\03@045852 by Karel Hladky
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In article <.....199609280746.AAA26412KILLspamspam.....dfw-ix10.ix.netcom.com>, Andrew Warren
<EraseMEfastfwdspam_OUTspamTakeThisOuTIX.NETCOM.COM> writes
>
>    Approximately once every two weeks while the Fund is open, then
>    never again.  The PICLIST generates 20-50 messages per day, so
>    this FAQ should represent only a very small percentage of the
>    total list traffic.
>

I think that the PICLIST traffic levels are now high enough to justify
starting a PICLIST newsgroup. There are many newsgroups with lower
traffic that this. Any volunteers to set up a vote?

sci.electronics.components.piclist or similar would seem appropriate.
Since some people may not have news access it might be a good idea to
keep PICLIST going for a while and mirror it on the ng and vice versa.
Several other newsgroups manage to do this quite successfully.

Karel
--
    ++++++++++++++++++ KH Design & Development ++++++++++++++++++
    Electrochemical Corrosion Measurement and Control Consultancy
    khladkyspamspam_OUTkhdesign.demon.co.uk http://www.khdesign.demon.co.uk/

1996\11\03@074630 by Larry Griffin

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Karel Hladky wrote:
>I think that the PICLIST traffic levels are now high enough to justify
>starting a PICLIST newsgroup. There are many newsgroups with lower
>traffic that this. Any volunteers to set up a vote?

>sci.electronics.components.piclist or similar would seem appropriate.
>Since some people may not have news access it might be a good idea to
>keep PICLIST going for a while and mirror it on the ng and vice versa.
>Several other newsgroups manage to do this quite successfully.

=========

NO!  That's capital N, capital O, exclamation point.
Everytime I see a mailing list convert to a newsgroup there is a sudden
increase in garbage postings from drifters and a decrease in meaningful
input from list members.  I also prefer having the discussions
automatically show up in my mailbox rather than having to physically go
retrieve them from a newsgroup.  That's my $0.02 worth...

Larry Griffin

1996\11\03@084807 by Mark A. Corio

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In a message dated 96-11-03 07:48:13 EST, you write:

>NO!  That's capital N, capital O, exclamation point.
>Everytime I see a mailing list convert to a newsgroup there is a sudden
>increase in garbage postings from drifters and a decrease in meaningful
>input from list members.  I also prefer having the discussions
>automatically show up in my mailbox rather than having to physically go
>retrieve them from a newsgroup.  That's my $0.02 worth...
>
>Larry Griffin

I AGREE with Larry.  That's capital A, capital G.......you get the picture.

Mark A. Corio
Rochester MicroSystems, Inc.
200 Buell Road, Suite 9
Rochester, NY  14624
Tel:  (716) 328-5850 --- Fax:  (716) 328-1144
http://www.frontiernet.net/~rmi/

***** Designing Electronics For Research & Industry *****

1996\11\03@091435 by Ian Stirling

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>
> In article <@spam@199609280746.AAA26412KILLspamspamdfw-ix10.ix.netcom.com>, Andrew Warren
> <KILLspamfastfwdKILLspamspamIX.NETCOM.COM> writes
> >
> >    Approximately once every two weeks while the Fund is open, then
> >    never again.  The PICLIST generates 20-50 messages per day, so
> >    this FAQ should represent only a very small percentage of the
> >    total list traffic.
> >
>
> I think that the PICLIST traffic levels are now high enough to justify
> starting a PICLIST newsgroup. There are many newsgroups with lower
> traffic that this. Any volunteers to set up a vote?
>
> sci.electronics.components.piclist or similar would seem appropriate.
> Since some people may not have news access it might be a good idea to
> keep PICLIST going for a while and mirror it on the ng and vice versa.
> Several other newsgroups manage to do this quite successfully.

I would certainly vote yes, perhaps the newsgroup comp.arch.embedded.pic
may be more appropriate. Assuming that that group would get the same
quantity of spam as c.a.e.
That group seems to get comparatively little spam,
a quick survey I did of the group, looking for spam gives a ratio of about
30 usefull : 5 spam : 5 not really the right group

And it isn't even a moderated group. Going by these rules, the piclist is
of lower signal/noise ratio than c.a.e
I'd say make the group unmoderated, but in the RFC say that a cancelbot may
be implemented in the future to eliminate excessive crossposts, similar
to the bot on alt.comp.hardware.homebuilt (which has a BIG problem with
posts that should be in alt.fix.my.pc, not in a group for building computers
with wire.)

The benifit of it not being in alt is of course, you get the spam cancellers
for free, as they do all of comp.*

Plus, it would ease the load on the maintainer if more people took the list
by news, and ensure that everybody knew of another place to access the list
if anything untoward happened to it for whatever reason.


> Karel
> --
>      ++++++++++++++++++ KH Design & Development ++++++++++++++++++
>      Electrochemical Corrosion Measurement and Control Consultancy
>      RemoveMEkhladkyTakeThisOuTspamkhdesign.demon.co.uk http://www.khdesign.demon.co.uk/
>


--
Ian Stirling.                        |  http://www.mauve.demon.co.uk/
AKA Caeser, Bolonewbie.              |  With information on the PDA I'm making.

1996\11\03@155155 by Eric Smith

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Karel Hladky <spamBeGonekhladkyspamBeGonespamKHDESIGN.DEMON.CO.UK> wrote:
> I think that the PICLIST traffic levels are now high enough to justify
> starting a PICLIST newsgroup.

This subject keeps coming up every few months.  I, for one, don't want a
newsgroup.

1.  Traffic level doesn't seem like a particularly relevant criterion
   for changing things.  You might just as convincingly argue that the
   PICLIST should be changed to a newsgroup because Microchip has many
   new PIC variants, or based on Microchip's stock performance.

2.  It is easier to archive the PICLIST for future reference than it would
   be as a newsgroup.

3.  News tends to expire extremely fast.  The news server I use has a
   4 Gigabyte enews spool, and it still expires things in days.  Sometimes
   I'm unable to find time to read news that often.

4.  News doesn't always propogate reliably.  Often things expire at some
   intermediate site and never make it to some people.

5.  News doesn't propogate as fast as email.  Sometimes people answer questions
   on the PICLIST in only a few minutes.

6.  I really don't want to read "Make Money Fast" spam all the time.

7.  It really isn't that difficult for people that are interested to subscribe.
   But having at least a trivial entry barrier does act as somewhat of a
   "bozo filter".  (Sorry if that sounds elitist.)

8.  If you don't like getting the PICLIST mail in your normal mailbox, you
   can:

       A.  subscribe in digest mode so you get the email batched into
           large messages

       B.  arrange to have a separate mailbox just to PICLIST

       C.  use procmail, which can sort your email based on regular
           expressions

Cheers,
Eric

1996\11\03@195222 by Ian Stirling

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>
> Karel Hladky <TakeThisOuTkhladkyEraseMEspamspam_OUTKHDESIGN.DEMON.CO.UK> wrote:
> > I think that the PICLIST traffic levels are now high enough to justify
> > starting a PICLIST newsgroup.
>
> This subject keeps coming up every few months.  I, for one, don't want a
> newsgroup.
>
> 1.  Traffic level doesn't seem like a particularly relevant criterion
>     for changing things.  You might just as convincingly argue that the
Agree

> 2.  It is easier to archive the PICLIST for future reference than it would
>     be as a newsgroup.

Hmm, depends on you'r software, for me news is probably marginally easier
Of course if it's a newsgroup, you get free indexing and storage for up
to a year (http://www.dejanews.com/)



> 3.  News tends to expire extremely fast.  The news server I use has a
>     4 Gigabyte enews spool, and it still expires things in days.  Sometimes
>     I'm unable to find time to read news that often.

news volume for usenet is frightning, my ISP has 21GB spool, which
is only enough for 2 weeks for most, 1 week for binaries, and 2 days of warez

> 4.  News doesn't always propogate reliably.  Often things expire at some
>     intermediate site and never make it to some people.

This is not really a problem with a comp group, some alt groups yes,
but if the group is carries by the majority of sites (as a legit new comp
group would be) then propogation is not a problem

> 5.  News doesn't propogate as fast as email.  Sometimes people answer questio
>     on the PICLIST in only a few minutes.

Well, mail varies, as does news, most mail is probably faster than most news

> 6.  I really don't want to read "Make Money Fast" spam all the time.

The cancelbots seem to be working, I found maybe 5 or 6 messages out of
400 or so in comp.arch.embedded


> 7.  It really isn't that difficult for people that are interested to
subscribe.
>     But having at least a trivial entry barrier does act as somewhat of a
>     "bozo filter".  (Sorry if that sounds elitist.)


It does, but it also is usefull, the reterorobomoderator on
alt.comp.hardware.homebuilt serves a similar function, in that it cncells
postings from a new username, untill either they are added to the list
by the maintainer, or the user puts PRR in the message to inform the robomod
that they've read the posting rules.


>
> 8.  If you don't like getting the PICLIST mail in your normal mailbox, you
>     can:
>
>         A.  subscribe in digest mode so you get the email batched into
>             large messages
>
>         B.  arrange to have a separate mailbox just to PICLIST
I'd say few people have this option.

>         C.  use procmail, which can sort your email based on regular
>             expressions

An increasing number do not have this option either.

>
> Cheers,
> Eric
>


--
Ian Stirling.                        |  http://www.mauve.demon.co.uk/
AKA Caeser, Bolonewbie.              |  With information on the PDA I'm making.

1996\11\04@123730 by vador Eduardo Tropea (SET)

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>>NO!  That's capital N, capital O, exclamation point.
>>Everytime I see a mailing list convert to a newsgroup there is a sudden
>>increase in garbage postings from drifters and a decrease in meaningful
>>input from list members.  I also prefer having the discussions
>>automatically show up in my mailbox rather than having to physically go
>>retrieve them from a newsgroup.  That's my $0.02 worth...
>>
>>Larry Griffin

>I AGREE with Larry.  That's capital A, capital G.......you get the picture.

>Mark A. Corio

And I AGREE with Larry and Mark TOO.

SET



********************************************************************************
Salvador Eduardo Tropea (SET) - RemoveMEsalvadorspamTakeThisOuTinti.edu.ar
Work: INTI (National Institute of Industrial Technology) Sector: ICE
(Electronic Control & Instrumentation)
Post (Home): Curapaligue 2124 - Caseros (1678)- Buenos Aires - Argentina

1996\11\04@171640 by Karel Hladky

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In article <19961103214743.10047.qmailEraseMEspam.....brouhaha.com>, Eric Smith
<EraseMEericspamBROUHAHA.COM> writes
>Karel Hladky <RemoveMEkhladkyEraseMEspamEraseMEKHDESIGN.DEMON.CO.UK> wrote:
>> I think that the PICLIST traffic levels are now high enough to justify
>> starting a PICLIST newsgroup.
>
>This subject keeps coming up every few months.  I, for one, don't want a
>newsgroup.

OK, just thought I'd ask. For me it makes no difference, my mail/news
reader (Turnpike) treats lists as virtual newsgroups anyhow. As for
archiving - is the list being archived at present ? Last time I looked
(few months back) it didn't seem to be all that up to date. And the
searches aren't exactly user friendly.

Karel
--
    ++++++++++++++++++ KH Design & Development ++++++++++++++++++
    Electrochemical Corrosion Measurement and Control Consultancy
    RemoveMEkhladkyspam_OUTspamKILLspamkhdesign.demon.co.uk http://www.khdesign.demon.co.uk/

1996\11\04@180943 by Gael Waiche

picon face
Salvador Eduardo Tropea (SET) wrote:
>
> >>NO!  That's capital N, capital O, exclamation point.
> >>Everytime I see a mailing list convert to a newsgroup there is a sudden
> >>increase in garbage postings from drifters and a decrease in meaningful
> >>input from list members.  I also prefer having the discussions
> >>automatically show up in my mailbox rather than having to physically go
> >>retrieve them from a newsgroup.  That's my $0.02 worth...
> >>
> >>Larry Griffin
>
> >I AGREE with Larry.  That's capital A, capital G.......you get the picture.
>
> >Mark A. Corio
>
> And I AGREE with Larry and Mark TOO.
>
> SET
>
>
*******************************************************************************
*
> Salvador Eduardo Tropea (SET) - RemoveMEsalvadorTakeThisOuTspamspaminti.edu.ar
> Work: INTI (National Institute of Industrial Technology) Sector: ICE
> (Electronic Control & Instrumentation)
> Post (Home): Curapaligue 2124 - Caseros (1678)- Buenos Aires - Argentina


So do I...

Gael

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