Friday, July 25, 2014

Honey I deleted the Website

It has been two months now, two months since I took an axe to our Website.

For almost 10 years Marcus and Agata maintained a website of Vintage Computer information from the 1980's, well that is how it started.

One day at work someone noticed that I had a repository of Computer information primarily on AIX, SAN, Storage and Backup/ Recovery on my USB key.

They asked me to share.

It had taken me over 5 years to get this information together but as a favour I placed this information on my employers corporate Microsoft Windows Server team shared drive.

Shortly thereafter other work colleges overseas wanted to access it via the Intranet web.  So I installed and configured a Microsoft IIS server to serve out all of these documents.

A few years later my contract at this company ended.  I diligently deleted all my files including this computer repository and left.  (Note the repository did not contain any information about my employer, just computer information that was freely available on the Internet, just not very well sorted, index, or to the point).

I got a call from technicians in my old company .... Where has our Computer Database of information gone?

So  I enlarged my home Webserver (then just serving out Vintage compurer documents from the 1980's) to include an extra 100GB of quality, sorted, technical information.

At my next customer  (an American computer company with turnover greater than 1B USD) I was surprised to find many references in their internal Problem Solving databases to our website.

I was surprised but happy that even this large Manufacturer of computers was using my website.

And then the Takedown
So all was going well until I was the subject of some harassment and take-down requests.

Companies would occasionally write to me (IBM would be the biggest example) and in some way ask me to remove documentation

  1. Sometimes politely
  2. Sometimes impolitely
  3. Sometimes threatening legal action
All for documents that were freely available elsewhere.

And so in 2014, I have given up.  It was a lot of work to keep a huge database of AIX, UNIX, SAN, Storage, Backup/ Recovery current with the latest documents

Not just downloading everything.   But the /good stuff/, documents useful to people.  And (just one example) since our website was up almost continuously it was much more available than say the IBM Redbooks site, or other parts of the IBM Web empire with which I'm familiar.

So for me,  a few threats made it clear that all the hundreds of hours of unpaid work, downloading, organising, converting (to searchable PDF), updating were not appreciated.  

Well then, yes: you scared me off.  Your bully tactics worked, I hope you feel proud of yourselves.