What's most troubling about the changes in Deja's direction is that it
was in part Deja's success and usefulness which drove alternative
archives into the dust -- the JSE SAS gopher archive has been inactive
for some time now, and I'm not aware of any equivalent replacement
There are several alternatives to the current situation:
1. Convincing arguments (words and more tangible support) to Deja
that persistent Usenet archives are in fact useful.
2. Identifying technical support as a key business function for
Deja. One option would be for companies to sponsor archival of
specific newsgroups or topical areas of interest, e.g.: SI would
*pay* Deja to provide X years of comp.soft-sys.sas archives.
3. Identifying another provider. The two principle candidates at
present are probably Remarq -- a Usenet archive/Web portal,
though less useful than Deja IMO; and Google -- a company
who has identified search and archival as its core competence
and is doing a bang-up job of it.
4. Initiating (or cultivating) a new service. Modeling this along
the lines of 2. above might be an option. LinuxCare, a Linux
services company, which has compiled what's described as a large
Usenet-style knowledge base. Non-technical groups might be
sponsored by companies with interest in specific areas of
entertainment, news, or local interest.
User-to-user support has been identified as a key component of the free
software movement. It's a method I was very familiar with from SAS-L,
part of what convinced me of the viability of the open source concept,
and its usefulness extends to many proprietary companies. I'd very
much like to see the prior functionality of Deja preserved in some form
I've suggested to several folks at SI that extending involvement with the
user community would be a Good Thing® (there's still that astronomy club
whom might appreciate a cash infusion and new digs in exchange for
You can contact Deja through its website feedback form
(http://www.deja.com/mailto.xpa), or mailto:firstname.lastname@example.org.
Management and company info are at http://www.deja.com/corp/about.shtml
Karsten M. Self <email@example.com> http://www.netcom.com/~kmself
Evangelist, Opensales, Inc. http://www.opensales.org
What part of "Gestalt" don't you understand? Debian GNU/Linux rocks!
http://gestalt-system.sourceforge.net/ K5: http://www.kuro5hin.org
GPG fingerprint: F932 8B25 5FDD 2528 D595 DC61 3847 889F 55F2 B9B0