You are now viewing an archive of all posts written by Peter Barns-Graham.

Greetings and Review

I wish you a Very Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year. I do hope that 2018 will be a happy, healthy & successful year for you and for all of your family.

2018 will be quite an important year for Stirnet as I really must get to grips with the upgrade to https (not as much progress has been made on that as I had hoped) and generally find a way to deal with those annoying browsers which keep changing and making things difficult for small commercial sites such as this one. I suppose they mean well but ...

I will not reach the target of 300 new pages for the Families Database in 2017 but there have been many non-Stirnet distractions, not least the birth of a second grandchild. However, many improvements have been made to existing pages. They are important to me also so I think that overall it has been a quite good year from the Database-Development point of view. Nevertheless, the problems with the Login & Registration module (which I think are due to changes by the browsers) have reduced the number of subscriptions received, which is a bit concerning.

The number of people visiting the site in 2017 is up compared with 2016 but the number of pages viewed is down, probably affected by the above-mentioned problems. I do not report much on the site's statistics, there is just a section called Statistics low on the History of the site page, but you may be...

Changing to https

I have started preparations for making a number of changes to the site. In particular, I am preparing for it to be operated under the https:// protocol instead of the http:// protocol which is what we operate under at present. I am not sure how long this will take not least because I have yet to find the right programmer for the job. [Any suggestions? Most of the work will be done remotely but I will want to meet him/her on odd occasions so that means that he/she should be in travelling distance from Herefordshire.]

Why am I doing this? I have taken note of the recommendation by various of the 'major Internet players' that sites should change from the longstanding http:// protocol to the https:// protocol, which is viewed as more secure. I understand that the additional security comes through code being encrypted in a way that should keep information safer from hackers. For a site such as ours, which receives only basic logging-in information and keeps away from online payment details (which are handled by PayPal), the only potentially-sensitive bits of information we receive are your Name, your email address, your Username, and the Password you use to log into the site. Of these, I'd guess that the only real issue could be with the Password and that would be a potential issue only if you use the same Password for this site as you use for other sites in which you do store sensitive data (such as bank details). [Incidentally, I...

Review of 2016

This has nothing to do with Brexit or Trump! I did not get as much done in 2016 on the simplification of the site as I had hoped. However, I did manage to upload over 300 new pages into the Families Database for the first time since 2011. Overall, therefore, not too bad a year for the site.

...

06 – Changes to the site

As forewarned in News Item 04, I have started work on simplifying the site, replacing Stirnet Histories with a section that is more supportive of what is the main purpose of the site: the support of Genealogical Research. I am sad to do so, for it means that I am giving-up my dreams of making a contribution to the study of Social History, but for a while it has been inevitable that I should do so That is because I have simply not had the time (or energy) to work on it in the way that was needed to do it justice. The good news to get from this is that it improves the already strong probability that I will be able to keep working on the Families Database for many years to come. It also means that it will be more 'commercial' and less 'personal' than if I had diluted its focus on Genealogy and so it should be easier (than it would have been) to ensure that someone else will take over the work on the Families Database when I eventually retire from it. This exercise may take a little while to complete but I see no reason why it should not be done before the end of this year (2015).

...