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>From tormod.lien@xxxxxxxxxxxxxx Sat Apr 1 12:22:12 1995
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BurmaWeb was created by the WEB TEAM of the Bumra Support Group, Norway
Contact: tormodl@xxxxxxxxxxxx BurmaWeb: http://www.uio.no/~tormodl
Oslo, 30 March 1995
The WEB TEAM of the Burma Support Group was founded in January 1995 as a
special working group for electronic mail. Our main focus has been the
World Wide Web (WWW), which is rapidly expanding. WWW makes the
presentation of information relatively simple to program and retrieve.
Already Free Burma has set up an index directory, or what WWW language
calls a "home page". For those unfamiliar with WWW, here is a very brief
What is WWW?
WWW is Email taken to a new level. Instead of simple text messages, now you
are able to "show" (not send) text with pictures and sounds (even video
clips!) by starting with your home page. This home page is on your Email
account's main computer. You store files there and then connect these files
together and allow other people to view, print or download them. Others are
able to access these files without needing to know your password.
The layout of your file can therefore be retained, since it is afterall
a file (formatting is currently limited, however). Cetain words or even
pictures are "linked" to files, and when you click on a designated word or
picture (usually either in color and underlined) you can automatically go
to a certain file which the word/picture is linked with. (Simplistically
speaking, it's a bit like clicking on a "yes" button, which is connected
or "linked" to another function and/or screen.)
Not the best explanation of WWW, we know, but once you "try" the Web you
understand what it can do. It's very straightforward to use. Since WWW is
Email, you need an Email account and the WWW program (Netscape, Mosaic)
to access the Web, which is free and open to all. Remember: it is not you
who are sending anything to readers, but readers who are accessing
certain of your files.
The Future of WWW and Burma So far Free Burma has created a home page,
with many files. ABSDF-Europe, DVB Radio and BSG have been discussing
creating several home pages in cooperation with each other. However,
there exists not only possibilities of duplication of information but
also the confusion of endless "linking" of information, driving users
into circles (different home pages on different computers can even be
linked together, including files in other home pages to your files).
One easy way to avoid this is by setting up some sort of coordination
between Burma groups, as WWW becomes more readily available and understood
(almost anybody can create a home page linked to however many files your
server has memory available for). With coordination of index and content,
we can avoid the pitfalls of many independent and isolated groups making
What BurmaWeb Would Like to Do...
During our discussions in Oslo, we have come up with some ideas for
coordination to avoid repetition, and ask other future Burma WWW sites
to consider them and give feedback on what you can do, or would like to do.
(Converting files into WWW is a piece of cake, and special formatting or
writing of files is not necessary if you have access to the right resources.)
Here are the things the following groups would like to concentrate on:
*Norwegian information (such as local articles, BSG newsletters)
*Non-English information (articles, newsletters)
*Detailed information about all organizations in English
*Up-to-date address list of Burma-interested groups/people
*List of publications, newsletters, where to buy/find them
*Some newsletters in their entirety, reports...
*Aung San Suu Kyi Press Anthology (in English)
*Karen Human Rights Group Reports (in English)
*UNHRC documents from the past session
*Collecting and systematically organizing HR violations
*Photographs from the Norwegian press
BSG itself would like to concentrate mainly on databasing and stay away
from current events, like BurmaNet handles. BSG would like to be a center
for non-English information in the beginning, in order to collect it in
one place and develop this information until it expands large enough to
be put on other sites in the languages' home countries. This, of course,
depends on groups in other countries sending non-English articles or
information either on disk or photocopies that BSG could scan in Oslo.
The idea of BumraWeb, then, is to have one group becoming a coordination
center for Burma WWW sites. This is not so much to control their output,
as to coordinate the outcome. Individual groups would create WWW home
pages as they themselves please, but it is essential that we should all
communicate our intentions with other groups *beforehand* and in the idea
phase, to avoid needless duplication. Good communication would also
facilitate receiving support, info, articles, etc., since any text file
can be easily "dropped" into any WWW page, where on your Web site or sent
via Email to another's.
Setting Up a Web Coordination Center
Keeping all groups aware on a regular basis of what other groups are
working on for their WWW site will avoid repetition and wasted work. So
if we chose a "central coordinator", where anyone could write to with
suggestions or comments, and this person would then keep in contact with
"local coordinators", presumably via Email (in fact, an automatically
addressed Email sending program is already in BurmaWeb and can be adapted
for anyone's use anywhere, including to send to many receipients the same
Soon the Web explosion will hit all of us working with Email and Burma,
and it isn't as restricted as BurmaNet, since anyone can create a WWW
home page. With the ability to link all of our work together, WWW makes
it possible for certain groups to focus on *certain information* and
become "centers" for certain info, while being linked to a Burma Web that
can be easily accessed by all both to read and send articles.
BSG asks that individual groups discuss what is their aims, what they may
be working on, and write their thoughts on a "BurmaWeb Coordinator" --
perhaps through Free Burma, which has already found space for a more
permanent and large memory capacity on one of the American WWW sites...
Please send your ideas to: tormodl@xxxxxxxxxxxx
(ATTN WEB TEAM)
or fax us at: +47-22 60 71 29
>From there, we will create a BurmaWeb mailing list and keep all
those who contact us in contact with each other.
Thanks for your support and we look forward to hearing from you soon!
WEB TEAM, BSG-Norway