Frequently Asked Questions About This Site

For "Frequently Asked Questions "About Everything Else" go

1.) There used to be more here regarding your family.

Yep. Others had a small part. But they preferred to be anonymous. So now this web site reveals only ME, warts and all.
If you know who my famous daughter is, you can read all about the interesting things happening in her life by inserting her married name in front of "dot com" and going there. That is her site, this is mine.
2.) Why when I click on email do I get sent to another page?

That's because there are hundreds of pages on this large web site, and when I change my email address - which I am obliged to do from time to time - I don't wish to change the email address hundreds of times. Instead, since all these pages point to the "email page", I simply change that one. Saves a lot of work.
3.) How do you keep continuous music running through all pages of this site, and even into those which link from it?

To do this, you must code your website in Frames, with the top bar containing the music (permanent placement on every page) and everything else appearing below it, so as each page changes, the top bar stays there. Read any of the good books on current HTML coding to see how to do this.
In my use of the Frames technique, I have the topbar do two other things:
1) allow the music to be presented in juke box form, where you can choose what you want to hear, and from any page in this website;

2) have the top bar also play the role of Navigation Bar, allowing the visitor to fly back and forth to the main pages.
This business is kept always at the top of your screen.
4.) What happened to all the politics pages?

When the Web was young and political pages were scarce, there was a need. On November 4, 2008, the American people, by a 52/47 split, knowingly voted in Socialism. A population that ignorant will take no advice from me.
5.) I saw an interesting animation when I first logged on to this site, but I can't get back to it. Why not?

You are probably referring to this website's "front door" (some people call it the "splash page") and not the Home Page, which we change about weekly. To see it again, go to the Table of Contents, and click on "Logon Page", or click . However, it will go by pretty fast this time, since its function is to pre-load the images of the Home page, which takes a few seconds, or longer for phone modems, and that has already been done.
6.) How busy is this web site? Have you won any awards?

The server which hosts our web site keeps statistics on the number of visits per day. Over the past 12 months we have had over 700,000 visitors (!), which comes out to just a bit more than 2,000 per day. The daily activity is spread pretty evenly across the weeks and months, although (for some reason) this web site gets more hits in November. It may have something to do with term papers due then, as a large percentage of visits focus on the
Essay and History pages. (Click to see list of "Most Popular Hits".)

As to Awards, we have won too many to post. Our first award came from "Aqui Cool Site" back in 1996. We will sometimes display the Aqui logo on opening screens for this web site.
Read more on our awards by going

We accept no advertising, have never advertised our site, nor notified search engines that we exist, but they still find us.

7.) Your copywrite goes back to 1995 or 1996. How did you know to get into the World Wide Web so far back?
(Not all of the inquiries took this form but this is the essential question.)

We were already into BBS - "Bulletin Board System", remember those? - in which you put your computer "on-line" for people to call into it (on modem, and only one caller at a time could call in) and when the Web appeared in 1995*, which permitted multiple callers to "log-on" at the same time, we recognized the new technology as a winner.
In 1994, the Hartman BBS was named Farrago (look it up in the dictionary) and it provided commentary and software files. It used software named "Renegade" to allow people with computers and modems to communicate and share software. The answer is 1995, not 1996. We were on the very doorstep when the Web began.
* Yes, the Internet is much older, by decades, but was strictly text until the "Web" began in 1995 in which the coding - HTML - allowed for images, animations, photos, music, and a lot of other stuff, including its most valuable feature - interlinking of pages. Also, before 1995, the Internet was basically a spider web of coaxial cabling, uniting the US government with US universities. The Web (WWW) opened the communications to millions of individuals, and then the world.

8.) How do you know you are the "largest personal web site in the world"?

The short answer is: a lack of evidence to the contrary. A "website" can be one page deep, or many pages deep. This website is more than 340 pages deep, enough to keep any person busy for more than a day. Commercial sites, especially those which keep yearly archives, can be thousands of pages deep, though 90% of it will never be accessed by anyone. The key word, then, is "personal".

BTW, I claim "largest personal site", not "most popular". But I do average 2,000 hits per day.

9.) Where do you get all the graphics and animations used here?

With few exceptions, I make them. When you have been creating web graphics for sixteen years or more, you get pretty quick about it. The dripping spigot and the leaping fish-out-of-water, however, are not mine.
The original dripping spigot was not mine. (The original background was black.) I made a new version with a transparent background. Because: my backgrounds are constantly in flux. Transparent images show the true background.

10.) What have you learned about website design?

What I have learned is that 65% of all website users Do Not Scroll. Hard as this is to imagine, it is evidently true. Which means, if the topic of interest does not appear in the upper half of a full monitor screen (which is what your computer displays), then the average internet user will NEVER see it.
So - Do you want to design your web pages for this "average" audience? Pride says NO. Practicality says YES. Thus, the solution is to put all your major website links within the upper half of the first page. Also - put such links on the LEFT SIDE, as the Internet favors the LEFT side, spilling all additional material (which depends on the size of the viewers screen - is it 640/480? 800/600? 1024/768? Larger?) into the right, which then requires a scroll in the horizontal direction. It is a pity to have to do this kind of thing for the ignorant, but that is what you do if you want your audience to be the largest possible.

11.) I love your musical selections, but I cannot figure out how to download them.

That is because this website is built in frames which does not allow you to track down very much. For instance, you cannot "view" my web pages for their content because it is locked in frames. Hmmm - what a clever guy I am.

Best thing to do is look at the juke box page to get the title. Then Google the title, knowing that the song is a Midi file. (Use "midi" in the search.) You will get several to download, and some of them may be better than what I am using here!

12.) Do you have a Blog?

No. Everything I write is in the form of an essay, of which there are hundreds on this site. I do not blog, and I have no MySpace, FaceBook, Twitter, or any imitators of such. Cannot be bothered. They are all about listing the photos of a hundred peculiar friends, while a crappy rap song plays in the background. I get all the exposure I want with this single website. There are a few photos. That's It.

BTW, If you wish to increase the frequency with which people who already know you, find you, then you can employ a Spider Page. (Click to see mine. Google adds such a page to its data bank.)

13.) How do you know all the stuff on this web site?

Over twenty years of formal education in the sciences and history, over 20 subsequent years as a professor at two major universities (Yale; University of Georgia; and still ongoing), some really good and well placed friends, plus lots of self taught subjects, a home library of thousands of volumes, a wine cellar of a thousand bottles (oh, wait - that does not apply), plus a personal preference for non-fiction in my reading habit. Other than that - just lucky, I guess.