I'm looking for a shop in the Boston area that does good TIG welding of
aluminum. I have an aluminum (356.2 T6) ship's horn that needs repair
that requires patching a 1/2" wide hole and fabrication of a new
bracket (very simple, from two pieces of 5/8" or 3/4" aluminum flat). I
need to get it done locally because it's a large 5-foot long, 75 pound
OK, but you should know that because you're posting from google, and
your posts don't include any context, people don't know what or who this
is in response to unless the go out of their way to back-track the
Not "people" in general, only people who don't know how to use their
newsreaders or who are reading news from news servers with poor thread
completion issues. In your case, I believe you're looking for the slrn
command 'ESC p'.
When posting to Usenet, you should generally _not_ quote chunks of a
previous post text "for context" like you would in an email. There are
times when it's appropriate, of course, for example I do it above with
your comments specifically because of the thread-following difficulty
you're having. Usenet posts get distributed to millions of servers
worldwide where such a data redundancy is an unnecessary and huge waste
of computer resources. The whole point of threaded news is that your
newsreader does the work of the linking the threads using the message
reference IDs. When this is achieved, quoting of the post immediately
previous is normally unnecessary.
Google is not the problem, by the way, Google handles the message and
reference IDs correctly. It sounds to me like you have some beef with
Google or Google posters that is misguided.
It's more than that. It's about communication to others, in a way that
makes it easy for them to understand what you've written, or to be able
to make the decision that they do not need to read further. If you want
others to be influenced by what you write, then you need to make it easy
for them to understand both the content and context of what you say, and
to be inclusive of your possible audience, rather than exclusive.
Correct, since email quoting is usually done with top posting to
maintain full context (often for CYA). The accepted rules for Usenet
have always been "appropriate quoting", where redundant or extraneous
material is removed (trimmed) and comments made after the relevant quote
left in. The opposite of top posting is not quoting the entire message
to which you are replying and placing your reply after this (often
mistakenly called bottom posting). Early 'good' newsreaders often
enforced having your contribution larger than that which you were
quoting to avoid the "Yes, I agree", or "Me too" single line postings at
the end of multi-page quoted text.
And others who aren't using Google Groups, and sometimes even those who
are. The reason for this I have outlined two paragraphs down.
The computers handle this relatively well automatically - the weak link
is the human in the process. Although there are many forum websites now
out there, I still think Usenet read through a specialised newsreader is
the most efficient way of reading news and provides the best
signal/noise ratio. The biggest waste of resources are probably the
binary newsgroups, spam, off-topic politics and full quoting (and
probably metadiscussions like this), not a line or two of appropriate
I personally find appropriate quoting quite useful. Where reference IDs
completely fall down is where the article to which you are replying has
not yet reached the news server you are using, or has reached it and has
been expired out. In both these cases the reference ID is completely
useless in trying to figure out what you are responding to. If you say
"You should be using one system: my system, Google Groups", then I would
respectfully disagree with you. Usenet is not like a forum website
managed by one server in one location and articles may take time to
propagate articles through the many systems that contribute to Usenet.
Replies take time to propagate back through the systems to the
originator, sometimes minutes, hours or days; sometimes never.
This isn't about 'First Amendment'; Usenet extends beyond the nominal
borders of the United States of America, this isn't about NetCopping: I
have no way of enforcing what you can or can't say in this newsgroup, it
is an attempt to convince you that there is a better method of
communication that follows conventions developed over 20+ years of
Usenet. In fact, it really isn't an attempt to convince you, but maybe a
hope that it will: my audience is the readers of this article who may
have been swayed by your article to believe that your way is the best
In fact, it would have been easier to killfile you than to spend time
writing this article, yet I think that you could have much that is
worthwhile reading. Two clicks away from oblivion (at least to me) yet
your views are worth debating. Such is the nature of Usenet.
My experience with Google is that their groups works, but there are far
more useful Usenet readers. Indeed I preferred the ancestor of Google
Groups, 'dejanews'. Google Groups reliance on reference IDs can be a bad
thing in reading threads, since you can't dissociate them from an
original article in the case of topic drift: almost inevitable in long
running threads. Thus you may miss an important thread since it is
classified under it's original subject and thereafter referred to by the
original Reference ID.
Bill, I agree with you on this. And no, I'm not suggesting that
everyone use Google Groups. I only use it because it's the most
convenient way for me to access Usenet at work behind the various
service restrictions here. At home I use MT-NewsWatcher on OS X.
My objection to posts like Dave Hinz's above is not so much that he's
spreading misinformation, but that he jumped into this discussion
thread with no advice on Boston area aluminum weldors. He could plainly
see the title of my post, and if he was not interested or too lazy to
type a keystroke to see what I was replying to, he should have moved on
without comment. I asked a simple on-topic question and was not looking
for a discussion on the best newsreader, quoting habits, top-posting,
Furthermore, a quick Google query on "Dave Hinz" shows that he likes to
derail good discussions with this kind of behavior in all different
usenet groups, just to re-read his own opinions. It seems he's even got
something of a usenet celebrity troll status for being the world's
stupidest self-appointed netcop.
-Adam (13-year usenet veteran)
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