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A man of the cloth and the steel he wields alive or dead?

I caught a conversation on the Yahoo Portable Typewriter forum where a few members noted that the old Typewriter Database site appears to have gone down a couple of days ago. It prompted me to do a little digging to find out what I could about the status of the site, and I’m copying my reply here for the benefit of curious Typospherians:

Hmmn, looks like it got pointed to a new hosting company, still in germany. It was hosted at 1&1 before. There could be a couple reasons for this:
1) The site owner moved the domain to a new hosting company, and just hasn’t set up the site again yet. (if this is the case, it might mean Mr. Schumann might be active again – so maybe Yay?)
2) someone might have snagged the domain and parked it at a blank webservice. I think this is probably not the case, as it’s still registered at 1&1:
Registrar: 1 & 1 INTERNET AG
Whois Server:
Creation Date: 04-JAN-2002
Updated Date: 07-MAR-2014
Expiration Date: 04-JAN-2015
and it isn’t expired yet. I’ve been checking on the domain registration every year, and it has been auto-renewing at the very last second on Jan 4 every year. Thus it’s unlikely that Mr. Schumann has lost control of it. For the record, I’ve got a standing order in to snag the domain if it ever does expire, so if it does expire, it’ll most likely go to me, and I’ll point it to the new Database. In any case, it appears that *someone* edited the DNS server records for the domain on March 7, and the site has been down since then.

I guess we might have managed to save that data from disappearing forever, if the site doesn’t come back up again. Of course, all this could just mean that Mr Schumann is paying attention to his website again. We won’t know unless he gets in contact with the collecting community what the ultimate fate of will be, but I’m awfully glad that the new Typewriter Database Project got started when it did. :D


PS: the new Yahoo groups interface sucks sweaty dingo balls, and every update seems to break more stuff and make it even more unintuitive and annoying to use. Now they have ads that show up in the middle of the page obscuring the messages, which cannot be closed or scrolled away. I don’t visit the Yahoo typewriter groups very much since those updates, so you can assume from now on that I’m not keeping track of what happens in those forums anymore.

Updated: March 9, 2014 — 8:51 pm


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  1. I must have hit the TW-DB site before it went down on Friday.

    Yahoo sucks ever since the new imbicile took charge. The old was much better. It’s a perfect example of change just for the sake of change.

    Super glad you have the typewriterdatabase up and running.

  2. Huge thanks to Ted for commandeering the data from the old site and putting together a very usable and enhanced reincarnation!

    Regarding the Yahoo! mess, I get the digest forms of the forums and the digests have not suffered much. All the communications are there and reasonably clear. The digests do not disrupt my day so much as separate emails do, either. But when I leave the digests, say to reply to someone or initiate a thread or to see images—jeez, give it up! It is unusable. Yahoo! is crippling our communication.

    == Michael

    1. I do the same as Michael, I get the e-mailed digest. The Yahoo Groups web interface is absolutely stupid.

      I understand the appeal of social media, but middle-age Internet (blogging) also has its value, and senior citizen Internet (bulletin boards, e-mail lists) has value too. It serves as an ever-more-useful searchable repository.

  3. Since no one had been able to contact Mr. Schumann in a long time, it’s hard to know what is going on. I am also glad you started the Typewriter Database project and saved the data.

    As for Yahoo, I’m really disappointed that they aren’t taking care of business. They have built some very large groups with huge marketing potential, but they are putting almost no resources into it. As you said, every update seems to break more things and generally make it harder to use. There are other better group sites out there, but getting everyone to move would be next to impossible. Everyone nowadays seems to be focused on social media and old services like this are getting the backseat. I think there are huge opportunities here if only Yahoo would recognize it. I get the digest messages and find that they are often truncated and don’t include everything when I compare them to the website, so I read the messages directly on the website, but sometimes it’s not easy.


  4. I too am relieved that your db got off the ground in time. Interesting that he renews it at the last minute.

    1. well, it’s probably been set to auto-renew from a credit card account. No particular attention needs to be paid to that, so it can be ignored for years unless the card expires.

  5. As of 4:13a PST, when I checked it, I got the message “This domain name has expired.”

    I think has died. :(

    1. well, I guess we wait 30 days for the registrar lock to expire, and my pickup bid should kick in. (:

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