You know, I've never really been considered a "guru" of any kind. I am getting a Ph.D. one of these years in Computer Science but it's not really about websites. It's mostly on AI. I have worked on sites, but this has been by far the biggest project, I've done. Previous to this it was the CASMII site which I built with the help of another member from the UK. Both are running Drupal, an excellent (yet far from perfect) CMS software.
So, I don't really consider myself a true "expert" or "geek" at this stuff but from time to time I do sport long hair, khaki shorts, sandals with socks and general hippie/nerd-esque clothing which are actually part of the uniform down here at Santa Cruz, CA.
The other parts of the uniform are the liberal politics, the "weirdo" attitude and absolute loathing for any hint of homophobia or any sexually based intolerance whatsoever. People have gotten beaten up for being homophobic in SC! I'm not gay though. I'm married. Although just saying that may qualify as being homophobic in some neighborhoods!
Anyway, how did we get here? I really didn't want to talk about my sexual orientation. This about Iranian.com...
Beta! Just remember the site is in beta. There are still plenty to do to get this thing up to modern standards. It's been a lot work in the past 19 weeks and 6 days. I have two other jobs, besides my research and activism involvements. The schedule has been absolutely killing me, but the satisfaction has been worth it.
Working with Wayne and JJ has been professional, fun and exciting. We seem to make a good team, get along and talk out issues. I absolutely admire JJ for his work and dedication. Iranian is easily the single most recognizable Iranian website outside of Iran. His commitment to freedom of speech is actually quite rare among people in general, let alone immigrant groups like Iranians. The fact that pretty much until today, he used to lay out all this by hand, is amazing. This operation was begging for a content management system, and now it has one. For the past 5 weeks or so we've been running "parallel" which means even more work for Jahanshah. He's had to do what he normally does (which can take 6-7 hours a day) and then enter everything into the new system too.
We've managed to devise a plan and achieve most of what we wanted by this point. More remains of course and that's where you come in. Please don't hesitate to send me email (use the "website bugs or technical issues" option) about anything you see that's missing, broken or could use improvement. I only regret that I can't write back to everyone so please don't be disappointed. I really do appreciate you help. I bet some of you out there are much better at this than I am. So give me some pointers!
Actually, that's probably an understatement. Iranian web designers and engineers tend to be perfectionists. I've seen some absolutely amazing sites by Iranians mostly inside Iran, but some in Europe and America.
To do any writing or commenting you need to register. The link is available at the bottom of the page. Make sure you put in a correct email because it won't really warn you after you hit submit. Also, fill out the biographical informaiton which is really important for our advertising revenue. We're not using it for any other purpose, and we won't attach names to that data.
We've given everyone a blog. Although the capabilities are limited compared to large scale blogging sites, it's a great way to get visibility and readership in this community. Your blog can be selected to be on the "blog central" page or a particular entry can be on the featured section on the front page.
You can access your own blog from your account page or by going to /main/blog/[username] like this. Don't forget to set your Blog title and Blog description at your account page. Click on "My Account" on the top right and then click on "Edit" on the left panel above your Avatar. This information will show up on top of all your blog entries and give a little intro about the blog.
So... that's about it for now. Have fun, and don't feel the need to get so nasty on the comments. For God's sake, random Americans are starting to think Hossein Derakhshan is the anti-christ. Take it easy on the guy, he's not evil!
Don't forget to email me with problems. And sunscreen, don't forget to wear sunscreen!
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