Amphicar Website Status

Ed Price

Member
The official website of the IAOC is located at http://www.amphicar.com .
This site is operated by your International Amphicar Owners Club. The post
that you are now reading is on a Digest operating on a completely different
web address, maintained and owned by Mike Israel. Although Mike is a member
of the IAOC, the two sites are completely separate resources attempting to
serve the needs of Amphicar owners in different ways.

The IAOC website is open to the public, although it has a large section that
is accessible only to IAOC members who have the correct Username and
Password. (The UN & PW are in each issue of the IAOC Wheels -n- Waves
newsletters, and are also available from me via email.) The Digest is
private, only allowing users who have been approved by Mike Israel.

We have recently been having several problems with the IAOC website. We
promise to address the problems of old information, non-updated VIN's and
owner's pictures as soon as possible. However, we need to address security
problems first. It appears that, shortly before the transition of website
control to the IAOC Board, the "Members Only" section passwords were
changed. This effectively denied all members access to that section of the
website. (The hosting site control passwords were also changed, but this
caused only a few lost days while we proved our ownership to the host's
security people.)

The IAOC website's passwords were scheduled to be changed with this issue of
the Wheels -n- Waves. The issue is now at our printer, and it contains the
new Username and Password. I hope to have the IAOC website password problem
corrected before everyone receives their copy of WnW, but we have to
understand HOW the site passwords were previously compromised before we put
that section up and running again. Otherwise, we stand a good chance that
the original "opportunistic hacker" will just change them again & again!

So far, we have found that the IAOC website was created using an
"un-registered" copy of FrontPage software (which is now obsolete anyway).
We don't know if this non-official software package might itself have been
compromised from the beginning; maybe it was even released specifically so
that a gullible webmaster might build a series of compromised sites with
built-in Trojan Horses.

The IAOC had approached a professional webmaster to get an estimate for
getting our site back in business. Unfortunately, he told us that the
current site was hopelessly structured and that our best course would be to
entirely rebuild the site from our basic files. We chose to not follow that
advice, for reasons of both risk and open-ended cost. Instead, the IAOC has
obtained a legal copy of the FrontPage software, and is currently examining
the website. Please bear with us as we climb the learning curve while
searching for land mines.


Ed Price
IAOC Membership Registrar
El Cajon, CA USA
61 Rust Guppy
 

amphi_sc

Member
IMHO, the "official" club site was very functional, had things easy to find, and was generally easy to use in the past. Not having been there in a few of months, I visited today again and find it broken in basic design. For some reason, now things are hard coded in widths. (MickeySoft tools are bad about doing things like that as well as hard coding links back to the developer's C: drive). For example, a table coded as

cellpadding="6" border="1" bordercolor="#000000" style="background-position: center; border-collapse: collapse; background-repeat:no-repeat; background-attachment:scroll" cellspacing="6" width="1114"

That just makes the site painful to use on some systems due to scrolling, or for those who don't want to dedicate the majority of their desktop to the amphicar site. On the other hand, this amphicar770 site is very user friendly in that it pretty much scales things automatically letting the user decide how much real estate is really needed.

I don't know when it got broke, but I don't recall it working that badly in the past.
 

PeterP

Member
I am a professional web developer, and would be happy to help out the club. Drop me a line if I can be of service.
 

mike_israel

Amphicar Forum Admin
Staff member
Ed is correct in stating that the amphicar-lovers forum and the IAOC are separate entities. This is why users of the forum are encouraged to join the IAOC if they have not already done so.

One technical correction. This forum is indeed open to the public. Always has been, always will be. Anyone is free to read the information in the general forums and most of the other forums. Persons wishing to post messages do need to register. No one has ever been denied access unless their IP or other information is that of a known spammer.

In the history of the list (started on Listbox, moved to Yahoogroups, currently on vBuletin) only a small handful of individuals have been banished from the forums. In all cases that I can recall, those were individuals who felt the forums are a proper venue for expressing their racist views of the world, usually in colorful language. We have had the occasional spammer slip through with ads for Viagra and such These have been rare and there are multiple layers to thwart this.

Originally, many years ago, I offered to set this site up on the original (Jeff Sweet) amphicar club page. There was no interest so I established it separately. I had the email addresses for Dave Chapman, Bill Connely, and a few others who I invited to join. They told two friends, who told two friends, etc. Today we have about 300 active (registered) users and about 100 "Guest" visits per day (unregistered users). Over 17,000 available postings makes this one of the premier sources of Amphicar information in the planet.

Keeping the forum open to the public, free of charge, has always been a primary objective. Doing so has provided the information and impetus for many Amphi-curious types to become owners (Amphipoda is just one example).
 
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