Jump to content

The Courier Online?

Recommended Posts

Some time ago, the Club published the entire run of the Courier on CD.

It was useful, but it worked slowly and clumsily, as you needed to know where the article was that you wanted to read, and had to look it up the annual index, if you knew which year.    It was an enormous labour to produce, by scanning every page of every magazine in the Club library archive, 

But that database is potentially now an enormously useful resource for the TSSC.


The TR Register has made the same access to TRaction magazine available online, via the members page of their website.   You log in as a Member, enter a search phrase and get a list of possible hits.

I used it today, to help someone with an article that appeared in 2000.

I had torn out that page and kept it, but could I find it?  TRaction OnLine found it, right away.


This is forward, modern thinking about how a Club can help and serve its members - TSSC, please note!

I hope that TRR will be glad to explain how it was done, and suspect that it wasn't as labourious as before, or expensive.



Link to comment
Share on other sites

On Each CD  Courier Archive there is a copy of the Courier Technical Directory (unlike the Mag issues themselves THESE are Searchable as follows)


Launch the Tecnical Directory 1980 to 2005 in Adobe Acrobat. On Later Update Disks there is an updated Directory and finally an Index.

In the Acrobat Top Panel there is a FIND Box

Type in this Box the Technical Subject you are interested in (Say "Tuning") then press enter.
This will search the Directory for any instance of the Word "Tuning".
KEEP Pressing Enter and it will Keep finding the NEXT instance or article on Tuning
Make a Note of the Page Number, Month, Year and Issue Number so you can Find that specific issue on all of the archive CDs
IE  (13/60 Tuning ........ P32  Jun 96 No. 192) .This is Not Laborious and is fact quite Quick to find a subject you want try typing a specific like "Hood Fitting"


So The Mag Archive IS Searchable on the CD and you also have access to ALL Couriers immediately to hand.


Hope this helps


Courier Ed


  • Like 1
Link to comment
Share on other sites

The index is indeed searchable ... with the mistakes and omissions which were inevitable in such a mammoth undertaking. Don't misunderstand me - I really appreciate the effort you chaps made and the CDs are a really valuable resource. But an online index could have these corrected as they come to light. I would suggest that such an index is made freely available and not stashed away in a members' area. This way, non-members will stumble across it as they search for information online, and they will see what a mine of information is available to TSSC members. Good for club membership as well as CD sales.


Cheers, Richard

Link to comment
Share on other sites

No need for anyone to spring to the defence of the TSSC CD archive!  It's good, as far as it goes, and better than I thought.

I'm grateful to Bernard for pointing out how to search it for articles.

And to Kevin for pointing out the Technical Index, online here.

It must have been an enormous labour to produce (I said that in my OP), and it does allow you to find previous articles.

But slowly, because it doesn't have anything like the speed and generality of the search facility that is now available for TRR members.


Because I'm a member, I can enter some words in the search box on their site, and immediately, get a list of possible hits .   Just like Google or any other internet search engine.


Compare:   To search the TSSC Archive you must:

Find, and download the Technical Index.      You cannot search a PDF online, only once it is resident on your own hard disc.

When you have found the article:-

Get out your copy of the Courier CDs, insert the disc for the appropariate decade in your CD drive.

Wait for it to boot up.

Go to that issue, 

Load that issue and turn to the page of the article.    Oh, yes, and if you have forgotten the page you found it in the Index, you have to go back again, because this is Steam Age computing!  You have to write things down!


I am disapponted by the TSSC response, but I shouldn't be.   Once again the antipathy of the TSSC to everything digital is shown, that led to the loss of the original  message board, and made its revival agonisingly slow.    The TRR offers its members a fast and easy to use way to search its archive - and the TSSC doesn't say, "Ooo, we can do that!"    It says, "What we offered eight years ago is just as good!"  when obviously, it isn't!     In that eight years, technology has given us:


Social Media


Tablet computers

and no need for CDs any more!   How many times have you bought new software and received it on a CD? You download it from the 'Net!   People don't buy films on CDs any more - they Netflix.  ALL the Blockbuster film rental shops went bust!  

CDs are Old Technology.   Slow, and clumsy when used as an archive.



Rant over


Link to comment
Share on other sites

Correct me if im wrong the CD version of the Courier although its a PDF , it is in fact an image so not searchable . If the Courier was converted to a true pdf  and uploaded to the web then Google would then do all the indexing and would appear in the search engines for all to find .


My latest laptop wasnt fitted with a CD rom 





Link to comment
Share on other sites

I hope you got a discount, doug!  If not you were stitched up like a kipper!

Anyone with a smart phone can download a vast amount of music and play it back, through earphones (the dorks walking down the street, eys half closed), portable loudspeakers or through your computer's speakers.



And if I may - the wonderful TSSC Courier Archive CDs are available from the shop.    If you bought the original set, that takes you up to the 'Noughties', but an additional disc is avauilable to bring you up to date!    To 2014!!!  Wow!!!!

This shows how antequated is CD technology, becasue it takes a long time to get the information scanned, transferred and marketed.   It also uses a significant amount of non-recyclable plastic!      By putting it all online, the TRR will, I  imagine, make every issue of TRaction available as it is published, either immediately or after a short delay, and use no plastic at all.


Another comparison.  Public Library of Science (PLoS) gets papers online in two weeks.     PubMed publishes online as soon as the parent journal makes them avauilable, from at once to several months, but that is the journals' policy, not PubMed's.   Doing literature research without online access hasn't been done for twenty years.  Even if you have a whole bookshelf of Couriers, going back to the early '90s, as I have, it's impossibly time consuming to find an article by hand and eye searching.


The TSSC were innovative in publishing by CD, but so long afterwards the Club is now well behind the race, and not providing its members with the service that it could.    Time to change up a gear!


Link to comment
Share on other sites



As has been stated many times in the past, the suggestion needs to be sent directly to the TSSC General Secretary for discussion at the regular COM meetings.


Simply raising it here on the Forum will not make it happen.


To ensure that there is the maximum likelihood of success, it would need to be presented to the COM with a fully costed business case and full technical details of how it would be implemented.


It would not be a simple or cheap thing to actually do - it may sound simple, and for small organisations with a simple newsletter with a basic website it is simple, but with an archive the size of the TSSCs it would be complex and expensive.


As far as I am aware, there is currently no IT specialist on the COM, and the IT is outsourced (and paid for) so the business case would have to show a significant positive and affordable benefit for the members.


If you were to join the COM you could further push the case to try and get it accepted and implemented.


In addition, you should think about getting it raised at an AGM and get enough members present passionate enough about it to get a resolution accepted to ensure implementation.


As you know, it was a significant challenge to get the COM to agree to setup this new forum, and it took an AGM resolution to force their hand - and even then it was touch and go to get enough support at the AGM to get the Resolution voted through.

  • Like 2
Link to comment
Share on other sites

John, yes, I did get £50 off!  :lol: 


But you raise an interesting point. Is new technology better than old? A record deck or tape deck will always be truer to the original than digital mediums. But it's the price and durability that go against them.  Some of the current streaming mediums have low sampling rates and are poor quality. Which is why CDs persist.

Link to comment
Share on other sites


 I'm a Member of the Club.  Bless the Officers of the Club for taking on this thankless task out of their own devotion to the Cause, and for nothing as they are 'Honoraries', but as a Member, they are my Servants.

That is why I pay my subscription and how they get the means to do what they do.

An online search facility of the Courier Archive would be an enormous service to the Club.

It's a pity that the response to this proposal is, "But we do it already", and "You can't raise it here", when the Club doesn't do it, to anything like the potential, and Officers of the Club are aware of it (you and Bernard), but won't take it up!   As a mere Member, with no access to the Club's finances beyond the Annual Report, no access to the Archive except on CD, and nothing like the knowledge of digital technology that you and others on the CoM have, it is inappropriate to suggest that or any Member should write the business case.  That is for the Officers to do.


What I do suggest, as I did above, is a friendly call to the TRR, to ask Wayne Scott (TRaction Editor and their Press Officer) how it was done.     It won't be a commercial secret. 


Your last sentence says it all, about the TSSC and digital.   And no, I'm not standing for the CoM.


Link to comment
Share on other sites

Won't argue with you doug on musical  quality of various media.

But that is irrelevant, when only the discerning few are interested.      


The 'quality' of the Archive scans on CD or OnLine  isn't great, but the written/printed information is perfectly preserved, in either.

What CDs lack is accessibility - see my post above on the process of finding an article.


Link to comment
Share on other sites

John, for the record, I am NOT a member of the COM, and I never have been, and other than receiving a copy of the Club annual accounts like all other members do I have no other insight into the Club finances.

I fought long and hard against the CoM (of the day) to get the Forum reinstated, and it took an AGM resolution supported by the members present to force the CoM into providing a Forum.

I took this route because I had been pushing until I was blue in the face, and I had sufficient understanding of Company Law to know that a formal Resolution, accepted at an AGM, would force the COM to act as the members directed.

One of the conditions of the Forum being set up was that it was to be run by the members, for the members and the CoM would keep out of it.

I was originally appointed as one of the Moderators, and then promoted to Forum Admin when the workload of keeping spammers in check became an issue.

Note how few problems we have with spammers.

  • Like 1
Link to comment
Share on other sites

Maybe its time to embrace the online technology that is available - I went on line and found FlipSnack , set up a FREE account and uploaded some old Couriers . This took 5mins - For the result Click Here  The free version isnt suitable of course though the paid version might work as you can add Indexes and links to pages . Because the print quality of the original is poor its difficult to read unless you use the zoom facility at the top 


Just an idea 



Link to comment
Share on other sites

I can't help thinking there's a potential car crash in slow motion here.

I rejoined the TSSC a few years ago because I was a member in the 1980s when I bought my first Spitfire.

It was nostalgia that made me rejoin; I suppose I could have joined a number of other Triumph clubs instead.

Whilst recognising the good work various people do on behalf of the club, the reluctance to embrace technology is both disappointing and a bit worrying.

I fear the CoM will wake up one day and lament the fact that the membership has dwindled to unsustainable numbers owing to the fact that younger generations expect to access information in very different ways to their predecessors.


I'm not having a go at anyone, I'm just making the point that the club MUST move with the times or die......

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Thank you, Kevin, for all your hard work!


I said that I thought the TRR would discuss how they have acheived this with the TSSC.

But I didn't know , so I emailed Wayne.

His reply, within 24 hours,  is as friendly and open as I hoped.  He knows Chris Gunby, and would be glad to talk him through how it was done.


I emailed Chris Gunby when I started this thread.


Link to comment
Share on other sites

I am reading this thread with great interest ,the Tssc are not stuck in the dark ages as far as technology is concerned the problem being the small team can only do so much at a time.

Now we are aware of the conversation on here I will put it on the next agenda for Com and feed back asap.

If any one has anything they want bringing up at a meeting please email gensec@Tssc.org.uk.


Sorry John I have not received an email from you ? or I would of responded quicker.


I am happy to call Wayne and see how the Tr reg do things but it will have to go on the list to do .


Have we any volunteers to help ?


Also for the record we are not honaries , we are members like the rest of the people on here ,the honuary members of the club are clearly stated on the inside page of the Courier. 


Cheers for now Chris 

  • Like 1
Link to comment
Share on other sites

Thank you, Chris! Your comments on doing what is feasible are understood.

I hope you and the CoM will see the benefits to members of this feature.


My emails sent to "chairman@tssc.org.uk" and copied to Bernard, who got them.



Link to comment
Share on other sites

Interesting topic..... guess I'm just a dinosaur..... even though I built my PC from scratch.


I had a really terrible Internet connection in my old house, any kind of download took days and was very unreliable. I know more than a few people who don't have Internet access of any kind. Maybe we should just leave them out?

I get The Courier by post, it works in my car, in my study, at work, the garage and the loo. My eyes read it without the need for constant upgrades downloads and patches or recharging.


I buy CDs as any kind of download is usually unreliable, and takes ages..... they play instantly. I download music occasionally, sometimes there are problems and it skips or loses the connection, I have to redownload (but not within so many days!), I can only put the music on a particular device and not transfer it to another within 90 days, then I go to listen to it and some bo***cks of a thing called the Cloud asks me to download it all over again at around 40 minutes per track.


So: even if the club is ready to embrace the Internet age, the country's infrastructure isn't. 

Link to comment
Share on other sites



Colin it will arrive at some point and then you will wonder how you managed without it


We got high speed about a year ago in a remote part of Derbyshire From one mb an hour (ha) to 56 a second


Can't believe how I managed



Link to comment
Share on other sites


Colin it will arrive at some point and then you will wonder how you managed without it




Maybe Colin will get decent broadband soon with the extra money heading for NI, meanwhile in the rural South West we'll be waiting a fair while yet I fear.




That 'some point' is a long way off for big chunks of the country, so the paper Magazine is here to stay for some time I'd say.



Link to comment
Share on other sites

Even though my neighbours and I have reasonable broadband speed (about 40Mb/s) we are investigating how we could get fibre broadband.

That has found us B4RN, Broadband for the Rural North, and its likely although not certain that we will link with them.

  B4RN have spread from the Lune Valley up and down the M6 corridor, to become the UK's biggest private broadband provider, with the fastest rural broadband in the wolrd!    They couldn't help  the South West, but B4RN's commercial model is interesting.

1/ Each 'parish' that joins digs in its own cable ducting, by community cooperation and work gangs!  Only then does B4RN come in, 'blow' cables and fix connections.

2/ The objective of B4RN is 1000Mb/s, yes one thousand!

3/ They can offer useful tax avoidance (nothing wrong with that!) for customers who also invest.


See: https://b4rn.org.uk/


John   No connection, beyond impressed potential customer.


PS Colin,  despite the minimal cost to the Club and maximal convenience to members, at this stage I'm not advocating a digital, online Courier.   Just an archive!

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Create an account or sign in to comment

You need to be a member in order to leave a comment

Create an account

Sign up for a new account in our community. It's easy!

Register a new account

Sign in

Already have an account? Sign in here.

Sign In Now
  • Create New...