The Tools of the Future to Help Remember the Past(First published in Newsletter #109 of 2/18th Battalion (A.I.F.) Association, Nov 1998.)
The July 98 Newsletter made several references to "the net", and "web pages". Internet and Web Sites What is this all about?
After WWII with the threat of nuclear holocaust, the U.S. Department of Defence and academic institutions decided that these new things computers, that were running more and more of the defence communications, should be interconnected in such a way, that many computers could talk to many other computers without a single point that could disable them. This is the beginning of what is now called the Internet.
In the early days, all the info was text format. As time progressed, pictures and sound were included. With the cost of computers dropping now most people can use a standard phone line, and some connections hardware and software can communicate over the Internet.
Electronic versions of letters and the postal system are called E-mail. Electronic versions of books, not only with pictures, but with sound and video are "web sites". Web sites have the advantage that they can be changed far more quickly than printed matter. Another advantage of a web site, is a hyperlink. It is a way to jump to a footnote or aside. Using software called a browser; you can jump back and forth and from one place to web site to another. This is what "surfing the web" is all about!
But how does this help the ex-armed forces both still living and those already gone.
It is said that if we dont know history and our failures, we are likely to repeat our mistakes. If you dont have access to the "net", then your children or their children do. And what better way to store history, remember history, and learn history. More and more info is being stored on the net. The Australian War Memorial has their many archives of photos and memorabilia accessible on the "net".
But this is only 1 of the formal storage places. What about the personal memories of so many whom have gone before? There are a few of us who are starting to store some of these personal, less formal history. But encourage those around you who have access to this technology or get access to the technology yourself and record your memories, anecdotes, and stories. Is does not have to be perfect or complete. The ever changing, ever growing nature of the net allows for bits and pieces.
Lets all work together to make the tools of the future help remember the past!
Some web sites of interest are
We are please to announce that on ANZAC Day 2000 the 2/18th Battalion (A.I.F.) Association released their own web site - http://members.xoom.com/nithsdale/ .
This site was designed by Pip Hanneman and Lachlan Simond. The history was written by James Burfitt. For further information or comment on the 2/18th please email James Burfitt (email@example.com).
[Sorry to say it appears the 2/18th Assoc web site is off the air. We are working with the owners to either host the site or at least assist in it's being restored to on line status. - firstname.lastname@example.org 2002DC04]
[Update - 1 Feb 2006 - We a pleased to announce that the full 2/18th Battalion historical web site is now online at www.218battalion.com . Have a look and review the battalion history, peruse a photo gallery or even search the nominal roll.]