Now that the Astronomy On-Line Programme has started, it will be useful for the Groups to start communicating with each other! After all, one of the main goals of this Programme is to give the participants the opportunity to `meet' on the Web.
One way to do this, is of course to consult each others Web sites, if these are available. Most often, it is possible to leave messages there. Another possibility is to send an email, simply by clicking on the (blue and active) email-address, indicated both on the Lists of Participants by individual countries and also on the individual Group Information pages.
However, it will often be most useful for other Groups to have the opportunity to follow the discussion between two Groups, especially if they are interested in similar topics. For this reason, and to open Astronomy On-Line as much as possible for everybody, we have constructed a mail-service with archive which in principle makes it possible for all Groups to see what is going on. This communication tool is very efficient and we urge all Groups to use it as often as possible.
It is quite simple. You enter the Communication by email area. If you do not know it already, you must first find the email address and group designation of your partner - this is easy by means of the special search engine installed there. Then you decide which of 17 different subject areas you message belongs to. And then you just press the corresponding button, type your message and send it.
By following this simple procedure, your message will automatically be sent to the Astronomy On-Line Communications Archive. Later, if you or somebody else is interested in a particular subject, you will be able to search for all related mail messages and get a list of them. The list is active, so you can immediately access those emails and study the content.
In this way, you will be able to gather lots of useful information and, in view of the very large number of Groups and messages, you are quite likely to discover something which will be new and interesting for you. Then you may of course contact the Groups which have produced these messages and talk to them.