I think the default should be – if I am looking at my settings – I want to change them. I had to figure out that I first had to click on “Make Changes to Primary Member Record” (not a confirmation of changes, but getting permission to change it at all), which was after the things I wanted to change.
So I wasted time trying to figure why checkboxes were grayed out and not working.
When I was done, I could not get out of the Membership Portal by clicking Texas Astronomical Society. Rather I had to use the back arrow.
You could have given me a link to the portal, rather than telling me in words, then I have to figure it out and remember which group this was, and what its address is on the Internet.
When I joined Texas Astronomical Society of Dallas, I thought I was joining the “Texas Astronomical Society” that gave an overview and umbrella of all things astronomy in Texas. But it seems to be just the Dallas group.
I tried to read the Spectrum online but my PDF reader is disabled. There is a list of years that, if you get it just right, shows the months (Apr 2020 most recent). Searching the site only shows a Sept 2008 and an Aug 2011 Spectrum.
The link to Members Only asks for an id and password. It would not work with my email and password. I went back to the Member Portal and found at the bottom as a side note, that someone set up ___ and ____ for everyone. If it were me, I would put everything open so anyone in the world could see what the group is doing, make it at least for all Texas, and then rely on the generosity of people to cover the expenses. I would NOT use PDF anywhere, but share all the materials in HTML5 because PDF locks the material so only Adobe benefits. Google is fighting Adobe and makes PDF viewing harder and problematic. And I would not guide new people to buying expensive telescopes, but encourage image sharing globally so that millions can learn to process and study raw images, not just those who have time and can afford it, or who can get to special places and times. A few all sky cameras can teach more fundamental “identify what is in the sky” and study what is known, for the 4.8 Billion people with some level of access to the the Internet now.
The link to “latest issue of Spectrum” requires scrolling to the the bottom of http://www.texasastro.org/ under a strange looking rainbow button. The instructions “Back issues are available under “Features->Spectrum Newsletter” in the main menu.” should open an HTML5 version of the issues. Put ALL the past materials online to let the search engines have material – specific to what you are doing – so that anyone in Dallas, or Texas, or the United States, or the world — can see what you have been doing, what you plan to do, what you teach as basics, what you have learned and discovered — and then join or comment or donate or get involved. Closed groups and societies will not grow. Open ones connect to global communities of billions of people and other groups.
The population of Texas is over 29 Million now, about 25% of them under 18. All of them have a right to see and study the sky. And they should not have to beg or pay to do it.
Richard Collins, Director, The Internet Foundation