What Is Radio Userland?
(This story explains the UserLand webpage titled "What Is Radio UserLand" that is available here and displayed partly just below)
UserLand's explanation of Radio is as accurate and simple as possible considering its ambitious reach. How simple can something be that seeks to dominate the known world?
If you don't understand everything on their page (especially acronyms like HTML or FTP), don't let that slow you down. UserLand's software appeals to hard-core programmers as well as to end-users. They need to signal programmers that Radio has the power they are looking for as well as signal us that it is easy-to-use.
Your job is to focus on this sentence:
"Radio Us erLand automatically builds your site, organizes and archives your posts, and publishes your content -- without any knowledge of HTML, FTP, or graphic design."
If you are like me, you may still puzzle over a few items on their page. Here goes my take on UserLand's pitch.
Using and Purchasing Radio UserLand
1. You can use Radio free for 30 days. Can't beat that. What are you waiting for? Free.
2. Either now, after 30 days or whenever you choose, you can buy Radio for its then-current price. This software is dirt-cheap. Heck, it's worth at least $49.95. All kidding aside, it's probably forth $399.95. Also note you receive 20 megabytes of free Internet server storage from UserLand and a year's use of that space.
3. Radio is sold on an annual subscription basis. If you buy Radio on May 4, 2002, your subscription will expire after May 3, 2003. You will be welcome and invited to download and use all enhancements made to Radio UserLand while your subscription is current.
You can still use your existing version of Radio indefinitely after your subscription expires. However, you will not be able to obtain new features until you purchase another annual subscription.
Also, after May 4, 2003, UserLand will not offer to host your site for you on their Community Server. You can still host your site elsewhere - just not through UserLand. See What Is Hosting? if the entire concept confuses you.
4. Clicking on the active price link ($39.95) takes you to another page here. I display a small portion of the page below:
UserLand emails your unique serial number to you after you purchase (not after you download for trial purposes) Radio.
Your serial number will be different than your user number. Your user number is assigned when you first download Radio - whether that is for trial use or for immediate purchase. My user number is 0107019. Please do not fold, spindle or mutilate. Especially mutilate.
(Think of it this way: your user number is your 'name' so far as UserLand's Community Server is concerned. Your serial number is just the private confirmation of your order).
Once you have purchased Radio, you will enter your serial number into your copy of the software. If you have already installed the trial version of Radio, start-up Radio and then go to this page online. This is actually a page within your private copy of Radio and looks like this:
(If you try to go there without having downloaded Radio, you will get an error message since you haven't installed Radio yet!)
Just enter your serial number exactly as it appears in your email from UserLand. Then, click Submit and join the rest of us as a bona fide Radio nut.
Clicking on the "versions" link on the main UserLand Radio home page (the one we started with at the top of this topic) brings you to UserLand's additional page here. This displays the system requirements for running Radio smoothly:
If you use Windows, note that Windows95 is not supported. This doesn't necessarily mean it won't work. On second thought, not much of anything worked well under Windows95, did it?
Hey Bill, I'm just kidding! Give Radio a try under Windows95 if you want. If Radio doesn't work, it won't damage your machine or your copy of Windows95. However, if it works, don't expect UserLand to provide any formal technical support for this version.
(It's hard enough to support all the flavors that are officially supported. It's not fair to expect UserLand to help us when we don't comply).
I am running Radio happily on a Pentium-II 350 processor. Well, somewhat happily. You will probably be able to run Radio on older machines with slower processors than the one they define as a requirement - 450 MHz. If you do use an older processor, don't be surprised if Radio runs more slowly.
Of course, to use Radio at all, you MUST have an active, ready-to-run connection to the Internet as well as a Web browser. If you didn't have those, you wouldn't be reading this in the first place! This needn't be an always-on Internet connection. Dial-up is fine.
Compared to most new software, Radio's requirements are remarkably modest.
Those Other Links
Unless UserLand changes their webpage before I can revise this page to match their page (got that?), you will see other clinkable links on the left side of their "What Is Radio UserLand" page.
(If, for some reason, you have gone elsewhere during this discussion, that page is still here and a partial list of links is displayed just below.)
Here is a brief explanation of those links. Follow the active links below to actual UserLand pages if any intrigue you:
Purchase - this takes you to the UserLand store.
Download - to install your own trial copy of Radio.
News - items of interest to you as UserLand enhances Radio over time.
FAQ - frequently asked questions by people like us ... even includes answers.
Directory - a set of documents about Radio.
Developers - information and enticements for people who want to get under the skin of Radio and enhance it themselves.
Discuss - the place where beginners, intermediate and advanced users go to ask for (and receive) help from one another. Don't ever hesitate to ask a question even if it seems 'dumb'. This is a polite, respectful and enthusiastically helpful community.
Mail List - an open invitation mail list currently hosted at Yahoo, mainly for developers.
Search - when all else fails, enter something into the text box to search for information across all of Radio's own documents. Even entering "help" will get you started.
Has it been longer than two minutes yet? Are you ready to dive in, download Radio and make your first post to your weblog?