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TidBITS Information

Thanks for enquiring about TidBITS! We hope you enjoy reading our publication, and feel free to send us any comments or suggestions via the email addresses below.

What is TidBITS?

TidBITS is a free weekly electronic publication that reports on interesting products and events in the computer industry, currently with an emphasis on the world of the Macintosh. In addition to weekly issues, we occasionally publish formal review issues and special issues focussing on a single topic. We feel that publications like TidBITS will become an important medium of exchange as the world becomes more electronically connected.

TidBITS Listserv

To subscribe to the TidBITS list at Rice University, send email to:
In the _body_ of the mail, put the line:
   SUBSCRIBE TIDBITS your full name
and you will be automatically added. You should also receive an acknowledgment from the Listserv so you know that you're on.

If you are already on the mailing list and need to remove yourself because you are leaving for the summer or you just can't keep up with so much mail, send another mailfile to the address above with this line in the _body_ of the mailfile:

and you will be automatically removed as long as you are sending the SIGNOFF command from the same account you used to SUBSCRIBE. The LISTSERV will let you know if the command is successful or not.

Changing Addresses

Many people change email addresses and wish to have TidBITS delivered to their new address. To change your address, simply send a SIGNOFF command (see above) from the _old_ account, then send a SUBSCRIBE command (see above again) from the _new_ account.

TidBITS Fileserver

Rather than try to provide lots of information in this file, we've decided to set up a fileserver that can respond to specific email requests from anyone on the Internet (or to people who use the CompuServe or AppleLink gateways). The fileserver works only with electronic mail, _not_ through FTP.

To request information or files from this server, send electronic mail to The server _only_ looks at the Subject: line to determine which file you want. Thus, you may leave the body of the mail empty, but if you do have text in the body, such as an automatically generated signature, the server will ignore it.

The server searches the Subject: line for only the first _word_. uAccess defines a word as a number of alphanumeric characters followed by a space or a tab. The server only looks for this first word and ignores all text after it in the Subject: line. The upshot of this is that you can only request one file per message. Obviously, the word must match with a file or your request will fail.

To get the list of files that are currently available on this server, please send email to with the Subject: line containing the single word (without the quotes) "index". For now, here is a brief list of some of the files we have available right now:

      keyword  brief description
   ----------  ---------------------------------------------------
         help  Help on using the fileserver
        index  Index of all of the available files on this server
    locations  Where you can find TidBITS issues
         news  The latest updates to the fileserver files
          bbs  A list of some bulletin boards that carry TidBITS
       setext  A description of the structure-enhanced text format
   guidelines  Article writing and submission guidelines
     maillist  Information on getting TidBITS via email
The file that you request will be mailed to the address in the From: line, unless a Reply-To: line is present in the header, at which point the file is mailed to the address in the Reply-To: line. Again, lines in the letter body are ignored.

In addition to the files listed above, there are a number of useful and informative files submitted by our sponsors on the fileserver. To get an index of those files, please send email to

TidBITS on the Web

For the latest issue, back issues, searching issues, and more.

Information from:
Ephraim Vishniac --
comp.infosystems.wais FAQ

Again, thanks for your interest and feel free to pass on any comments or suggestions that you may have.


Adam & Tonya Engst, TidBITS Editors

Adam C. Engst, TidBITS Editor -- --
Author of Internet Starter Kit for Macintosh --
Internet Explorer Kit for Macintosh --
Internet Starter Kit for Windows --

Netscape HTML Checked! January 1, 1995 - Robert Lentz (

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