The printed S I G N A L 5 0 y e a r s
now in 2010, issued since 1960 !!!!!
In all 382.000 copies, 2 million readers
Some 20-40 years ago I received 5.000-7.000 letters yearly from the Signal readers, now the amount is less than 1.000 snailmail letters yearly. At every weekend I wrote personal replies and packed 100-200 Signals to be taken to the post office on Monday, in the daytime I was working in the advertising department of the local daily newspaper Etelä-Suomen Sanomat from 8 am to 4 pm. Had to find some time also for my family, wife and two daughters and -social- life meeting the friends and relatives etc.
Now that I am retired and have all the free time ever needed and live alone I pack 50-100 Signals at a time once in 4-6 weeks only, write some 50-100 personal letters a year only, reply some 100-200 emails a year, print 100 copies of the 12-page A4 size Signals at a time 3-4 times yearly with my b&w A3 digital copier and with the A4 colorlaser printer. Less and less time is devoted to the printed Signal, more time is spent with the web edition, usually 5-10 hours DAILY.
I receive some 400-500 emails EVERY DAY, I destroy the spam and open only a few personal emails and the new Signal penpal ads.
I edit every single penpal listing, have to correct 90 % of them on the computer, take "bad" words away, make country names into LARGE ALPHABETS, etc. I want the layout to be clean, the contents to be ok also for children, no sex, no hatred, no porno links, no begging etc. The Signal receives at present some 100 snailmail letters monthly.
Usually I add the penpal listings to the web edition 4-10 times daily, the first time at 10 am or so, the last time usually at 12 pm or even thereafter, at night. Making the html-codes for the web pages takes a lot of time and when the pages have been layouted and coded they must be sent to the servers to become visible for the readers. I learn coding by studying other web pages and when finding some useful interesting contents I try to get similar material to the Signal, too.
Just now Signal-s penpal listings and other contents are automatically translated into your own language by Microsoft and Google !!!!
This kind of work is quite interesting, just take a look at the front page of www.signalpenpals.net. By clicking the flags or links above the penpal ads you can read the Signal and all the penpal listings in your own language, in some 50 different languages - English, Russian, German, Spanish, French, Portuguese, Italian, Chinese, Korean, Arabic, Hindi, Japanese, Swedish, Norwegian, Danish, Dutch, Finnish, Czech, Romanian, Croatian etc. You may easily translate also all my other websites and the links in the same way:
I was a schoolboy of 16 when I started the Signal in 1960 and wanted to find collectors abroad to exchange stamps
And I still am gathering stamps, covers, mbls, viewcards, phonecards, records, almost anything but I really have no REAL collections... I just save them. What I-ve been collecting lately is the COMPUTERS !!!! Mainly old ones, from the 1980-s, 90-s, 2000-s...
I-ve got old cp/m computers: four Osborne I, Osborne Vixen; four different Kaypro-computers, an old Seiko from 80-s; some 10 different old laptop computers, five different Apple-computers, 18 different handheld computers, my current computers used in the Signal work. In all the amount is now over 50 different and the operating systems vary from CP/M, DOS, Windows XP, Ubuntu Linux to Apple OSX, etc etc. A few weeks ago I found an old Apple Newton handheld, 20 years old, price Euros 70. Usually nobody is willing to pay nothing for those obsolate computers but collectors like me pay even to much if they need something for their collections. Unfortunately I-m one of them...
Some of my friends have been asking what I-ve done with all the envelopes and postage stamps I-ve received from the Signal-readers in 1960-2010 ????
Well, some 25-30 years ago I swapped tens of thousands of envelopes and mint foreign postage stamps into a used old Vokswagen (VW) car. Now I have 50.000-100.000 envelopes, don-t know yet what to do with them. Possibly I will try to sell them in the fleamarkets, via postal philatelic auctions, to friends or maybe I just "collect" them and let my daughters solve the problem when the time comes, who knows.
Want to know more about the Signal ? Visit these pages for photos and info:
http://www.signalpenpals.net/pdf/6Dissue0104.pdf (pages 6, 7 and 8).
If any of you happen to visit Lahti Finland in 2010 you are welcome to meet me at my home and in Signal-s office !!!
In the past a few Signal readers have visited Signal-s offices - Gottfried Novak from DDR/Germany, Kit Seyd from Great Britain, Johnny Jaros from Czechoslovakia, Robertas Cerskus from Lithuania, Mr & Mrs Dunajev from Russia, some readers from Korea, Algeria and Uzbekistan...