Welcome to the September 2001 issue of the OptiBoard Community Newsletter!

========== [ In This Issue ] ==========

-> OptiBoard Newsletter Sponsor's Message
-> OptiBoard August Statistics
-> OptiBoarders Meeting at Vision Expo West
-> OptiBoard Shirts Now Available
-> Referral Contest Update
-> Hot Topics
-> OptiBoard Featured Member of the Month
-> Moderator Column: "The knowledge pool", by David Wilson
-> Meet our Moderators

========== [ OptiBoard Newsletter Sponsor's Message ] ==========

This edition is sponsored by Optical Dynamics Corporation, providing business solutions for the optical professionals: Q-2100 Lens Casting Technology, Business Plans, Marketing Concepts. Training Systems, Advertising Programs.


========== [ OptiBoard August Statistics ] ==========

Here's the Board statistics for August:

New Members in August: 111
Total Members (as of September 8, 2001): 1070
New Posts in August: 1877
Total Posts (as of September 8, 2001): 20089
New Message Threads in August: 230
Total hits in August: 746356 (24076 per day)
Total Kbytes downloaded: 1790760 (1.79 gigabytes!)

========== [ OptiBoard Polo Shirts Now Available for Order! ] ==========

OptiBoard polo shirts are still available for online ordering. Many have already received their shirts so don't be left out. Visit this link for more details and the order page:


========== [ OptiBoarders Meeting at Vision Expo West ] ==========

There will be an OptiBoarders meeting at Vision Expo West in Las Vegas. The meeting will be at the Jobson booth at 11:00am Saturday September 22nd. Visit this thread for more info:


========== [ Referral Contest Update ] ==========

The OptiBoard Referral Contest has been extended until September 30th. The winner will receive their very own OptiBoard.com email address, plus a Custom Avatar and User Title (if they don't already have one.)

As of September 3rd, Mike Fretto was in the lead with 4 referrals. However the race is close with JennyP at 3 referrals and many others at 2, so there's plenty of time left for someone else to pull ahead. For more information, visit this URL:


========== [ Hot Topics ] ==========

Here's a few of the many hot topics currently being discussed on the Board:

The OAA and Our Future (also the Featured Thread of the Month!)

Tips on Dispensing (also the Featured Thread of the Month!)

What are your states reqs for being in optics?

"You made my glasses wrong"

Poll: How did you find OptiBoard?

Poll: Who Is Your Favorite Lens Manufacturer and Why?

Poll: What percentage of AR jobs do you dispense?

Static Glasses?

Oakley Consumer Alert

Embarrassing Moments

ABO Credits Online

Poll: National and State Organizations

State Leadership Announcement

Leaving SOLA

Contact Lens Education

Welding Spatter

Retina Forward Design?

Anyone design a 'ben franklin' lately?

Irlen Filters? (for Dyslexia)

Irish Troubles

Asda/Walmart start

Eyewear Abuse

"OptiBoard Anonymous"

========== [ OptiBoard Featured Member of the Month ] ==========

OptiBoard has improved greatly in the past six plus years, not only in appearance, but in the quality and depth of its content. That is a direct result of the input of our Members. The Administrator and Moderators take notice of the countless contributions made by board Members, which measurably improve the quality of this board.

Occasionally one member will stand out in particular and the administrator and moderators would like to recognize this individual. Hence the award of a tip of our collective hats! The OptiBoard Featured Member of this Month is:

Harry A Saake!

Harry is the originator of the TIPS ON DISPENSING thread, the largest message thread on OptiBoard with 207 replies to date! As one of our Moderators said in nominating Harry, "I'd like to recognize him for starting the dispensing tips thread. What makes this board cook are the interesting and informative threads like this one. Recognizing successful thread authors and giving that as the reason for Member of the Month will encourage others to come up with something just as good!"

Congratulations, Harry, and thanks for all you've done for the OptiBoard Community!

========== [ Moderator Column ] ==========

"The knowledge pool", by David Wilson

In the years since Steve first launched OptiBoard it has developed into the premium optical forum. You clearly enjoy accessing the board or you wouldn’t be reading this. But what does it mean for you? Do you use it to chat with fellow opticians or optometrists or to find out what is happening in the industry locally or around the world? One of the great strengths of OptiBoard is the pool of experts and highly experienced opticians it has attracted. This pool now includes you! This is your opportunity to get answers from others in the pool for those things you have always wondered about or new technology that you are unsure of. If our OptiBoarders don’t know the answer or where to find the answer (and I don’t just mean the moderators), then there is a good chance that few people do.

So, when you visit OptiBoard consider a visit to the Ophthalmic Optics forum, the 'Oasis' as Darryl likes to call it. Several good examples of what I mean can be found in the last few posts. A visit to "Refractive index" (http://www.optiboard.com/forums/show...fractive+index} will fill you in on the ongoing international debate about the reference wavelength; the reason why the refractive index quoted by a European manufacturer differs from that of an American or Australian manufacturer. Pop into the post on "Retina Forward Design" (http://www.optiboard.com/forums/show...&threadid=2616)to find out about the latest in progressive lens design. "Welding spatter" (http://www.optiboard.com/forums/show...&threadid=2665) is a post that attracted a huge amount of interest, although, despite some very good theories, I’m not sure if we do have the definitive answer to this question yet. You will see, though, the lengths that some of our OptiBoarders go to find the answer; have a look at Darris’ excellent responses to the welding spatter post. It even inspired some experiments.

I couldn’t finish without a plug for my own forum, "International Optics." Our moderators come from four countries, Australia, England, Israel and the United States. We hope to encourage interest among professionals in the ophthalmic optics field to find out what is happening in their profession around the world. Who knows, we may be able to help each other. What happens in one country is quite likely to happen in another.

Encourage your colleagues to join in. The more members we have the greater the combined knowledge and the more the fun.

See you on the Board!
David Wilson, Moderator

========== [ Meet Our Moderators ] ==========

Here is an introduction to some of the OptiBoard Moderators:

Steve Machol (Administrator)
---> Started in 1973 by grinding glass spheres in wholesale lab in Phoenix, AZ. Spent 14 years at SOLA Optical as Technical Service Manager and, most recently, Director of AR Services. Currently working as an Optical Industry Consultant specializing in Seminar Courses at Trade Shows and Optical Web Site Design and Management.

Pete Hanlin (General Discussion and Just Conversation Forums)
---> Pete Hanlin- entered optical field in 1989, currently managing a multi-OD practice in Tallahassee, FL.

Jo (Optical Marketplace, Job Board, Feedback, Q&A and Test Forums)
Joann Raytar, started in Optics in 1991 as a lab technician. Currently employed at an OD's office in Newtown, CT. I am still a lab rat at heart but now I have my hands into everything else too,

John R (International Optics)
---> John Ranfagni, West Yorkshire, England. 26 years optical lens surfacing experience.

hcjilson (Feedback, Q&A and Test Forums)
---> Harry Jilson, Retail Optician since 1959, now practicing on Cape Cod in Hyannis MA. I enjoy golf, sailing, golf, net surfing, golf, learning to cook, golf, reading Maria's posts, and a warped sense of humour...did I forget to say golf?

Judy Canty (Education and Professional Organizations)
---> With 30 years in the optical field, from wholesale lab to corporate flunkie to independent owner, I am THE eyelady. Old enough to know better, married, 3 kids, optically INVOLVED, I love this business just the same!

Maria (Just Conversation Forum)
---> Maria Kelly, 1st year student at Bradford, UK, dispensing optics.

David Wilson (International Optics)
---> Head lecturer, optical dispensing, at the Open Training and Education Network-Distance Education in Sydney Australia (540 students across Australia and New Zealand). Writer of a textbook, Practical Optical Dispensing (available in USA through NAO and in Britain through ABDO). Currently writing a second textbook, Practical Optical Workshop. Lecturer at conferences in USA, Asia, Australia and New Zealand.

Clive Noble (International Optics)
---> Born London, UK, 1941. Started career in optics on the wholesale side, import/distribution in the mid 60s after a boring 10 years in a bank. I found it so fascinating that in order to learn more I did the
dispensing course, which led on to also working as a dispenser in London. Emigrated to Israel in 1979 and strangely enough find myself doing the same here as I did there, import/distribution/working with the public. I'm currently self employed.

shanbaum (Ophthalmic Optics)
---> Robert Shanbaum, Director of Software Development, Gerber Coburn. First Optical Job: picking lenses in a large wholesale lab, summer 1965 (I was 14). Back then, it was called "pulling glass", a moniker which I think continues to be useful for our industry

Laurie (Education and Professional Organizations)
---> Optical Educator at Hillsborough Community College in Florida. I started out in Opticianry working for my mother over twenty years ago. I have been teaching for the last ten years now and I have great hope for our field. We have increased our enrollment tremendously due to the availability of technology, enabling us to produce distance learning courses.

Darryl Meister (Ophthalmic Optics)
---> Darryl has lived and breathed optics for most of his (surprisingly) short life. He was most recently Technical Marketing Manager for SOLA Optical USA, and has become a well-respected authority on 'all things optical' on the forums. When Darryl Meister talks (or writes) - people listen!


Once again, thanks to all of you for your support and for helping make OptiBoard truly the 'Premier Online Community of Eyecare Professionals Worldwide!'

Steve Machol
OptiBoard Webmaster