Letter From Editor
Never Ending Quest

Iran Online has been a unique experience for all of us who thrive to maintain and expand it.  Due to its nature, the growth and expansion of Iran Online is a never ending process. For every page of information that is included, there are ten more waiting to be added.  To set up a typical Internet site for a client, we design few pages, add a database if necessary and consider the task complete.  What remains is the maintenance of the site and occasional upgrades upon request. This is quite different with Iran Online. There, the challenge is to enhance the site continuously to ensure that our visitors will visit our site on a regular basis. The list of enhancements is long and endless. We constantly modify and re-prioritize the list to accommodate new requirements and our visitors' requests while maintaining a balanced approach in expanding different sections of Iran Online.  At the same time we evaluate new features that may be of interest to the Iranian Internet community.  Additions of new features require allocation of more resources for their development and future maintenance and upkeep.  Therefore, for every new feature, we have to ask ourselves if we have enough resources for the new undertaking. So far we have managed not to let limited resources impede the expansion of Iran Online.  In this process, your approval and support of Iran Online and its goals remain to be the most important motivating factor for our staff.  We are streamlining our processes to ensure the availability of resources for upcoming enhancements.

Iran Online, a truly International site

We have a large number of non-Iranians who visit Iran Online on regular basis.  They have a wide range of interests.  Some ask us to put them in-touch with the Iranian business community, importers and exporters.  Some others participate in the chat rooms.  Some are interested in Persian cuisine and ask for recipes. Some just want to learn about Iran and Persians.   We welcome our non-Iranian visitors and invite them to continue visiting us.   Furthermore, we plan to include more detailed information about Iran in English to better serve Iran Online non-Iranians visitors.

We want them to know

At the beginning, we relied heavily on the Internet search engines to promote Iran Online.  Every week, we checked various search engines hoping that Iran Online shows up at the top of Iranian Internet sites list.  The result was quite random. One week Iran Online was at the top and the next week it was no where to be found.  As the number of sites increased, the search engines became more ineffective.  After having a number of meetings, we decided to give up relying on the search engines.   Instead, we decided to make Iran Online one of the best Iranian sites if not the best. We believed that if our visitors found Iran Online worthy, they would help us promote it through "word of mouth".  We still think that it is the most effective way for attracting new visitors.  Therefore, we ask all of you to continue inviting your friends  to visit Iran Online and to take advantage of its services.  We also ask you to encourage Iranian businesses to advertise their products and services in your favorite Internet sites.

New Additions

Each Monday, we post new additions to Iran Online.  Our site visitors can read about the new material in the "What-is-new" page.  A link to the new additions is also provided in this page to allow quick access. In the last few weeks, we have been expanding "Iran Hall" section by adding images from various parts of Iran.  We have also provided data about Iran and its diverse population. The  "Newsroom" page has also been expanded during this period to include more sources of news.  Our visitors can access more than eighty news sources from all over the world.  Iran Online Newsroom has truly become an impartial gateway to all the major news sources available on the Internet.

Iran Online popularity has been steadily increasing.  Iran Online site alone receives 450,000 - 525,000 daily requests.  This is very encouraging and gives us more reason for further expanding Iran Online.  We are also in the process of expanding our infrastructure by adding new servers and software to accommodate the growth of Iran Online and  Manou & Associates Inc. client base.

This Issue

As always the articles posted in this issue are from a pool of viewers provided material.  We thank those whose articles are included here. The articles presented here cover a wide range of topics.  They do not necessarily reflect Iran Online or its staff viewpoints.   We also thank you and would like to remind you that we value your opinion. Please continue to send us your articles and comments.

Iran Online
September 1997

The IranOnline.com