Sirius Astronomer NEWS

Posted On August 12, 2002

We are hoping that you did!

There are perhaps two very significant things that you may have noticed this time.

The newsletter arrived much earlier than has become usual

The quality of the graphics / photographs and paper are all improved significantly.

Did you receive your copy earlier than you have been?

Over the past year we have seen some significant deterioration in the timely delivery of the Sirius Astronomer newsletter. Some members have been complaining that their copy has not been delivered until well after the OCA general meeting (held on the second Friday of each month).

The Sirius Astronomer is mailed out purely by the efforts of one long-term OCA trustee. None-other than our Treasurer/Membership Secretary Charlie Oostdyk. The printers deliver the newsletter to him (all 850 copies). Charlie then prints out a label for every member and then sticks these onto each and every copy of the newsletter. He then delivers the mail to the Costa Mesa post-office for bulk-mail delivery. The delivery problems have all occurred due to "improvements" in the local postal facilities and their use of automated mailing/sorting equipment. The sad fact is that our newsletter was not the most compatible with these new systems - which meant that invariably our mailing got left at the bottom of the stack of deliveries to do.

Through the introduction of an additional fold in the newsletter and a slight repositioning of the mailing label we seem to have struck gold as far as being able to make our newsletter more friendly to these automated systems. The initial signs are that our newsletter is being delivered more promptly than ever - with many people receiving their copy prior to the OCA meeting.

Please let us know if the delivery of the Sirius Astronomer Newsletter has improved by filling out the survey to the right

We hope that the delivery has improved- but if it has not we need to know about it so we can continue to work on the problem and get it fixed!

Did you notice the improvement in print quality - especially the quality of graphics?

Take a look at the July newsletter and compare the quality of the images/photos with the August version. You should all see that we are using better/brighter paper and that graphics quality has improved drastically.

Did you receive your Sirius Astronomer earlier than usual?

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How did we do this?

We have improved the printing quality by moving our newsletter printing to a completely new printing company based in Irvine. This printer allows us to submit the newsletter entirely electronically (we upload a high-quality print format file to them via the web). The mechanism for actually producing the newsletter is then handled via the high quality and high speed printing systems they have available.

How much MORE does this cost the club?

Actually - the cost of printing using this new printer has nearly dropped in half!

It is not often that you can improve a problem by throwing less money at it!

 More improvements - including COLOR!

Due to the drop in the costs for producing the newsletter we have decided to produce a special version of the Sirius Astronomer every quarter. This version will have a full-color section to allow us to display some of the remarkable full color and high quality graphics that many of our members achieve with their own equipment. As well as providing this new full-color section the entire publication for that month will be printed at an even higher quality than normal. The overall annual costs for printing the newsletter are now increased by just $80 per month over the prior version. Well worth the small increase I think!

The October version of the Sirius Astronomer should be the first version which includes the full color section. Look for further announcements from the new Sirius Astronomer Editor, Darren Thibodeau regarding this new capability.