In 1996 when “Netscape” became widely available Dr Ashir Kumar (class of 1962), chair of the newly formed website committee1, got the first AOA website created on his Department /MSU server. This was at a time when he barely knew how to use a computer, and there weren’t many organizations’ websites around to model after. The very first posting on that site was an audio message by Dr Keswani which he gladly provided upon Ashir’s request. Here is his audio message:
The Homepage (the term used those days) was launched at the AOA convention in Toronto, Aug 1996, and the information was published in the “Journal of the Aiimsonians of America” (oh yes, we actually had an official printed publication twice a year till 2004, edited by Drs Pratap Gupta and Dhirendra Bana). That piece is reproduced below:
Aiimsonians Homepage was recently established on the internet . Besides improving communications with AOA members, the Homepage also provides information regarding the AOA, collections of pictures and other memorable history. Several AOA members, esp. younger aiimsonians (some of whom are still completing residency and fellowship training in the U.S.) have already started communicating with Kusum through e-mail after discovering the AOA through its Homepage. We are hopeful that electronic communication will facilitate dissemination of information about AOA to junior aiimsonians, and thereby, increase their participation in various activities of AOA. The AOA Homepage is also linked to other relevant internet sites that provide e-mail addresses at AIIMS and enable one to post messages at the AIIMS Alumni Bulletin Board. To those Aiimsonians who are still not comfortable with computers, I’d suggest the foll.: find a computer, get an e-mail address, and learn how to be part of the electronic communication system. That is the way to go!
Ashir Kumar MD
Chair, Academic Council of AOA
Index of the that Homepage was as follows:
Professor N H Keswani’s message to Aiimsonians (.wav audio)
Treasures from the past:
AOA Awards / recognitions
AOA Newsletter articles, some selected ones
AIIMS – Pictorial history, several old photos (collected by Drs Mani Bala and Ashir Kumar from various sources)
AOA Sponsored activities
AOA Membership form
Around 2004 another website committee2 chaired by Dr Narayan Verma (class of 1970) got a “make-over” of the Homepage done. AOA convention registration could now be done on an electronic form at this beautiful green colored Homepage, now called AOA website. Basic AOA Directory information (out of the detailed information contained in the original printed edition of the Encyclopedic Directory published by Dr Mani Bala, Dr Dhirendra Bana, Cora Bana, and late Dr S P Gill in 1997) now became available online. This was done after vigorous discussion in the General Body meeting regarding privacy concerns. Dr Aditya Bardia (class of 1997) joined the website committee in 2005 and helped nurture the website till 2011, when another website committee 3 chaired by Dr Manjari Joshi (class of 1970) got another “make-over” done by Drs Munish Sharma (class of 1995) and Aditya Bardia, both computer wizards. It was now dynamic, interactive, state of the art website that was launched in the convention in San Diego, Ca, Aug 2011.
Now with boom of smart phones and tablets, the website took another rehaul to dynamic adaptive interface in 2015.
1Ashir Kumar (Chair), Kusum Kumar, Mani Bala
2 Narayan Verma (Chair), Cora Bana, Dhirendra Bana