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[image ALT: Much of my site will be useless to you if you've got the images turned off!]
Bill Thayer

[image ALT: Cliccare qui per leggere la stessa pagina in Italiano.]
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Q: The links on your site don't work. I click on them and nothing happens.
A: The links usually do work, in fact: see this page.

Q: Your pages are a mess! Tables don't line up, font sizes are strange, and things just look ugly.
A: You're either using an old or inferior browser or using an adequate browser but disabling its basic features: see this page.

Q: I'm lost. I can't find anything.
A: This is a very large site, with about 14,000 webpages in eleven languages. You may not be looking correctly; after all, do you expect to walk into a large library and have the book you need jump into your hand? Slow down a second and think: see this page.

Q: I still can't find anything. Can you help me?
A: If it's something unusual, of course: I'll be very glad to. If you're just lazy, no. (Actually, I already have: what do you think this site is all about?)

Q: I think I found what I want, but the page is not in English. Can you translate it for me?

[image ALT: A British flag] 
[image ALT: an American flag] 
[image ALT: an Australian flag]
A: First make sure that the page does not in fact exist in English! If a page is not in English, at the top of the page you should find a British, American, or Australian flag: it may take you to the English-language page.

If, however, there really is no English page, you have two choices:

(a) You just need some small piece of information on it.

(b) You'd like the whole page translated.
In either case, write me. If it's (a), I'll almost always get back to you very quickly, and you'll have your answer. If it's (b), you'll have less luck, especially if the page is very long, because translation is a slow process: 1000 words takes about two and a half hours. I may help you narrow down what you need to a small part, and translate that.

Q: Many of your pages quote Greek, but all I get onscreen is garbage.
A: The polytonic Greek on almost all my pages is entered in Unicode; if you can't read the Greek on my site then — or the occasional text in Arabic, Coptic, Egyptian hieroglyphic, Etruscan, Gothic, Hebrew, Runes, or Russian — the odds are you are not Unicode-enabled. Now that Unicode is here to stay, do yourself a favor and do whatever you need to read it: not only for my site, but for many other sites out there. A good place to start is Display Problems? on the Unicode Consortium's site; an additional source of useful information is Alan Wood's Unicode Resources, which has information on specific versions of browsers and an extensive catalog of Unicode fonts.

Q: Can you recommend things to see, places to go in Italy or France? Do you have information about train schedules, museums, churches, photography? Can you recommend hotels or restaurants?
A: Tell me something about yourself and your interests, your time and budget constraints: be specific; I'll try to help. I like this kind of mail, actually, because in the process I often wind up learning even more about these places!

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Page updated: 22 Jan 15