Editor’s Note: NAILS is pleased to announce its online correspondent, Debbie Doerrlamm. Doerrlamm is a nail technician based in Ronkonkoma, N.Y. She is also the founder of World Wide Web Services, a company that designed and runs the NAILTECH mailing list and the BeautyTech website. These services reach hundreds of nail technicians, educators, salon owners, and other salon professionals daily. Doerrlamm will report on Internet happenings, new sites, tips to make you more cyber-savvy, and what nail technicians all over the world are talking about.

Debbie Doerrlamm, NAILS online correspondent

Debbie Doerrlamm, NAILS online correspondent

Are you online? What does “surfing the ‘net" mean? What is that “dot com” thing? What about the strange combination of numbers, letters, and symbols found on business cards, billboards, and ads? It’s all about getting online, through the Internet and other services. You might be surprised to find out that there are plenty of resources on the ‘net designed especially for nail technicians.

To get online, you need a computer (obviously) and special software. Many of the bigger online services, such as America Online (AOL) and Prodigy, will give you the software and a free month of trial usage. All you have to do is call and request it, or ask a friend who already has the service to request it for you.

The instant you sign up for any of these services, you just choose a screen name, which will be your e-mail address. Using your new e-mail address (mine is webmaster2@beautytech.com), you can access all sorts of sites, including information on how to sign up for a free subscription to the NAILTECH Mailing List (info@beautytech.com).

An Internet mailing list is like a roundtable discussion via e-mail. Subscribing to the list is free. Once you send an e-mail asking to subscribe, you will automatically start to receive posts (an e-mail message that is visible to all list subscribers) from other subscribers. You can read, save, delete, or reply to these posts, or add a post on a new topic to the list.

Hot topics on the NAILTECH List these past few months have been silk vs. Fibreglass wraps, pedicures, sculpting acrylics on nail biters, and what to do about allergic reactions.

Part of the fun of the Internet and other online services is ‘chat.’Chat is a real-time online conference, similar to talking on a CB Radio, but typing, not talking. There are “chat-rooms”or channels on more topics than you’d ever think existed! At first it can be a little confusing and overwhelming, but once you get the hang of reading these messages and responding, oh the fun you can have!

There is a chat session for nail technicians on AOL every Sunday night at 8:00 p.m EST. To access the session, simply click on the “People Connection” icon in the tool bar under the menus, or pull down the “Go To” menu and select “keyword...” Type in “people connection.”Click on “private room.”Enter the words “nail tech” and that’s it.

If you signed up with a service other than AOL, chances are you have the abilty to connect to the biggest  chat connection in the world, the IRC (Internet Relay Chat). Since instructions to chat in IRC are different than on AOL and similar systems, e-mail webmaster2@beautytech.com for instructions for joining in the IRC. Chat time for IRC is also 8:00 p.m. EST on Sunday nights. Hot topics in the IRC lately have been gels, airbrushing, and upcoming tradeshows.

The World Wide Web portion of the Internet is one of the more exciting things to experienced! What you will see here are documents filled with text, graphics, fill-in forms, and in some cases animated icons, mini movies and sounds! Most pages are “linked” to other pages and you can bounce from site to site as things interest you.

Your first stop on the Web should be BeautyTech. BeautyTech is a “Virtual Beauty Community” for the entire beauty industry. Inside BeautyTech, you will find specific areas for the nail technician (NAILTECH), hairstylist (CutingEdge), and salon owner (SalonTalk). While the CutingEdge and SalonTalk areas are still in their infancy, NAILTECH is growing everyday. The resources available in the NAILTECH website are educational and fun. They include listings of shows and classes, articles, nail art pictures, salon referral listings, and shopping.

Get out your “surfboard”and surf over to BeautyTech: Using AOL , pull down the “Go To”menu, select “keyword...” and type in “web.”Then type in the box: http://beautytech.com and it will take you to the site. Using most other services, start your Web Browser, then type in the box: http://beautytech.com.

Hope to see you all online real soon. Welcome to Cyber Space. . . enjoy your stay!

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