In late 1990 many people interested in a coming astronomical
event, the total solar eclipse of July '91, found themselves
contemplating a journey to southern Baja California. The path of
the eclipse passed over the big island of Hawaii, the city of La
Paz, and on over mainland Mexico.
As an astronomer, my son, Tom Metcalf, was active on the news
group "sci.astro". When questions began appearing about what
might be expected in traveling to this "unknown" region of Baja
California, he asked if he might pass on my name as a source of
some information. I agreed, and so began the long process which
has led to these "Information Pages".
When the number of email queries became overwhelming in early
'91, I prepared a number of "ftp" files to answer common
questions, and provide information on what to expect in Baja
California. Interested netters (there was no "Internet" at that
time) could download the files and print them out. These files
were given the name "Baja California Information Files."
Following the eclipse there appeared to be a continuing
interest in the files, and so I left them up for downloading.
Continuing email questions prompted further updating of the
information files, and even some expansion - and I had thought
it was all over after the eclipse!
In the Fall of '95 I became interested in learning the new
medium of the World Wide Web, and so used the conversion of the
Baja California Information Files as a way of learning the
techniques required. Originally, I maintained both the new web
pages and the old "ftp" files, but that became too much of a
burden, and so the Baja California Information Files were
removed in 1996, leaving only the "Baja California
Information Pages." Whereas there used to be about four visits to
the FTP site each week, there are now (1998) hundreds of
visits to the website each day!