Back in 1995 I was looking for information on the WWW, and noticed that there were quite a few good engine sites in the USA, and a couple in England, but nothing in Australia. At that time I decided to fill that niche as best I could.
At that time Steam & Engine was launched on a public access network called APANA. Although they provided a good starting point for very little money, the link was atrociously slow. After a year or so I moved to our sponsor of the time, WebMania. Then the site existed on its own dedicated server which I ran out of my own pocket (and the link was still too slow). In 2003 Steam & Engine moved to England! Thanks to the generosity of Paul Evans of www.semidiesel.com. Paul graciously allowed me to place S&E on one of his commercial servers - thanks mate. Now in 2009 S&E is again back in Australia hosted on a commercial server. I moved it back because I was finding it harder and harder to find time to build the custom hand grown HTML that the site has traditionally been made of. Now it is hosted within the Joomla Content Management System meaning I can tinker in the spare moments I have from time to time.
These days there are thousands of engine sites around the world, I still aim to provide one of the best with Steam & Engine. Rather than just provide dry information, I try to include a bit of human interest - I believe that the humans are more important to our hobby than the machines we struggle to bring to life.
I Paul Pavlinovich am a Computer Consultant specialising in System Architecture (Computer System Design). I used to operate my own company, but in 2000 I once again crossed to the dark side and became an employee. I was stationed in the USA four two and a half years working on a smart card system into Public Transit in the San Francisco Greater Bay Area. Today I am back in Australia and work for South East Water Limited in Melbourne (Victoria) in the 'us' Utility Services alliance.
My interests in steam and internal combustion engines started when I was around 6 or so. My father would "drag" me from exhibition to exhibition... back then I did not always want to go, but today I thank him for it. Although I have no formal mechanical or engineering qualifications I have built up enough skill to successfully tear down an engine and rebuild it.
One of the reasons I keep going in this hobby and maintain the enthusiasm required to keep this set of www pages up to date and growing is Mr Brice Adams. Brice started the Stationary Engine Mailing List and has kept his enthusiasm and good grace through out the trying times of running that list. Brice and I have become pretty good friends since we met, to the extent that I impose on him annually for lodging and transport to the Portland (Jay County) engine show in Indiana USA. On the days when I feel like simply deleting everything, his example keeps me going. Thanks Brice.
Over the last couple of years there has been a bit of change in pace. My sons joined Scouts and about six months later so did I as a leader. I find Scouting highly enjoyable and today am a section leader and operate one the of the region abseiling teams. As any SL will tell you, Scouting is only two hours a week (off).
This is Alex on a training course to become an Abseiling Participant to join the abseiling team.
One of the coolest things about Scouting (apart from annoying hundreds of kids all at once) is handing out recognition for achievements. This is Matthew receiving his Pioneer Cord from me during a district event.
Naturally I have almost no spare time anymore so I've been selling off my engines while maintaining my small collection of steam models and logging model railway items.
I continue to drive trolleys (speeders) for Puffing Billy Railway and once or twice a month drive the "Track Patrol". On this I get together with some fellow railway nuts and we inspect the line, bridges, signalling, etc. for any defects or vandalism before the first train runs.
Where else can you find me?