A few months back I wrote a couple articles about the Internet and it's most popular feature, the World Wide Web. At the time, I mentioned the existence of many interesting automobile-related "sites." As a refresher, sites are computers on the Internet which offer information on a particular subject for users to browse. Well, like all things Internet, the only thing you can count on is change. Some of the sites I mentioned just a few months ago have changed their addresses or are gone altogether while other new sites have popped up, so an update seemed appropriate.
The most biggest single news is that Ferrari SPA, always a technology leader, has embraced the Internet and put up their own Official Ferrari world wide web site. This site complements the many "unofficial" sites put up by fans of Ferrari around the world. The Official Ferrari World Wide Web site runs on computers in where else but Italy and can be found at: http://www.ferrari.it/ferrari/
Upon entry to the site, one is greeted by a red background with the logo shown below. Clicking the logo allows one to enter into a whole array of online, up-to-date information about Ferrari - the man, the company, the cars, the brand, the factory, the clubs, and the news. But before one reaches the meat of the site, a screen is displayed which allows choice of language, either Italian or English, and on that screen is an interesting quote from Enzo himself:
"Molta gente importante mi invita ad andare in questa o quella cittá. Io rispondo che non vado perché vedrebbero me, un uomo come un altro. Li invito invece a venire a Maranello perché qui possono vedere come facciamo le nostre macchine e parlare anche con i miei collaboratori." ("Many important people invite me to go to this or that city. I respond that I do not go because they would see me, a man like any other. Instead, I invite them to come to Maranello because here they can see how we make our cars and they can also talk with my collaborators.")
The Internet provides a convenient way to visit Maranello without leaving the comfort of one's own office.
Ferrari's Internet site is elegant and simple. The screens always present just a few choices, all shown with beautiful full color graphics. By the way, because the site, like the cars, has been designed to high aesthetic standards, a web browser which supports graphics is a must (but most of the graphics are fairly small so a 14.4 bps connection should suffice). From the main menu you'll find paths to follow on the history of Ferrari, the models, racing, Oggetti Ferrari (Ferrari Style), the clubs (owners and fan clubs), a guest book, and Ferrari news.
It is this last item which I find most interesting. Sure, you'll be able to peruse the models section to see information on your favorite Ferrari (they are all there) but you could get that from a book. The news, however, is something that lends itself particularly well to the electronic medium. Here you can find the latest breaking news on the company, the cars, Formula 1 racing, other competition (IMSA, Challenge, etc.), and on the Ferrari clubs.
Just prior to going to press on this article I was able to jump online to see how the 24 hours of Daytona was progressing. There were 8 different postings made to this section during the course of the race: