[Chugalug] Reminiscing about times I was too young to remember!
mrmaxx at spamcop.net
Sun Oct 14 00:04:21 UTC 2012
On Sat October 13 2012 2:33:58 PM wes wrote:
The problem with writing about using these services is any description we
could give in words would make it seem lame compared to what's around today. I
still occasionally connect to BBSes and play games and trade messages and
such, but it's mostly for nostalgic purposes as those methods are largely
impractical with email and IM in the state it is today. 20 years ago it was
really hard to even imagine things evolving like they did.
I suppose it's somewhat akin to reading books compared to watching TV. In the
early days of TV, the quality was so bad that it was actually easier to
imagine the world you were being thrown into by reading about it than by
trying to fill in the gaps left by the screen. As time moves forward, these
gaps are closing more and more, and as such, the visual medium is catching up
to the written word in its ability to convey a story or setting.
In a world paid for by ads, it's even harder to imagine how these old-timey
services even existed. It all started as an academic exercise, and then
expanded to some of the larger companies with needs to communicate data more
efficiently. It was a wide-open infrastructure until people started abusing it.
To finally get to your question after too much ado, I would get on and start
looking for people who liked the same things I did. Not easy to find for
someone who likes things not a whole lot of other people liked. Message
boards, newsgroups, etc. A lot of research material was being offered in text
format at the time, so I did a lot of digging in those fields too. All text, on
a 80x25 terminal, moving at exactly the speed of mud. It was still faster than
schlepping down to the library and digging through the books manually..... but
only if what I was looking for was even available. With BBSes came color and
crude animations, and thus the cycle repeats.
in summary: it was just like what we have today, minus the pictures and
Yeah, I used Compuserve for a short time. Then I discovered BBSes. MUCH
better. Better graphics (mostly,) better games, easier to move around on. I
quit using Compuserve after a VERY short time. Never used AO-Hell, or GEnie...
I *may* have logged on to GEnie once or twice, but that was about it. It's
been so long since I used CompuSmurf, I don't even really remember much about
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