Saturday, April 09, 2011

That's, like, a million in blog years.

Fifteen years ago, I had a 14.4k modem in a Pentium 133-powered Compaq Deskpro, but no 'net connection at home. The only web surfing I did was occasionally at work; it wasn't 'til a pending layoff coincided with AOL offering flat-rate monthly pricing that I bothered installing the internets on my home machine.

Had I been aware of it, I could have pointed my shiny new Explorer icon at the web log of one Charles G. Hill, which is celebrating its fifteenth birthday today. By way of comparison, my first blog post is so recent that it was typed on the same computer I'm using to type this one.

19 comments:

Anonymous said...

Don't fret too much. Some of us that read your blog knew/know CPM and DOS.

jed said...

I think my 1st personal site went up in 1997. Might have been '98. Can't really say I've maintained a continuously updated presence the whole time, but there's always been at least a static site someplace or another.

RevGreg said...

I ran a dial-up BBS using a rack of 300baud modems and a 1.2 MEGAhertz Apple //e when I was in high school/college and were I not the victim of an investor who got cold feet not long before the launch, I likely would be living off of the proceeds of being one of the first ISPs serving north-central PA (we couldn't secure other funding and he lost over $30,000 because he took the equipment we had purchased and didn't try to sell it until it was worthless.)

Then ran two moderately successful blogs (one humor blog, one political) for about six years...quit blogging in 2004. Have flirted with doing so again and have (thankfully) not gotten back into it.

To give you an idea where we were in the taxonomy of political weblogs, we published a short essay called "Civilization and It's Enemies" by a then unknown author by the name of Lee Harris (as well as follow up pieces) whom we had come to know and who didn't want to published the essay he had sent us to read until we literally BEGGED him to. It flourished into a book which I *highly* recommend (http://www.amazon.com/Civilization-Its-Enemies-Stage-History/dp/0743257499) and I treasure my signed copy!

Unfortunately, with popularity in the area of political commentary came more idiocy than any human being should ever be exposed to...and, really, it's just a big echo chamber for the most part. We initially did it out of enjoyment and it became drudgery...I miss it sometimes but when I start thinking about the frothing stupidity I had to deal with on a daily (if not hourly) basis, I don't have ANY desire to do that again!

Anonymous said...

RevGreg:

Oh, the horror!

I supplement my Socialist Insecurity disability check by working from home, helping DSL customers setup/untangle/restart their modems wireless connections. Between very elderly people (What's a modem?) and kids who know everything about computers (Me: No, you cannot have two DSL modems on the same phone line. Kid: But my friend uses the same equipment and he has THREE modems on his phone line!) I have a deep appreciation for the ignorance and general stupidity that infests our Republic.

As a side note, I no longer wonder how O'Bungler and half of the Congress got elected. I'm just greateful for (most) of the other half.

cap'n chumbucket

Old NFO said...

Good for him! That is quite an accomplishment!

North said...

I started my blog on an abacus. About 6 weeks ago. That is 6 weeks in blog years.

CGHill said...

@RevGreg: I don't really blame you for backing away from it. Once it becomes drudgery, it's better to wash your hands of it and go on to something different.

I did the BBS thing once upon a time, albeit on the Commodore side of things; even ran a FidoNet conference for a while.

Jim said...

I miss 14.4 kbaud modems, their handshake sequence was so much shorter than the subsequent faster ones.

That said I'm perfectly happy regarding my wireless connection to my DSL pipe to the world as notable for its occasiona absence, rather than its presence.

Jim

RevGreg said...

@CG Hill: I don't it was drudgery per se that drove me away...it was the pigeonholing. Since I was a conservative blogger it was generally expected that I would conform to certain views...but frankly I don't give a damn about homosexuality, while I'm basically pro-life I don't see any upside to making abortion illegal, I think the War on Drugs has caused more harm than good, and I think the government has NO business legislating morality. It's one thing to fight one side, I had to fight BOTH sides. The firearms rights issue can be much the same...I admire those who can stick in there greatly.

Shane said...

In 1975, I remember logging onto a remote minicomputer the size of a refrigerator. We were at 110 baud -- about 10 characters per second via a special landline. A couple of terminals could handle 300 baud -- about 30 characters per secound.

Tam said...

How come I can't congratulate Charles Hill on his 15th blogiversary without it turning into a "Who Used The Oldest Modem" contest?

Shane said...

Sorry about that, us old fogies start reminiscing about the old days and get carried away.

CGHill said...

And fogies, by definition, are old. (At the other end of the age spectrum: whippersnappers.)

Tam said...

I'm trying to formulate some theorem that states that "Any mention in an internet post of a piece of computing equipment older than X years will, within Z comments, degenerate into a discussion about which slide-rule jockey slung punch cards first." :D

Example:

"Hey, the other day I found 2600 in perfect shape at a garage sale for $5, and it came with a copy of Space Invaders! We took it home and played all afternoon!"

...will, within an hour, result in someone posting that they were writing code on an IBM 360 before some other participant in the discussion was born.

Dr. StrangeGun said...

Blog 1 happened sometime around 1997 and has been long lost to the intarwebs due to residing on the college's server and my graduating ~7 years ago.

At the time I was running a homebuilt AMD K5-100 machine running '95.

That was a tremendous improvement over my previous system, a 386DX40 running... '95. That machine was almost completely of scavenged parts, having 4Mb of 30 pin RAM, two ~200M hard drives (system on one, swap on the other), a dusty Trident VGA card, and a Hyundai monitor with one working gun (red) set up as a monochrome VGA. First thing I ever bought new was a 14" packard bell monitor, proving I was capable of utter idiocy back then.

Justthisguy said...

Jerry Pournelle was first. Everybody claims to read his site, but it's never on anyone's blogroll.

Zendo Deb said...

The history of tech, part 1. Floppy drives (the 8.5 inch variety), punched cards, slow as hell modems. (300 baud anyone?)

Those were the days huh? Not hardly.

Though I do think it was easier to find valid information on the internet - as opposed to the rumors that pervade today - when the best tool was Gopher.

Justthisguy said...

Oh, Hi, Zendo! Are you still living aboard? Are the Flarduh laws about that getting on yer nerves?

Justthisguy said...

Dang! It does seem to me that there are a bunch of grumpy old spinsters and grumpy old bachelors here, who like to keep a pistol handy.