The thought popped into my head the other day about something from my teenage years… Bulletin Board Systems (BBSes). While I never formally owned, operated, or even had a modem to connect to one, my best friend in high school did.
I basically lived over at his house for the majority of my high school years, playing on his computer. It was faster than mine, his had a CD-ROM, and he had a modem. He decided to spin up a BBS, “The Cartoon Express.” It had nothing to do with cartoons, and it wasn’t speedy, but it was the best we could come up with at the time. He had a few of those old shareware cd’s (Nightowl) that he would host, and I’d spend hours going through them and saving things to disks to take home to my computer.
The BBS didn’t have many users, but it was fun to manage and play around on. If I spent the night at his house, I’d dial up to other BBSes around town and poke around to see what all they had. While it wasn’t a lot, it was pretty cool in my eyes. I loved the ANSI art, and even got into trying to make screens myself. But then, the internet came along, and that became a lot more exciting.
While I was reminiscing the other day, I started looking around and there is apparently still a small community hosting boards today. Synchronet, BBS software that’s been around forever, is still active and you can download and run your own BBS via telnet. I’ve started playing around with it, and it’s quite fun.
While I’m sure it’ll be a complete waste of time as I won’t follow through with it, I am enjoying myself and getting lost in memories of a time far gone. Ah… the good ole days!