Inkwell: Authors and Artists
Cliff Figallo (fig) Thu 7 Apr 05 14:02
You're right, Rheingoldian One. The WELL would complete the circle that began with BBSs. It would be run on a PC in someone's basement. I was in such trouble with so many people by the time Gail describes that it all becomes a blur thinking about it. Hell, even David Hawkins walked out and, to my utter astonishment, refused to return to his job. Holy Fucking Shit! We were not only sysopless, I'd been rebuked by one of the precious elders of the community. And having my wife-to-be working for me during that time did not lead to the warm fuzzies on the homefront. The social chaos of that time, combined with the technical confusion and ownership juggling just proved how truly indestructible the WELL had become. Maybe the Loma Prieta earthquake was the high point of my years there. It sure opened the collective heart and made us appreciate our being connected. It was followed immediately by the Mandel Meltdown so meticulously examined in Katie's article and book. And then things started tumblin'. So, what's our next momentous caper, gang? Shall we lead the world into the post peak oil years?
David Gans (tnf) Thu 7 Apr 05 17:09
We're restoring Jerry Garcia in the basement right now.
Uncle Jax (jax) Thu 7 Apr 05 18:01
As long as he doesn't dance and sing, "Puttin' on the Ritz".
Peace, order and good government (paulbel) Thu 7 Apr 05 18:03
And he's going to pitch for the Hoboken Zephyrs.
Gail Williams (gail) Fri 8 Apr 05 00:01
We're down the the home stretch of this conversation, which is slated to run through noon Friday. For anyone who's interested, the invitation to join or return to The WELL is good through the month, and is referenced at http://www.well.com/twenty/ The place to continue talking on the inside is the <welltales.> conference. To find out where Howard and Cliff are and what they're up to elsewell, just look at the first few posts in this topic. Start at zero: <0> I like to add features and do some development. We've been static or stable for a long time, and personally I'm delighted by social photo sites like fotolog and flickr. I'd love to work out the business logic and the resources to wonderful visual tools and toys for interaction within our ongoing community. Just for example. That's the main thing I'd love to see the staff and the community get better at in the future.
John Payne (satyr) Fri 8 Apr 05 10:01
Heh! I've gotten caught up (and technically over my head) in how the Well's software (user experience) could be improved more than once, most notably having started a largish set of topics in <meta.>, mostly during July, 2000, the majority of which have since been killed. These mostly related to the organizational structure of topics and conferences, not something that could easily be changed, nor that could be changed obviously and abruptly without ripples of resistance among users. Poor timing on my part, no doubt. Our parent company, Salon, was struggling for its survival, and any schemes that meant new investment were all but out of the question. I haven't exactly changed my mind about those ideas, but I've lost most of my attachment to them, and don't now have time to spare to get involved with implementing them, even if I did have the chops, which is doubtful. PicoSpan is as it is in no small part because of what was practical, given available hardware, twenty years ago, and if it were being designed from scratch today it would be very different. But, you know, it really *does* work very well, and it's really not so hard to use once you get used to a few basic commands and they start to roll off your fingertips without really having to think about it. I can't speak to Engaged, since I've hardly used it (not at all recently), except for the limited version through which this conference and <pre.vue.> are world-readable, but based on what others have said there's a gradual drift towards preferring it. Certainly it's easier for new users to learn. (See note below.) There's a lot that *could* be done to fill out the possibilities of user interaction, but, as <gail> was at some pains to point out to me a few years ago, there's a core user experience here that shouldn't be messed with, and changes should therefore be approached with due caution. It's amusing to think that we might have undergone a role reversal on this issue over the intervening time. ;-) Note: I use the links that Engaged automates in my posts as a matter of principle, even though I'm not logged in via Engaged myself. Not only do they provide added utility to those using Engaged, but they provide a standard format for certian references that, by now, most PicoSpan users recognize and readily interpret, and in some cases their content can be pasted into the PicoSpan command line with no editing.
David Gans (tnf) Fri 8 Apr 05 14:45
Our next interview has taken center stage, and this is the moment when the Inkwell team thanks all our participants for their time and energy. So: thank you all for being here. I also want to say that the conversation does not have to end -- and I hope it doesn't. All of you are invited and encouraged to continue.
Low and popular (rik) Fri 8 Apr 05 14:48
It's been going on for 20 years now. Why stop now?
wish you the very beat (tinymonster) Sat 9 Apr 05 11:29
John Payne (satyr) Sun 10 Apr 05 10:18
<pre.vue.>'s Question of the Week, now running for a second week, is What would you miss the most if the Well wasn't here? <pre.vue.57.1856-> will take you directly to where it starts.
Randy Tinkerman (rmt) Thu 4 Jan 07 15:40
Nearly two years after this topic, and many of you stimulated a flood of memories which i have ever treasured, even during my times, sometimes long, away from here. I joined in '85 or perhaps '86 (trying to find a bit of R&R from building that first windplant), off and on through the 90's, and about two months ago, from Germany where i've reincarnated. thanks all for the memories. i swear i still believe i coined the word dWELLer, but that could be hubris or addling. i loved how this community shaped my consciousness. login was, and luckily still is, rmt... though in those days i often used Alpha 10 as a pseud. I remember being asked for permission to allow posts to go into some book about the WELL, and i do remember reading faster than Pico could scroll. Be WELL, all.
Gail Williams (gail) Thu 4 Jan 07 16:10
Keep on with that wind energy, Randy. You do good work.
Randy Tinkerman (rmt) Fri 5 Jan 07 14:59
Vielen Dank, Gail. Can't believe how much progress we've made, and how much farther we still have to go. And how about some kudos to you... just getting my feet wet here, again, but nice to be back. You can't believe the memories just by reading some of the logins. And if you're interested, i wrote on the blog today about the release of an amazing Iraqi Peace Plan, published by Independent UK, written by the former Defense Minister. Plan is here: http://news.independent.co.uk/world/middle_east/article2125419.ece I'll try to find a place to discuss it as i wander around.
David Gans (tnf) Sat 6 Jan 07 17:19
Randy! Nice to see from you!
David Kline (kline) Fri 22 Feb 08 10:11
Randy -- greetings from a fellow renewable partisan at National Renewable Energy Lab in Colorado.
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