Inkwell: Authors and Artists
Gail Williams (gail) Sat 23 Oct 99 15:26
Hello, Geno. What was it like being a subject of a book? You must not feel too abused by the process. Any bones to pick with Indra? Stuff he left out or should have?
Vendor of mirrors for the middle-aged (catch22) Sat 23 Oct 99 16:16
I must confess to not having been around in the glory pre-net days, never having had the thrill of mixing with virus hatchers, and not much liking the atmosphere created by this author and his old buddy. The whole thing appears to me to be an exercise in middle-aged nostalgia for times that should have gotten better and did. For most of us.
Jef Poskanzer (jef) Sat 23 Oct 99 16:46
Indra darling, when you discovered the net in, what, mid 1980s? were you aware at the time of the existing net culture that had already been thriving for over a decade? Are you aware of that culture now?
Jesus Slut Fucker (jesuschrist) Sat 23 Oct 99 17:26
In a message to Geno, Gail sez: GW> How does it feel to be subject of a book? Any bones to pick GW> with Indra? This was not the first time I was mentioned in print. You might check out George Smith's: The Virus Creation Labs. Also you might have noticed that I am mentioned frequently in the bible. So this time I was a bit more prepared. IF YOU CAN'T ALWAYS GET WHAT YOU WANT...TIE HER UP. -JESUS AXION Now, I can't tell you how poorly my story was told in the bible. Time and time again Peter and his boys got it wrong. You might notice though that they made themselves look pretty damn good. I mean hell, no one ever mentions Peter's perference for sodomizing chickens. Indra told mainly his story in his book. Yes, there are a few things I'd wish he'd have gone into more detail on. Cleton and what a real asshole he was in reality. How my Bogus Message Writter program worked and how it drove the fido gawds crazy but it wasn't my story, it was Indra's. He did a fine job and I enjoyed the book. DAD THIS IS A FUCKED UP PLAN! -MY ACTUAL WORDS ON THE CROSS Anyway Gail I'm hoping Indra will write a sequel. I've even offered to help. I think he should call it: Cyber Trailer Park Trash. -Jesus, Son of Gawd
Reva Basch (reva) Sat 23 Oct 99 17:33
Jesus Slut Fucker (jesuschrist) Sat 23 Oct 99 17:49
In a message to Jesus, catch22 sez: C> I must confess to not having been around in the glory pre-net C> days never having the thrill of mixing with virus hackers and C> not much liking the atmosphere created by the author and his C> old buddy. The whole thing appears to me to be an exercise in C> middle-aged notalgia for times that should have gotten better C> and did. Sharon, Sharon, Sharon. These were not pre-net days. Fidonet isn't even as old as the internet and is still alive and well. It is international and still a lot of fun. Chances are if you like the Well you'd like Fidonet. Research it on the Web and maybe you'll find something you like. -Jesus
catch22 (catch22) Sat 23 Oct 99 18:00
I appreciate your solicitude. However, the key point I was making is that I find your behavior boorish and the author's twaddle sophomoric.
Fisher of Men (vasudha) Sat 23 Oct 99 18:45
I find the author an excellent writer. Quite good with words. I like his taste in friends (Alaster McIntosh, who is one of my heros in the whole world). I think Jesus Slut Fucker is funny. But that's just my sense of humor. And then again it's not *my* religion he is making fun of. But part of what makes him funny, to me, is how irritated he makes some people become. Sorry.
Jesus Slut Fucker (jesuschrist) Sat 23 Oct 99 19:10
catch22, who is really just too fucking stupid to live sez: C> I appreciate your solicitude. However, the key point I was C> was making is I find your behavior boorish and the author's C> twaddle sophomoric. Now Sharon, you can't lie to Jesus. The truth of the matter is I exposed your ignorance and now your backtracking. I suggest my dear Sharon the fault is not in the stars but in you. Take a laxative or get laid maybe you'll feel better. OH GOD THAT THING IS BIG! -ALL OF SLUT FUCKERS LADY FRIENDS Additionally as official conference moderator I demand you show us your tits. -Jesus
David Chaplin-Loebell (dloebell) Sat 23 Oct 99 19:15
I do think that some of the groups that were using various networks and online technologies in the late 80s and early 90s were interesting, vibrant, and unique. For whatever reason, most of the gathering places of these groups were hugely fragmented when the web came along. Despite <catch22>'s dismissiveness, I think this is a real phenomenon, one that characterizes the current state of The Well, among other things.
Jesus Slut Fucker (jesuschrist) Sat 23 Oct 99 21:37
Yes, Fidonet is not what it once was, however there are over 20,000 or so BBS's in the US alone. Fido suffers from poor leadership or they could easily take advantage of the web. Still the messaging software is still a lot better than anything you see here on the Well. Also Netscape and Mickeysoft could learn a thing about file transfer from fido technology. -Jesus
Geno et al (indra) Sat 23 Oct 99 22:52
It's just after 5:30am here and there's lightning over the woods to the south and a hell of a wind blowing. Stayed up to watch the Tyson fight - what a fiasco, particularly coming straight after Naz's dirty maul in Detroit last night - saw the computer was still glowing in the dark so came to check this. Anyone offended by Geno (Jesus SF), he's just doing what he does. He's a softy really, behind all the blather. You might care to check out an interview I did with him (http://www.cybergypsies.com/geno-jesus.html). Geno, please don't insult Lizabeth, she is making a valiant attempt to interview me. Hello Jef (#28), I first got online (not the internet) in 1984 and at the time was the first person I knew who had ever used a computer of any kind. I'd been asked to write an ad about this thing called a modem and decided to test it first. So I was very much at sea and rather dumbfounded to discover that, as you say, there had been this unknown world out there for years. Most of the things I was involved in, Fidonet, Greennet, the various multi-user games, dated from that period or not long before, so I was never much involved with what had gone before. Some of my friends on Shades, for eg, had been around when Essex MUD was developed, that being the director progenitor of Shades and forerunner of all the thousands of Lambda and Diku and other MUDs that now exist all over the net. In answer to your question, I knew that I had stumbled into something beyond my experience, but I never really did get to know all that much about what had gone before. I have read about it since. Cybergypsies is the stories of people I knew and wasn't intended to be a history or view of the net. The stories unravel during the decade between the invention of the Apple Mac and the coming of the Web Sharon (#27), I don't want to say that the pre-Web era was a golden age, just that I enjoyed being online more in those days. The virus thing was only one very small part of it. Partly what made that time so exciting for me was that I was very deeply involved in human rights work online via Greennet, which I no longer am. During the Gulf War, when we were working with the Kurds, there was a real sense that at least in Britain we were close to achieving a breakthrough, that we were mobilising irresistible pressure on our government into doing more than pay lip service to human rights. The old 1991 postings on Greennet are still there, in the mideast.kurds conference, and reading them back now they seem so charged with naive hope. I stopped writing for Amnesty in 1997, after Bosnia, Myanmar, Rwanda and countless other disasters, I found myself having to whip up passion rather than just feeling it. The last thing I did for Amnesty was an interview with Don McCullin, the photographer, about his feelings after thirty years of documenting human rights disasters. I asked him if he ever looked back over his old pictures and he said, "When you go into your attic and you fish out some of those old colour magazines as I often do, and look at what I've done, it all looks rather like a veneer, that's faded because it's been up in the attic. It's kind of faded like newspapers, they go yellow and faded and that's what our memories become, our minds become." Given the power of his pictures, and his reputation, I thought that was terribly sad (anyone who doesn't know Don's work, do check it out via Amazon or the search engines - or mail me email@example.com if you want to know more) but it was exactly what I felt when I looked back over my work for Amnesty and the work we did on Greennet - old, faded and turning yellow. :)
Reply to Vasudha (indra) Sun 24 Oct 99 04:37
Hello Marguerite, (#18) yes I was and am very deeply influenced by Hindu ideas - and those of other Indian religions. At the school I went to, Mayo College, in Ajmer (near Pushkar lake, which you will surely know, having belonged to Swami Muktananda's sampradaya) we had Hindus of various sects, Muslims (Sunni and Shi'a), Jews, Christians of various demoninations, Buddhists (Mahayana, Hinayana and Tibetan), Jains and Parsis. We grew up together knowing a lot about each other's religions, partly because we all celebrated each other's major festivals - dozens of holidays and feast days, wonderful for schoolboys - and learned each other's prayers and traditions and tales... ...but I have not heard your story before. Where does it come from and what was the vizier's reply?
More to Vasudha (indra) Sun 24 Oct 99 07:19
Marguerite, you said >It seems the meme of different worlds as different states of >consciousness and not actually *substantial* in and of themselves >as we ordinarily think of "substantial", comes up over and over >in Hindu stories.(I can give other examples.)" Please do, I would love to hear them. >Did you first think about this as a result of your contact with Luna? What I described above (#13) were more Luna's ideas than mine, but I applied them when struggling to work out how to write my book, which contained stories from dozens of different people inhabiting many different worlds, all of which to me seemed equally real. Luna, in her power, in the Vortex, was a mesmerising, dazzling person. I never did find out who she "really" was, no-one did, but the one time she spoke to me "out of character", ie as her human self, she said "if you met me in real life, you wouldn't look at me twice and wouldn't want to know me. I am lonely, a bitter person. I murder myself daily. I come here to die, so that Luna can live." I'm no psychologist, but it seems obvious that we all do this, to some greater or lesser degree, in our everyday lives. We all have roles (mother, golfer, raconteur, mountain climber, project manager) which we relish, of which we can say, when I'm doing or being such and such, I feel absolutely alive, and other roles which are "just not me". Whoever-played-Luna saw her/him/self as having two roles, one the human being in the real world, the other Luna in the Vortex. Of the two, s/he chose to regard Luna as having the "real" life and lived for the moment when the modem went on and the portal of the Vortex scrolled up onto her screen.
Fisher of Men (vasudha) Sun 24 Oct 99 08:11
There was a slippage in the messages. I meant for this one to follow <38> I think the story is from the "Yoga Vaishista" The author is himself sort of mythical. Like a Homer. His name's "Vaishista," if i remember correctly. I will find out Aaggggggggggg. But I will have to wait to go upstate (soon) to where I keep my books so I can really goggle my memory. I will find out. I also sending an e-mail to my friend Swami Shankarananda in Melbourne. It was his job to remember. And he's an ex-Shakespeare scholar. So he may have something interesting to add. I think the upshot of the story is that the King could no longer find any peace after this incident and so became motivated to do unusual things, for a King, in order to try to get at the bottom of what was going on. He goes on to try to find out who he really is, what is his true identity. So it turns into a quest for the Self. Leads to other adventures. He becomes a King/savant. It took a while before they could calm him down. He could've run away a la Siddhartha Gautama. Or he may have fired the Vizier and brought in other consultants. Or perhaps the Vizier gave him The Teaching. I believe this story is used by people giving instruction in Advaita Vedanta. "Only Brahman is real...etc." But these stories get spun differently depending on from what linage is the person who is telling them. And what they are trying to emphasize. I may be wrong about the Yoga Vaishista. It could be straight from an Upanishad. Used by Vendantins. Which one? I will just have to look it up. There was a comic book series a while back that did something similar. It featured a postman who went to sleep in one world only to be someone in another world while ostensibly asleep in the first. And vis versa for the other world. It was a gimmick for two comic book companies to merge their worlds and join together their stable of characters into one series. At the end (spoiler) the postman, Akira-like, becomes a giant who straddles the two worlds. He merges identity somehow with the writer of the comic. And is able to have whatever he wills. And becomes "God." It's uncomfortable for the other characters, to say the least. Since he's not a particularly nice or happy "God." The end, like the ending in _Akira_, the Japenese anime, was a bit of a let down to the build up, IMHO.
Geno (jesuschrist) Sun 24 Oct 99 08:12
I'm always surprised when someone actually takes JSF seriously, sorry to anyone that took offense. I don't think the Well is ready for JSF so I guess I'd better keep him at home, under the bed, in the closet, and on the fidonet echo Flame. Anyone searching for Jesus can find him in Flame, where he is a sure bet to win the Asshole of the Year Award for 1999. -Geno
David Chaplin-Loebell (dloebell) Sun 24 Oct 99 09:15
Maybe JSF should visit <flame.ind.>
first be a good (satyr) Sun 24 Oct 99 09:26
JSF> Fidonet is not what it once was Case in point: the company that produced TBBS is now growing by leaps and bounds, driven by an internet-related product -- a hardware/software combination that's basically a turn-key, all-in-one gateway, firewall, email host, and web server.
David Gans (tnf) Sun 24 Oct 99 10:26
(I hid <30> because I had already posted that message earlier in the topic.)
Jef Poskanzer (jef) Sun 24 Oct 99 11:17
From my perspective as someone who has been on the net continuously since 1976, the BBS/MUD culture of the late 80s & early 90s is a puzzle. It came out of nowhere, ignoring existing culture. A decade later it vanished, declining to adapt to changing conditions. And during the ten years it was popular, it was also the subject of much ridicule for its shallowness. And yet we have a book written about these folks, which I guess we are supposed to take seriously. It doesn't really add up for me.
Mahatma Ghandi (jesuschrist) Sun 24 Oct 99 11:32
Jef, I don't think you are looking at the whole picture. Fido vanished? Certainly it declined. There are still over 70,000 nodes internationally. I find it strange that I am being forced to defend it, me one of it's biggest critics. However, the detractors here in the Well seem uninformed. There was a book written about the decline of the Roman Empire. Should we take that seriously? Most of the net software you currently run was first developed for fido.
Reply to Jef (indra) Sun 24 Oct 99 11:34
Well, you don't have to take it seriously, but I guess it might help if you read it :)
Colostomy Bagboy (jesuschrist) Sun 24 Oct 99 11:38
In a message loosely aimed at Jesus, David sez: DCL> Maybe Jesus should check out Flame.ind Yes, it is interesting and the first thing I checked out when I came over here. Funny some of the people posting in there we ran out of Flame long ago. Could be interesting and fun, though without the Flux and dirty tricks of fido Flame.
Jef Poskanzer (jef) Sun 24 Oct 99 11:41
>Most of the net software you currently run was first developed for fido. Uh, no. Actually most of it is directly descended from the NCP tools on the ARPAnet. In particular telnet and ftp are both the same programs used back in the early 70s, with modifications of course.
David Chaplin-Loebell (dloebell) Sun 24 Oct 99 11:46
Geno, what you're saying isn't exactly true. Certainly some Fidonet software was adapted to work with usenet and other internet technologies, but there's little direct heritage between the two. Jef, The BBS culture became popular as Modems became affordable to consumers. At that time, public ISPs were unusual. The internet was mostly accessible to academic users, along with a few corporations and governmental organizations. BBSs were a way for people to connect. The net was not on the radar. And, um, wasn't the early Well part of this movement? The current web is also the subject of much ridicule for shallowness. Then as now, the ridiculers are the ones who haven't figured out how to find the things they're looking for. Maybe the things they're looking for don't exist. That doesn't mean there's nothing there.
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