Follow

I wish computing rolled over a little bit slower. A simple teletext / NAPLPS network world would have been so cute for a few decades.

The chap giving the HOPE Bildschirmtext chat was spot on: high complexity includes the seeds of its own defeat, especially if we actually care for literacy in FOSS. A good chat to watch in light of Gemini/Gopher philosophy.

@Shufei Prestel/Btx/Videotex was terrible. Hardly any interactivity. Fucking menu systems. And really expensive, at least in Sweden.

Just simple, ordinary ASCII terminals and access to real timesharing (TOPS-20, anyone?) was so much better.

@mc Don’t harsh my fangirl mellow! Yes, they were expensive, but they didn’t have to be. The shoehorn with PSTN wasn’t apt, but as information broadcasting they did very well. Besides, they are aesthetically very cute and that is what is important. I like Twenex but hims is not very cute, I daresay. Teletext is ultimate cute.

I think a cheap local mesh feedback could have been achieved in time. Or even on PSTN, as Prodigy did in USA.

@Shufei Oh, I don't know about not cute... Imagine this fine Facit 4431 terminal with a glowing green phosphor (something like , 525 nanometres) and a modem with red blinkenlights on top of it. That's what my connection to the world looked like a long time ago.

Not my photo, I'm afraid. Found it here: eolo.cps.unizar.es/eddiethewil

@mc Awwww, mea culpa, that is a cute terminal. I don’t think I’ve ever seen one like it.

I like Twenex and have played around with the SDF emulated system a bit. I do wish it had some colours, though. I’m a fan of terminal colours.

@Shufei I seem to remember BYTE Magazine having an article about NAPLPS a long time ago.

NAPLPS looked a lot more interesting than the Prestel hack when I read about it way back when. We never saw any NAPLPS here.

This one, perhaps?

archive.org/details/byte-magaz

@Shufei Or imagine a PLATO system open to the public? Now we're talking! Perhaps PLATO systems networked together somehow?

Really liked Brian Dear's "The friendly orange glow":

friendlyorangeglow.com/

@mc Orange glow is nice. I make my UI have orange normal text, green for headers, and red for links.

Thanks, I don’t know much about PLATO at all. Is this the system where they invented the mouse? I saw an old kinescope lecture on it once, by one of the devs showing it off.

@Shufei No mouse, but actually a sort of touch-sensitive screens in a crude way! At least on some of the terminals.

You can experience a running PLATO system here:

cyber1.org/

Wikipedia article: en.wikipedia.org/wiki/PLATO_%2

PLATO User's Guide from 1983: controlfreaks.org/twiki/pub/Ma

@mc Oooo, jolly good. Thanks heaps. NAPLPS is indeed aesthetically endearing. I dunno why but SVG doesn’t approach the cuteness of it, though of similar ilk, natch. Partly it is primary colours, maybe. Teletext and ansi terminal colours make me happy, at least. They are artistically naive, which clarifies. Too much finesse can hurt cuteness.

Sign in to participate in the conversation
Mastodon @ SDF

"I appreciate SDF but it's a general-purpose server and the name doesn't make it obvious that it's about art." - Eugen Rochko