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[ih] virtual communities

> When did USENET arise?  I'm pretty sure it was UUCP-based (not IP-based) 
> when I first heard of it in the WELL days, but I don't know the dates.

From: Steven Bellovin <smb at cs.columbia.edu>
Subject: Re: [ih] virtual communities
To: Randy Bush <randy at psg.com>
Date: Mon, 23 Nov 2009 17:50:48 -0500

We had it running in late '79 (first my 150 line shell script, then a C
version that was never released past UNC and Duke), and announced it
(with Steve Daniel's code) in Jan '80 at what became Usenix -- see
http://www.usenix.org/about/history/ Yes, it was dial-up only; UNC and
Duke used home-built autodialers.  I forget the design of the Duke one,
though it came first; I had a cleaner design, which I had the dept's
electronic tech to build: it did software timing of the DTR line to
drive a relay opening/closing the phone line of a phone whose handset
was sitting in an acoustic coupler.  DN-11s were pricey and you had to
rent the compatible dialer from the telco; other autodial modems were
very rare back then, not all that long after Carterphone.  Building our
own was much cheaper and didn't involve getting the faculty to pay for
an extra monthly bill, and the 60 hz clock interrupt on our 11/45 had
just enough precision to do sofwtare-controlled pulse dialing --
slightly out of spec (which I think was 60/40 make/break at 10
pulses/second; we did 67/33, i.e., 4 ticks/2 ticks) but it worked.

Yes, Plato Notes was earlier, but it was captive to an organization and
closed; Usenet was always open to all comers.  In fact, eventually
someone wrote a gateway from Notes to it.

Mark Horton at Berkeley started feeding in ARPANET mailing lists and
relaying between the two networks around '81 or '82; I forget.

Feel free to forward.