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17-Nov-2014 20:56

Back then it was called Apple Link, a project commissioned by Apple Computer and a company called Quantum Computer Services to connect Apple II and Macintosh computers.The beta test was dubbed “Samuel” and for Schober, a teenage fan of BBSes (bulletin board systems), it was an intriguing opportunity.Last month, Sean Parker of Napster fame launched Airtime.Amid the hoopla of the launch — attended, for some reason, by Jimmy Fallon and Snoop Dogg — Parker told an anecdote about meeting his business partner, Shawn Fanning, 15 years ago in a chat room, saying, “There’s something exciting about bringing spontaneity to the Internet.

His relationship with the company started in 1988, before it was America Online.The chat product, called People Connection, had a variety of rooms for people interested in such topics as genealogy and strategy games.Schober remembers a ticker dubbed “Network News,” a kind of virtual community newsletter that would let people know when certain chat rooms had a special guest or were discussing certain topics.Around 2000, however, I found myself drawn more to AOL Instant Messenger (AIM) than I did to AOL’s chat rooms.

Launched in 1997, AIM became widespread once it was made available to non-subscribers in 1998.

Massively multiplayer online role-playing games (MMORPGs) like made gaming in chat rooms seem antiquated.



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Susan Campbell’s outstanding work on honesty and confidence.… continue reading »


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