Weekend Open Forum: Online since...?

By Jos ยท 55 replies
May 3, 2013
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  1. Tekkaraiden

    Tekkaraiden TS Evangelist Posts: 997   +93

    I learned the modem command to turn the sound down/off so I wouldn't get caught being up till 5 in the morning downloading/surfing.

    As for being online, was on local bbs's from 1993 until I started using aol in 1995 or so, actually started paying for internet access in 1997.
  2. fimbles

    fimbles TS Evangelist Posts: 1,185   +208


    First thing I did was download the hexen 2 demo.
    psycros likes this.
  3. hahahanoobs

    hahahanoobs TS Evangelist Posts: 2,040   +678

    We appreciate what you've done with the site.
    Julio Franco likes this.
  4. avoidz

    avoidz TS Guru Posts: 460   +56

    1996. But it was two years later when I really spent a lot of time online. I was using my workplace Internet and staying there till 2 or 3 in the morning. It was such an exciting time with so much to take in and learn. I kind of miss those early days really. Now a lot of it is taken for granted.
    psycros likes this.
  5. Benny26

    Benny26 TechSpot Paladin Posts: 1,535   +51

    Late bloomer myself. I started using the Internet around 2006.
  6. davislane1

    davislane1 TS Grand Inquisitor Posts: 4,736   +3,757

    I started using the Internet around 96-98 on an ISDN connection. I used it almost exclusively for four things: flash games, Pokemon, NASCAR (I was really into stock car racing as a kid), and downloading Gameboy ROMs. I always thought I was the coolest kid on the block because I didn't have to put up with dial-up like my friends did.
  7. TorturedChaos

    TorturedChaos TechSpot Chancellor Posts: 839   +29

    1999. We got our first modern computer the year before and I finally talked my parents into dial up
  8. Outlaw88

    Outlaw88 TS Rookie

    I started playing with BBS's in the mid 80's(300 baud modem), but it was not until 91 after I got out of the Army that a friend got me hooked on the internet. If I remember correctly, there was no www, just ftp, telnet, irc, and email. I remember the internet being more fun and complicated back then, and a lot less worrying about viruses.
  9. TomSEA

    TomSEA TechSpot Chancellor Posts: 2,715   +856

    I can't remember the exact year but it was probably around 1985-86. I had one of the brand spanking new Amiga's and I used to surf BBS's all the time with it. Although originally slow as hell, those were some exciting times seeing how online communications developed year by year.
  10. tonylukac

    tonylukac TS Evangelist Posts: 1,372   +69

    I first used the web in 1995 at Walt Disney World. My nieces got me reinvolved in computers and the web and knew more about it than me in 96. Had a Toshiba laptop gifted to my in 96, provided by an accounting job I worked at, and used it to do some refresher courses where I also used the web at College of DuPage in Glen Ellyn, IL. I think I got a computer capable of surfing the web in either 96 or 97, where I used aol dial up. I still have that email address today. They put in cablevision broadband in about 2000, which then somehow became att then comcast, then we moved from the house at about 2002 where we now have dsl, which was cheaper than cable. It's now run again by att. The phone company switch providing our dsl is relatively new (about 30 years old). Others were like 100 years old in the area, so we were lucky to be within the 5 mile area that was the limit of dsl in 2002.
  11. Dawn1113

    Dawn1113 TS Booster Posts: 322   +65

    Yeah, I remember doing the same. :D Often enough, I woke in the morning to find the connection had been lost some time during the night. I literally had to fight my tears when that happened. :D
    cliffordcooley likes this.
  12. windmill007

    windmill007 TS Rookie Posts: 308

    BBS, CompuServ , Prodigy, then AOL. Ahh the good old days. 300 baud modem. LOL
  13. dikbozo

    dikbozo TS Booster Posts: 82

    1997.Dial up on a 14.4 kbps modem. Brutal.
    I remember being able to click a link and going to the bathroom for a whiz and still end up waiting for a page to load.
    Blink tags.
    Yahoo as the coolest place.
    First Google search in '99, never left home again.
    After an upgrade to 33.6, I disremember downloading the latest Netscape release for 2 hours. Went broadband early 2000.
  14. VitalyT

    VitalyT Russ-Puss Posts: 3,664   +1,949

    "Being Online" is a confusing term, and it can mean one of the following:

    1. Interacting with other users via Internet (chat or email?)
    2. Looking at some static pictures.

    Technically, you are not much "online", if you just browse websites, without any input from your side. In other words, word "online" means "available", first of all, I.e. available for communication through Internet.

    Anyhow, this one is tough to figure.

    Myself, I started using the first versions of IRC in 1994. And in about 2000 was when I stopped using IRC.
  15. cliffordcooley

    cliffordcooley TS Guardian Fighter Posts: 9,723   +3,697

    I never thought "availability" meant "in use", some places availability means standby waiting for when it needs to be used. Much like our phones being connected/online, which means they are available 24/7 waiting for when they are needed to be used.
  16. dikbozo

    dikbozo TS Booster Posts: 82

    IDK if this counts or not.

    Way back in 1973, my high school got a teletype terminal. We were allowed unsupervised access to a real time multi-user system. IIRC this was a telephone based connection. We could type in commands real time and access online programs and create files. We also had the option of creating off line punchtape programs, which we could then read into the system and have them compiled and run with results within the day, perhaps even while we sat there. Much cooler and faster than the punch cards batch runs we had used at the beginning.

    As it was I didn't get back into computing until '97 from dropping out in 1975. Things had very definitely changed.
  17. dikbozo

    dikbozo TS Booster Posts: 82

    The original usage from Back in the Day was being able to connect, whether a persistent connection like broadband or an as needed connection like dial up. I was at a retail outlet the other day that was using dial up to connect for a credit card transaction, so it is still out there.
  18. VitalyT

    VitalyT Russ-Puss Posts: 3,664   +1,949

    Exactly! If you are online, that means you can be contacted, first of all. But when you just browse Internet - that's not really being online. Of course this can be argued against...
  19. cliffordcooley

    cliffordcooley TS Guardian Fighter Posts: 9,723   +3,697

    You can't browse the Internet unless you are connected, which means you are on-line.
  20. psycros

    psycros TS Evangelist Posts: 1,870   +1,291

    BBS's from 1990-1994. Starting in '96 it was dial-up for the next decade until I manged to figure out mobile tethering..and that's what I'm still stuck with today. There's no broadband where I live and probably never will be. In fact, we're actually going *backwards* because the phone lines are so decrepit that dial-up doesn't even work any more. Twice now the state and federal governments have given grants to ISPs to get us real internet, and twice they've pocketed the money and delivered nothing. We're now three years into a whole new round of funding and it looks like their gonna shaft the taxpayers again. Its astounding to me that in this day and age, in the United States of America, that there are people less than ten minutes from a city who can't get reliable, affordable and modern Internet. Then again, this is the same America with crumbling power, water and gas infrastructures so maybe I shouldn't be too surprised.
  21. ET3D

    ET3D TechSpot Paladin Posts: 1,377   +168

    Not sure of the exact year. I managed to avoid being online for most of my years growing up. I knew people who had modems and downloaded stuff from BBS's, and that was good enough. When I moved from the Amiga to the PC in late '94 I bought a modem but had problems connecting so replaced it with a RAM upgrade. I think I only went for a modem the next time I bought a PC, in '96.

    Still, I had net access at the university, read newsgroups and browsed using Mosaic, so I'm pretty sure I was online in 1993 if not a little earlier.

    (By the way, the price of the 16MB SIMM I bought in '94 would buy me now, even when not adjusted for inflation, around 64GB of RAM. Although that would be in 8 DIMM's, so I wouldn't be able to plug them all in.)
  22. Skidmarksdeluxe

    Skidmarksdeluxe TS Evangelist Posts: 8,647   +3,274

    '97/'98 I think.
  23. learninmypc

    learninmypc TS Evangelist Posts: 7,671   +413

    Yes, I was sitting in my room when some friends of mine knocked on my door & asked me if I wanted to go online?
    Long story short, they gave me a pc with Win ME on it (supposedly before it had been released to the public) One of them had thrown it together from parts he had in his basement.
    Like some ignorant pc users,I knew nothing about security programs & before too long my nice pc was infected.
    Thankfully another friend of mine, had a son that was a computer tech. He fixed it up for me for free & I was totally happy on my free dial up ISP www.nocharge.com
    It later got replaced with another free pc & another.
    My best friend gives me his pc's because I take better care of them than his other friend. Life continues.:)
  24. HiDDeNMisT

    HiDDeNMisT TS Booster Posts: 231   +14

    I remember I was using the internet when they got to for school. Started using it around 96. Then I found out a bout emulators a few years later. Man I had a blast.
  25. treetops

    treetops TS Evangelist Posts: 2,073   +219

    My family got a computer in 94-95 and the internet in 98. My friend down the street had the internet probably in 94 but I never used it. We would play computer games occasionally. His dad owned a computer store, he had 2 phone lines. For the time that was unusual, one was for the internet and or modem to modem gaming. When people talked about the internet I pictured a giant jungle gym. I was 10 when it came out. I thought is was amazing playing modem to modem warcraft 2, duke nukem and descent.

    When I saw battlenet for the first time for warcraft 2 and the diablo 1 online I was instantly hooked on pc gaming. Then of course there was the infinite porn.. what else could a 15 year old ask for from a glowing box?

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