In Memorium: The Lost Delights BBS

I just read an article from The Atlantic that brought back some memories. This blog is named after my Bulletin Board Service (BBS) from 1989, also called Lost Delights. It hosted conversations about role-playing games, which obviously have been my obsession for a very long time. Computers have always flavored that obsession. I’ve been on the net since 1980, when I started Computer Science at Indiana University. I had been programming since 1978 on a Wang 2200 at Tippecanoe Valley High School in Indiana. The Wang was a fairly advanced computer for a High School to have, and I was the only one who was able to figure it out, besides the math teacher that is. I wrote a computer game on it (Post-apocalyptic adventurer who faces 4 challenges, including a skateboard gang if I recall correctly). I discovered later with some surprise that they were using my game at least seven years after I left. I then moved to Warsaw High School and moved way back in time to the IBM 024 & 028 keypunches, the 083 sorter, 085 collator, and the 557 Alphabetic Interpreter from the 1950s, complete with vacuum tubes! Vaults from the game Fallout 3 feel very familiar to me as a result. I think they had a PDP-11 as well, but we didn’t do much with it. In 1985, I bought a Leading Edge Model D, an IBM clone and the first microcomputer I owned. I couldn’t do a damn thing with it, so I gave it to my roommates for a year, my brother Matt and friend Rainer, with the agreement that at the end of the year they would show me how to use it. Smartest move I ever made. They were relentless and despite much annoyance with the thing, they conquered and I learned. Around 1988, I started running a BBS on gaming using a 2400 baud modem, a significant step up from the 300 baud modem I started out with. Around the same time I was running a computer dating service for Bloomington, Indiana. That didn’t last long. There were a lot more guys interested than there were women, so I made what connections I could and gave up on the business.

Computer in Tranquility Lane, Fallout 3 videogame


About lostdelights

An old gamer flying his freak flag, I've been playing table-top role-playing games since 1978. I've been building my own system (Journeyman) since 1981.
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