Whatever happened to …


At a retirement party in June, I ran into martmart.  I told her that I thought it was one of the great user names of all time.

The history goes way back before we consider internet access to be what it is now.  Properly configured, you just attach to your home network with its router and permanent internet connection wirelessly and away you go.  It was much more primitive.

But it wasn’t always like that.

There was a time when your computer actually had to be connected to a modem with a telephone line and you made a phone call to your provider to get connected.  You needed a login and password to be entered each time you connected.  Who could forget the sound of your modem negotiating a speed connection with another modem on the receiving end.  In fact, some poorly done technology movies today still use that same noise.

In order for all this to work, you needed an account and I had purchased access through Compuserve.

Then along came ENOREO.  The Education Network of Ontario.  It was provided to get Ontario educators online and yes, you needed a login and password.  Their naming technique was the first four letters of your first name concatenated with the first four letters of your last name.  So, she became martmart and I became dougpete.  For the most part, where I can, I’ve used dougpete ever since for most internet things.

If memory serves me properly, for Windsor and Essex County, there was a bank of eight modems located at the former Windsor Board of Education office for us to dial in to.  And we did.  It was very popular; trying to get a connection in the evening was next to impossible.  When you got through, you had access.  We were provided our one email address within the enoreo domain and also could get on the internet.  It was a “different” internet – mostly text based but the information was the ultimate goal.

The very best users could use keyboard characters to create ASCII art to prove internet supremacy.

Of course, time and technology has changed to what we have today.

But we had to start somewhere!

A few questions …

  • did you have an enoreo account?
  • if not, do you remember having an account on another service?
  • how about email?  Did you ever sign up using an email service that’s no longer in existence?  There must be so many messages bouncing around as undeliverable.
  • do you have memories of your modem connecting to another?
  • do you know the difference between ATDT and ATDP?

I’d love to hear your thoughts!

The complete set of “whatever happened to” posts is available here.

OTR Links 07/10/2016

Posted from Diigo. The rest of my favorite links are here.