6 comments on “Before the Internet: The Bulletin Board System II

  1. My god, I feel old. I had an Apple ][+ for years, and how cool the ][GS seemed in comparison when I bought one. Then I got a 1200 baud modem, and the very slow online world was revealed (good thing it was mostly text-based). Then I bought a used US Robotics 9600 baud modem, which seemed blazingly fast in comparison.

    I remember being on the Apple 2 BBSs, and the Mac ones that followed (when I got a Mac I joined BMUG). But I’ve forgotten so much of that world. The name “The Tower” sounds awfully familiar, but I could be kidding myself.

    • Thanks for stopping by. I always wanted that USR 9600 modem but I couldn’t afford it. Being stuck at 2400 baud was a killer for my BBS…at least until the real killer of crashed hard drives. You probably wouldn’t have been on my BBS unless you were in the San Francisco Bay Area, and then I would only recognize you by your handle. But I did find that there were a number of “towers” out there and it was not so original a name. I came up with the name when I was fishing on my grandfather’s charter boat one weekend and I heard the deck hands chatting on the radio. One of them mentioned “Tower of Power”, the band, and I loved the sound of it. I figured it would be better to shorten it.

  2. From what I remember, the BBS I knew was just “The Tower,” though that’s certainly not definitive. Back then I’d call around after 11 PM, when phone rates were cheaper (and back when I stayed awake that late).
    I just had a sudden flash of my handle back then: Monte. This is one of those times when you remember something only when you’re not trying to do so. I’m fairly sure that’s it, or close to it, but I don’t have anything left from that age to verify.

    • … to clarify: I started calling around my area after 9, and more widely after 11, not that I called whichever Tower it was specifically at that time.

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