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What happened to Compuserve?

Compuserve was an online service for dialup modems from the 1970s to the 1990s. It was a way of getting online and communicating with others before the Internet was generally available to individuals. Later, it became a primary way for individuals to connect to the Internet, turning itself into an Internet Service Provider. But over time, it faded away into history. Here’s what happened to Compuserve.

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Computers in 1985: It was a very good year

In some ways, 1985 was a really pivotal year for computing. The industry was changing fast, but in 1985, many relics from the past were still present even as we had an eye for the future. Here’s a look back at computers in 1985 and what made that year so interesting.

I think 1985 was interesting in and of itself, but it also made the succeeding years a lot more interesting. A surprising amount of the technology that first appeared in 1985 still has an impact today.

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Spectrum bought by AT&T? Not quite.

Was Time Warner Cable or Charter Spectrum bought by AT&T? No it wasn’t, but I understand why some people are thinking that right now. It now turns out that both Charter Communications and AT&T have a history with Time Warner, but it’s complicated.

That said, there is a rumor now that AT&T’s arch rival Verizon is considering buying Charter Communications, the company behind Spectrum. Meanwhile, AT&T is trying to buy Time Warner. Time Warner differs from Time Warner Cable.

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Another perspective on Y2K

Rob O’Hara stumbled across a stash of Y2K survivalist magazines and wrote about it. I wasn’t going to be surprised if there were some minor glitches, but I wasn’t expecting the apocalypse. I withdrew a couple hundred bucks from the bank a few days in advance and filled my bathtub with water the night before, so I would have a supply of money and water to tide me over if some glitch interrupted either of them for a day or two.

In late 1999, a lot of people said I was being reckless. Today, people think I was being excessively paranoid. It’s funny how perspectives change.Read More »Another perspective on Y2K

Google’s plan for fiber seems to be working

I saw this on Slashdot today: In Lawrence, Kan., about 40 miles west of Kansas City, Kan., a local ISP is building an affordable fiber network. Pricing is a little higher than Google, at $70/month for 100 megabit and $100/month for gigabit, but that’s still better than what you typically see from the local cable/phone duopoly.

The cable/phone duopoly won’t build this, so it’s going to have to be upstarts who do it.  Meet the new revolution: Same as the old revolution.Read More »Google’s plan for fiber seems to be working

How I once took down a network, including a radio station

I met up Monday night with some other security professionals for some emergency networking of the professional kind. One of the attendees, a penetration tester, had a little incident where he took down a production system when he conducted his penetration test. The system owners were a bit arrogant, and, well, they paid for it.

I’ve taken down a network too, but in my case it wasn’t something security-related. No, in my case, I was a 20-year-old desktop support technician working in a college computer lab, making an honest mistake.

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Facebook’s IPO doesn’t have to be the end of Silicon Valley

I saw a story on Slashdot this weekend writing Silicon Valley’s obituary at the hands of the Facebook IPO. The logic is that since social networking is an easier path to riches than traditional science, people will choose social networking.

In the short term, he may be right. But in the long term? The Facebook IPO looks more like Dotcom 2.0 to me. Read More »Facebook’s IPO doesn’t have to be the end of Silicon Valley