The Cathouse was my first foray onto the Internet highway. I created my little electronic bulletin board (bbs) using an Atari XL (later ST), basic XL and an electronic bulletin board program (the name I can’t remember).
In 1984, those of us foraging around on the newly minted electronic roads did so with all the gusto of a race car driver. If we crashed and burned, it was all good. We’d just reboot, mess with the program a bit and get everything up and running again within, well, maybe a few days. Debugging the code was always the trickiest part because part a was connected to part b which was connected to part z and that was connected to part h… you can see the headache coming, right?
Pretty much anyone could into the mix, post a few messages about how to find their board and then wait for the crowds. Every ping of the modem and blink of an LED meant someone was logging in, browsing through the message boards and seeing if there was anything worth coming back for. Early adapters of such technology skidded around looking for interesting conversations as that’s pretty much all you could do back then (beyond downloading pirated software).