It looks like Google groups is finally out of beta.
December 11, 2001 5:58 AM   Subscribe

It looks like Google groups is finally out of beta. As well as the archive they bought from Deja, they have also added posts dating back to 1981. The timeline here demonstrates this feature, showing the first mentions of MS-DOS, AIDS, and Madonna on Usenet.
posted by viama (67 comments total)

 
Use the advanced search to zero in on messages from a particular year.
posted by beagle at 6:10 AM on December 11, 2001




davehat, you just warmed the cockles of my heart :)
time to go reminisce
posted by sawks at 6:38 AM on December 11, 2001


nice to know that the first response to the very first spam was cynicism.
posted by o2b at 6:52 AM on December 11, 2001


First post containing the word "sex" (June 5, 1981).
Man, was I young, pure and innocent...
posted by XiBe at 6:55 AM on December 11, 2001


Usenet post from bill gates using Gordon Letwin's account.
posted by luser at 7:01 AM on December 11, 2001


Anyone know when the first troll was? I'm trying to find the start of the infamous "Oh how I envy American students" thread...
posted by dlewis at 7:04 AM on December 11, 2001


My first post -- 11/7/91. Pretty boring -- I was having some sort of problem with ANSI emulation and z-term.
posted by Mid at 7:17 AM on December 11, 2001


Google says this is the first mass spam, but who can forget this gem from Feb 9 1990? Oh, if I had only listened then, I would be so rich now...

Earliest mathowie reference.

This is apparently my first post.

OK, now show us yours!
posted by internal at 7:20 AM on December 11, 2001


Hmm... I could have a LOT of fun searching this archive for things like the
First Mention of Nintendo, or.. . who knows...!
posted by crog at 7:20 AM on December 11, 2001


First mention of Winamp?
posted by elvissinatra at 7:25 AM on December 11, 2001


Wow. I spent a lot of time on RASSM in college.
posted by dogmatic at 7:30 AM on December 11, 2001


...
I couldn't resist looking for the First Mention of Metafilter on Usenet back in March 3, 2000. Kind of odd, I thought I might find something older than that, but I sure didn't...
posted by crog at 7:40 AM on December 11, 2001


Hmmm. Looks like everything over a year old is offline again...
posted by Armitage Shanks at 7:54 AM on December 11, 2001


Zoinks. Archives are great and all, but do they really need to keep my alt.test posts from 1990?
posted by precipice at 8:01 AM on December 11, 2001


I see that my first post was oin April 30, 1993. My next post was 8 months later about 3dStudio R3 and mach32 drivers.
posted by tomplus2 at 8:07 AM on December 11, 2001


Not my first post, but the one of which I enjoyed most. I was having a discussion with David Gans (host of the Grateful Dead Hour) about whether or not releases of Dead shows after Jerry Garcia's death should be pieced together from different concerts or if they should be released warts and all from the same show. After some discussion we both had convinced each other of the other's point of view. Here is the comment where David agrees with me. Moments before I had just e-mailed him off-list to say that I was wrong and I should be glad the Dead put anything out rather than complaining about what they put out.
posted by terrapin at 8:11 AM on December 11, 2001


Ah memories! I found all my old posts to alt.music.alternative, then alt.music independent when that group was created to escape the absolutely unbearable volume of traffic about Pearl Jam and other mainstream bands.
posted by nstop at 8:22 AM on December 11, 2001


Yikes, a lot of people have been yakking about me behind my back.
I like the fourth entry: "is a monarchist who likes Ian Curtis, girls, gays, Beckett, sociology..."
posted by MiguelCardoso at 8:40 AM on December 11, 2001


I'm still not sold on it. The earliest return on a search for "am.elite give.me.warez" is in 1995, a time when it was already legend. Anybody got a better search tack on this or other eternal threads?
posted by NortonDC at 8:45 AM on December 11, 2001


From one of my early Usenet posts:

For now, I just modified my ProDOS to always turn off the 5.25" drive motor before calling the UniDisk device driver. Works like a charm.

Oh, those were the days.
posted by kindall at 8:49 AM on December 11, 2001


Very cool. I haven't posted on usenet since 1997, but back in the day Macs and funky music were my thing. Not much changes.
posted by pascal at 8:58 AM on December 11, 2001


OK, now show us yours!

Hehehe. We're all dating ourselves.

I KNOW I posted on FIDONet 10 years earlier then my first post....but I don't remember what name/nickname I used or the BBS' I frequented.
posted by bkdelong at 9:11 AM on December 11, 2001


Hehehe. We're all dating ourselves.

Probably because back in the day, some of us spent so much time as USENET geeks, no one else would date us. </guilty>
posted by bradlands at 9:26 AM on December 11, 2001


What I find most hilarious is that on the first post about AIDS, some guy is already telling everyone how it's old news. Maybe he saw it on fark. Hahaha.
posted by Hildago at 9:26 AM on December 11, 2001


This1996 is1996 humiliating.1994
posted by joemaller at 9:47 AM on December 11, 2001


What I find most hilarious is that on the first post about AIDS, some guy is already telling everyone how it's old news. Maybe he saw it on fark. Hahaha.

Actually his reply is not in the first thread on AIDS.
The first thread on AIDS starts December 20, 1982. His reply is from November 27, 1983.
This is a problem of google, it combines threads that have the same Subject, within in the same group, even if the threads are yeasr apart.

Still very very nice to have the archive go back so far. This stuff will be worth gold for historians one day.
posted by Berend at 9:47 AM on December 11, 2001


I am mortified. I don't remember having an obscenely large sig. I don't remember spending that much time on alt.romance giving advice. That's it. I'm certain some of these have been forged! Positive! Excuse me while I wander away in shame...
posted by headspace at 9:52 AM on December 11, 2001


Brings a tear to my eye... all my cute little sigs with political statements... Fight the CDA!
posted by xyzzy at 9:55 AM on December 11, 2001


I don't remember posting this.
posted by corpse at 10:09 AM on December 11, 2001


WTF? I was posting about Peanuts Characters in 1995? I am so proud of my first post, I answered a lost soul's profound query. Snif.
posted by kokogiak at 10:30 AM on December 11, 2001


Hey, what's a kremvax?
posted by Iberaband at 10:32 AM on December 11, 2001


God, this is frightening. I was a pretty obnoxious kid back in 1993.
posted by ph00dz at 10:59 AM on December 11, 2001


Hey, what's a kremvax?

Sigh. Kids.

It was purported to be the Kremlin's VAX.

You know, 'VAX' as in DEC. as in... ah, never mind.

My oldest post. Although, I was pretty sure that the Freenet stuff that we had set up at Case Western in the late 80s had a usenet feed...
posted by warhol at 11:06 AM on December 11, 2001


Whew, I'm glad my posts to alt.drugs.psychedelics were made under a pseudonym . . .

Also, won't future time travelers use this information to pinpoint a user's precise location in history?
Think about it.
posted by jeremias at 11:32 AM on December 11, 2001


As in it's easier to hack root on an AIX using -froot than it is to change directories on VAX/VMS? ;) My friends always said such amusing things. Damn I was a horrible geek.
posted by xyzzy at 11:40 AM on December 11, 2001


I made a half-hearted attempt to help someone with a brain teaser. I'm sure that future generations will be ever-so-pleased to reap the rewards of my efforts.
posted by youhas at 11:51 AM on December 11, 2001


(cringe) Oh, god, they've got...everything....all of it...I thought it was dead and gone and no one would know what a blithering idiot I was in those days.

My first post here is in 1988. Am I that old?
posted by mourning-glory at 11:53 AM on December 11, 2001


May 1992 was my first post, at least as far as Google goes. I was into motorcycling, mountaineering, photography, snowboarding, Toyota trucks, other stuff...still am I guess :)
posted by gen at 12:02 PM on December 11, 2001


January 1995, looking for Returned Peace Corps Volunteers who served in Boliva, a month before I left for the saidsame nation. My address is "shadowkeeper@prostar.com ". Try as I might, I can't ever remember having and ISP called "prostar' ...
posted by Shadowkeeper at 12:20 PM on December 11, 2001


Posting on behalf of Grum whose work machine won't let him post:

* The first Microsoft sucks (Dec 1990).

* The first reference to Osama bin Laden (Feb 1994, from Voice of America.)

* One of the first references to a certain intern (Jan 1998). I have to quote this one: Monica Lewinsky doesn't exist...at least not in the "mainstream media". Not a single mention anywhere this morning either in print or on the tube. Patience, buddy...
posted by Yogurt at 12:22 PM on December 11, 2001


my first post.

hey, i really liked peeps, okay?

my god, how embarrassing. i don't even eat them anymore!
posted by sugarfish at 12:45 PM on December 11, 2001


I still haven't tracked down my first post (too many old email addys!), but I did find an old AOL overhead account of mine in an old post to alt.hackers.aol.sucks. It's fun to be a target!
posted by ahughey at 1:14 PM on December 11, 2001


I love their remove this post policy. Just email us from that account and we'll remove it. Umm, the UNIX server I dialed into in 92 probably doesnt even exist anymore let alone my account. Considering how nicely google removes webpages they should have a more reasonable policy to remove posts. Fax them an ID or something if you used your real name.
posted by skallas at 1:36 PM on December 11, 2001


Looks like this is Matt Drudge's first post to the Usenet... funny.
posted by danec at 1:36 PM on December 11, 2001


Wow, one could get lost in this morass of 5 year old nostalgia easily. But anyone remember alt.religion.kibology? Well it seems that James "Kibo" Parry himself wrote this note and introduced one of the first uses of "dot bomb"

My favorite quote from this page . . .

Also I was the one who told Mike that some Web browsers allow animated
background images, hence his little moving starfield

posted by jeremias at 1:45 PM on December 11, 2001


Oh wow, first post from a CWRU Freenet account 6 years ago to misc.test. Ah, the memories.
posted by zempf at 1:50 PM on December 11, 2001


Am i really supposed to believe that "newbie" was never uttered on Usenet until 1988?

That, combined with it's inability to find any use of "give me warez" predating 1995, makes me wonder what's going on.
posted by NortonDC at 1:53 PM on December 11, 2001


The beginning of the end of music on vinyl.
posted by luser at 1:56 PM on December 11, 2001


My first post from Google, though there is a reply to another, earlier post about a book I don't remember reading. Dead Can Dance, anyone?

Is there some indication from Google as to the holes in their archive?
posted by tranquileye at 1:58 PM on December 11, 2001


This is fun. The first appearance of our President is his alleged involvement in some slimey Persian Gulf oil scandal.
posted by luser at 1:58 PM on December 11, 2001


Ok, I need to stop now. But I think there is a hole in the archive -- I can't believe AOL didn't suck until 1994.
posted by luser at 2:16 PM on December 11, 2001


So it only took 50 or so comments before it occurred to me to search for my college email address. There's nothing interesting (msotly video games), but I had forgotten all about the name on my email account.

It does seem like you can remove items that were posted from an old email address.
posted by yerfatma at 2:19 PM on December 11, 2001


I can't believe AOL didn't suck until 1994.

I can't believe an AOL user got on a news group back in 1994.
posted by yerfatma at 2:20 PM on December 11, 2001


My first post was in alt.music.independent as a college-indie-rock-snob trying to sell Pavement to someone. *sigh*
posted by malphigian at 2:30 PM on December 11, 2001


sugarfish: I also posted to alt.food.peeps! Hahahaha...
posted by nstop at 2:46 PM on December 11, 2001


at least you lot managed to stay clear of the *.flame groups. Eek. I wish I could go back to 1992 and tell myself "stop flaking off on Usenet and study, you punk!" ... because otherwise you'll be cringing at what you wrote in ten years time. Heh.
posted by GrahamVM at 5:27 PM on December 11, 2001


luser and yerfatma: AOL first got a Usenet feed (and FTP)in 1994. Before Feb 1994, they had no Internet access other than e-mail. I know this because I was unfortunate enough to use it for a few months right after I graduated from college (before I found a real ISP). AOL having access to Usenet, IMHO, was the final nail in the coffin. Yes, it had been going downhill for a few years, but the S/N ratio got so bad after AOL unleashed a bunch of netiquette ignorant users, that save a few groups, it was awful... -sigh-
posted by internal at 6:36 PM on December 11, 2001


On a serious note, this post from January 20 1999 in misc.activism.militia is frighteningly prescient about terrorists and civil liberties (Terrorism is escalating to the point that Americans soon may have to choose between civil liberties and more intrusive means of protection," says Defense Secretary William S. Cohen), and is also the first use of the phrase "then the terrorists have already won" on Usenet (according to Google).
It doesn't appear again until September 12th 2001.
posted by Grum at 7:08 PM on December 11, 2001


Man this kicks ass! I don't have much of a history, but it was fun looking back on the month that I posted to usenet.

Here's my first post. An ascii face. ah... memories. Although it seems like there are a few missing... or maybe I'm just thinking of things I wanted to say. :)
posted by ODiV at 9:01 PM on December 11, 2001


Man this kicks ass! I don't have much of a history, but it was fun looking back on the month that I posted to usenet.

Here's my first post. An ascii face. ah... memories. Although it seems like there are a few missing... or maybe I'm just thinking of things I wanted to say. :)
posted by ODiV at 9:44 PM on December 11, 2001


damnit... sorry. delete and disregard if you could.
posted by ODiV at 9:44 PM on December 11, 2001


Here's mine, at least that I can find. I'm talking about something I no longer understand, I swear.
posted by Neale at 11:36 PM on December 11, 2001


Am I the only long-time geek that never ever used Usenet? Weird. Like a missing part of my brain or something....
posted by stavrosthewonderchicken at 1:18 AM on December 12, 2001


Looks like it's been worldwidewebdotted.
posted by crasspastor at 3:57 AM on December 12, 2001


Oh yeah. I forgot to mention I'm working on mirroring it. Stay Tuned!
posted by crasspastor at 4:01 AM on December 12, 2001


We will have an entire generation of geeks unable to run for public office with this kind of history left to haunt them.
posted by stbalbach at 4:27 AM on December 14, 2001


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