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Tell me about Mudcat

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knight_high 29 Jul 08 - 12:03 PM
GUEST,lox 29 Jul 08 - 12:06 PM
GUEST,lox 29 Jul 08 - 12:08 PM
MartinRyan 29 Jul 08 - 12:08 PM
GUEST,lox 29 Jul 08 - 12:12 PM
Amos 29 Jul 08 - 12:42 PM
Alice 29 Jul 08 - 12:53 PM
MMario 29 Jul 08 - 01:03 PM
McGrath of Harlow 29 Jul 08 - 01:22 PM
Joe Offer 29 Jul 08 - 02:16 PM
Big Mick 29 Jul 08 - 02:30 PM
topical tom 29 Jul 08 - 03:40 PM
Amos 29 Jul 08 - 03:48 PM
catspaw49 29 Jul 08 - 03:56 PM
Peter T. 29 Jul 08 - 04:27 PM
Amos 29 Jul 08 - 04:32 PM
MartinRyan 29 Jul 08 - 04:37 PM
PoppaGator 29 Jul 08 - 04:39 PM
Rapparee 29 Jul 08 - 05:02 PM
MartinRyan 29 Jul 08 - 05:19 PM
Amos 29 Jul 08 - 05:27 PM
MartinRyan 29 Jul 08 - 05:28 PM
beardedbruce 29 Jul 08 - 05:29 PM
MartinRyan 29 Jul 08 - 05:32 PM
MartinRyan 29 Jul 08 - 05:34 PM
Joe Offer 29 Jul 08 - 05:48 PM
PoppaGator 29 Jul 08 - 06:03 PM
Joe Offer 29 Jul 08 - 06:11 PM
beardedbruce 29 Jul 08 - 06:15 PM
Amos 29 Jul 08 - 06:32 PM
McGrath of Harlow 29 Jul 08 - 06:34 PM
Art Thieme 29 Jul 08 - 06:35 PM
Joe Offer 29 Jul 08 - 06:40 PM
The Fooles Troupe 29 Jul 08 - 07:06 PM
Charley Noble 29 Jul 08 - 08:01 PM
Bill D 29 Jul 08 - 10:41 PM
Joe Offer 29 Jul 08 - 10:55 PM
Bill D 29 Jul 08 - 11:12 PM
Joe Offer 30 Jul 08 - 12:18 AM
GUEST,LTS pretending to work 30 Jul 08 - 06:34 AM
kendall 30 Jul 08 - 06:52 AM
MartinRyan 30 Jul 08 - 06:55 AM
MartinRyan 30 Jul 08 - 06:56 AM
Bill D 30 Jul 08 - 10:42 AM
PoppaGator 30 Jul 08 - 11:33 AM
Amos 30 Jul 08 - 11:46 AM
Bill D 30 Jul 08 - 12:19 PM
dick greenhaus 30 Jul 08 - 01:06 PM
beardedbruce 30 Jul 08 - 01:12 PM
GUEST,Peace 30 Jul 08 - 01:15 PM
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Subject: Tell me about Mudcat
From: knight_high
Date: 29 Jul 08 - 12:03 PM

I am fairly new to the Mudcat Forum but find it a fantastic source of information and discussion. Can anybody please tell me, or point me towards how it started - How it got its name (meaning?) etc.


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Subject: RE: Tell me about Mudcat
From: GUEST,lox
Date: 29 Jul 08 - 12:06 PM

to the right of the "create a new thread" option is a box with "filter" written next to it.

Type anything you want to know in there - eg "mudcat origins" and then set the date to as far back as you like and you can find just about any subject matter you care to mention.


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Subject: RE: Tell me about Mudcat
From: GUEST,lox
Date: 29 Jul 08 - 12:08 PM

so you'd choose "age: all" and press "refresh"


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Subject: RE: Tell me about Mudcat
From: MartinRyan
Date: 29 Jul 08 - 12:08 PM

Another good starting point is the Mudcat FAQ - you should see a link to it in another box at the top of the page!

Regards
p.s. And..... Welcome!


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Subject: RE: Tell me about Mudcat
From: GUEST,lox
Date: 29 Jul 08 - 12:12 PM

Hmmm ... I just tried my own advice ...

... I'd Better leave this to someone else ...


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Subject: RE: Tell me about Mudcat
From: Amos
Date: 29 Jul 08 - 12:42 PM

It was originally a blues forum founded by Max Spiegel, and named for a catfish peculiar to the Mississippi Delta region, which was the birthplace of the American "delta blues" style. The fish is locally known as a Mudcat. Hence, a good name for a blues forum. It later expanded to become the host of the Digital Tradition database, and the scintillating high-society discussion center you find here today. ;>)


A


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Subject: RE: Tell me about Mudcat
From: Alice
Date: 29 Jul 08 - 12:53 PM

welcome to the Mudcat!


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Subject: RE: Tell me about Mudcat
From: MMario
Date: 29 Jul 08 - 01:03 PM

Or - If you don't like that version:

It's a cover for a radical subversive unit of the Manatee/Penguin/Dutch Alliance in thier continual efforts to flood the entire world (excluding the Netherlands) and rule FOREVER!

Some thnk the MPDA is only a cover for the Mouse though.


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Subject: RE: Tell me about Mudcat
From: McGrath of Harlow
Date: 29 Jul 08 - 01:22 PM

But a much better way is to start a thread and ask people, as knight_high has here. I anticipate that it should throw up some interesting information, and linmks to enjoyable past threads.


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Subject: RE: Tell me about Mudcat
From: Joe Offer
Date: 29 Jul 08 - 02:16 PM

Hi, knight-
This group of threads (click) on the history of Mudcat will give you a lot of background.
Take a look through the QuickLinks dropdown menu you'll find on almost every Mudcat page - one handy utility you'll find there is Messages By Day, which gives you a snapshot of what was going on at Mudcat on any given day of our history. You should also take a look at our FAQ (Frequently Asked Questions). I'm also quite proud of our PermaThreads, projects Mudcatters have undertaken to provide more permanent information and ongoing information about verious performers and clubs.
Welcome to the Mudcat Cafe!

-Joe Offer, Forum Moderator-


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Subject: RE: Tell me about Mudcat
From: Big Mick
Date: 29 Jul 08 - 02:30 PM

Joe, that is a great link!! I just enjoyed the heck out of going through that bunch of posts. The very first thread linked "longest ongoing Mudcatter" really will give you most of what you need to understand the history and how we started down the path that led us to this point.

knight, welcome to our little village. Glad you are here. Learn to use the search and filter functions, read the FAQ, and if there is any help you need, drop Joe or I a PM and we will be happy to guide you on your way. Hope you are around a good long while.

All the best,

Mick


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Subject: RE: Tell me about Mudcat
From: topical tom
Date: 29 Jul 08 - 03:40 PM

knight high: Welcome to the Cat! I'm sure you'll get a lot of information and enjoyment out of it!(and maybe a weebit of controversy as well!


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Subject: RE: Tell me about Mudcat
From: Amos
Date: 29 Jul 08 - 03:48 PM

See?? See what a good dude Big Mick is, and Joe Offer too?? I tell people and tell people, but does anyone lissen to me? Noo-ooo-ooo!!

(Jes' funning witchoo. It is what Pythagoras would have called a self-evident truth.)


A


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Subject: RE: Tell me about Mudcat
From: catspaw49
Date: 29 Jul 08 - 03:56 PM

Welcome to the 'Cat!

I think Joe's series of linked threads are all pretty good but if I had to chooses one, I'd pick Longest Ongoing Mudcat.

Don't get too overwhelmed with the history of the joint. Have a good time and I hope you find all you're looking for.....Ask if you don't!

Spaw


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Subject: RE: Tell me about Mudcat
From: Peter T.
Date: 29 Jul 08 - 04:27 PM

The real truth is that when it started, back in the Dark Ages, Mudcat was one of the very few places on the net that was simple and clean, and -- for anyone who was wrestling with threaded discussions elsewhere -- astounding in its useability.   You will notice that, for example, the reason why Google won -- and why Macintoshes are the turtle in the race -- is the simplicity and clarity of design, not crammed with crap, and not too complicated. Max is one of the pioneers in that design ethos, and (I am not kidding here) should be recognised as such by the computer history folks.

Apart from, and beyond that, there were all these great folks, and the music, and a lot of love.   It took a long time for everyone, everywhere (not just on Mudcat) to figure out what it meant to create -- and sustain -- an online community, e.g. what are manners? what are the binding rituals? And so on. Thanks to Joe and others with a great deal of patience -- and a little of the folkie ethic -- Mudcat is still a beacon on the Internet.

Max Vobiscum

yours,

Peter T.


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Subject: RE: Tell me about Mudcat
From: Amos
Date: 29 Jul 08 - 04:32 PM

Max Vobiscum.

Et cum Spiritum Tuum.


Peter T, you are the funniest dude who ever tapped a post on the 'Cat.



A


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Subject: RE: Tell me about Mudcat
From: MartinRyan
Date: 29 Jul 08 - 04:37 PM

Not just funny - he's spot on in his analysis, to boot!

Regards

p.s. Mind you, I could worry about the proportion of ex altar-servers around here judging by the fragments of Latin we're treated to every so often....


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Subject: RE: Tell me about Mudcat
From: PoppaGator
Date: 29 Jul 08 - 04:39 PM

I was aware of the Digital Tradition motherload of lyrics back when it was hosted/maintained at Xerox/PARC in Palo Alto, and stumbled upon Mudcat only after Xerox gave up custody of the DT and Mudcat had successfully applied for adoption.

At least, that's how I think I remember things. But that implies that Mudcat existed for a while before incorporating the DT. So, when I read that "Susan of DT" was one of the very first Mudcat members, I was briefly confused. She must have used another name at first, I suppose. (When a member changes his/her name, the name-change takes effect "globally," throughout all archived history; that is, the new name appears on all the person's old postings.)

Finding Mudcat at the time when the DT had just recently been incorporated probably means that I witnessed the beginning of the end of Mudcat's era as a predominantly American, blues-oriented phenomenon. The presence of all those tradtional lyrics attracted folk-oriented web-searchers from all around the English-speaking world, forever changing (broadening) the demographics here.

I myself am American and primarily interested in music related to the blues, so in a sense I miss the "good old days" and indeed regret having completely missed the even-older and presumably even-better days. But that's OK. I like it well enough now, and I get a certain kind of bemused enjoyment from monitoring a British folk-music scene that is far outside my personal experience and therefore sometimes fascinating and often amusing to me.

I'm not sure how far back my history at Mudcat goes. I was a very occasional lurker at first, later a very occasional guest-poster, and finally a member, I can look up my oldest post as PoppaGator easily enough, and also perhaps an earlier GUEST post or two as my real self. I'll submit this message now before I lose it, then look up those dates...


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Subject: RE: Tell me about Mudcat
From: Rapparee
Date: 29 Jul 08 - 05:02 PM

It should be "Et cum spiritu tuo", Amos. Geez, you grew up when Latin wasn't a dead language!


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Subject: RE: Tell me about Mudcat
From: MartinRyan
Date: 29 Jul 08 - 05:19 PM

I was much too polite to point that one out, Rapaire!

Regards


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Subject: RE: Tell me about Mudcat
From: Amos
Date: 29 Jul 08 - 05:27 PM

You are too kind, Martin, while Rapaire is not quite kind enough. My baaaaadum.



A

And just to complete the rejoinder:

"INTROIBO ad altare Dei.
S. Ad Deum, qui l¾tificat juventum meam.
P. Judica me Deus, et discerne causam meam de gente non sancta: ab homine iniquo et doloso erue me.
S. Quia tu es Deus, fortitudo mea: quare me repulisti, et quare tristis incedo, dum affligit me inimicus?
P. Emitte lucem tuam, et veritatem tuam: ipsa me deduxerunt, et adduxerunt in montem sanctum tuum, et in tabernacula tua.
S. Et introibo ad altare Dei: ad Deum, qui l¾tificat juventutem meam.
P. Confitebor tibi in cithara, Deus, Deus meus. Quare tristis es, anima mea, et quare conturbas me?
S. Spera in Deo, quoniam adhuc confitebor illi; salutare vultus mei, et Deus meus.
P. Gloria Patri, et Filio, et Spiritui Sancto.
S. Sicut erat in principium, et nunc, et semper, et in s¾cula s¾culorum. Amen.
P. Introibo ad altare Dei.
S. Ad Deum, qui l¾tificat juventum meam.
P. Adjutorium nostrum in nomine Domini.
S. Qui fecit coelum et terram.
P. Confiteor Deo, etc.
S. Misereatur tui omnipotens Deus, et dimissis peccatis tuis, perducat te ad vitam aeternam.
P. Amen. S. Confiteor Deo omnipotenti, beatae Mari¾ semper Virgini, beato Michaeli Archangelo, beato Joanni Baptist¾, sanctis Apostolis Petro et Paulo, omnibus Sanctis, et tibi, Pater, quia peccavi nimis, cogitatione, verbo et opere. [Strike your breast thrice and say] mea culpa, mea culpa, mea maxima culpa. Ideo precor beatam Mariam semper Virginem, beatum Michaelem Archangelum, beatum Joannem Baptistam, sanctos Apostolos Petrum et Paulum, omnes Sanctos, et te, Pater, orare pro me ad Dominum Deum nostrum.
P. Misereator vestri, etc. S. Amen.
P. Indulgentiam, absolutionem, etc. S. Amen."



A


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Subject: RE: Tell me about Mudcat
From: MartinRyan
Date: 29 Jul 08 - 05:28 PM

Interesting effect on your diphthong ae - at least on my screen!

Regards


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Subject: RE: Tell me about Mudcat
From: beardedbruce
Date: 29 Jul 08 - 05:29 PM

That would be "0.75" in Metric Latin...


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Subject: RE: Tell me about Mudcat
From: MartinRyan
Date: 29 Jul 08 - 05:32 PM

No decimal point allowed! Can't remember how they coped.

Regards


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Subject: RE: Tell me about Mudcat
From: MartinRyan
Date: 29 Jul 08 - 05:34 PM

dodrans

Regards


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Subject: RE: Tell me about Mudcat
From: Joe Offer
Date: 29 Jul 08 - 05:48 PM

PoppaGator, you bring up a good question - was there a Mudcat before it joined with the Digital Tradition and opened the folk music discussion forum on October 1, 1996? From some of the early hieroglyphs from the history of Mudcat, one might might be led to believe in the pre-existence of a Blues Mudcat, but I have found no solid evidence.
The best I can do is a Wayback Machine Search under Mudcat's previous URL, deltablues.com - and it goes back only to December, 1996.
I've always meant to ask Max that, but I never think of it when I see him.

Oh, and one word about Susan of DT, who is indeed an historic character: DigiTrad-blurb.cfm, the Official History of the Digital Tradition, states that Susan was one of the two original sources of the lyrics for the Digital Tradition. As such, it may be said that she predates even the sainted Dick Greenhaus. This might make one think that Susan is Really, Really, Old - but rumor has it that she is the Exact Same Age as Joe Offer. Which is quite young, actually.....

-Joe-


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Subject: RE: Tell me about Mudcat
From: PoppaGator
Date: 29 Jul 08 - 06:03 PM

Hmmmm, I suppose I read somewhere that DT had found a home at Mudcat, and assumed that Mudcat had previously existed. And you what happens when you assume, don't you? You make and ASS out of U and ME!!!

Anyway, as promised earlier, I found my earliest postings, along with the dates that indicate my middling status as neither a true old-timer nor a newbie:

First post as a member:
16 Apr 03:
http://www.mudcat.org/detail.cfm?messages__Message_ID=934959

First post ever, as myself:
24 Dec 99:
http://www.mudcat.org/detail.cfm?messages__Message_ID=153878

(I tried to make links, but the "blue clicky" blickifier seems not to work correctly for these internal on-site references.)


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Subject: RE: Tell me about Mudcat
From: Joe Offer
Date: 29 Jul 08 - 06:11 PM

I dunno, PoppaGator. I also have always assumed the pre-existence of Mudcat, but I have no proof. I guess, until we can get a definitive answer from Dick or Susan or Max or maybe Bert (who actually IS really, really old), we have to classify this as a Matter of Faith.

-Joe-


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Subject: RE: Tell me about Mudcat
From: beardedbruce
Date: 29 Jul 08 - 06:15 PM

It PROBABLY was an example of Intelligent Design...


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Subject: RE: Tell me about Mudcat
From: Amos
Date: 29 Jul 08 - 06:32 PM

Well, Susan, Dick or Max could address this; my understanding was that the site was operating before Max agreed to host the DT when Xerox decided they couldn't do it anymore.


A


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Subject: RE: Tell me about Mudcat
From: McGrath of Harlow
Date: 29 Jul 08 - 06:34 PM

Amos amat amant...


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Subject: RE: Tell me about Mudcat
From: Art Thieme
Date: 29 Jul 08 - 06:35 PM

To paraphrase Robert Frost, Mudcat is an oasis where, when ya gotta go there, they gotta take you in!

And a fine place it is most all the time.

Art


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Subject: RE: Tell me about Mudcat
From: Joe Offer
Date: 29 Jul 08 - 06:40 PM

Now, I've always thought that this page (click) predated the folk music aspect of Mudcat. In fact, it may even have been the Home Page of Mudcat before the folkies arrived (it's obvious that Max made some changes to the page to accommodate the folkies). Click here for a Mudcat Home Page from December, 1996. If you follow the Philosophy link, you'll see a page from the Week of April 1, 1996 (caveat: note the date).
When we folkies came, Max was not quite 25 years old. He's a lot older now - but hey, so are we all....

-Joe-


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Subject: RE: Tell me about Mudcat
From: The Fooles Troupe
Date: 29 Jul 08 - 07:06 PM

"Tell me a story,
Tell me a story,
Tell me a story,
And then I'll go to bed!"


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Subject: RE: Tell me about Mudcat
From: Charley Noble
Date: 29 Jul 08 - 08:01 PM

When I first joined no one was ever this helpful. I just muddled about.

Of course it didn't occur to me to ask for help.

Cheerily,
Charley Noble


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Subject: RE: Tell me about Mudcat
From: Bill D
Date: 29 Jul 08 - 10:41 PM

Yes, Joe...that page with literature & philosophy etc. at the top was what I remember of the Delta Blues site. I remember looking up songs one minute and browsing thru odd links on Robert Johnson & Nietzsche the next. It changed pretty rapidly once the database was attached and even faster when the Forum was added in Oct. '06. I had browsed the database, but lost track of the beginnings of the forum and didn't post for 'about' 3 weeks.

I CAN confirm, however, (because I sat around and watched a few of the discussions) that Susan of DT began the process of trading files of songs after comparing fat notebooks with a friend..(Dennis Cook, husband of Judy Cook)...Dennis, Judy, Susan & Dick Greenhaus were all familar with computers, and the logic of putting songs onto disc to make updates & trading faster was a logical step. (You'll have to quiz some of them as to exactly who made the 1st disc...etc..)(I had 3-4 iterations of the floppies before the online version)

But it was not long before Dick was appearing at events with copies of the floppies and making more and asking people for their input. As the Internet/WWW [I hope some of you still appreciate the difference] appeared to 'common folk' about that time, the next step was obvious...only the 'how & where' were tricky.

Eventually, Dick found that temporary home at Xerox and as they say, "it all took off". There's a dozen stories about the problems, music software, 'philosophy' of what to PUT in the database...etc....many of those stories are buried in various threads if someone wants to do enough research.

It's because Mudcat Central was located in Pennsylvania and that Max played music and because Dick & Susan have attended the FSGW Getaway for years that the East Coast of the US became a major gathering place for those who wanted to meet folks they had corresponded with....and here we all are...

Now there are 'Mudcat' centered meeting in The British Isles, Europe, Australia..etc...and long time members all over the world. I have been privileged to meet many thru the Getaway and Mystic and a couple other events.

Ya' know what? Mudcat has become important!

"Good, though"


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Subject: RE: Tell me about Mudcat
From: Joe Offer
Date: 29 Jul 08 - 10:55 PM

Now, we do have to give Dick the credit for actually building the database (although he started it as a word processor file). Dennis and Susan were still in the Notebook Generation at the time, and didn't know from databases.

I thought the Digital Tradition and the Forum came to Mudcat on the same date, October 1, 1996. I wasn't there, though - as is often the case, I was on vacation....or out to lunch.....or something. I cam in January, 1996 - although I had been to the Xerox site many times. After the Digital Tradition was taken off the Xerox site, I kept going back, hoping to find that Xerox had reinstated the database. I think I saw a notice there one day that the database had moved to www.deltablues.com.

-Joe-


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Subject: RE: Tell me about Mudcat
From: Bill D
Date: 29 Jul 08 - 11:12 PM

Well...hmmm...I remember being told the database had moved, and wondering exactly why it landed in that strange place. It was called a 'magazine' format, I believe, when Max had all those odd headers & links to go along with blues history. I 'think' there was this brief period when the database was here without the forum....(after all, the forum took some design work, which Max's elves worked on at spare moments.)


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Subject: RE: Tell me about Mudcat
From: Joe Offer
Date: 30 Jul 08 - 12:18 AM

Well, I have to say, I'm really disappointed that the beer link on this page goes nowhere.

Max, please bring back the beer section!!

-Joe-


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Subject: RE: Tell me about Mudcat
From: GUEST,LTS pretending to work
Date: 30 Jul 08 - 06:34 AM

"He's a lot older now - but hey, so are we all...."

Speak for yourself Sunshine!!!

LTS


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Subject: RE: Tell me about Mudcat
From: kendall
Date: 30 Jul 08 - 06:52 AM

Well, my family coat of arms says "In Deo Non Armis Fido" that's the extent of my Latin.

There was that time many years ago when I asked this woman in a bar for her name and she said she was Italian and her name was Mea Culpa. Never did find her in the phone book.


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Subject: RE: Tell me about Mudcat
From: MartinRyan
Date: 30 Jul 08 - 06:55 AM

Kendall

Rough translation: "Keep the dog away from the shotgun when the sun shines"

Regards


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Subject: RE: Tell me about Mudcat
From: MartinRyan
Date: 30 Jul 08 - 06:56 AM

p.s. That was no lady in the bar - that was a nun!


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Subject: RE: Tell me about Mudcat
From: Bill D
Date: 30 Jul 08 - 10:42 AM

I see your point, Joe....we need a 3rd 'section': folk, BS...and beer! It can be waaaaaayyy at the bottom - I'll find it.


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Subject: RE: Tell me about Mudcat
From: PoppaGator
Date: 30 Jul 08 - 11:33 AM

This is the most complete history of Mudcat I've yet encountered, and cleared up many questions and misunderstandings for me.

Thanks, all!

I suppose we have to thank knight_high for getting this particular ball rolling, but really, the emergence of so much information has been accidental/serendipidous. We get new memebers asking similar questions every couple of months, and the answers have never yet been this thorough!


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Subject: RE: Tell me about Mudcat
From: Amos
Date: 30 Jul 08 - 11:46 AM

It changed pretty rapidly once the database was attached and even faster when the Forum was added in Oct. '06.

I believe you mean October 1996, yes?



A


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Subject: RE: Tell me about Mudcat
From: Bill D
Date: 30 Jul 08 - 12:19 PM

why no, Amos...we "oldtimers" remember when it was steam powered and all the posts had to be mimeographed and hand-delivered to Max. The whole thing ran at -.426 BAUD. Posts from England ran months behind.(We speeded up a lot in '08)


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Subject: RE: Tell me about Mudcat
From: dick greenhaus
Date: 30 Jul 08 - 01:06 PM

For the record, Digitrad hit the Web in 1992. A gentleman names Steve Putz arranged for it to appear at the Xerox Parc site.


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Subject: RE: Tell me about Mudcat
From: beardedbruce
Date: 30 Jul 08 - 01:12 PM

I remember making (disk) copies, I think at FOTM. When was the DT at two disks?

8-{E


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Subject: RE: Tell me about Mudcat
From: GUEST,Peace
Date: 30 Jul 08 - 01:15 PM

"In Deo Non Armis Fido"

God will not arm dogs?


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