October 16, 2003

BoingBoing publicity

Jason Scott (the guy doing the massive BBS Documentary and the guy behind textfiles.com) mentions my PLATO book project in a column called "Five Things Worth Looking Into on the homepage of BoingBoing. Scroll down on the right-hand side of that page to see this:

PLATO. It doesn't stand for anything, although they tried to back-tack some acronyms on it. To some, it's the first BBS. At the very least, it's an impressive technological feat, allowing a thousand users to connect to the same computer space, starting back in the late 1960's. You can trace Lotus Notes, Castle Wolfenstein, Tradewars, Hack, and a bunch of other concepts to this system. Brian Dear has absolutely, unequivocably risen as the Mack Daddy of PLATO knowledge, and is working on what will probably be the best book that will ever be written on the subject.

Actually, PLATO stands for "Programmed Logic for Automatic Teaching Operations" and did from the very beginning. It's a myth that they "tacked on" a meaning for the acronym at a later date. At least, by June 1960 there are documents from the Coordinated Sciences Laboratory that show the full meaning of the acronym was already in use.

Posted by brian at October 16, 2003 12:50 PM


Brian, you have to write and correct me! Luckily, I found your entry and have made the correction you cite, so misinformation doesn't continue.

Posted by: Jason Scott at October 17, 2003 06:15 AM

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