Présentation Logan

Hello Everybody!

I hope you’ll forgive my English, but my French is barely good enough to muddle through some of your posts; I couldn’t begin to write in it!

Unlike many of you, I never actually got to experience Minitel during its lifetime, but became interested in it after the fact through Julien Mailland and Kevin Driscoll’s book (I’m actually a PhD student at Indiana University and Julien is one of my advisors). I’m particularly interested in the way Minitel compares and contrasts with the USA’s history of networking projects up to and including the internet.

But perhaps even more than Minitel, I’m interested in the ways in which diehards like yourselves are keeping Minitel alive today. Julien has shown me some of the emulation work being done on Minitel, and I’d love to pick your brains about how one goes about emulating a network rather than a console. The strategies being devised here and elsewhere to preserve software on modern systems are in my opinion ahead of a lot of formal institutions (especially museums), so I look forward to learning more about them!

3 J'aimes

Welcome on the forum Logan :grinning:

At my level, I try to keep:

  • original hardware: terminals, peripherals, server related hardware, etc
  • original software: server side, and also minitel related like videotex emulators, page composers
  • documentation… how all this was working ?

With my own original hardware and original software, I’ve revived 2 « original » servers in autumn 2018.

I’ve also recreated a few typical minitel services: eletronic yellow pages, and a famous sex chat room: 3615 ULLA
This is new software, written in python, which can be used as examples to recreate other services (some people here are playing in that area and reused part of my code).
I’ve written this code in the same spirit as my original software by in 1984, like a videotex extension to an existing language, something quite common with today’s languages but unusual at the Apple ][ time :wink:

I’m convinced that preserving a technology like the Minitel, need to preserve its interactivity to show what it was really like. Otherwise it’s just a terminal and nothing more than that.
Who is interested in looking at a game console if you cannot play any game on it ?

I’ve seen your work, it’s fantastic!

I’m curious, how do you think about the preservation of the PAVI system and the centralization that occurred with Minitel?
I was looking at the « Minitel Libre ou Internet libre » thread, for instance. Do you think of this emulation-based decentralized Minitel as then being the « true » one, perhaps even more true to the original promise of Minitel than the system itself was?