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Re: BP Album+ || New Features Requests and Discussion



@Mike Pratt

I think another amusing point about the whole “online social community” thing is that people mistakenly think Facebook invented all these concepts and that we’re somehow “ripping off” Facebook by emulating these features.

Facebook did not invent ANY of the key features people associate with social networking.

That credit goes to the dial-up bulletin board community of the late 1980’s. Specifically, a piece of software called “The Major BBS”, which you can learn about here:

Twenty years ago, when I was coding “plug-ins” in C for Major BBS, we had ALL of the following features:

Poking = “Paging” You would type “/p username” and it would pop-up on the other user’s screen if they were online. Or if they were offline the system would queue-up pages and notify you when you logged back in.

User Profiles = “User Registry”

Facebook Apps = “Add Ons”

Chat = “Teleconference”

Private Messaging = “Site Mail”

Friends = (Implemented using a lot of different features, but to the same net effect.)

Activity Stream = “Site News(?)”

Groups = “Forums” (Entirely text based)

Photos = “File Archives”. (Text based, queued downloads. At the time it would have taken 20 minutes to download a 300×600 pixel image, and JPG had not been invented yet. So you would queue the images you wanted to see and let them download overnight)

Marketplace = (Done with “classified ads” add-on)

FaceBook Ads = (Ads were manually added to pages by the SysOp, but could be paid for online with a credit card using another add-on)

And many of the major BBS features in turn emulate old UNIX functionality.

So to all those who are worried about [insert company name] patenting [whatever feature] or who feel bad about “copying” what somebody else is doing, practically any patent claim can be easily invalidated by showing prior art.

Anyways, back to coding… :)


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