Wednesday, November 25, 2009

BBS: The Documentary "Thanksgiving" Special

Jason Scott filmed this panoramic documentary from 2001-2004, and BBS: The Documentary became available for purchase in 2005. Scott explores the birth of computers and computer networking from its early roots in the telegraph system to the internet today. He interviews Tom Jennings (creator of FidoNET), Ward Christensen (creator of CBBS, the first BBS), and other famous people. He covers the history of BBSes, astscene (ANSII art), hacking, phreaking, FidoNET, commdore vs. atari vs. apple vs. etc. and several other early computer topics. It's a 3 disc set, and each disk has 2 or 3 45 minute episodes, so there is quite a bit of content. It's brilliant, amazing, thought provoking, interesting, and even emotional.

Scott goes beyond the surface observations of history and explores the lives of people who grew up with BBSes and ran BBSes. He interviews early computer artists, poets, programmers, and philosophers. He presents a slice of the underground 80s computer subculture, and I couldn't recommend it more.

BBS: The Documentary official website.

1 comment:

dominic said...

i am very disappointed that this isn't on netflix.