Forum:Hobbies, then and now
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Despite the newfound duty to patrol edits, ban vandals, and patiently explain How To Be Funny And Not Just Stupid to a progression of anonymous n00bs, writing fake encyclopedia articles and fake news stories is still tons of fun, especially compared to hobbies of the past.
- Want to meet strangers? Buy a Citizens Band radio (which cost as many "dollars" as a web-capable computer does now) and you could meet everyone with the same hobby within about...3 miles. With a couple hours every night, you could become an informal moderator of the channel (dethroned if you ever took a week off), though the regulations technically prohibited you from discussing anything serious. Yes, we were all anonymous — no one with a business in town or who wanted to be influential at town meeting would dare to have such a Second Life — and there was trolling.
- Want to play with computers? A lone wolf could rewrite operating systems, blast ROMs, and even rewire circuit boards. It never seemed to matter that the result would be cryptic and even its data files would be of no use anywhere else. In the old days, you might even get the result to do useful computing. Now, Mozilla-sized collectives are churning out better stuff. This hobby has fascinated me recently, now that we can, at the kitchen table, write emulations of the computers of old that are instantly 100 times faster than the originals and totally customize them. But none of them will ever even play an MP3 file. Hell, they never did.
- Want to combine computing with meeting strangers? There was the BBS, a slow-speed version of IRC, provided you either wanted to subscribe to multiple phone numbers or repeatedly dial and deal with busy signals. Trolling was as above; likewise rage posts.
- Simply want to drop out? The predecessor to fantasy sports was done not with Sunday football parties but with dice on a card table in the basement. At the end of two months, you would have a neat replay of the 1980 National League, and you could spend hours comparing your statistics to the real thing. Less technical? Build a ship inside a bottle.
These were hobbies because they required that you apply yourself, they got better the more serious you got, and because what you did one night built on what you did the night before (unless you programmed in BASIC before libraries).
Uncyclopedia adds typography as neat and as detailed as you want to spend the time making it; a choice of the world's illustrations; instant worldwide publication; sharing audio if you want to; and collaboration with people from Britain to America to Australia. That is why I am here. I am sorry to sound like my father used to, but I hope it helps people appreciate how great this is to compare it to the supposed good-old-days. 01:32 25-Aug-14
- Navelism! In January 2015 we can have 'Uncyclopedia:A Look Back' which I trust is hopelessly unreliable and funny about the history of this site. Introduction to be written by Sir Jimbo Wales. --RomArtus*Imperator ITRA (Orate) ® 10:59, August 25, 2014 (UTC)
- As interesting as a wiki, but more challenging, as the medium is strictly one-way: One's transmissions needed to be under two minutes total, and paused every ten to fifteen seconds in order to listen for "breakers," such as emergency traffic that might have priority. The absurd protocol was to yield to any interruption, which was never an emergency. 17:34 3-Sep-14
- Actually, that rule here is the TLDR rule. 19:47 6-Sep-14