Wednesday, March 01, 2006

bsdtalk021 - Interview with Stephen Jones of SDF

Interview with Stephen Jones of SDF. Super Dimension Fortress provides free shell accounts at http://www.freeshell.org

45 comments:

Kered557 said...

Hey,

Are you a student or professor at UMA? I belong to SDF and when I downloaded the interview I noticed that it was downloading faster than anything I have ever downloaded on campus here at UMF! Nice stuff man! Ill be sure to listen to it often!

Kered557
kered557@sdf.lonestar.org

Anonymous said...

This was a great interview on the history and status of SDF. I joined last summer. It's been a wonderful educational experience and lots of fun.

Makes me want to get the BBS Documentary at:

http://www.bbsdocumentary.com/order/

The history of this type of networking: bbs's, gopher, shell access is fascinating.

Cowl
cowl@sdf.lonestar.org

Cowl said...

This was a great interview on the history and status of SDF. I joined last summer. It's been a wonderful educational experience and lots of fun.

Makes me want to get the BBS Documentary at:

http://www.bbsdocumentary.com/order/

The history of this type of networking: bbs's, gopher, shell access is fascinating.

Cowl
cowl@sdf.lonestar.org

Anonymous said...

Some SDF statistics not mentioned in the interview:
* 208 VHOSTed domains
* 6029 member hosted domains
(51 'vanity' domains to choose from)
* 27065 active members
* usually ~400 concurrent users at anytime
* 10 production machines (NetBSD alpha 2.1/2.0.2)
* 21 * 36.4GB drives / 10-30GB 'local' per host
* 6172 dialup numbers in the US/Canada
* over 1 million accounts created since 1987

Anyone know any others?

Beaker said...

Nice interview! Actually learned some new things about SDF (been a member since June 2001). It's amazing Stephen has kept SDF going so long - and he sounds so young! ;)

Anonymous said...

I have been a member of SDF since early 2003. At a time when everything was going to web based mail SDF provided me with the shell account I was looking for and has provided me with great and extremely cheap service ever since.

Thanks Stephen!

-Rich Bryant

NsOmNiAc said...

Been with SDF for a long time now and it's great to hear the story and history behind SDF. Hell I didn't even know what the SDF stood for. Great to hear Stephens words though always had great admiration for him and his love of UNIX and Severed Heads.
NsOmNiAc

rdhatt said...

Stephen forgot to mention the 'netris' tourneys!

Anonymous said...

I enjoyed this very much. Thanks.

Anonymous said...

Hi Stephen

Thanks for the great interview! And I don't think you are a boring storyteller (as you mentioned in your email). Nice to hear about the history of SDF and how you took on the challenges. Keep it up!

--Stefan (happy SDF-EU user since 2004)

Dexter in Transit said...

So great to hear the history behind this amazing service! I actually just signed up last week due to my nostalgia for the gopher system; I'm very much still in the process of "learning the ropes" as it were. I especially appreciate Stephen's anti-establishment, anti-corporate idealism; it is that sort of attitude which I personally feel helps to fuel the "true spirit" of the Internet. Wonderful interview, and I'm so happy to be a part of this!

Devon
dkoren@sdf.lonestar.org

John (jboy) said...

I've been a member since 22oct2001 and can't begin to list the many things I've gotten out of my membership. I learned a whole lot about a wide array of things; had a bunch of interesting conversations; good things to do to kill time; met nice people (even in `real life'); etc., etc. Thanks for the interview.

Anonymous said...

I think ignoring the following question was a great omission:

Is it not honourable to mutt suck dinner duck?

Anonymous said...

There's also a great writeup on SDF on the Wikipedia:

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/ Super_Dimension_Fortress

Unfortunately, it does not cast Stephen's management of the system in a very good light.

rbigelo said...

SDF is what Internetworking used to be before the shameless and wanton over commercialization of the Internet.

Anonymous said...

Cool to learn about all the backstory of how things happened in the early days. Great job Stephen.

artagel at sdf

corster said...

Great interview! I've been a member for 2 years. I will never leave. Until, of course, smj pulls the plug. :)

Get your free UNIX shell account at sdf.lonestar.org

-cor-

Anonymous said...

Why not just install Linux or NetBSD on your own computer?

What would I get out of joining this system? Wouldn't I learn more by "rolling my own" shell account at home?

I'm sure Stephen is a nice guy, but why would I want to trust him (or anyone there) to keep my files safe?

It might be a good way for newbies to get their feet wet before they graduate to setting up their own home system. But, isn't that what Knoppix is for?

jcarpen said...

Nice interview. I was excited to learn more about SDF. I've been a member for a few years now and it's been great. Thanx for keeping it running!

Karamoon said...

Great interview, SMJ. Every single time I use SDF I feel grateful that the real Internet isn't quite dead yet. Thanks for keeping it alive.
-Kara
(SDF user since 2003)

Anonymous said...

I like SDF because it's Lisp-friendly. They have a ready to use ISLISP (OpenLisp) and they also run some stuff on Symbolics Genera (although I have no idea as to what).

Stephen Jones is a true hacker, a true system administrator!

Anonymous said...

Oh, by the way. SDF gives access to a DEC Alpha (that's 64 bits).

Pretty nice.

rielore said...

SDF is an invaluable resource for those interested in learning and take pleasure out of discovery. Its true accomplishment is the many smart, friendly, and interesting people it has made into loyal users: a testament to its excellence.

Anonymous said...

An exciting bit of SDF history. I've been an sdf member since early 2001. Why couldn't I have joined up earlier? When will the "More from Stephen Jones" interview be out?

kthorn

Erikstotle said...

Nice interview. I had no idea quite how much work went into SDF. It was interesting to hear the history of SDF. Very good job.

Erikstotle
estotle@sdf.lonestar.org

alexeyt said...

Thanks for the history lesson. Now I know why linux got dumped.

rbigelo said...

SDF Public Access Unix System .. est. 1987

sdf.lonestar.org

No Pop-up or Banner Ads
No SPAM
No Nonsense

ssinct said...

Great interview. My years on sdf have been useful and informative. Here's to another 20 years.

Anonymous said...

smj i love you....

your anonymous admirer

brendan said...

Jesus smj can talk. I hope it was the edit but the first reply went on for about 10 minutes. Also I imagined when smj spoke it would be like a voice from Olympus, instead he sounds like some UNIX sys-admin.

Still a great interview, at least for SDF users. I listened at a friends house when he had gone out, when most normal people would be looking at porn.

No mention of the international facets of SDF though.

brendan@droog

Yargo said...

Cool interview, and for auditive people like me, nice to have a voice now in the head when reading stuff from smj! (Even if English is not my native language.)
It's interesting to hear about the history - the only thing I'm regretting is that I haven't come to SDF earlier than 2004.
Definitely a cool place for trying things out, for getting into touch with a lot of interesting people (not to mention the knowledge and idea base), and to have a "base in cyberspace" where one feels at home. I'll continue to do advertisement for it, hoping that SDF will continue!
-yargo@sverige

\ On The Streets of Philadelphia \ said...
This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.
Alban Zope's Other Halls said...

At 8:52 AM, \ On The Streets of Philadelphia \ said...

Stephen:

'Devon' said it for me: "I especially appreciate Stephen's anti-establishment, anti-corporate idealism; [...] attitude which I personally feel helps to fuel the "true spirit" of the Internet. Wonderful interview, and I'm so happy to be a part of this!

I'm also very pleased [more at: relieved] to note somebody else is a fan of "THX-1138"; when I've tried describing its seminal influence and the filmmaking/literary excellence [also clearly anti-estab, anti-corp] I seem always to engender The 1000 Millimeter Stare.

N.B.: Not to evaluate anyone at your level of expertise, but [re. your almost palpable focus, thought organization, etc.] I notice you low-ball your [public] speaking skill set (in the email announcement)! This is one absorbing interview from where I sit [now higher-up, straighter and taller-in-saddle after exp. to this information]. Thank you! --Wordy Wally --- 'lunarvol' admin@gobi-igloo.com

Anonymous said...

Hi! I'm hearing-impaired (deaf) so unfortunately I couldn't listen to the interview. However, I am a member of SDF for the past few years. One of the commentors wanted to know why they should trust Stephen/SDF. Well, I felt very wary the first time I joined, but as time went by, SDF has gained my trust. Never had a single problem or felt suspicious. Free shell account and a lot of goodies, to boot - what more could you ask for! ;-)

Give SDF a try! If you don't like it for whatever reason, you could always leave. You've got not much to lose.

Great job, Stephen/SMJ and SDF! Keep it up. You've got a lot of loyal and satisfied SDF users backing you up.

--A Happy SDF User

Anonymous said...

Interesting interview. And thanks smj for keeping gopher alive!

Karl Viklund said...

Thank you very much again!
Looking forward to the next edition of BSDTalk! :)

Stas said...

Man, your project is absolutely amazing. I only hope, that doing it is so much fun for you, as listening it for me.

Stay kool, stay BSD, stay true!

uglyman said...

way to go smj. SDF is great. takes me back to the good old days.

Rev.Jim said...

Been a member of SDF since the mid 90's. There's not a better value out there. I have no worry about trust with Stephen. The number of times he has personally busted his *ss, spent his own funds, and wasted untold hours to keep that system running and ensure the safety of our files so that we can do what we do has convinced me of his integrity.

Thanks Stephen for all you do for us!!!

-revjim

Haakon B. Dahl said...

Has anybody transcribed this interview? I'm at work. I know this is a dead thread, but perhpas... perhaps.......

Anonymous said...

transcribed this interview? lol.

Anonymous said...

Almost the whole interview is so boring.
What a self-centered man!

Anonymous said...

Lets see, the interview was about him and SDF. What else was he supposed to talk about? You? What a self centered man!

Tom said...

SMJ does a great job at SDF.

For those who've asked .. SDF is more then a shell account, it's a community of people who communicate with one another via the various methods that SDF provides (BBS, WEB, Email, IRC, to name a few). What makes SDF special is that it is run like a computing environment in the early days of the Internet.

Its not corporate at all. Its simply a place for people who like computing.

biff@sdf.lonestar.org

Anonymous said...

An interview that was very pleasant to listen to. I had the impression that you ended it too quickly. You don't have any time limits, so you shouldn't end your interviews when the other guy still has something to say.

Anyway, thanks for you work!