The Club de TeleMatique was founded back in 1980 by European civil servants. They named it TeleMatique, mind you, and not simply "computer club", way before Clinton started talking about the infobahn :-). We still have some of the
- get as many people online as possible
- show them they can get in touch with home country via eMail
- the bbs was in all (then) official EC languages (but Greek, due to the lack of standardization to display Greek-too many codepages involved) in order to facilitate the first contact.
Fidonet was but the first step. We then went to cyberspace as well, in 1993. Our first web site was hosted by a local provider, but soon we felt the need for our own place, where you are now. Not only did we get more physical space to give you a better service, but we got our own domain as well. Highly symbolic, but highly practical as well.
Closer to us...
In 2002, since most everybody had internet access either at home or at work or both, we decided to re-center our activities along 4 main axes:
- Linux (Unix)
- Promotion of free software
- The web
You can find us on Twitter, Facebook, subscribe to our RSS feed, or read our TeleMatique daily news (see on the right hand side).
We still have activities at our local and provide help to our members
Finally, you can also visit our ressources pages:
|Permanent ressources:||Interesting news:|
And if you like them: Click to tweet!
This is what we wrote about it back then (1987):
Our multi line BBS is available 24h at (+352) 292199 - V34. We offer a 5 Gigas HD and 6 CD-Roms online to our members. Only line 1 and the HD are available to unregistered user. See registration menu on the BBS for more information. Don't hesitate to mail for additionnal information. Besides the BBS and the online presence, we offer courses in various computer related matters, hardware discounts in local shops and we occasionnaly sell hardware as well, at bulk price (see the local page).
The very first BBS was hosted on a 286 Olivetti machine with 20 Megs under DOS, the last one on a pentium with 10 Gigs under OS/2.
Fidonet is an amateur network. It's relatively simple to set up, doesn't use complicated things like a tcp/ip stack, works over a simple phone line, is free and available to anyone. Moreover it's basic principle is that most of the things are done offline: that ensures a reduced cost.
This is roughly how it works:
- you write your mails or newsgroup articles.
- When you're done, a program called a tosser calls an archiver (lha,zip, pak, arj, zoo, whatever) and compresses everything in a bundle.
- Then the mailer calls a node near you. The 2 computers exchange passwords, and then your computer sends out your mail, and picks up anything sitting on the remote computer for you.
- Then the line is cut, and the tosser starts unpacking the incoming mail, and tosses it in the message base.
- You read it whenever you have some time.
In the best of worlds, things go like this:
the world is divided into smaller and smaller units: zone, networks, nodes, points. It is usually written as zone:network/node.point. For example:
2:270/25.1 2 means Europe, 27 means Luxemburg (Region), 0 is the network, 25 is the node (the computer of the Club de TeleMatique) and 1 is the final user.
When 2:270/25.1 writes a mail to somebody in the USA, for example 1:1/1.1, the mail goes from
2:270/25.1 to 2:270/25 => 2:270/0 => 2:1/0 => 1:1/0 => 1:1/1 => 1:1/1.1
Downside: depending on the number of "jumps" the mail has to do, delivery can take several days.
BUT: it's fun :-) and very cheap, since with just a local call you can send out an unlimited number of messages, which makes the individual message cheaper than any postal rate. The principle is actually the same as internet, where mail also bounces from one computer to the other. The main difference is that in internet, computers are usually online 24h, whereas in fidonet they only have to be available at certain times of the day (zone mail hour).
Fidonet has also schemes for file distribution, an equivalent of FTP, and many other things. All this is glued together by a weekly nodelist which enables mailers to know where to call to send the mail. This means that fidonet is much more chartered than the internet, and therefore maybe more suitable for beginners.
You can communicate with somebody from fidonet by reversing the fidonet address this way:
2:270/25.11 becomes Dominique.Samson@p11.f25.n270.z2.fidonet.org althought due to a recent surge in internet popularity, the official gate was overcrowded, occasionning problems. We provide a fidonet<>Internet gateway for our members, mail and newsgroups.
More information about fidonet R27 (Luxembourg) and a french explanation .