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Thanks For Reading: 15 Years of News For Nerds 229

Slashdot turns 15 this month! You may have noticed that we’ve swapped out the usual logo for the first of the reader-contributed designs we'll be featuring this month. (If you think you have a better idea, we'd love to see it; all artists whose designs we choose to run will get Slashdot anniversary T-shirts, and one will get a Nexus 7 tablet.) We're also happy to announce an overdue feature here on Slashdot: a blog with information from the developers and editors. We'll use it to provide updates and background information about the site's development (for instance, new features or fixed bugs, or changes in the user interface), and try to answer reader questions about the site at greater length than the FAQ. Shameless tease: today, you can read about the launch of Slashdot mobile in the inaugural post. We might use the blog to expound on story choice or to make non-critical announcements, too. You probably don't come to Slashdot generally to read about Slashdot, though, so don't worry &mdash the blog will live safely and quietly in the background until you want to read it. Since this is a new feature, we're still working out exactly how it should best be used, so feel free to make suggestions below on what you'd like to see. Between now and the end of October, look for a passel of other treats, too, starting with an interview with Woz later today. We hope you'll get together with other readers at one of the many parties planned for later this month, also. Slashdot exists for and because of everyone who reads the site; thank you for being part of it.
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Thanks For Reading: 15 Years of News For Nerds

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  • Congratulations (Score:5, Insightful)

    by frank_carmody ( 1551463 ) <pedrogent@gm a i> on Monday October 01, 2012 @07:28AM (#41511701)

    To everyone involved, on both sides of the fence!

    The new logo is really great BTW.

  • Haha (Score:5, Insightful)

    by Life2Death ( 801594 ) on Monday October 01, 2012 @07:29AM (#41511711)

    The title gives the impress "thanks for reading, we're shutting down /. kthxbi"

    as always, tl;dr

  • Thanks (Score:5, Insightful)

    by AmiMoJo ( 196126 ) <mojo@world3.nBLUEet minus berry> on Monday October 01, 2012 @07:31AM (#41511719) Homepage Journal

    Thank you Slashdot. You created one of the greatest communities on the internet. Yeah, it is a community, despite the fact that we mostly argue with each other all the time :-) No other site comes close to being as insightful and interesting, and occasionally hilarious.

    I'm sure there will be lots of "Slashdot is dying" posts, but I think it is more of an inevitable change. Long gone as the Emacs vs. vi holy wars, to be replaced with the Android vs. iOS wars. How long ago the late 90s seem now.

    • At least we are still seeing sensible comments here in slashdot
      • by AmiMoJo ( 196126 )

        At least we are still seeing sensible comments here in slashdot

        And without demanding your real name either.

    • Re:Thanks (Score:5, Informative)

      by Dupple ( 1016592 ) on Monday October 01, 2012 @07:43AM (#41511775)

      Long gone as the Emacs vs. vi holy wars, to be replaced with the Android vs. iOS wars. How long ago the late 90s seem now.

      I used to like coming here when apple was nearly dead and you could guarantee a good MS bashing. How times have changed indeed

      • by tsa ( 15680 )

        Yeah, those were the days ;). At least we have a choice now. Even in companies you see more and more Linux and Apple.

      • by AmiMoJo ( 196126 )

        MS bashing is still alive and well, but Apple are really pushing hard for that number-one-object-of-hate spot.

    • Re:Thanks (Score:5, Funny)

      by dkleinsc ( 563838 ) on Monday October 01, 2012 @07:45AM (#41511783) Homepage

      3 obvious points about that:
      1. I'll believe /. is dying when Netcraft confirms it.

      2. Your preferred $EDITOR sucks. Mine rocks.

      3. I want Natalie Portman naked and petrified in hot grits.

    • Re:Thanks (Score:4, Funny)

      by Anonymous Coward on Monday October 01, 2012 @07:46AM (#41511793)

      Starting Score: 1
      Moderation: +1

      Thank you Slashdot. You created one of the greatest communities on the internet. Yeah, it is a community, despite the fact that we mostly argue with each other all the time :-)

      +1 Informative

      No other site comes close to being as insightful and interesting, and occasionally hilarious.

      +1 Funny

      I'm sure there will be lots of "Slashdot is dying" posts, but I think it is more of an inevitable change.

      -1 Troll

      Long gone as the Emacs vs. vi holy wars, to be replaced with the Android vs. iOS wars.

      -1 Flamebait

      How long ago the late 90s seem now.

      +1 Insightful

      Total Score: 2

    • Thank you Slashdot. You created one of the greatest communities on the internet.

      It could have been digg/reddit long ago though, before those even came about, but the site rested on it's ass.

      Not that I mind, given the commentary there is low grade and lots of noise... but still.

      Aside a few tweaks, this place kinda the same since 1999. No ambition whatsoever.

    • Re:Thanks (Score:5, Interesting)

      by MtViewGuy ( 197597 ) on Monday October 01, 2012 @08:14AM (#41511949)

      What I find fascinating is that how much the influence of UNIX has become in today's computing landscape since Slashdot started 15 years ago. After all, Apple's MacOS X runs off a UNIX kernel variant named Mach, and both iOS and Android runs off UNIX-like kernels. In short, the dream of running UNIX on consumer devices has become reality, though in a way nobody expected.

      Congratulations on 15 years of one of the most influential places on the Internet, and may you be around for its 30th anniversary. We do miss Rob Malda (CmdrTaco) and his stewardship of Slashdot, though.

      • Definitely. Back in the late 90's it didn't really seem odd to hear influential people in IT say things like "UNIX is dead", "In ten years every server will be running Windows NT or Netware" or "Linux is just a toy, Windows is the future".

        The only upside to those dark days was that a lot of companies who got suckered into the lovely all-Windows future dumped near-new workstations and servers because they were standardizing on NT on workstations and servers (and surprisingly often win9x on regular desktops,

      • by AmiMoJo ( 196126 )

        For me it's bitter-sweet. Both Linux and BSD are open source, and that was always the dream - OS software running on mainstream consumer devices, replacing proprietary and restricted code. Unfortunately it took commercial companies doing their own UIs on top of the OS core to gain popularity, and while iOS is particularly bad both MacOS and Android are still somewhat locked down in practice (bootloaders, DRM etc.)

        Even on /. I don't think many people realize just how many embedded devices run Linux or BSD.

        • Re:Thanks (Score:5, Interesting)

          by drjzzz ( 150299 ) on Monday October 01, 2012 @09:03AM (#41512273) Homepage Journal

          "I don't think many people realize just how many embedded devices run Linux or BSD."

          True. I've seen a couple airplane entertainment systems booting recently (normal startups, not reboots) and was a little surprised to recognize many of the usual daemons waking up. In contrast, I've seen a number of information screens in lobbies of hotels or office buildings stuck on a crashed Windows error message. Once upon a time, such a contrast would have cheered slashdotters but now it's just the way it is. So long Windows, and thanks for all the BSODs (in keeping with the thread above).

          • by AmiMoJo ( 196126 )

            To be fair I think most people recognize now that Windows is pretty stable, but of course is at the mercy of poorly written applications and hardware failures. Displays in particular, where the machine is stuck in some hot cupboard somewhere and neglected for years on end doing 24/7 duty and then not attended to when it fails so the evidence lingers for days, tend to show many such faults.

            It is interesting how when MacOS/iOS/Android/TVs/routers/etc crash people don't blame Linux or BSD. It is just assumed t

    • Re:Thanks (Score:4, Informative)

      by thereitis ( 2355426 ) on Monday October 01, 2012 @08:17AM (#41511969) Journal

      No other site comes close to being as insightful and interesting, and occasionally hilarious.

      TBH I haven't gone to this link in awhile since I like to read all comments, but it's a roundup of the most popular Slashdot comments (submitted by users): []

    • Not only created, but also maintained the community, at least for lots of people. Gracias.
  • by Anonymous Coward

    Wow! 15 years? Man I need a life.

    • by garcia ( 6573 )

      It's pretty crazy that I'm still with the same site I was reading back in high school and my freshman year of college.

      I still remember my first +4 post and how I got contacted by the guy who in HS introduced me to the site I would continually contribute to as a commenter for the next 15 years of my life because it floated to the top.

      I went to my first /. meetup after moving to Minnesota, a state where I knew no one and realized the community this site has built covers such a wide range of "nerds" that while

  • by Anonymous Coward on Monday October 01, 2012 @07:41AM (#41511759)

    and five years of news for burned out web admins.

  • 15th year old (Score:2, Interesting)

    by Anonymous Coward

    I suppose that this means that /. is currently in its acne filled puberty.

    • by symes ( 835608 )

      I wish I was back in my acne filled, zx spectrum dominated, puberty... so much to look forward to in those days. And congratulations and thank you to /. for filling up a bit of my life that probably would not have found the same level satisfaction in the real world. Oh, and mobile /. is long overdue.

    • I think if slashdot taught us anything, it is that websites operate in dog years.
  • Slashdot "bugfix" - LOL
  • No, thank you! (Score:5, Interesting)

    by johnsnails ( 1715452 ) on Monday October 01, 2012 @07:56AM (#41511841)
    No thank you /. for enabling me to be across such a wide range of technology issues, it actually helps earn boss respect to be across so many things that I attribute to /. news.
  • dayummm (Score:4, Interesting)

    by Monoman ( 8745 ) on Monday October 01, 2012 @07:58AM (#41511849) Homepage

    Wow that might make some of us .. .err not me, feel old.

    I wonder what the average slashdot age is around here. Meaning, are many "old timers" still around? How long the typical person stays active on /.? etc etc

    • Re:dayummm (Score:5, Interesting)

      by Average ( 648 ) on Monday October 01, 2012 @08:14AM (#41511941)

      Any of us with a /. UID under 15,000 or so were here before logins (since there were that many of us who signed up the first few days).

      What makes me feel old is that I'm working on the same floor of the same building I was in 1998, back when I first saw Slashdot and happiness was a warm DEC Alphastation.

      • by Monoman ( 8745 )

        That is a low number you go there old timer. Heck I think I always had a login so that may have happened sooner.

      • by CharlieG ( 34950 )

        Heck, this is my second ID, because I couldn't remember my first. Sigh, good to see some folks that make me seem like a noob still around. Was fun to see the Hot Grits comment, I'd love to see some caveman comments. Feeling old "First Post"
        It would be interesting if they could dig up what the highest UID was at the end of each year, and post that

        • I had the same thing happen. I didn't create an account right away when they first started offering them and when I finally did I lost the first one.

    • Re:dayummm (Score:5, Interesting)

      by tamyrlin ( 51 ) on Monday October 01, 2012 @08:42AM (#41512127) Homepage
      Here is one old timer checking in. Although I'm more of a passive consumer of slashdot these days. Although this is not really slashdot's fault, I'm more of a passive consumer of mailing lists, discussion groups, usenet, etc these days as well. (Having a day job and a family does have a higher priority for me than participating in forum discussions these days.)
      • by drjzzz ( 150299 )

        Impressively low numbers, fer sure! "Age" is relative. When I finally joined (after watching for a while), I thought "that's it, I'll be at the end of this line forever." Then within a few years 10x more people joined. This is a great site (though I sometimes do look for a "like" or thumbs-up option and wish I had karma points to give).

    • Re:dayummm (Score:5, Informative)

      by MyLongNickName ( 822545 ) on Monday October 01, 2012 @08:54AM (#41512195) Journal

      My sig points to some research I did to answer this question.

      EDIT: For those of you not logged in, the sig says []

      • by CharlieG ( 34950 )

        Perfect - I was saying that someone should do that research

      • Thanks for posting this- I've actually been wondering for years.

        I must have signed up in 1999. I was.... thirteen. Now I'm 26.

        Half my life!

    • by Bigbutt ( 65939 )

      The bad thing is I had an earlier ID but it was tied to one of the earliest ISPs that went under. Since I couldn't remember my password and the email was invalid, I had to create a new ID (this one). It's still a low number though :)

      I found the old email address a couple of years ago and thought I'd send a note in to see if I could reactivate it based on knowing the e-mail but I never received a reply (probably a good thing I guess).


      • Same thing happened to me. I believe my nick was sp_ or something similar, and I believe it was in the neighborhood of 10k. I changed providers suddenly because the one I had went under. I also tried emailing way back, like in 2000 or 2001, to get it back, but also got no response. Oh well!
    • by Kozz ( 7764 )

      I was lurking for at least a year before registering, I believe. If I'm someplace with access to my own computer, I will typically visit at least once per day. Oh, the hours you owe me, Slashdot! ;)

    • by tjansen ( 2845 )
      Can't speak for others, obviously, but I mostly only ready Slashdot on Google Reader these days. I just don't have the time for writing comments any more, and, frankly, I guess I am too old for flamewars and trolling by now :) Congratulations, Slashdot!
  • Been with you since day one. The attraction for me at the time was that Slashdot was using GNU/Linux. Continued since then because it is simply the best search engine out there. I've been trying to remember the other search engines at the time (without googling them) and can remember only Alta Vista and Dogpile.
    • by Monoman ( 8745 )

      How many userIDs do you have? The one you are using is too high to be from "day one".

      BTW - only one of the sites mentioned in your post is a search engine. The other two are not search engines.

    • I first couldn't figure out your message, but then realized you probably meant "Google was using GNU/Linux". FTFY.
  • by Spectrumanalyzer ( 2733849 ) on Monday October 01, 2012 @08:06AM (#41511897)

    Thank you for bringing me a community with people that are more than willing to give me sleepless nights.
    Thank you for giving me a reason to surf on the job, just to check if that rat bastard Anonymous Coward has brought insult to my name, once more.
    Thank you for bringing us a site that is immediately quoted on a bazillion dupe wannabee sites once it gets slashdotted.
    Thank you for reminding me that I am a geek, no matter where I work, whom I work for - ultimatively Im really your bitch and nobody else.
    Thank you for occasionally making me a moderator and handing me anything between 5 to 15 moderator points just to take it away from me a few days later, just to tell me that every geek is created equal.
    Thank you for posting subjects making it possible to discuss no one else but us geeks would ever dream of discussing.

    And ultimatively...

    Thank you for being the one and only site out there, reminding us all of - that we have no life, really - we dont! ;)

    • by symes ( 835608 )

      Thank you for giving me a reason to surf on the job, just to check if that rat bastard Anonymous Coward has brought insult to my name, once more.

      When I first started lurking on /. I genuinely believed that Anonymous Coward was a remarkably prolific poster. It was not until I plucked up the courage some years later and posted something that I realized...

  • by JoeCommodore ( 567479 ) <> on Monday October 01, 2012 @08:15AM (#41511951) Homepage

    I, for one, congratulate our Slashdot overlords!

  • Slashdot on 9/11 (Score:5, Interesting)

    by lateral ( 523650 ) < minus city> on Monday October 01, 2012 @08:28AM (#41512041)

    I'll never forget September 11th 2001 on Slashdot. When I first heard the news that somebody had flown a plane into the World Trade Centre I reflexively checked the BBC website. It was unreachable - completely swamped. I checked CNN and that was swamped too. I went to Slashdot and they were reporting it and available so on-and-off I followed the story on Slashdot and on TV all day.

    By the evening on the TV they had already gathered their pundits and reduced the days events to a continuous 10 second loop of a plane hitting a building. It was already starting to look like a music video.

    Meanwhile on slashdot there were real conversations going on with real people who had been there, seen it or been affected by it. I remember one comment in particular - somebody wrote about psychologists being dispatched (volunteering I think) to go to school bus stops to tell some of the waiting kids that their parents were dead.


    • I also experienced the same thing. I was heading to work after one of my college classes and my friend (coworker and classmate) got a call from his mom saying that there was a small plane flying around New York City, making it sound like some Cessna pilot that got way off course, but certainly not what we heard when we got to work. I immediately tried to bring up those same sites, until realizing that Slashdot was one of the only outlets that was reachable, besides the small TV in my boss' office. Bizarre
  • by Zarhan ( 415465 ) on Monday October 01, 2012 @08:35AM (#41512079)

    You know, like implementing things like IPv6 and UTF-8 support.

  • by ls671 ( 1122017 ) on Monday October 01, 2012 @08:39AM (#41512111) Homepage

    I hear each and every AC is going to get 15 mod points for /. 15th anniversary, spread the news !

  • Long missed feature (Score:5, Interesting)

    by Vintermann ( 400722 ) on Monday October 01, 2012 @08:42AM (#41512129) Homepage

    so don't worry &mdash

    Speaking of, when will we get unicode support?

  • Congratulations on surviving this long...many other places on the net have come and gone in the time that you have been around...and I have been there with you too, and enjoying it all the time. Thank you for building such a wonderful site, again and again and again! :-)

    Good luck going into the future, from one of you're earlier members!


  • ...dotSlash

    Does this mean there is only 15 more years?

  • A mobile version of /. is years overdue. What the hell took so long?
  • Thanks for giving me something to do during those long compiles!
  • Happy birthday to slashdot. 365 days until you can drive and buy three-two. May you keep on strokin for another fifteen.

    My android only loads half of the new icon. The mobile site doesn't let me view just the article - it automatically expands the first or second article.

  • Slashdot, I love you.

  • by concealment ( 2447304 ) on Monday October 01, 2012 @10:00AM (#41512773) Homepage Journal

    Having had legitimate posts downvoted to "Flamebait" for offending community pretense, I'm not going to pretend Slashdot is a Utopia. People are still people, and people are still stupid, even when they're smart. On the internet, this all gets turned up to 11.

    However, Slashdot is a better example of what the net can be than "social networking" like Facebook, Myspace, Digg, Fark, Reddit, etc. These sites are clustered around the idea of people socializing through the internet. As a nerd, I think that's foolish. You socialize around being a person who likes to be with other people, and you find people who you respect.

    A lot has changed in the past 15 years. UNIX is now mainstream, running on thousands of devices. Even more, computer technology and networking are now mainstream, with ordinary people navigating wi-fi hotspots and even writing code for their phones. What once was special and unique is no longer so removed from the experience of normal people.

    I miss CmdrTaco and his guidance, but think the team is doing a good job. That's fortunate, as they have quite a task ahead of them: remaining focused on what it is they do well in a world that has surged past their original mission, and now needs new types of guidance with new uses of technology.

  • 15 years (Score:5, Interesting)

    by Natales ( 182136 ) on Monday October 01, 2012 @10:10AM (#41512859)
    In the last 15 years I've had 4 different jobs, I've moved 4 times in 3 different countries, I divorced and got remarried and I've had a lot of personal changes. In all these years Slashdot has been a refuge for me, even an obsession when I had nothing else going on, or when I was stuck over the weekend in some foreign country. I always felt part of this community even if sometimes I've been modded down into oblivion.

    Being a nerd and a geek is cooler now, but we are still fringe elements of society at large, so I never want to underestimate the need and value of the few good virtual places where we can be accepted and talk to others like us. So today, I just want to say thank you Slashdot for being there. We've all grown together.
  • My post for 2012 (Score:5, Interesting)

    by davidu ( 18 ) on Monday October 01, 2012 @11:36AM (#41513759) Homepage Journal
    I guess this is an appropriate post for me to comment in. Nice work Slashdot, still going strong.
    • Re:My post for 2012 (Score:4, Informative)

      by hovelander ( 250785 ) on Monday October 01, 2012 @04:06PM (#41517511)

      Your post is a good experiment on how no one ever scrolls down to the bottom and only comment the first 5 - 7 posts.

      Some things never change in 15 years, eh?

      Mods? This is why you use your points near the bottom! Anything? Helllllllllloooooooo?

      Well, at least this is where I usually try to use my mod points. Sorry Dave, used my last one up before it expired at midnight last night. I'd have given you one here. Thanks for being part of the reason why I started reading here so long ago, man.

      Cheers to ya!

Nondeterminism means never having to say you are wrong.