Category : Various Text files
Archive   : GFILES.ZIP
Filename : GNOMES.TXT

Output of file : GNOMES.TXT contained in archive : GFILES.ZIP
Trolls Amongst the Gnomes
Electrik Kool Aid

Once upon a time there was a surrealistic world inhabited by
peaceful gnomes who leisurely went about the process of
interacting with one another in an adult and kindly manner. It
never rained in BBSland and all the gnomes were happy to help one
another in any way possible. If one gnome "crashed" or suffered
similar misfortune, his fellow gnomes were happy (nay, eager) to
assist him back on his feet (and share their Coke and Pizza with
him during the process).

The gnomes expended much effort to communicate new ideas and the
details of the latest current events topics with one another.
Before long local groups of gnomes found that it was possible to
communicate with other isolated groups of gnomes and through this
interaction were able to greatly expand the sphere of knowledge
to gnomes they wouldn't otherwise have occasion to communicate
and learn with.

There was much rejoicing in BBSland when these first few
tentative steps blossomed into fruitful interaction where all
were equal and all shared freely with one another to the best of
their abilities and took only according to their needs. The
population of BBSland took great leaps as more and more outsiders
found that visiting with the gnomes wasn't only something another
gnome would enjoy.

But alas, there one day fell a dark shadow across the face of
BBSland... Someone determined that along with written communication,
gnomes were also capable of exchanging the special scrolls that
enabled their equipment to work in new and exciting ways. This
beast was innocently named DOWNLOAD.

The troll's arrival, at first, was yet another occasion for the
inhabitants of BBSland to erupt from their hovels and make merry.
This new method of communicating with fellow gnomes allowed them
to display their home-brew efforts at producing scrolls without
having to give away the recipe to competing gnomes. The first
few gnomes to try DOWNLOAD freely exchanged their scrolls with
other gnomes (as was their custom) and used the work of others in
the craft as a basis for their own attempts. It still had not
rained in BBSland and all pointed to DOWNLOAD as the best thing
to ever happen to the gnomes.

As more and more people began to visit the gnomes, many of the
newcomers were seduced by DOWNLOAD and began to suckle from his
breast to the exclusion of all other activities. Often they
never even bothered to say "Hello" to the oldtimer gnomes who
existed around them. Many of these pseudo-gnomes never learned
the finer points of interacting with the gnomes and, like all
visitors to a different culture, often left trash and were often
highly disruptive.

Meanwhile, some gnomes began to find their work on a par with the
best efforts of the scrollmasters. They found that not only were
their scrolls as good as (if not better) than the scrollmaster's,
it was possible to distribute them to other gnomes for far less
than what the scrollmaster required to simply recover his costs.
Since many of the early gnomes had much time and effort into
producing professional-quality scrolls, they felt that it was
only just that a gnome who found the scroll acceptable should
offer payment to the gnome who authored the scroll as
compensation for it's production. Unlike the scrollmasters, the
SHAREWARE gnomes felt it was in their best interest to allow
potential customers the courtesy of sampling the scroll prior to
purchase. In this way, the purchaser could gain a superior
scroll for low cost (or discard it was lacking) and the scroll's
author would incur nothing but checks in the mail.

But many gnomes felt that paying for these scrolls was a task
best left for another day. As a result, the authoring gnomes
often found many, many gnomes asking for free advice yet very
few who had paid. Some of the pioneer SHAREWARE gnomes became
disillusioned with the process and left BBSland to join the
ranks of the commercial scrollmasters.

During this time, it became possible to purchase gnome-compatible
equipment for very little money and the outside world discovered
tangible benefits that could be derived from using it. The ranks
of the scrollmasters swelled beyond what any of the early gnomes
could have foreseen. The commercial scrollmasters soon found
themselves in mortal combat to create new and exciting scrolls
that non-gnomes could use and enjoy. Before long the scroll-
masters began to forget that, though their scrolls were superior,
there was no justification for them to price them as if they were
written by God himself and that once a gnome purchased the scroll
the gnome was entitled to something more than an occasional offer
to upgrade their new scroll (often for more than it would cost on
the open market)...

The history of BBSland does not record the name of the first
gnome to break ranks, but it is likely one who felt that the
scrollmasters had become too bloated and greedy, or perhaps it
was someone who had the genuine desire to allow other gnomes to
try out a new and exciting scroll as a preliminary to purchasing
one of their own... Either way, the first raindrops fell across
BBSland as this gnome fed DOWNLOAD a scrollmaster's commercial

DOWNLOAD began to transform from an easy host to an evil taskmaster
after this occurred. He found that within his grasp he had the
power to seduce multitudes of otherwise honest visitors to BBSland
into the reach of his slimy tentacles by making them "an offer they
couldn't refuse." The non-communicating pseudo-gnomes saw this
and fell down and worshiped him and suckled ever more earnestly.

Soon some gnomes found that the it was possible to become popular
with fellow gnomes by abandoning the staid and conservative
scroll exchange in favor of a scroll exchange that catered to
only the vile commercial offerings of DOWNLOAD. They slithered
into the darkness and returned riding the troll's back loudly
proclaiming "Free Scrolls! Free Scrolls! The yoke of the
scrollmasters has been broken! Free Scrolls!"...

As in all things dubious, the vulgarness of DOWNLOAD's new
activity soon attracted new and ever more vile trolls: PHREAK
and ANARCHY. These beasts also found life in the miscretance of
gnomes. PHREAK suckled those who felt it best to avoid
communication charges while ANARCHY found haven amongst the
pseudo-gnomes who liked to steal credit card numbers and perform
other felonious acts. Together DOWNLOAD, PHREAK and ANARCHY
formed a trident that gave rise to the pirate BBS.

The trolls banded together and began to create an elaborate
culture rank with jargon and special methods of interaction among
the gnomes who became enchanted with their smoke-and-mirror show
and crossed over.

At first, the legitimate elder gnomes looked upon (and often
suckled from) this new triad with less than alarm. It was to
them, as to the pseudo-gnomes, a new and exciting experience that
was tempting enough to sample. But as more and more gnomes
sampled from this new BBS, many of them found the experience far
more fulfilling than the boring ways of old. Eventually many of
the elders found it necessary to open their scroll exchanges to
the dark side of DOWNLOAD's realm simply to have other gnomes
even visit.

These new ways were openly practiced out in view of all and much
ado was made of the atmosphere. Unfortunately for the gnomes who
made TOO much noise, the outside world became aware of this game
and smitted many. At first some of the followers of PHREAK were
laid low and cleaved by the wrath of Vengeance. As time went by
and the outsiders entered further into the society, ANARCHY and
DOWNLOAD were also both smitten and attempts were made to
decapitate them in a steely blow.

The outside world did not succeed in this attempt and to this day
all three of the trolls inhabit many a BBS (with DOWNLOAD being
dominate in almost all cases). For while they now slither quietly
in the shadows, they stand ready to rise again.

The legitimate elder gnomes now see this triad for what it is: A
smear upon BBSland and a reasonably proper reason for the outside
world to monitor the happenings in the land of the gnomes. The
problem with this anger is that many of these elders point to
their pirate brethren while they themselves have "Evaluation"
scrolls tucked away in the corner.

(It has been estimated, and been my experience, that there are
VERY, VERY, VERY few BBSs that do not have a pirate section
hidden somewhere, even if they present an open and clean mask to
the general public.)

The serenity of BBSland is forever broken, and while many still
hold faithful to the old ways, the lightening wrath of the
scrollmasters and the elders of the outside world stands poised
to strike the entire landscape of BBSland into barren nothingness
should the triad ever become known again to the outside world...

But my heart fills with gloom for I know that many will hear but
few will listen. The scrollmasters even now assemble the armies
that will lay waste to the followers of the triad of trolls. If
they unleash the avenging angels named "Punative Damages" and
"Rackettering Influnced and Corrupt Organizations" many gnomes
shall tremble and fall before their might. All gnomes, clean or
otherwise, shall suffer in this frenzy and the open, carefree
pastimes of the gnomes shall suffer an abrupt end.

The scrollmasters have begun this war with the formation of the
SPA (software protection agency) and have worked closely with
the outside world's FBI (Fraternal Brotherhood of Imbroglio) and
the FCC (Friendly Communications Communists) to pay silver to
those gnomes who would reveal the troll lairs. The outside world
has legislated that the parents of a gnome who has not reached
the age of majority are responsible for their young gnomelette's
trespasses. Many a hovel will be siezed as troll dens, many a
parent will become insolvent, many will cry out in grief...

Yet still there will be the renegades who ignore the signs of
impending doom. They will scoff and say "It can't happen to
me." But then, no one else ever thinks it will either.

I have forfeit my position as an elder and become but a visitor
among the gnomes. Though many will look upon these words with
scorn as the rumblings of a demented old less-than-gnome, I pray
that those who continue to suckle from the trolls look further
than their own selfish sphere, banish to triad to nothingness,
and allow BBSland to continue to exist so that I may again visit.

Have an excellent summer and may the gnomes be with you.


  3 Responses to “Category : Various Text files
Archive   : GFILES.ZIP
Filename : GNOMES.TXT

  1. Very nice! Thank you for this wonderful archive. I wonder why I found it only now. Long live the BBS file archives!

  2. This is so awesome! 😀 I’d be cool if you could download an entire archive of this at once, though.

  3. But one thing that puzzles me is the “mtswslnkmcjklsdlsbdmMICROSOFT” string. There is an article about it here. It is definitely worth a read: