Computers, Gadgets and Beyond!

Aragorn’s MUD Info

The site formerly known as "the aragorn.uio.no WWW server". A site dedicated to MUDs that I kept at my first place of work. Terrible name for something that sooner or later would have to find a new place to stay, but there you go. Anyway, this is the new home for the forseeable future, so bookmark at will. For those not in the know, a MUD is a text based multi-player adventure game, kinda like World Of Warcraft or EverQuest, just without the graphics. Not for everyone, I know. But they're fun, friendly, and worth trying out. Note that the "Aragorn" in the title here has very little to do with the current round of excitement around Tolkien's work after the absolutely brilliant trilogy of films by Peter Jackson. I picked the name as my MUD-character back in 1987, and I'm kinda stuck with it now. 🙂 Enough of that, here is the original site, more or less intact but for a few dead links removed:
  • NOTE! If you hack your own MudOS driver to add features, fix bugs or whatever then please let webmaster at this site know so I can keep tabs. I'm trying to keep track, since most people have given up trying to get the current maintainer to add changes to the main distribution.

  • The on-line MUD magazine Imaginary Realities released its final issue in December 2001. However, the entire archive appears to have disappeared. Let me know if you have a copy somwhere.

  • For MudOS sources/drivers/patches/diffs, the most recent site is www.mudos.org.

  • Also see my own ftp site of LPMud/MudOS-related files at ftp.kolbu.com:/pub.

Further MUD subtopics

The NANVAENT homepage
- A great LPmud run by Bill McMillan and myself in bonnie Scotland. (Now based in London)

WWW homepages of other LPmuds
A lot of LPmuds are getting their own spot on the web these days, here are a few.

Other LPmud related starting points
FAQs, mudlists, papers, comments, info etc etc.

MudOS manual pages in HTML format!
Converted straight from the MudOS distribution and will hopefully be kept as up to date as possible. Hyperlinked, of course. Let me know if you find strange looking man pages, it might be that my perl script isn't quite perfected yet. 🙂 NOTE! Not up yet.

MUD related NEWS groups
For the latest gossip, flamewars and the occational useful discussion.

Vital MUD ftp sites
Where to look to get the latest clients, drivers, mudlibs.
AKA, "what the world looked like 10 years ago"...

An interesting article on how a MUD can be used in your WORK!

Personal work

The mud definition from the Jargon book

MUD /muhd/ n. [acronym, Multi-User Dungeon; alt. Multi-User Dimension] 1. A class of virtual reality experiments accessible via the Internet. These are real-time chat forums with structure; they have multiple `locations' like an adventure game, and may include combat, traps, puzzles, magic, a simple economic system, and the capability for characters to build more structure onto the database that represents the existing world. 2. vi. To play a MUD. The acronym MUD is often lowercased and/or verbed; thus, one may speak of `going mudding', etc.

Historically, MUDs (and their more recent progeny with names of MU- form) derive from a hack by Richard Bartle and Roy Trubshaw on the University of Essex's DEC-10 in the early 1980s; descendants of that game still exist today and are sometimes generically called BartleMUDs. There is a widespread myth (repeated, unfortunately, by earlier versions of this lexicon) that the name MUD was trademarked to the commercial MUD run by Bartle on British Telecom (the motto: "You haven't *lived* 'til you've *died* on MUD!"); however, this is false -- Richard Bartle explicitly placed `MUD' in PD in 1985. BT was upset at this, as they had already printed trademark claims on some maps and posters, which were released and created the myth.

Students on the European academic networks quickly improved on the MUD concept, spawning several new MUDs (VAXMUD, AberMUD, LPMUD). Many of these had associated bulletin-board systems for social interaction. Because these had an image as `research' they often survived administrative hostility to BBSs in general. This, together with the fact that USENET feeds have been spotty and difficult to get in the U.K., made the MUDs major foci of hackish social interaction there.

AberMUD and other variants crossed the Atlantic around 1988 and quickly gained popularity in the U.S.; they became nuclei for large hacker communities with only loose ties to traditional hackerdom (some observers see parallels with the growth of USENET in the early 1980s). The second wave of MUDs (TinyMUD and variants) tended to emphasize social interaction, puzzles, and cooperative world-building as opposed to combat and competition. In 1991, over 50% of MUD sites are of a third major variety, LPMUD, which synthesizes the combat/puzzle aspects of AberMUD and older systems with the extensibility of TinyMud. The trend toward greater programmability and flexibility will doubtless continue.

The state of the art in MUD design is still moving very rapidly, with new simulation designs appearing (seemingly) every month. There is now (early 1991) a move afoot to deprecate the term MUD itself, as newer designs exhibit an exploding variety of names corresponding to the different simulation styles being explored.

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