A talker is a chat system that people use to talk to each other over the Internet.[1] Dating back to the 1980s, they were a predecessor of instant messaging.

A talker is a communication system precursor to MMORPGs and other virtual worlds such as Second Life. Talkers are a form of online virtual worlds in which multiple users are connected at the same time to chat in real-time. People log into the talkers remotely (usually via telnet), and have a basic text interface with which to communicate with each other.

The early talkers were similar to MUDs with most of the complex game machinery stripped away, leaving just the communication level commands — hence the name "talker".[2] ew-too was, in fact, a MUD server with the game elements removed.

Most talkers are free and based on open source software.

Many of the online metaphors used on talkers, such as "rooms"[3] and "residency", were established by these early pioneering services and remain in use by modern 3D interfaces such as Second Life.


History of talkers

Early Internet talkers

In the school year of 1983-1984, Mark Jenks and Todd Krause, two students at Washington High School in Milwaukee, wrote a software program for talking among a group of people.[4] They used the PDP-11 at the Milwaukee Public Schools (MPS) central office. After searching around the PDP-11 files and directories, Mark found the PDP-11 program talk, and decided that they could do better. The system had approximately 40 300-2400 bit per second modems attached to it, with a single phone number with a hunt group. The talk program was named TALK and was written to handle many options that are seen in IRC today: tables, private messages, actions, moderators and inviting to tables.

Talker hosting

In 1996, was formed,[5] the first server to sell space for talkers, later giving it the name Dragonroost. The server had up to 90+ talkers on it at one time, during the mid-nineties boom of talkers. A number of other hosts started up as alternative hosting companies to ceased hosting any other talkers besides its owners' on September 28, 2009.[6]

Notable talkers

See also


  1. ^ Hahn, Harley (1996). The Internet Complete Reference (2nd ed.). Osborne McGraw-Hill. pp. 498. ISBN 0-07-882138-X. "A TALKER is a multiuser talk facility that is easy to use and is devoted primarily to conversation. You connect to a talker by using telnet [...] The word "talker" is a descriptive term. For example, some talkers are muds, while others are BBSs; there is no strict definition. If it's easy to use, and you connect in order to talk to other people, it is a talker." 
  2. ^ Ito, Mizuko (1997). "Virtually Embodied: The Reality of Fantasy in a Multi-User Dungeon". In Porter, David. Internet Culture (pbk. ed.). Routledge. pp. 89–90. ISBN 0-415-91684-4. "These combat-oriented MUDs stand in contrast to non-gaming "talker" MUDs or educational or professional MUDs." 
  3. ^ Levine, John R. (1997). More Internet for Dummies. IDG Books. pp. 197. ISBN 0-7645-0135-6. "Talkers are for talk only, with no games, no monsters to fight, no quests, and no bizarre rules to learn. All you do is talk and make new friends. Talkers are much like IRC, except that rather than join a channel, you move into a room." 
  4. ^ Brandon De Hoyos. "The Early Messengers". Retrieved 2008-03-14. 
  5. ^ "History of The Talker". Retrieved March 8, 2010. 
  6. ^ "Dragonroost Talker Server". March 8, 2010. 

Further reading

  • Thomas, Angela (2007-07). Youth Online: Identity and Literacy in the Digital Age. Peter Lang Publishing. ISBN 1433100339.  - an ethnographic study of youth online, analyzes textual interactions, including at Middle Earth-related talkers

External links

Wikimedia Foundation. 2010.


Look at other dictionaries:

  • Talker — Talk er, n. 1. One who talks; especially, one who is noted for his power of conversing readily or agreeably; a conversationist. [1913 Webster] There probably were never four talkers more admirable in four different ways than Johnson, Burke,… …   The Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • talker — UK [ˈtɔːkə(r)] / US [ˈtɔkər] noun [countable] Word forms talker : singular talker plural talkers informal someone who talks a lot or who talks in a particular way She s quite a talker. a smooth talker (= someone who is good at persuading people… …   English dictionary

  • talker — talk|er [ tɔkər ] noun count INFORMAL someone who talks a lot or talks in a particular way: She s quite a talker. a smooth talker (=someone who is good at persuading people by saying nice things): Your brother certainly is a smooth talker, isn t… …   Usage of the words and phrases in modern English

  • talker — noun a) A person who talks, especially one who gives a speech, or is loquacious or garrulous. What this country needs is a smooth talker. b) A talk show; a talk show host; an all talk radio station. The royal engagement is likely to be a top… …   Wiktionary

  • Talker — Tal|ker 〈[tɔ:kə(r)] m. 3; TV; umg.〉 = Talkmaster * * * Tal|ker [ tɔ:kɐ ], der; s, [engl. talker = Sprecher, zu: to talk, ↑ talken]: 1. (EDV) Gerät, das Daten sendet. 2. ( …   Universal-Lexikon

  • talker — n. (colloq.) a fast, smooth talker ( one who speaks glibly, in a deceptive manner ) * * * [ tɔːkə] smooth talker ( one who speaks glibly, in a deceptive manner ) (colloq.) a fast …   Combinatory dictionary

  • talker — [[t]tɔ͟ːkə(r)[/t]] talkers N COUNT: usu supp N You can use talker to refer to someone when you are considering how much they talk, or how good they are at talking to people. ...a fluent talker …   English dictionary

  • talker — noun (C) informal someone who talks a lot or talks in a particular way: What a talker that man is! | We need a persuasive talker and a good organizer …   Longman dictionary of contemporary English

  • Talker — pranešimų šaltinis statusas T sritis automatika atitikmenys: angl. talker vok. Talker, m rus. источник сообщений, m pranc. source de messages, f …   Automatikos terminų žodynas

  • talker — talk|er [ˈto:kə US ˈto:kər] n informal someone who talks a lot or talks in a particular way ▪ Media people need to be good talkers and skilled negotiators. ▪ Mom thinks he s a smooth talker (=someone who is polite and pleasant but who you do not… …   Dictionary of contemporary English

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