CompuServe FLEFO archives, anywhere?
Thread poster: opolt

opolt  Identity Verified
Germany
Local time: 03:32
English to German
+ ...
Nov 23, 2011

Hi all,

back in the nineties I was an avid user of CompuServe's FLEFO (Foreign Language & Education Forum). That was a long time ago, I don't even remember the user name under which I was posting ... But I really loved this forum, certainly there was a lot more interaction going on, on the human/personal level, than here (I have to say). Those were the times ... though later I got distracted and left, for reasons not related to FLEFO itself.

Does anyone among you know whether the FLEFO discussion threads (or part of them) are available online? Or has FLEFO survived in any other shape or form? I briefly searched around, with no conclusive results so far.

Thanks in advance if you can give me any pointer here!


 

Laurent KRAULAND (X)  Identity Verified
France
Local time: 03:32
French to German
+ ...
A possibility? Nov 23, 2011

http://www.desktoppublishingforum.com/bb/archive/index.php/t-368.html - this discussion features what seems to be the "new" FLEFO site , namely http://community.compuserve.com/languagesicon_smile.gif?

HTH

[Edited at 2011-11-23 17:19 GMT]


 

opolt  Identity Verified
Germany
Local time: 03:32
English to German
+ ...
TOPIC STARTER
Merci, Laurent Nov 23, 2011

Many thanks for these links! Especially the second one seems useful, though it goes back to 2005 only. Not many of the old names in there, sigh... I'm still rummaging through those threads, hoping to find something interesting.

I remember having seen some archives directly from the CompuServe era somewhere sometime, but can't find them again.

I guess the old times are over then, once and for all. Oh well.


 

Charlie Bavington (X)  Identity Verified
Local time: 02:32
French to English
I think it's finally expired... Nov 23, 2011

Ah indeed, fine times - I wasn't actually a translator back in the Compuserve FLEFO days, and I think my sole contribution was about season tickets on the Paris metro, but it used to be great reading. I know one or two people from it are no longer with us, sadly.

Meanwhile, there used to be a site called www.flefo.org run by this bloke
http://www.kuckuk.com/home/ck/
to replace flelo on c/serve and I was on there for a while but it petered out, I think.
You'll see there was also a yahoo group for a while, also basically inactive for some years.

I can think of 2 potential leads for you to find out exactly what has happened.
One is to contact Margaret Marks http://www.proz.com/profile/41876 who used to mention flefo from time to time on her blog here http://www.transblawg.eu/
The other is to contact "Bourth" http://www.proz.com/profile/40488 - profile map gives clue as to real name if you didn't already know it.
There may be others who were active on flefo with profiles on here (Stephen Geller?) but at least with the above 2 people, I know they are still active in translation generally, blogging and answering kudoz questions respectively. I hope they don't mind me mentioning them....


 

RobinB  Identity Verified
United States
Local time: 20:32
German to English
All gone Nov 23, 2011

Unless somebody, somewhere used an offline reader (remember those?) and saved everything to disk. I doubt it, but please let me know if you come across anything useful.

There was an attempt to keep Flefo going for a while at www.flefo.org, but it sort of died off a year or so ago.

As I remember it, most of the original members walked out when new moderators took over and the forum was basically hijacked by a bunch of language academics and hobby linguists with little or no interest in translation. But it had already been dying a slow death since the late 1990s and the rise of the Web - we co-sponsored the last Flocktail at the ATA conference back in 1999, though of course a lot of us still meet regularly every year at ATA conferences. I was chatting to a friend in Boston last month about how we'd first "met" on Flefo a good 20 years ago, and I think it's fair to say that Flefo was responsible for a good number of very enduring friendships (plus a few animosities!).

Yes, Flefo really was something else, wasn't it? A lot of really interesting opinion from people who had been translating since the core of the earth was cooling, and exceptionally well-informed answers to terminology questions. Nothing like it today (nor do we have the same quality of flame wars, either). I suppose what made it stand out was that everybody actually *cared* about translation and really made the effort to learn how to become a top-flight translator.

Robin


 

opolt  Identity Verified
Germany
Local time: 03:32
English to German
+ ...
TOPIC STARTER
Thanks Charlie Nov 23, 2011

Very useful links! I'll check those sites later on when I have more time.

I think one reason I fondly remember FLEFO is that I was a beginner in those days, and that it showed me the way ... and the atmosphere wasn't as competitive and "all work and no play" as it seems to be today.

Indeed, I still remember Carsten, a programmer and En-De translator, I think. I also vaguely remember Margaret.

FYI, Per Döhler (aka Triacom), who was one of the most active FLEFO participants, also gets mentioned in ProZ forums from time to time, mostly due to his very useful write-up on cross-border VAT issues.
http://www.triacom.com/frame.html?http://www.triacom.com/aboutus/profile.per.de.html&de

At any rate, it seems FLEFO is gone forever.


Edit @Robin: Thanks for the additional info. You summed it up much better than I could have. As to the flame wars, I think there was a guy named Bernie who had made a habit of unleashing a heated argument every fortnight or so... We would then follow these blockbuster discussions with our 14K modems... AFAIR it was considered an honour to be "Bernied" :-]

[Edited at 2011-11-23 22:56 GMT]

[Edited at 2011-11-23 22:57 GMT]


 

RobinB  Identity Verified
United States
Local time: 20:32
German to English
High-speed 14k modems? Luxury! Nov 24, 2011

When I first joined Flefo, I had a 1200 baud modem, but soon replaced it by one of the new super-fast 2400 baud modems. Times have changed, right?

Carsten married Joanne M. - probably the biggest (well, certainly the most public) Flefo romance.

I kept in touch with Bernie B. occasionally after he "retired" to Florida and disappeared from Flefo. He still pops up with comments from time to time on blogs run by old-time Flefoids. It was definitely a matter of honour to be flamed by Bernie, who would then routinely be barred for a couple of months by Doug or Jerry. OTOH, let's be honest: Flefo also had its fair share of jerks and outright weirdos. But that's translation, right?


 

Tomás Cano Binder, BA, CT  Identity Verified
Spain
Local time: 03:32
Member (2005)
English to Spanish
+ ...
Good times indeed! Nov 24, 2011

It was a terrific time with FLEFO as my first professional exchange experience. I still have two very good customers I met via my contacts in FLEFO in ancient times.

I am not going to say I miss FLEFO since more modern means of communication do the job better and in a bigger scale, but I reckon it is OK to miss the third-hand car you had as your first vehicle: your current car is more modern, safer, faster, more comfortable, but it would be such fun to drive the old shaky coffee machine and meet the old pals along bumpy roads that have been paved over by today's ample motorways!


 

David Earl  Identity Verified
United States
Local time: 19:32
Member (2007)
German to English
FLEFO et. al. Nov 24, 2011

Sorry opolt, while I followed FLEFO for a while, I was there as a language learner. Mostly, I tried to lurk and keep up with my profession at that time (programming).

Tomás Cano Binder, CT wrote:

I am not going to say I miss FLEFO since more modern means of communication do the job better and in a bigger scale...


If one _only_ used the software provided by CompuServe, I can understand that statement. My own experience with offline readers makes modern approaches like webfora seem like a disorganized mess. My experiences with web-based communications rivals my experiences with using WinCIM, for example.

Offline readers pulled from all subscribed sources automatically, kept discussions organized in a nice tree (like email clients do, when the sending servers actually uses the Follow-up entry in the email header) and did it quickly. At least, the ones I used (BlueWave for FidoNet and CISComm for CompuServe) did. Using five minutes of connect time, the OLR transferred about two hours of reading and writing per day for me.

David.


 

opolt  Identity Verified
Germany
Local time: 03:32
English to German
+ ...
TOPIC STARTER
Thanks everyone ... Nov 24, 2011

... for taking me down memory lane a few miles, it's good to know that you're still there, guys (and gals)!

There seem to be quite a number of ex-FLEFOids around here, and it's good to know that some of the "old school" spirit has survived. Not to sound like an old grumpy man, but some things were better then. Technology doesn't change everything for the better automatically, I agree with David here. At any rate I don't think it's primarily the tech side which is to blame for all that ... but as you'll know, ProZ proscribes political discussions (maybe a good thing in today's overheated Web "community"), that's why I'm going to stop here :-]

Cheerio delirio,

-- opolt


 

RobinB  Identity Verified
United States
Local time: 20:32
German to English
Some things were better Nov 24, 2011

opolt wrote: Not to sound like an old grumpy man, but some things were better then.


Right. Muppets didn't last long back then...

Robin (also not trying to sound like a grumpy old man, but failing miserably, so I'll just go and whack a few more muppets)


 


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