Spud's Xanadu, the world's only cat-run usenet and email server has become even more popular. Now with four of the world's fastest V.34 modems all on the same telephone number - (01268)515441 Spuddy's followers are putting the system to almost constant use, it being a rare occaision when all four modems are unused for more than a few minutes.
But what of the cat behind the system? We spoke to Spuddy himself recently and he revealed a truly visionary side to his nature. "It seems plain to me," he told our reporter, "that people, feline and otherwise, want to access the internet but are either uncertain what to choose or just don't want to pay good money for a year-long contract with the wrong company. We allow the net-inexperienced to land on their feet without dropping their money. Some users use our system to get to grips with the internet and then move on to other service providers more suited to their needs, others stay with us, more comfortable with our friendly service."
But isn't it a disadvantage not being able to use such internet services as FTP, Gopher and WWW? "You can." purrs Ankles, Spuddy's PR cat, "we have a copy of 'Accessing the Internet by Email' By Doctor Bob online as /usr/src/litening/InetViaEmail. Obviously FTPing takes longer this way, but it can be handled while you're offline, with downloading the final file being faster than FTPing direct from most FTP servers, so saving on your telephone bill."
I looked blankly, Ankles like so many other technical types often forgets that ordinary folk can find tecnical jargon hard to follow. Grinning, he explained, "You can do pretty much everything with a little patience and some trial and error."
So there you have it, Spuddy provides a service we could all be happy with and charges nothing. But it hasn't all been easy. "Some time ago," Spuddy explains, washing his whiskers, "a user misused our usenet connection and lost us our news feed. We still haven't got a full feed of all 8,000+ newsgroups, even after all this time, but the number of groups we do recieve is always growing. If a user wants a newsgroup badly we can usually obtain it for him quickly enough. We are also looking into a solution which we hope will give us a full usenet feed once again. If we get it back we will be sure to warn new users about the perils of misusing a service such as this."
Against this adversity, and against the adversity of being run by cats in what many see as a human's world, Spud's Xanadu is prevailing. But the question on everybody's lips has to be what has caused this recent upsurge in the involvement of cats in so many previously human preserves?
Mystic Mog, the slinkiest black pussycat ever to ride a broomstick believes she has the answer. "The recent activities on Neptune are having far-reaching effects on this world as a whole. It has for some time been seen as raising the goals of the planet as a whole, the three dominant species on the planet are now no longer happy with a slow, steady progress in the world and are stepping out of line to improve things. Spuddy is one of the first, but over the next few years (Neptune being a notoriously slow planet) expect to see more creatures of all species moving to achieve things you would previously have thought them incapable of."
That is today's main story.
You can call Spud's Xanadu 24-hours on (01268)515441 all speeds to V.34