I posted the following to an earlier iteration of this blog back in 2009, on the 20th anniversary of my first getting online:
One thing that I neglected to mention in my previous entry was the impetus behind my purchasing my first modem. Well, that impetus came in the form of an online service in the UK that started life as the Compulink Information eXchange, or Cix to its friends. More specifically, in the form of a section that appeared in the monthly UK computer magazine Computer Shopper containing printouts of conversation from the forum that the magazine ran on Cix. (To be even more specific, the forum was run by Huw Collingbourne - so really, it’s his fault originally that I ended up marauding the Internet!)
While Cix was technically an online service, most users made use of offline reader applications to download new messages, read them then upload new posts and replies due to the exorbitant cost of phone calls back in the 1990s. It was very much text-centric, and rather like a slightly more orderly form of Usenet. (They also had a Usenet gateway at the time, which was how I initially entered that realm of the Internet.)
My usage gradually trailed off as the World Wide Web became prevalent, but I do have fond memories. It amazes me that it's still going, I guess enough people still use it to help pay the bills.