[FoRK] A forward question: the birth of revchron? Re: Text tides Re: google wave

Gordon Mohr gojomo at boxbe.com
Tue Jun 9 11:31:37 PDT 2009

I asked a question in Revspeak that is worth repeating in Oldspeak, 
because I'm hoping our combined recollections can pinpoint earlier 

I revwrote:
> Conventions matter, and that's why 20 years ago, there was
> almost no reverse-chronological presentation. (Can anyone
> think of examples?) We had screens and scrolling windows --
> but we didn't yet know how to use them.

I'm not sure where I saw a rev-chronological presentation first. It was 
possible as soon as there were cursor-addressable screens, but there was 
still an overwhelming bias towards append-to-bottom, scroll-off-top for 
any log of events/messages.

There might have been some Mac-centric BBSes I contacted in the late 80s 
that used cursor-addressing and thus could have preferred a 'new on top' 
orientation for a MOTD/greeting or board listings... but my recollection 
is hazy.

I feel like newest-on-top was my default orientation in the 'elm' mail 
program, but more recent mail practice may have warped my memory. I also 
can't remember if 'nn' or other Usenet readers I used ever had 

Where did others first see a rev-chron presentation of communication on 

Are there any precedents in early/specialized printers -- perhaps a unit 
that pushed paper out its front, rather than its top, so the newest 
lines were under rather than above the print head?

- Gordon

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