Moo! LambdaMoo.

Re the lispygopher chat, just a few thoughts longer than a toot.

I played the hell out of MOO back in the ’90s, as well as ran my CircleMUD (D&D-like combat-oriented) for a while, and my own CloudMUD system which was a Java chatter with rooms you could put images in. I have my more recent in-development-maybe VRMicro project which reduces it to sprites walking around reading files in a 2D memory palace.

Terms:

  • MUD: Multi-User Dungeon. A server runs a virtual world, you connect with a chat client, interact with it like interactive fiction but with other people. These vary from MUSH/MUCK chatters, to MUD which was adventure-oriented.
  • MOO: MUD Object-Oriented. Users can create their own objects, script them with a fairly powerful LISP-inspired system.

I’d love to have one back, and I’ve even recompiled LambdaMoo locally and it works, BUT.

Moderation then was awful, and on the Internet now it’d be disaster. See My Tiny Life but imagine millions of cybercriminals and trolls.

MOOs require you to moderate objects, rooms, & scripts as well as people. You need several staff 24/7, who are calm, serene, at least competent hackers, with the wisdom of Solomon, and the righteous fury of Judge Isaac “Hanging Judge” Parker. It’s an impossible task to make safe.

The technical side is also tough. Nobody really wants telnet anymore. In theory you could make a distributed one with Spritely Goblins or something else, but I haven’t seen a practical example of:

  1. Shared server state,
  2. Someone owns their own developments,
  3. Multiple clients contributing,
  4. With moderation.

All those parts are important.