Origins of GAGME.COM

The origins of the name GAGME date back to around 1988. The summer of 1988 I was working at AT&T Network Systems. They had an employee sale of 3B2 minicomputers. As all I owned at the time was an 8086 based PC clone, I jumped on the opportunity and bought it for $1500. Yup, a whopping 8Mhz 32 bit processor (remember, 16bit PCs had only just come out), 4 MB of RAM (my PC had 640k), and a 72MB hard drive! Just right for running a Unix server. Picture below:

After I got it up and running, I immediately started looking for a way to get Internet E-mail at home. Remember, this was 1988, nobody outside of academia knew what the Internet was. The first thing I needed to come up with was a name for my computer. After bouncing a few ideas off the owner of a Public Access Unix system in my area, he found one of them particularly bad and responded "oh, gag me!". Ah! That's perfect! My initials are G A G, so GAGME was perfect!

And so, the name GAGME was born. I shortly obtained the domain, and have since obtained the domain as well.

Sorry, the name doesn't have anything to do with S&M or bondage.

Michael Shoshani provides this alternate view of GAGME history:


n the beginning, Greg created gagme.

And gagme was without form, and void. And Greg spake and said unto gagme, "thou shalt handle user logins and store user files". And gagme said unto Greg, "Login incorrect". And Greg beat gagme mercilessly about the case with a large socket wrench until gagme complied. And it was evening and it was morning, one day.

And Greg spake unto gagme and said "Behold I have given unto thee the ability to send and receive email." And gagme sent and received email until the inevitable core dump. And it was evening and it was morning, a second day.

And Greg breathed into the earth and created serveme. And Greg spake unto serveme and said "Thou art a news server. Thy function is to send and receive articles from Usenet." And Greg spake unto gagme and said "Behold thy news server serveme. Thou shalt be connected to it, and thou shalt send and receive Usenet articles through it". And gagme spake unto Greg and said "Login incorrect", until Greg kicked it several times. And it was evening and it was morning, a third day.

And Greg said to himself. "It is not good for gagme to be alone. I will create a helpmate for it". And he shut gagme down and while gagme was sleeping, Greg removed a couple of memory chips and used them to build a second machine. And when he booted gagme, Greg said unto him "Behold, I have created a mate for you; from you was it taken and it shall be your mate." And gagme spake unto Greg and said "A mate? Why me??" And to the mate gagme said "Thy name is whyme; for thou art circuit of my circuit, cable of my cable". And it was evening and it was morning, a fourth day.

And Greg, who had not yet slept, decreed that his entire userbase, including himself and his sister Dorothy, shall house their files upon gagme. Greg then commanded that whyme devote its service to Lily. And it was evening and it was morning, a fifth day.

And Greg noticed a great and terrible thundering, and a shrieking followed by the nasty odor of something burning. And behold! Fire and brimstone had rained down from the heavens, and had destroyed serveme. And Greg was greatly vexed, for he had just settled in to take a nap. And lo, Greg added another disk drive to gagme, and yea did gagme take the additional responsibility of being its own news server. And it was evening and it was morning, a sixth day.

And Greg (who by this time had joined forces with Dave and his creation sashimi, if for no other reason than to get some sleep once in a while) managed to scrape together a live connection to a backbone. And yea, Greg thundered mightily and commanded that the detested uuftp not only be destroyed, but that its source code be shredded into molecules. And Greg rested on the seventh day, and it was very good.