June 27, 2011
Spanning 65 of our arbitrarily defined message-board pages and 648 messages, the longest-running thread in Light Reading history turned 10 on Sunday.
We're speaking, of course, of the epic tale of Tachion Networks, immortalized in the comments to a story about its coming downfall, Tachion Trolls for Cash.
Fittingly, the thread started with a question that many readers might be asking right now: "What was Tachion's product, anyway?" (We'll also give credit for "Who the hell was Tachion?")
Nobody at the time bothered to answer, and Phil Harvey, who wrote the story in question, is on vacation today, so we can't ask him. As far as the rest of us can tell, Tachion's Fusion 5000 was supposed to be a Class 5 switch that carried data as well as voice.
When Tachion shut down in July 2001, the thread got an adrenaline jolt that lasted for most of its first eight years. Posters including Sunil_M and especially Pastel -- inspired by "themaninblack," who posted on other long Tachion threads -- wrote scripts starring caricatures of the executive team. We learned a lot about Tachion leadership's supposed management flaws, too much about their libidos and way too much about their digestive tracts.
Between those stories and the lengthy arguments about whether the thread contributors were wasting their lives, there were a few classic moments worth linking here:
An appearance by BobbyMax, Light Reading's most infamous message-board poster. In classic BobbyMax form, he took two years to show up and informatively named his post, "History of Tachion Is Intriguing." (See B. Max R.I.P. and Searching for BobbyMax.)
An eight-month pause in 2004 that ended, ironically enough, because someone posted, "I cannot believe that this stupid thread is still in existence."
A black thong under white stretch pants. How did that take four years to get mentioned?
Actual discussion of Tachion's actual product.
"Jeff Matros," a poster claiming to be Tachion's former CEO, known to fans as The Man in Black. He appeared in September 2005, blaming everything on his development organization and challenging his detractors to a debate that never happened.
Randomly placed macroeconomic analysis.
The last post that actually discusses Tachion (rather than discussing the thread itself) came on June 2010, right before the nine-year mark. The most recent posts after that, from March 2011, were those that led to the creation of this very story.
Ten years would be a good milestone for calling it quits, but we suspect that's not going to happen. In the words of poster nightRaider in 2001, "Tachion will NEVER die. It will live on and on."
2001 Top Ten: Words of Wisdom
Tachion and on and on...
Tachion & Tellium Tales
— Craig Matsumoto, West Coast Editor, Light Reading
About the Author(s)
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