________ ________ ________
2021-01-04 / \/ \/ / \
/ __/ /_ _/
I know, I know. I still owe y'all an / _/ / /
explanation of where I've been and what I've \_______/_\___/____/\___/____/_
been doing. It's coming, I'm just really / \/ \/ / \
distracted at the moment. Before that though / _/ /_ _/
I need to talk about something that's been /- / _/ /
bothering me for a long while and that's \________/\________/\___/____/
Firstly, for context, let me explain my very naive dream for what ~tel
would be. I wanted to create a service analogous to an old fashioned POTS
network. Phones connected by numbers. People would be able to call each other,
leave voice mails, people would be able to organize meetings on the bridge,
and we'd have a bit of fun with phone gags on the way.
That, of course, is not the way it went. It was 2019 and the tildeverse is
mostly timid nerds and they all have access to far more convenient ways to
contact each other, no one is calling anybody. The vast majority of ~tel users
are people who asked for a login with no intention of using it. The same login
collectors who's name you see on every roster of every PUBNIX. The few that
were interested in using the service never really found the time to I suppose.
As the sysop I have the privilege of seeing the statistics Asterisk spits out
and they're disappointing. Almost literally, ~tel does nothing. If I turned it
off today, very few people would notice and even fewer would care to ask why.
But I'm not blameless either, not at all. I let people not using it as I'd
hoped kill my interest in the project entirely and I stopped promoting it,
stopped putting any work into it and when people requested or recommended
modern features you wouldn't see in a traditional phone system, SMS/text chat
for example, I actively resisted them.
So for some time I have been considering just turning it off. Tilde's have
come and gone, there's no shame in calling it a day and maybe someone more
interested in a modern VoIP service with all the bells and whistles will be
inspired to make a similar service.
The alternative is I take the phone network out of ~tel and turn it into
something else, something a bit more in line with the rest of the stuff I
The idea I've settled on at the moment is to set up a dial-in kind of
service. I'd keep the conference, keep the function of the 11xx numbers and
integrate the content from the 1900s while still keeping it modifiable by
anyone that'd like to.
To that I could then add gateways to the Asterisk systems of other
tildeverse members as well as C*NET, Futel and whatever else, and I also think
it'd be fun to create a kind of voicemail dead drop, though I'm not sure how
I'd use or present the results. There's also some DTMF games I started and
abandoned that I'd like to revisit, depending on how confused I get when I
look back through my notes hahaha.
So that's where I'm at. That may not be the final result, I'm still
considering my options, but I can say this for sure: tilde.tel as it exists
now will be decommissioned in the coming months. I'm deeply proud of what I
built but I know I will never improve ~tel as it stands now, I'm completely
uninterested in working on it, so it's time to say goodbye and clear the
workbench for something new.
My sincerest thanks to it's users, and everyone who's volunteered help - I
do genuinely appreciate it, even though I always turn it down haha.
I look forward to being able to share something new with y'all.