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What Was Be Dope?
Choose a topic that interests only a relatively small subsection of the world at large - computers. Then, select a subtopic that even less of that subsection cares about - operating systems. Finally, pick one of the most obscure, least-installed operating systems in existence (BeOS) and launch a humor website focused upon it.
Obviously, this was not my plan from the start. Started on a whim, Be Dope soon enjoyed tens of thousands page views per day. Growing (some would say mutating) beyond the boundaries of a simple website, it soon became required reading for the fledgling BeOS movement. Within weeks of its launch Be Inc. CEO Jean-Louis Gassée commented "Read Be Dope, even more fun and relevant than Wired -- and a lot easier on the eye." Through its three year history, Be Dope would bring the kind of pseudo-fame and lack of fortune that only the Internet is capable of delivering - providing me with the opportunity to meet interesting people, be published in the BeOS Bible, write for Be Magazine, guest-star in an online comic strip, present a technical white paper at a virtual gathering for an imaginary trade show and finally work for Be Inc. itself. Sure it would have been a lot easier just to send them my resume, but sometimes you just have to take the scenic route.
Even after Be Inc. has auctioned off its belongings and closed its doors in sunny Menlo Park, I am still known as "The Be Dope Guy" to a large segment of the Internet, an obscure title I am proud to bear.
After spreading humor and confusion inside and outside of the BeOS community for three years and nearly five hundred articles, I closed down Be Dope on January 29, 2001 as I moved on to pursue other interests. I still miss it sometimes.
The domain bedope.com (and the content therein) won't go anywhere for a while, so this little bit of Be history will live on for now (I would hate to break all the links pointing here). Besides, I'm using the domain for some other things, so it can't just disappear (unless someone offers me a large sum of money).
Thanks to everyone for making it a fun ride.
- Mike, editor [at] bedope [dot] com
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