(slightly edited by fravia+)
Well, well, well... this is not for the younger ones, or is it?
The Web has superseded Gopher, alas! Only some older ones seem to remember Gopher,
Veronica (very easy rodent-oriented netwide index 'f computerized archives)
(and Jughead, which had even an index even smaller than Veronica...
however it could build a searchable menu of a particular Gopher hierarchy of menus).
Old lore... could it still be useful? There's even a Bring Back Gopher Campaign,
let's give them our seekers' crumb!
|Hunting for gophers |
I Will start
with a little information on the gopher protocol just to bring those
not in the know, up to some speed...
"Gopher is a
protocol system, which in advance
of the World Wide Web, allowed server based text files to be
hierarchically organised and easily viewed by end users who accessed
the server using Gopher applications on remote computers. Initially
Gopher browsers could only display text-based files before developments
such as HyperGopher, which were able to handle simple graphic formats
though they were never used on a widespread basis as by this time the
World Wide Web and its Hypertext Transfer Protocol (HTTP) were gaining
in popularity, and had similar and more extensive functions."
Now you may not think its anything to get excited about, but to anyone
of such fickle notion i would have to point out the fact that the "
Gophers" are truely of ancient standing next to now towering templedom
of " HTTP " forget the back alleys of the web, our gophers dwell with
the catacombs of the current web ;-) poses a unique oppertunity to seek
lore of old, archive, make avalible to a wider public, no?
But how can one hope to dig deep enough to find
these ancients dwellings when our mighty spade of googledom cant get
passed the gravel and dust! ( Sadly google dont feel the need to
index gopher:// sites :-( ... )
"Dont be glum ol'chap the hounds are onto something"
Alas a clever hound by the name of veronica is well versed in fiding
gophers for our use ;-)
Luckyly for us there is indeed a gopher-space indexer/search engine, by the
name of veronica. A number of still existing gopher servers allow
access to this resource... a quote from a veronica FAQ provides a good
veronica is a resource-discovery system providing access to
resources held on most (99% +) of the world's gopher servers. In
addition to native gopher data, veronica includes references to many
resources provided by other types of information servers, such as WWW
servers, usenet archives, and telnet-accessible information services."
So we can presume this is a data rich resource of surviving ancient
lore, or at least we can hope it is. We can access Veronica via
gopher servers for the most part have access to veronica, this seems to
be a pretty stable long life server! lets make use of it while we can!
Do experiment with it, until your hearts' content, sadly it doesnt use
boolean logic, hyphens, wildcards and all those features we have come to
get used with through modern search engines: the content of all pages is not indexed! It
works via document descriptors and file title... as far as i can tell ;-)
Your best bet is not to use punctuation at all, just merely words or even better "parts of
Of course for those that dont have time to strole the winter woodlands
with the hounds, you can access a listing off all gopher servers known
to 'Veronica' via this link: gopher://gopher.floodgap.com/1/world
That was it. A very short essay (if it can be called essay) but hopefully you will be able to
sniff out some forgotten lore & maybe even archive it, useful for the less
Some Gopher software you may care
to use allough most browsers should still support gopher:// links
WS-Gopher, by Dave Brooks
: Your best bet for
a true 'gopher' experience' 16bit win_3.1
but will execute under 9x/NT...
Fetch it here
More gopher-ware can be found in the same dir, sniff around.
Even more windoze clients here, or search for
Note that your Opera may be not configured for gopher searches. Here some uni's veronicas:
(c) 3rd Millennium: [fravia+], all rights reserved, reversed, revealed and