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 Post subject: Circle of D'ni
PostPosted: Sun Sep 14, 2014 5:57 pm 
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Location: Digging around in the dusty archives, uncovering Uru history.
For my project on the history of the Myst-Uru Community, I’m in need of more information about a group called The Circle of D'ni.

What I know is that it was a small group of Myst fans that came together in the mid-90s to share information about D’ni, especially the language. It was organized by Telanis (Rickard Johansson), a fan in Sweden, and was originally called The Circle.

Most of the information I’ve been able to gather was from posts made by one of the members, Erithan in a DPWR thread, “community timeline” in April 2005:

    In this post, she indicates that she discovered the group about a decade before (the post was Apr 27 2005); that the group existed before Cyan Chat and before the Riven Lyst which was started in July of 1996.

    In this post, she states that they normally communicated by e-mail; that "Telanis would get information from RAWA and it would trickle down through the Circle via puzzles or e-mails, etc."

    In this post, she talks about the Circle of D'ni Lexicon being compiled by Teluknava Je'Alae and that The Riven Journals were released on April 21, 1997.

    In this post, she talks about the Circle using the D'ni map translations as the primary source material for their work, building on it to create the lexicon, and “Telanis somehow managing to get info and words and such out of RAWA.”

So, according to all the research, the Circle was formed in 1995 and communicated mainly by e-mail, but the Guildmaster Telanis site (that hosted the group) has a date of November 1997, and both the site and the group are clearly influenced by the Book of Ti’ana which was released in 1996. Of course, it’s possible the group was formed in 1995 and changed over time as new information was discovered. So, I’m very interested in information about the group’s earliest days:

    When was it formed and how did they find each other?

    Was the website much different or was there an entirely different version in the beginning? This page, Application for The Circle may have once provided directions on signing up to the group, but now talks about restructuring the group.

    What did they do / talk about before the release of the Book of Ti'ana and the opening of Cyan Chat?

    And, how did they find out about Cyan Chat? The earliest website for Cyan I can find is from December 11, 1996. The links are broken, so I can’t see what information might have been revealed there.

Any information that anyone can share will be greatly appreciated - even a link to a post by a member of the group or recalling that a member was later known by a different name (many of them took on the names of characters in BoT, so it's likely they might have altered their name if they stayed in the community).

Btw, as long as we’re reaching back into the 1990s, does anyone remember seeing any bulletin boards about Myst back in the 90s?

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 Post subject: Re: Circle of D'ni
PostPosted: Mon Sep 15, 2014 1:38 am 
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There was much discussion on Usenet, of course.

Poking around I find a message from 1998:

https://groups.google.com/d/msg/alt.gam ... Q_bwpdQooJ
"Dumb AOHell got rid of the Myst area!!! darn it, now if I want to chat with other Myst fans I have to use Cyan's chat room, which doesn't like my computer."

So there was an AOL keyword too.

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 Post subject: Re: Circle of D'ni
PostPosted: Mon Sep 15, 2014 2:43 pm 
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Thank you, belford! That information is gold.

I had done a little research on Usenet just to get a feel for the era of the internet when Myst was released, but hadn't thought to look for Myst related items. *facepalm* I also hadn't thought about AOL, but had found a few Yahoo groups for Myst fans. I'm afraid I wasn't very internet savvy back then, but with help like this, it's becoming more clear how things worked.

Very helpful, thank you. :D

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 Post subject: Re: Circle of D'ni
PostPosted: Wed Sep 16, 2015 8:48 am 
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Hopefully this won't be considered an improper necro post, since it is a year old. I don't know how much you've found out in the last year. I had never heard of the Circle of D'ni, but I was fairly active in the early days of the Riven Lyst so I thought there might be information there.

First, I thought that the Riven Lyst started in July of 1997, not 1996. I joined in September of 1997, and I got the impression it wasn't that old. It was up to about message #560 at that time, and the participation level was fairly high at that point (about 30 messages per day). But perhaps they changed the software and started the numbers over at some point.

Anyway, I dug into the archives, and I found that the site you have for the Circle of D'ni was not the original one. The original one was http://www.artech.se/~strndbrg/ , so that would explain the 1997 date for the site you have (although Telanis's message regarding the site switch was sent on September 20,1997, which is a month or two earlier than the November date you mentioned.

Note also that the "old" site is still active, but it is now a site for "Cat-in-a-box", which is being run by Rickard. So perhaps sending him an email at the address on that site might get you some information (although some of the links are outdated, so I don't know how current things are).

Perhaps an email to RAWA might also get some information, since he was obviously involved at the time.


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 Post subject: Re: Circle of D'ni
PostPosted: Wed Sep 16, 2015 1:41 pm 
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Shorah J'on and welcome home! Thank you very much for your post. Yes, the thread is a year old, but the project is still in progress and every bit of information is greatly appreciated.

Since making the post, I was able to get in touch with Telanis (through another website that Erithan had posted a link to on the MYSTcommunity forums). He shared a great deal of information with me, but I don't recall if he mentioned that the Cat-in-a-box site was the original Circle of D'ni site, so that and the actual date is new information for me.

J'on wrote:
First, I thought that the Riven Lyst started in July of 1997
You are right about that. I don't know if that was just a typo in my OP or if it's what I believed at the time based on Erithan's posts, but in my timeline, I do have it as July 1997 and The Riven Lyst FAQ page is my source.

J'on wrote:
Perhaps an email to RAWA might also get some information...
I try not to pester the poor man too much, so the plan is to gather all I can from other sources and then get down on my hands and knees and beg him to read the whole thing for accuracy. :wink:

J'on wrote:
Anyway, I dug into the archives...
Archives? *drool* If you've saved all or even some of the messages from the Riven Lyst, you're now my new best friend. :D Seriously, this is one area where I've found very little on the actual activity. So, yeah, um... check your PMs, please. :)

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 Post subject: Re: Circle of D'ni
PostPosted: Mon Oct 05, 2015 3:33 am 
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I remember going onto the Cyan chat all the time in the 90s.. We had a great time! i think my name was Cheetah313... Or Courtney313.. It was on the Cyan website.. if anyone remembers please message! :)


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 Post subject: Re: Circle of D'ni
PostPosted: Mon Oct 05, 2015 7:45 am 
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Yeah I used to live in CC back in the day :)

It went down a while ago, don't think Mark has put it back online since. But the amount of people using it dropped severely over the last 10 years or so.


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