In the late 1980s, I was playing chess by correspondence (email chess) on the ARPANET while assigned to NASA.
In 1987, I was playing email chess on Leisure Linc, an early on-line "internet" company. It was the first national online chess bulletin board system (BBS) and was run out of Greensboro, NC. Leisure Linc later became the USA Today (USAT) Sport Center in 1989. The cost was $5 an hour to be online. CompuServe was charging 25 cents a minute to be online, so LINC was cheaper.
In 1988, I was active on the rec.games.chess Usenet newsgroup and email chess. Other newsgroups were rec.games.chess.analysis, rec.games.chess.computer, and rec.games.chess.politics.
In 1992, the first Internet chess server (ICS) was launched. It later evolved into the Internet Chess Club (ICC) in 1995.
From 1993 to 1997, I had a small web site at www.txdirect.net/users/wall/. It was one of the first personal web sites dedicated to chess. Also in 1993, I started converting all my games into Portable Game Notation (pgn) format, created by Steven Edwards, which was perfect for databases and computers.
In 1994, I was playing correspondence chess at the International E-mail Chess Club (IECC) as one of its founders and VP games and chess analysis editor for Chess Bits & Pieces online chess newsletter. I was also tournament director of the pyramid ladder challenge competition. I am still an active member and played several games in the past year.
I was also playing chess at the International Email Chess Group (IECG). IECG was active until 2010.
In 1995, I was one of the first members of www.zone.com before it was taken over by Microsoft (Microsoft's Internet Gaming Zone). I was one of the first sysops and online tournament directors, and directed the first online zone chess tournament. I may have directed the first worldwide Internet chess tournament. Free prizes were later sent out to winners in each section by Microsoft. My handle was ajeeb.
In 1996, I contributed pgn files of game collections to ftp.pitt.edu.
In 1997, I had a web site at geocities.com, the Bill Wall's Chess Page. That was active until it closed in 2007.
In 1997, I was playing chess at the Yahoo! Games site.
In 1998, I was playing chess on the Free Internet Chess Server (FICS). I am still active on that site and my handle, like everywhere else, is billwall. Catch me if you can.
In 2003, an Italian player wrote a Wikipedia article on me, which was posted on Wikipedia until 2011. By then, the Wikipedia police decided I was not notable enough in the chess world and deleted the Wikipedia entry for Bill Wall (2 recommendations to keep, 5 recommendations to delete).
In 2004, I became a member of chessgames.com (my handle is wwall). It wasn't a site to play chess, but it was a place that had a large chess database. I have 369 of my own games on the site and have contributed hundreds of biographical information and game analysis.
In 2007, I was one of the first chess players at www.chess.com, which is now the largest online place to play chess.
In 2009, I contributed about 100 collections of games in pgn format at gambitchess.com. The collections are not on my chess page at http://billwall.phpwebhosting.com/.
In 2010, I wrote a chess e-magazine called White Knight Review. All the issues are available on my chess page.
In 2011, I started playing blitz chess at playchess.com, run by ChessBase. It seems to be the fastest place to get an opponent with less waiting. I found that the higher rated you get, the longer it took to get an opponent. As a guest, or anonymous player, I get an opponent with a wait time less than a minute in most cases.
In 2012, I started writing chess columns at Chess Maniac, an online chess-playing site.
In 2014, Thomas Katsampes of St. Paul, Minnesota, put together my web site, Bill Wall's Chess Page. I have thousands of chess articles and pgn games and we think it is the world's largest online chess collection. We added a Twitter account for chess, @billwallchess in December, 2016.
In 2015, I experimented with making videos of chess miniature games and put them on YouTube.
In 2016, I began to play regularly at lichess.com and that is my current favorite chess site to play chess. You can find me playing 10 minute games (or sometimes faster blitz) under the handle billwall.
In 2017, I became a premium member of 2700chess.com with access to a 6 million game database.
I play chess online at other sites, too. These sites include sparkchess.com, gameknot.com, chesstempo.com, chesscube.com, instantchess.com, chessok.com, redhotpawn.com, and Internet Chess Club (ICC).
I am also a member of sites with large chess databases, such as 365chess.com and chess-db.com.
I have contributed to other sites, including thechesspedia.com, ChessBase, chessDryad, ChessCentral, Chessopolis, OlimpBase, Rick Kennedy's Jerome Gambit site (my favorite gambit in blitz), Marek's 1.b4 site, and Chess Pastebin.
Many of my chess books have been scanned and are available at my chess page or at archive.org.
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Copyright 2015 by William D. Wall
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