Roland "Commander" Sykes
June 1st, 1953 - March 10th, 2008
Wizard, Bit Twiddler, Philosopher, Teacher, and most fun of
The Bus Driver for ADAPT
From: Kevin Reed
Looking back now, it's hard to believe that I've been influenced by Roland Sykes for more than 20 years. We have had quite a technical ride together with him leading the way...
We first collaborated together when he contacted me in mid 1980 about modifying a BBS that I wrote to provide a support BBS for NCIL when he was the director of a Ability Resources CIL in Tulsa, OK. The system was based on a Victor 9000 could only do one connection at a time using a 2400 baud modem. That system became a hybrid in that it networked two different computers to provide dual BBS modem line connections at the same time.
Over time, DIMENET was started and we moved to a Unix based BBS environment with USENET style topic groups, communication etc. At one time, the DIMENET BBS systems located in 5 cities provided access to more than 2,200 DIMENET subscribers throughout the US as a free accessible service and meeting place with Independent Living as the main theme.
With the first Internet connection 1991 as a better gateway for email from the DIMENET network to the outside. Web pages started to appear around 1995 and eventually full blown T1 or better network services were located in several locations of Dayton OH, Framingham and Taunton MA and Washington PA.
Along the way, we created a number of things, from BBS interfaces, Web Archives, Mailing lists for a large number of activity projects, support tools for ADAPT and numerous Statewide Independent Living Councils and centers.
Currently, there are more than 30 Independent Living Center or similar organizations that directly or indirectly have services via DIMENET related projects and sites.
All the while, Roland was in the forefront of what was needed, how it should be constructed, why it was important... the wizard behind the curtain was he. I will remember Roland in a special way, on a highly technical level in a way that most didn't know him...
I will missing him greatly...
DIMENET Systems Administrator
TNET Services, Inc.