e: ratcode@yahoo.co.uk
aim: Hellahulla
icq: 24681012
irc: Hellahulla @ Undernet

What is the Rat Code?

All over the WWW, Usenet, BBS's and other parts of the internet you will probably find certain types of codes, these codes are used to tell others about you and your particular interest (depending on the code) using a combination of (usually) letters and +'s and -'s plus some other characters. The original code that popped up was the Geek Code (Now superseded by the multi-purpose OmniCode) followed by a plethora of other codes (Furrys code, Goth code, Cat code, etc.).

The original Rat's Code came in 1997, but since then has not been updated at all, so I decided (mainly because of my interest in rats, and others wanting the Code to be updated in many ways) to have a go at the code, and bring in up to date.

The idea behind the Rat Code is to show other rat lovers (whether they own rats or not) who you are, what you do, what you are interested in, who your rats are, and what they are like.
The code is meant to be placed in your email and news signature file or on your website so that whenever you post a Usenet message or send an email or someone visits your site, the code will be included with your message, and people will be able to see how crazy you are about rats ^_^

The original owner of the Rat Code decided not to include a section for your individual rats for good reasons as although for people with only a few rats (I have calculated that with 7 rats the code won't be too long) will not have a problem with creating the code, but people with a lot of rats (I know people with 30 rats!) will have a code that is enormous, and although there is no real restriction on signature length in emails and newsgroups (Kibo's signature was once 350 lines long) people are not too friendly about others with huge signatures, although there really is nothing to complain about IMHO, bandwidth being not such a valuable commodity any more.
Please note that some newsreaders and email clients don't allow signatures that are longer than 5 - 6 lines, in this case you will have to make your code short by either missing out some rats or the individual rat section completely, or you could get a new newsreader or email client. The final option is to have your code in your FINGER reply, you'll have to check with your ISP about how to do this. Also note that the standard width for email and news messages is 72 characters, so your code should not exceed this in width, if it does simply move to another line.

The Rat Code is totally community based, without people wanting a code there would be no need for a code, so if you wish to see the code develop and grow please send any suggestions or comments to my email address ratcode@yahoo.co.uk . Thanks for looking.


2 May, 2005