Pizza Hut claims it had online ordering in 94

IIRC in 1994 we were still using dial up modems and didn’t have web browsers.
The internet was alt groups and text only email.
What in the world are they talking about?

Simple answer: you don’t recall correctly. Hobbes’ internet timeline has had it listed for years now.

We did have web browsers in '94. Of course, things were simpler back then. I wouldn’t imagine it was the fully automated system we have now. Unless I’m wrong, the order simply printed out at some central processing center where some poor employee had to call it in to the local franchise.

I remember being able to order pizza online in Seattle around then. Don’t believe it was Pizza Hut but I remember doing it.

And I remember it going around the internet as various pizza ordering services popped up (kind of the joke of the geeks all ordering pizza without having to see anybody).

According to this Wikipedia page Pizza Hut began allowing online ordering in Santa Cruz in 1994. Here’s a blog post with a screenshot of their Pizza Net running on Mosaic.

As for the history of the Web (as opposed to the internet, which is older) it was young then, but did exist. Plus, the technology to convey to someone that you want them to bring you something and you’ll pay them when it arrives existed long before that. And, if you want accuracy always go to Hollywood. In the internet identity theft documentary, The Net with reenactments by Sandra Bullock and Dennis Miller, there is a mention of ordering pizza online.

Web browsers were certainly around in 1994. That’s when I first started using them, but Mosaic was released even early, in January of 1993.

Here’s a picture of the 1994 web site.

The best thing about that movie was the cameo by ResEdit.

That said, there’s no reason you couldn’t do an online ordering system via telnet, so a web browser is not a necessary component, although it does make the experience much more user friendly.

Oh that makes sense. I was thinking they were letting people pay online then too. When did that start? Jesus I’m old.

Couldn’t have been much before 2000. That’s about the earliest you’d have some relatively secure way of sending credit card numbers about on the web.

NCSA Mosaic had support for HTML forms as early as 1993, though I don’t think they were standardized until HTML 2.0 in 1995 (the last HTML standard to be published as an RFC.)

You don’t need a credit card to order a pizza online, even today.

Netscape had SSL 2.0 support in 1995. (In fact Netscape developed the SSL standard.)

But it’s certainly not necessary to have an encrypted connection to collect credit card data. Early e-commerce sites were more than happy to transmit that stuff in the clear.

Sure, but the followup question was about online processing of payment.

I recall just how naive people were about the “Information Superhighway/System of Tubes”. Astounding.

Then again, maybe not. Most people still seem to have no clue how secure or insecure their personal information actually is.

Obviously some time after this, but does anyone remember that World of Warcraft once had a /pizza command to order Pizza Hut from within the game, charged to your credit card you used to subscribe?

E-mail could also have been used, in theory.

i attempted to order a pizza but gopher ate it.

Understanding that joke makes me feel old, and that’s despite only having learned about the tool, and never really using it.

Can you believe internet use was a class offered by our student society rather than the University when I started in 1994?

Around that time I bought some CD’s from, using their telnet interface. THE FUTURE!

Amazon was processing credit card payments online in 1995, weren’t they?

Speaking of transmitting sensitive stuff in the clear…

Telnet is completely unencrypted. Even your password is sent in plaintext. It’s been replaced by the totally-encrypted secure shell (ssh) at this point, even in applications where security isn’t a huge concern simply because it’s easier to only remember one command.

Do you remember how you paid for those CDs? Were you typing in credit card information on a Telnet connection or did you already need to have an account?

And beat Amazon to market by a couple years and my memory is that you set up payment with them online.