I've been using BBSes off and on since 1984. I decided to start my own BBS in 1996 with the help of a friend, Scott McNay (in Fidonet Net 396 in Killeen, Texas). I had tinkered with GAP and TriBBS software in 1994 but wasn't able to host a board until in 1996. My first BBS, AfterHours/2 BBS, was running Telegard and then Telegard/2 (OS/2-native) when it came out. I've tried out and used several dozen BBS packages over the years as well as having run a BBS under OS/2 and Windows. I used OS/2 up until 2016 when I decided to modernize my BBS and switch over to using Slackware Linux for the OS and MBSE BBS for the actual BBS software. In 2019, I purchased ArcaOS, a modernized third-party supported version of OS/2 Warp 4.52, and set back up my beloved Maximus/2 BBS yet again.
I've been a member of Fidonet, for better and for worse, since 1996. I am still a member today, having had the same node number since 2000. Micronet was only meant to be an experiment when I created it on 1 Sepetember 2000 but here it is, all these years later, and still going strong.
Cheepware was an experiment also as in 1998, I discovered a BBS door I liked but it was unregisterable nagware (meaning it nagged you every time you ran it to be registered). I sat down and created "The Magic Oracle". I originally meant the door for my own use but a few of my fellow sysops wanted it, so I created the Cheepware name--because sysops are notoriously cheap--and I released my door as freeware. Fast forward several years and many programs later, Cheepware is still around.
I will continue to keep running my BBS and working on my software when I have the time and energy to do so. I still enjoy the hobby even though it's become much more of a niche hobby over the years.