As 1985 and 1986 progressed, the ARPAnet got more loaded as more sites
came on, but I don't have any specific statistics. Cross-country links
like the one we had through Pittsburgh (CMU, PSN #14) were apparently
the real hot spot.
BITnet was starting around then, too, mostly 9.6-19.2-56 kb links
between IBM mainframes.
It's not important to your very interesting history, but I believe that
BITNET started in 1981. It was already up to more than 1000 nodes when
we joined in 1985 with a 56 kbps link to the University of Maryland.
I remember many of the events you describe, but from the perspective of
someone responsible for our connections. We got our SURAnet connection
up in early 1988 with a Proteon p4200 and a T1 line.
Roger Fajman Telephone: +1 301 402 4265
National Institutes of Health BITNET: RAF@NIHCU
Bethesda, Maryland, USA Internet: RAF@CU.NIH.GOV