The Bulletin Board’s corner
The BBS or the Bulletin Board system for the first tool available for collaborative computer platforms. It allows communication between two or more computers with telephone lines using a modem. With the first appearance in mid-1990’s, there were more than 60 000 Bulletin Board systems in the United States only. Around 60 of them were operated by local newspapers. Electronic Trib was the name of the first newspaper BBS in 1990. The first official BBS upload went on February 16. 1978 in the home of suburban Chicago of Walt Christensen. It operated on one of the first technologically advanced computers on Star Horizon system with 4 Mhz CP/M with 5 MB of the hard drive and 110 Bps modem. The connection wasn’t possible without the answering on the phone and placing the receiver in modem’s cups that were acoustic. This system was intended for posting and reading messages; it was considered as a great technological breakthrough. This was the origin that gave an idea to creating forums on which people could exchange messages and communicate among themselves, meet other people and create a digital social life for themselves.
As Bulletin Board system continued its evolution, the system became more sophisticated. Some of them make the connection of over 256 users possible, provided that BBS multi-line system was used as a connecting catalyst. While others could handle even more but they required a separate computer for every connection, so no more than one person would be connected to one computer.
This pioneer of future software presents the birth of the beginning for new ways of communicating that we created for ourselves. They were regarded as a local phenomenon; this was a new idea that many ordinary people were not used to seeing.
The possibilities for using such sophisticated system such as BBS were unlimited at the time. Where companies all around the world could advertise their products more easily than before. Another great advantage of BBS was that its users could exchange new ideas and discuss different topics at the same time. As the internet become more available and widespread in the late 1990’s, the popularity of BBS rapidly decreased as it was fading away with new ideas rising each day.
Because of the high cost of long distance charges with users who are not close to each other, local BBS users became more connected than the ones that are separated by countries across the sea. This was the main reason why BBS meets or “Get Togethers” were common for local users.
We as a human race were always ready for embracing new ideas, mainly through technological breakthroughs. There was not an idea that didn’t give birth to another even greater idea that made connecting with each other not only possible but much easier.
BBS remains to this day a godfather of all the forums and meeting places online. Nowadays we have computers so advanced that they contain information that technology in 1990’s couldn’t even imagine possessing. The evolution of technology continues.