New tree structured discussion system in Santa Cruz, CA, USA

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William R. Ward

Aug 17, 1992, 6:05:07 PM8/17/92

This is a new tree-structured BBS, in the tradition of LBBS, Magpie,
Stuart II, Pyrzqxgl, the Temple of Zuul and XBBS. There are no
uploads or downloads, just messages. Access is free, and no
identification is required.

To call:
The BBS is running under UUPC/extended, which presents a Unix
getty-like interface upon connection. To enter the BBS, type "bbs" at
the "login:" prompt, and the password is blank, so just hit
Enter/Return at that prompt. You will then be put into the BBS; from
that point, follow the directions you are given.

The system is single-user, and runs at 1200 or 2400 baud. 8 data bits
and no parity are required.

About tree-structured BBS's:
Several years ago there was a BBS called LBBS in (I think)
Chicago. It was tree-structured, not unlike the threaded newsreaders
of today (trn, tin, gnus). About 10 years ago, a man named Nick
Turner from Boulder Creek CA found out about it and wrote a BBS named
Stuart II, which ran on an Apple II. An electronic community
developed, with monthly pot-luck parties held at Nick's house. Later,
similar systems appeared in the Santa Cruz area: the Temple of Zuul,
running on an Atari 8-bit, now defunct; Pyrzqxgl, running on a Victor
9000 computer and still up at +1 408-476-4633, 300/1200/2400 baud);
and XBBS, running first on a Victor 9000 and now on an IBM AT (+1
408-476-4945, 300/1200 baud) with up to five dial-up users. The
Magpie system, which has several systems in New York, NY, arose from
the Stuart II legacy as well.
The structure of the modern tree BBS is basically that each
message is a reply to some other message, and so on, up to the root of
the tree. The topology used is an upside-down tree, with each node
(forked branch) a message and each edge (straight branch) a link
between messages. You navigate by going up toward the top of the
tree, left or right among your current message's co-replies (or
siblings), or down among the list of replies to the current message
(or children).

About The Hermitage:
One day I was playing around with the host script that comes with
Telix, a terminal program for MS-DOS, and realized that it would be
relatively easy to write a tree-structured system using its powerful
script language, which is much like C. I did so, and a few days
later my system was online. I named the software "Treelix" in honor
of its origin (Telix) and its structure (tree). After a week or two I
converted the program to C++, which is its current status. The 1000th
message was posted yesterday, after 17 days online.

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