Back when I first got a modem
, I didn't have any way to get onto the internet
or much knowledge about its existence. Luckily, there was a thriving local BBS community
(around 80 BBSes) for my geeky self to participate in some of. For some reason, one of the most popular software choices was WWIV. There was a national network of WWIV boards with different boards in the area carrying different discussion areas (there were kinda like moderated newsgroups
, but often with automatic approval) as well as a local network ("Localnet") passed over the same channels and at least one competing network started by people that didn't care much for the politics of the main WWIV network.
"WWIV" is properly pronounced "World War Four".
WWIV nodes each had a unique 4-digit numeric ID. IIRC, the scheme was that the first two digits were the first and last of the area code with the last two digits being above 50 for area codes with a 1 in the middle and below 50 for area codes with a 0 in the middle. (It's since been dropped, but at the time, US area codes always had either a 1 or a 0 in the middle)
The really scary thing is that there's a web page for WWIV (www.wwiv.com) and they're still occasionally coming out with new releases.
Personally, I liked Citadel better, anyways. I started out running an RVIX board on a Commodore 64, and then later upgraded to a Citadel+ (Citadel derivative) board on a PC.