/B-B-S/ [abbreviation, `Bulletin Board System'] n. An electronic
bulletin board system; that is, a message database where people can
log in and leave broadcast messages for others grouped (typically)
into topic group
s. Thousands of local BBS systems are in
operation throughout the U.S., typically run by amateurs for fun
out of their homes on MS-DOS boxes with a single modem line each.
Fans of USENET and Internet or the big commercial timesharing
bboards such as CompuServe and GEnie tend to consider local BBSes
the low-rent district of the hacker culture, but they serve a
valuable function by knitting together lots of hackers and users in
the personal-micro world who would otherwise be unable to exchange
code at all.