6.4 Telnet Bulletin-Board Systems
Big Dummy's Guide to the Internet

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     You might think that Usenet, with its hundreds of newsgroups,
would be enough to satisfy the most dedicated of online communicators.
     But there are a number of "bulletin-board" and other systems that
provide even more conferences or other services, many not found
directly on the Net.  Some are free; others charge for access.  They
     Bookstacks Unlimited is a Cleveland bookstore that uses the Internet
to advertise its services.  Its online system features not only a catalog,
however, but conferences on books and literature.
     Telnet: books.com
     Log in with your own name and select a password for future connections.

     Cimarron.  Run by the Instituto Technical in Monterey, Mexico,
this system has Spanish conferences, but English commands, as you can
see from this menu of available conferences:
          List of Boards
            Name                 Title
            General              Board general
            Dudas                Dudas de Cimarron
            Comentarios          Comentarios al SYSOP
            Musica               Para los afinados........
            Libros               El sano arte de leer.....
            Sistemas             Sistemas Operativos en General.
            Virus                Su peor enemigo......
            Cultural             Espacio Cultural de Cimarron
            NeXT                 El Mundo de NeXT
            Ciencias             Solo apto para Nerds.
            Inspiracion          Para los Romanticos e Inspirados.
            Deportes             Discusiones Deportivas
     To be able to write messages and gain access to files, you have
to leave a note to SYSOP with your name, address, occupation and phone
number.  To do this, at any prompt, hit your M key and then enter,
which will bring up the mail system. Hitting H brings up a list of
commands and how to use them.
     Telnet: bugs.mty.itesm.mx (8 p.m. to 10 a.m., Eastern time, only).
     At the "login:" prompt, type
and hit enter.
    Cleveland Free-Net.  The first of a series of Free-nets, this
represents an ambitious attempt to bring the Net to the public.
Originally an in-hospital help network, it is now sponsored by Case
Western Reserve University, the city of Cleveland, the state of Ohio
and IBM. It uses simple menus, similar to those found on CompuServe,
but organized like a city:
            1 The Administration Building
            2 The Post Office
            3 Public Square
            4 The Courthouse & Government Center
            5 The Arts Building
            6 Science and Technology Center
            7 The Medical Arts Building
            8 The Schoolhouse (Academy One)
            9 The Community Center & Recreation Area
           10 The Business and Industrial Park
           11 The Library
           12 University Circle
           13 The Teleport
           14 The Communications Center
          h=Help, x=Exit Free-Net, "go help"=extended help
          Your Choice ==>
     The system has a vast and growing collection of public documents,
from copies of U.S. and Ohio Supreme Court decisions to the Magna
Carta and the U.S. Constitution.  It links residents to various
government agencies and has daily stories from USA Today. Beyond
Usenet (found in the Teleport area), it has a large collection of
local conferences on everything from pets to politics.  And yes, it's
     Telnet: freenet-in-a.cwru.edu or
             freenet-in-b.cwru.edu or
     When you connect to Free-Net, you can look around the system. 
However, if you want to be able to post messages in its conferences or
use e-mail, you will have to apply in writing for an account. 
Information on this is available when you connect.
     DUBBS.  This is a bulletin-board system in Delft in the
Netherlands. The conferences and files are mostly in Dutch, but the
help files and the system commands themselves are in English.
     Telnet: tudrwa.tudelft.nl
     ISCA BBS.  Run by the Iowa Student Computer Association, it has
more than 100 conferences, including several in foreign languages. 
After you register, hit K for a list of available conferences and then
J to join a particular conference (you have to type in the name of the
conference, not the number next to it).  Hitting H brings up
information about commands.
     Telnet bbs.isca.uiowa.edu
     At the "login:" prompt, type
and hit enter.
     Youngstown Free-Net.  The people who created Cleveland Free-Net
sell their software for $1 to anybody willing to set up a similar
system. A number of cities now have their own Free-Nets, including
Youngstown, Ohio. Telnet: yfn.ysu.edu At the "login:" prompt, type
and hit enter.