Good day: I'm interested in the history of the Moodle forum and similar bulletin-board systems (BBS) that were integrated in early VLEs or LMSs. Perhaps this is a question for Martin and the other founders of Moodle, but I'm wondering why BBS were a central part of VLEs and LMSs from the very beginning (I didn't use Moodle 1.0 but I'm guessing it had a BBS - in fact the Moodle history document I found:
says that Martin made the very first post in the first Moodle course, meaning it must have used BBS).
Back to my original question: Why was the BBS integrated as a central feature?
If I may hazard a guess, I'd say it must have had something to do with the way programmers used Usenet and other BBS in the 80s and 90s as they collaborated to write code and solve problems ("I just created this cool thing. Will you try it out?" etc). And since programmers created the first VLEs and LMSs (early WebCT and Blackboard, for example, and then Moodle), they thought it would be cool to put their own learning tool into the LMS? I'm just speculating here, so I'd really appreciate hearing from someone who knows more about the provenance of discussion forums in Moodle and other VLEs.
A related and interesting topic is how instructors today are "given" the VLE w/o really appreciating where the discussion-forum tool came from and how it can be most effectively used. Most instructors are not programmers and have no experience of collaborating in the way many of us would think is native to the BBS, so helping them to use it effectively is a challenge. But that's a topic for another day. Any insights into the origins of the discussion forum in Moodle I would be really glad to hear about! Thanks. - Peter