About the Center of Awareness

The Center of Awareness BBS Alliance is a network of Synchronet bulletin board systems. Our focus is on real-time inter-BBS communication that integrates with Synchronet's built-in features. We offer a suite of modern and classic BBS games that do not rely on typical inter-BBS kludges, as well as a message network, instant messaging and more.

Center of Awareness Features

Our installer makes it quick and easy to configure your BBS for COA access. Once setup is complete, our games & message areas will be present on your BBS, and a background service will keep your system in sync with the rest of the network.

Our message network doesn't rely on typical QWK or FTN methods, and requires no configuration on the part of the joining sysop. As soon as a message is posted, it is delivered to every system on the network. If your BBS is offline when new messages are posted, it will pick them up the next time it connects.

We offer helper scripts to show a network-wide "who's online" list, and to allow your users to send instant messages to other online users. Instant messages are delivered using Synchronet's built-in inter-node messaging features, and as such will work with most any command shell.

Center of Awareness Games

Of course, what most people are interested in are the games. Here's a list of what we currently offer, which will be configured automatically on your system when you join:

Barren Realms Elite
Bubble Boggle
DiceWarz 2
Falcon's Eye
FatFish
Global War
Kannons and Katapults
LORD
Maze Race
Planets: TEOS
Synchronetris
The Pit
Thirstyville
Top Rank Boxing
Uberblox
Usurper

Classic (DOS) door games are accessed via a transparent connection to a central gaming server, so that all users can play within the same "local" game. Only the user's alias is sent to the central gaming server, and a random password is automatically set for each new gaming session.

We're happy to add more games at the request of our members, provided that there is sufficient interest and that the software is stable.

Security

No, the COA software does not distribute users' passwords, email addresses, or other personal information between systems inside or outside of our network. Only user aliases are recorded in our "who's online" data. When a user connects to our central gaming system, only their alias and the name of the game they wish to play is passed along.

Full disclosure: in the earliest days of the COA, we experimented with maintaining a shared user database. Our network was smaller then, and comprised of a handful of trusted systems. Even so, there were security concerns that were difficult to set aside. That part of our system raised more issues than it resolved, and so we happily retired it long ago.

Join the Center of Awareness

Membership is open to any Synchronet BBS* that has been online for at least 90 days and seems stable.** If you'd like to join, fill out the form below and we will get back to you.

BBS Name:

Address: bbs.example.com

Sysop:

Email address:

Comments: optional

You can also contact us on IRC, in #coa on irc.synchro.net, or by visiting any COA member system (see the list on the left-hand side of this page) and posting a message in one of the COA message areas.

* You must be running a recent development build of Synchronet in order to join. Let us know if you need information about upgrading.

** We reserve the right to reject or rescind membership. If we do, we'll let you know why.