Yes it's a 3D application that came out around the same time Character Studio Max came out... I'm not sure on it's relevant usability in the industry now a days but I'd start learning Maya if I were you... every company is starting to turn towards Maya. Great for game platforms and Visual Effects.
I'm pretty sure Rhino was just intended as a modeling program for an alternative to using Lightwave's and 3d Max's modeler programs (it could export to tons of different programs for surfacing and animation, not sure on import though). I always heard it was a pretty decent modeling interface though some people liked it better and some didn't.
I still think modeling in Maya is a pain in the rear though.
I can speak to that, to a degree. A few years ago this forum was heavily active. We had a strong base of long-time posters and a very solid community. Lots of new members, lots of years-old members, lots...