Re: [unrev-II] Collaborative Discussion Tools

From: Bernard Vatant (
Date: Fri Apr 13 2001 - 15:54:21 PDT

  • Next message: Garold L. Johnson: "RE: [unrev-II] Collaborative Discussion Tools"

    If I may step in briefly ...

    Every page I write is weaved of all the lines I read and wrote
    Every moment I live is weaved of all the moments I lived.

    There are several successive important people in knowledge discovery and
    invention, like one of my maths teachers explained us long ago about problem
    solving - maybe I added some stages myself since ...

    The first important one is the one who discovers there is a question
    The second is the first one to understand what the question is, and to set
    it clearly
    The third one says a solution is possible and shows some right way towards
    The fourth one proposes a credible, but incorrect solution
    The fifth one proposes a correct, but convoluted and unreadable solution
    The sixth one proposes a correct, readable, but still heavy solution
    The seventh one makes it so simple that it stays in the books and makes all
    the above forgotten
    (a midget on giant's shoulders, said Newton ...)

    If all of them were kept in the books, science would be less arrogant maybe

    Happy Easter


    ----- Message d'origine -----
    De : "Jack Park" <>
    À : <>
    Envoyé : vendredi 13 avril 2001 20:07
    Objet : RE: [unrev-II] Collaborative Discussion Tools

    > Violent agreement, indeed!
    > And, your comment that, given the fact that we don't know each other, we
    > might well be thought of as just avatars for somebody else. But, and I
    > often wondered this myself, what if I did log in here as, say, Ted
    > Would I be treated any differently? (I suspect I would, particularly if my
    > return address were faked to a penal institution). It's true that people
    > often defer to those who are articulate, even when the articulate ones are
    > wrong -- which, I often am )-:
    > Analogizing to a book is a very good way to state the case. On that, I
    > agree. But, I must inject that I do not see this list as anything other
    > fodder for somebody's book(s), so this list must reflect the collective
    > stream of consciousness, no matter how chaotic it may be. And, others
    > should be encouraged to step in and occasionally summarize threads, or
    > books.
    > I think we're on to something here!
    > For me, however, the problem remains. I am explicitly building an IBIS
    > system into Nexist now. I remain excited to begin playing with it,
    > now, a bit apprehensive about its power given the things I have learned
    > Jeff Conklin.
    > Cheers, and happy holliday.
    > Jack
    > At 10:49 AM 4/13/2001 -0700, you wrote:
    > Jack,
    > I think we are in violent agreement.
    > I don t think that editing someone else s work without leaving a trail to
    > the original work is a good idea.
    > I read your question as whether or not annealing was desirable rather than
    > asking about editing another s work.
    > As I reorganize my information, I would love to have a track of the
    > of changes at an appropriate level of granularity.
    > It is not my intent that the work of others be destroyed in the process of
    > restructuring the main thread, only that the main structure reflect the
    > of the integrated thinking of the participants.
    > Consider the difference between having a textbook on a complex subject and
    > *having* to wade through all of the papers, notes, memos, false starts,
    > ends, etc. that are involved in the history of the subject of the book.
    > historical record can be extremely useful, even essential, so long as it
    > t the only source of information.
    > One of the things I like about Augment is that a document, once published,
    > is there essentially forever. It is clear from the discussion that the
    > interaction of versioning with reference is a definite issue.
    > I think that the use of avatars for attribution would be an interesting
    > experiment. It seems that reputation would develop, and this may or may
    > be a good thing . It seems to me that in such a case most people would
    > not to argue too strenuously with the most articulate regardless of what
    > name was used. Since I don t know any of you personally, for example, the
    > names carry no impact beyond my experience with them in this forum, so
    > is no distinction between real names and any artificial names. I recognize
    > that there is a difference when we are talking about situations where
    > is interaction other than on the form, such as when some individual is in
    > position of authority.
    > Since I feel free to disagree with anybody regardless of credentials, this
    > doesn t affect me directly. I figure that whenever there is a discussion,
    > either (or both) learn and teach, and either way, everybody wins.
    > To summarize: The original work should never be lost by any summarization
    > restructuring that takes place. Part of this is addressed by getting buy
    > from the group on the rewording or restructuring.
    > Thanks,
    > Garold (Gary) L. Johnson
    > DYNAMIC <> Alternatives
    > -----Original Message-----
    > From: Jack Park [
    > <> ]
    > Sent: Friday, April 13, 2001 9:40 AM
    > To:
    > Subject: RE: [unrev-II] Collaborative Discussion Tools
    > At 09:06 AM 4/13/2001 -0700, you wrote:
    > [Garold L. Johnson] It may be useful to save the original input, but the
    > structure of the result is as important as such things as wording.
    > IBIS, for example, might be a valuable structure for documenting
    > even though it doesn t appear to work well for capturing the discussion in
    > real time. In this case, the original input is historical, but the
    > restructured discussion is the desired end product. This is where I think
    > that David Parnas is correct that it is desirable to document the history
    > we would like it to have occurred rather than absolutely accurately the
    > it did.
    > One of my difficulties in managing my own information is exactly this
    > ongoing restructuring so that my recorded information documents my best
    > understanding in an area. Tracking the history of an idea is also
    > valuable at times. None of the tools I currently have do a really good job
    > of either of these things.
    > [Jack Park] David Parnas (presumably) says it is correct that it is
    > desirable to document the history as we would like it to have
    > you follow with that my recorded information documents my best
    > understanding...
    > And I see an apples and oranges issue here. Rod Welch is fond of
    > events as they unfold at his site, then annotating hell out of them with
    > own brand of insight. That particular behavior results often in some
    > insightful walks down memory lane when he shares a page or two with us.
    > occasion, he might "get something wrong" and we are blessed with the
    > to click a link and jot off a reminder, correction, whatever. At this
    > point, he has either the opportunity to go in and literally change his
    > record, or he has the ability to post the comment and react to that,
    > the original oratory intact. It's his personal space, and his right to
    > choose.
    > So, given that there is merit in seeing the flow of information being
    > translated into representations of somebody's knowledge, including all the
    > warts, I recall my question: is it appropriate to mess with the original
    > flow of information, occasionally restructuring it through a de novo
    > presentation, perhaps adding commentary and so forth, or should one go
    > and restructure original messages, which, imho, opens up a whole nother
    > of issues on link integrity and so forth as is being discussed over on
    > OHS-DEV.
    > From my own perspective, whenever one messes with somebody else's writing,
    > one is just liable to introduce personal biases into the result; again,
    > imho, personal biases should never be allowed to censor or otherwise
    > pre-interpret an open flow of information in society. Lord knows, we've
    > up with one helluva lot of pre-interpreted information while watching the
    > US/China thing just now trying to put itself to bed. But, I also think it
    > is appropriate for the those with an editorial bent to occasionally make
    > statements that reveal their judgements, biases, and so forth, on the flow
    > of information. A moderator might step in and summarize things, perhaps
    > even drawing to a close some on-going thread. Again, however, that is a
    > loaded canon, so to speak.
    > With respect to attribution, my thinking has always been that it would be
    > best if everyone had an avatar and never actually identified who they are.
    > That way, it would be possible to really have a serious discussion going
    > between the likes of Nobel laureates, congress persons, spys, school kids,
    > and even Ted Kazinsky. One wonders where such a conversation would go.
    > you don't do it that way, it's not long before some big cheese dominates
    > thread, again, inserting tons of personal bias into the thread. My
    > here: personal bias is valuable at the outset, but lethal when individuals
    > overuse it <note>I hope you realize I'm trying carefully not to overuse
    > mine:o)</note>.
    > You have every right to modify that which is contained on your own web
    > Indeed, reflections of your personal knowledge should be expected to
    > over time, and if you don't want others to see the history of your thought
    > process, so be it. But, and this is, I think, my point, when you enter a
    > discussion (such as this one), I do not think you should have the ability
    > go in and change some statement you make when you later find out you'd
    > rather not have somebody find out you were, say, "that stupid." <note>
    > imagine how I'm going to feel some years from now when somebody rubs that
    > statement in my own nose! </note>. So, as hinted above, there are both
    > public and personal information spaces. Nobody should, imho, have
    > control of public spaces (within certain limits such as motivated by the
    > need to suppress hate messages, threats of death, pornography, and so
    > -- and those applying only when appropriate, e.g. on discussion lists such
    > as this <note>I am saying there are times when censorship has its proper
    > role, but not in a knowledge-accretion community where everybody is
    > basically aiming at discussion specified kinds of issues</note>).
    > Do I have expectations that my diatribe will end this thread? I have
    > hopes that it will not do that. It seems to me that we are now tapping
    > the roots of collective wisdom building. Nothing could be more important.
    > Jack
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