Re: [unrev-II] Semantic Community Web Portal

From: Eugene Eric Kim (
Date: Mon Sep 10 2001 - 01:09:36 PDT

  • Next message: Gil Regev: "RE: [unrev-II] Semantic Community Web Portal"

    On Sat, 8 Sep 2001, Jack Park wrote:

    > I have a confession to make.
    > I have a login password for Bernard's web site. I have yet to use
    > it. Why? Because I am lazy. It is far easier to hit NewMessage in Eudora
    > and type "unrev" and then ship off some gem, than it is to fire up my
    > browser, type in enough of a url to get the browser to remember where I
    > want to go, then log in, then navigate to some appropriate page, then offer
    > up some gem. Eric Armstrong has been right all along: email is easier.

    This is an important quandary. A little effort can result in an order of
    magnitude return. However, most people don't want to blindly expend that
    effort without knowing for sure that the returns will be worth it. And
    even then, most people are too lazy to expend the effort. Witness the
    reluctance most programmers show in documenting their code.

    If we can erase the need for that effort in the first place, then the
    problem is solved. This, however, is far easier said than done.

    > But, email is far less useful in a couple of senses: it's not well
    > organized (in contrast to a well-designed web site as is Bernard's), and it
    > tends to allow rambling, which, I think, calls for some structure, as for
    > example IBIS provides. But then, try to put IBIS threads into email and
    > you lose the structure of the discussion; web sites are better for
    > that. So, I conclude, email is easier and for those of us of the lazy
    > persuasion, better. But, I also conclude that, for purposes of logical
    > coherence in discussion and knowledge space, web sites, particularly those
    > designed as knowledge portals like Bernards, are better. Go figure.


    > Were I to conjure a summary of this response, it would be:
    > What we need is a knowledge portal that is as convenient as email, and as
    > powerful as a web site.

    I have been experimenting with the following:

        1. Use e-mail for unstructured discussion.
        2. Have a designated group facilitator create a structured IBIS dialog
           map of the e-mail discussion, with links to the original e-mails.
        3. Use a Wiki to collaboratively build a web site that integrates the
           content from both the e-mail archives and the dialog maps.

    I am convinced that this combination of tools and methodology greatly
    improves the collaborative process. However, in the absence of better
    tools, some effort must be made to conform to the methodology, things like
    periodically checking the dialog map and Wiki in addition to following the
    e-mail discussion. My challenge is convincing others that this effort is


    +=== Eugene Eric Kim ===== ===== ===+
    |       "Writer's block is a fancy term made up by whiners so they        |
    +=====  can have an excuse to drink alcohol."  --Steve Martin  ===========+

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