META:RE: Black Holes

From: James Rogers (
Date: Wed Jun 07 2000 - 11:15:10 MDT

> I see complaints like this on the list continually, surely if as
> Transhumanists we wish to be at the bleeding edge we should
> accept and try
> to accomodate all emerging forms of communication technology.
> I'd quite like
> a voice/video mail list with text summaries to enhance my
> extropian learning
> experience (and see what you all look like). Harking back to 'pure text
> only' seems a little conservative/entropic.

This isn't about accomodating "emerging forms of communication
technology", rather it is about effectively using the standards of a given
communication medium. For email, that is ASCII text. Most of the useful
content on a mailing list can be successfully communicated using nothing
more than text, as it has for a long time. Depending on how and where I
am accessing my email, I may or may not be able to read non-text markup
and attachments. Generally speaking, email that is not text/plain ends
up in my trash bin without getting read.

I think that you should also realize that the people who use text
optimized environments for reading their email are not doing so because
they are unsophisticated or technologically backwards. In fact, these
people are typically among the most technically savvy of mail users,
choosing to use a text-based mail environment because they find it
efficient. Them thar perty winders email clients offer only one narrow
interface for Internet communication, and by no means define the
standard by which all others should be judged. And of course, some people
in the world have no choice but to use ASCII text environments for their
email access.

I personally use UNIX-based environments for virtually everything,
including email. If I want to look at something in a non-text format, I
prefer to explicitly fetch that item using my browser or some other
appropriate utility. Even when I was using Eudora on NT, I supported a
strict ASCII only email policy. Just because you can doesn't mean you

My $0.02,

-James Rogers

This archive was generated by hypermail 2b29 : Thu Jul 27 2000 - 14:12:46 MDT