META: Mirror-1post/day solution suggestion

Dave Hall (
Thu, 4 Mar 1999 00:31:19 +0200

I have no idea what "META:" is supposed to stand for in the context of this list, but I assume it's for making suggestions on improving infra-structure, and thus our ability to *learn* from what people post.

Too many solutions proposed in this list require a "they" or "someone" factor. For example, "someone should write a program for my nifty ingenious idea I just thought of". So the idea is posted, and quickly attacked by the hordes of commentators just itchy to get their memetic comms fix. There are some excellent comments and commentators. I sort my daily posting reading by Author first, then select the most interesting subject line and read that. If it looks appealing I then sort by subject and attempt to wade upwards looking for interesting bits. And the amount of garbage that has to be waded through to find the *good* stuff (because it is out there) becomes intolerable.

In terms of design, the tools currently available for knowledge gathering
(as opposed to status/money/sex hunting) have truly outlived their
usefulness. BUT it takes a lot of money and effort to develop a new tool product from scratch, and economic forces can crush attempters at any time. The trick is to use solutions that can be found by deploying basic common sense usage of existing tools. If nothing else it will show the SUPPLIERS
(the current software vendors) that there is a DEMAND for changes to their
tools. So what was a wire-and-nails solution then becomes a commercial product or service so that it can be easily replicated to all similar knowledge distribution systems.

As writers are satisfying an urge to be heard and should be given every opportunity to say what it is they have to say, I suggest a kind of "mirror" list to the main list, where each compuslive writer submits ONE posting per day, in *addition* to the normal load in the regular list. Those with the patience to wait a day before manically attacking their keyboards, thereby be able to choose and give thought to the best discussion topic get to do it in style and with professionalism. And then spend an hour, instead of dozens of 5 minute "CyberRoadRage" bursts to write thoughtfully about the topic.

That way we get the best of both worlds. It's all about supply and demand. I am a READER pleading with the WRITERS to improve the quality of your work, so that I may better learn from your insights. In terms of basic supply-and-demand, that was just a clear signal demanding some supply. That "up-a-level" list may in turn begin to flood, at which point the system can naturally migrate to a higher level, where edited manuscripts in Rocket eBook format are required and can be purchased for say 50c each. In a book form, a writer would need to have the publishing industry sell the piece for $48 to get 50c. If you're any good, you get read, and sold. Simple.

This list, is after all a CONTENT PROVIDER in the true sense of the word. It commands more of my time than any other single content provider, with the exception of perhaps Wired News, where I read everything because it's well presented and well written and well chosen content. Same can be said for The Economist which I read for it's quality of writing and selection of topics. Recognise the economic implications of that and it becomes extremely easy to see that the "only way out is up". One creates demand by providing quality.

[Durban, South Africa]