Re: NodeNets and ExI

Max More (
Thu, 04 Jun 1998 11:09:48 -0700

Sarah: A slightly belated "welcome back" to the list. I've missed your

Let me note here, for those of you who don't know, that the NodeNet grew
out of an idea that was originally Sarah's a couple of years ago. Sarah
discussed her idea with Greg Burch while he was in England, then Greg went
on to refine the idea. We have now simplified the workings in order to make
it feasible to actually get it implemented.

At 03:32 PM 6/4/98 +0100, Sarah Marr wrote:
>First, are these lists to retain the exclusivity which
>might serve ExI best in the long run, by establishing its credentials as a
>world-class organization, or are they to be open to all, hence increasing
>publicity, but, more than likely, deterring the specifically
>scientific/economic professional community from using the nodes as a
>'trading' place?

My own perspective on this is that the NodeNet forums should incorporate a
reasonable degree of exclusivity. We do indeed want to build a strong
reputation for ExI. The lists will not be open to all. They will be
restricted to ExI members, and only those applying members whom each
NodeMaster deems appropriate or qualified for a forum. However, to address
Reilly's concern, the criteria of "qualified" will vary for each list. Even
if desirable (and I agree it is not), qualifications need not be academic
degrees. (Requiring higher -- or any -- degree in relevant fields, given
the size of ExI's membership, would guarantee very little participation!)

For highly technical forums, we probably want to be more restrictive in
allowing members to be posting-enabled Participants. Here, either a formal
background in the topic, or demonstrated knowledge in writings, previous
email list postings, etc. would count. For other forums, especially highly
cross-disciplinary ones, or more practically focused ones, the default
might be that all applicants can be participants, with the NodeMaster
merely screening out those who have shown little substantive imput in the

I will work with each NodeMaster on setting out both a mission statement
and qualification filters for each forum. I hope we will also continue to
discuss it here (or on the Extropians-Select list once that's up).

>Second, with multiple, highly-specific nodes, how is ExI
>to ensure that 'cross-pollenation' of ideas occurs effectively?

That's the job of the Extropians-Select and Extropians-Open lists, as well
as publications in Extropy Online, and conversations at local events and
EXTRO conferences.



Max More, Ph.D.
Updated website (Jan 98):
President, Extropy Institute:,