[MG] Is Main Page unapproachable?

Ed Pastore epastore at metagovernment.org
Wed Jun 16 22:42:46 EDT 2010

On Jun 14, 2010, at 11:58 PM, Mark Janssen wrote:

>> How about a link somewhere near the top saying (something
>> like): "For a geeky philosophical presentation of this content,  
>> click here."
> Haha, Dude that's awesome, but given that we're wanting to *attract*
> those types, putting an insult on their door maaay not keep them.

That's not intended as an insult. Would "nerd" be better? Check out  
the catch-phrase of SlashDot.

> My
> solution:   At the end of the first paragraph or the third:   "Need
> more persuasion?  [[Why this project is needed. | Check this]]."

That doesn't present a second door to the idea, it claims to be a  
further explanation of the main page. I thought we were leaning toward  
a general-public page and a nerdy page. If we insert a link in the  
general public page, it should be clear that it is not for them. As  
was the original point of this thread, the general public seems to  
have trouble grasping the main page. Encouraging them to go to  
something more confusing isn't going to help.

> It should be noted that the only community sites that have been
> running since the beginning are geeky ones (slashdot, for example).
> Who else?

Back in the day, the only users of the internet were the geeky people.  
So that only makes sense. And in any event, the mission of this site  
isn't to create a fun online community, it is to promote software  
which can govern other communities.

>> If we require trust before even attempting synthesis, then we will  
>> get
>> nothing except solutions to insignificant problems among homogenous
>> populations.
> Dude that is NOT true.  How do you even make this argument in
> seriousness?  Wikipedia gave *everyone* *edit authority* on the *front
> page* -- was that an insignificant homogenous population or result?
> Do you honestly think that wikipedia would have been successful
> without trust?  Anyyway, the point it MOOT -- wiki has already
> achieved/solved the synthesis!  Trust was and still *IS* the
> answer!!!!

We already discussed this. Wikipedia is a completely different animal.  
The vast majority of people participating in it have the same overall  
goal: making a better collection of knowledge. Human social governance  
is not like that. Do people agree on abortion, on budget allocations  
in New York City, on whether or not the US should pursue offshore oil  
drilling? People don't even agree on whether or not Israel *exists*.  
Comparing that situation to Wikipedia just doesn't compute.

> So, anyway, I'm not saying that trust is required before attempting
> synthesis -- it is the outcome of synthesis, dammit!  If you look at
> my writeup on [[synthesis]] you will see that one side of the other,
> however, DOES have to take a risk in order to achieve it.  Secondly,
> you have to be imaginative.  Trust can build innovating solutions that
> have never been seen.  Do you ever wonder why artists (and geeks for
> that matter) place themselves outside society?

I very much agree with the above. It seemed to me that previously you  
were arguing that the community has to start with trust. That I don't  

>> Yes. We've already discussed on this list a simple solution. Well,  
>> it is
>> technically difficult to implement, but the idea is very simple: to  
>> have no
>> single administrator. Instead I propose we eventually have multiple,
>> redundant, distributed admins. Each one is check-summed by all the  
>> others,
>> so any implementation which deviates from the trusted trunk is  
>> deprecated
>> from the aggregate "administration."
>> Right, as I say above, I propose a distributed system that goes  
>> further than
>> any current cloud in that it distributes administration to an  
>> unlimited
>> number of authoritative but independent admins who cross-check each  
>> other.
> But you are freaking missing years of software and open source
> history.  This scenario was played out decades ago man, by Stallman
> and others.  Here's what happens:  Person X says "Hey, I'm not getting
> the attention I want".   He then starts his own fork and 6 months
> later through various specious means ("embrace and extend" --familiar
> with that approach?) has attracted half of your population into his
> (more-closed) system.  Now you are CIH, wondering WTF?

No; all of the above is about software development. I am talking about  
server administration, which is completely different. In software you  
can have branches and they may or may not be good. In server  
administration, you want one core and that's about it. The  
distribution is just a semi-human mechanism for authenticating the  
instances and keeping the admins honest.

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