Building Activity on discuss.the-knowledge.org

Building Activity on discuss.the-knowledge.org

Postby tahanson43206 » Mon Jul 27, 2015 3:50 pm

The purpose of this message is to enlist forum member guidance for Dr. Lewis Dartnell.

Maurice Goldberg reported finding that enhanced capabilities are available for the software supporting this forum, but their installation would require the investment of precious personal time by Dr. Dartnell. From all accounts, Dr. Dartnell is heavily burdened with his scientific duties and his public activities, let alone his personal life.

In recent days, activity has resumed on this site. An opportunity exists for members who contribute to change the culture from typical Internet forum conversation which accomplishes nothing, to result oriented activities that produce measurable results.

This formum software has significant weaknesses. Please identify them in reply to this message, so Dr. Dartnell can receive feedback on where he could best allocate the few minutes he can spare for this forum.

This forum software has strengths as well. Please identify those in reply to this message, so Dr. Dartnell will know what he can build as he goes forward.

In watching the recent posts, using the Recent Activity button at the Board Index level, I would prefer that the software keep track of messages I have already read. To accomplish this, the software would have to employ a cookie on my workstation, or require me to log in so the messages read could be stored in a database keyed to my membership ID.

In order for ANY Internet forum to succeed, each member MUST derive some benefit from participation.

Many visitors to the site will derive benefit from reading the messages, and never see a need to become a member.

Visitors who DO decide to invest in the forum by becoming members should at LEAST have the option of "Liking" (or Rating) the entries contributed by contributing members. The DISADVANTAGE of composing a message that says I LIKE That! is the burden this places on the member and non-member participants, who must devote their limited online time to reading useless message content (from their perspective).

(th)
May every member of The Knowledge forum grow financially, intellectually, socially and beyond.
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Re: Building Activity on discuss.the-knowledge.org

Postby Maurice Goldsmith » Mon Jul 27, 2015 4:26 pm

I'm new to using forums so it took me a while to get the hang of this one. One thing I eventually realised was that I wasn't getting notified of any replies or new messages by email - I'd just assumed it would happen! In case anyone else is new to forums like me, the two steps I took that have made a difference are:

1. On the Board preferences tab on the User Control Panel select "Edit posting defaults" and make sure "Notify me upon replies by default" is set to Yes.

2. Go to the main board index, open up each forum listed and find the "Subscribe forum" link at the bottom of the page. Click the link (it changes to [x] Unsubscribe forum). I subscribed to each of the 25 forums individually, so this takes a while. I don't know if there's a "mass subscribe" feature - I couldn't find one.

I now get a message about every posting and reply (I think!). I guess if the board gets busier I will have to throttle that back to avoid getting overloaded - this is where a "digest" facility might come in handy. If anyone has any better tips please post them!

Thanks
Maurice
I am the author of a post-apocalyptic novel - The Lucifer Bug http://www.theluciferbug.com/
Maurice Goldsmith
 
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Re: Building Activity on discuss.the-knowledge.org

Postby tahanson43206 » Wed Aug 05, 2015 4:48 pm

The "View Active Topics" feature of the software Dr. Dartnell selected for this forum appears to show that there may be as many as:

5 people who check the forum within 24 hours
9 - 13 people who check the forum within a five day period

The software does not (necessarily) show unique visitors, so repeat visits to a topic may count towards the total.

Never-the-less, it would appear that between 5 and 13 people may be visiting the site at least weekly.

Depending upon who these folks are and their interests, capabilities, energy level and resources, there is a (small) chance that something happening here might inspire activity that would count toward preserving existing knowledge, by protecting it from loss.

Establishing beachheads for groups of people away from Earth is a logical step to take, and a number of space development supporters site that as a good reason to work that problem.

Likewise, confronting those who are creating chaos here on Earth in 2015 is an endeavor worth undertaking, and quite a few folks are in fact engaged in that effort.

However, going deeper, the root causes of disruptive behavior can be best confronted by dealing adequately with the needs of children, whether they are in European refugee camps or American inner cities.

A useful mechanism that might work for the somewhat tenuous environment of "The Knowledge" forum is "The Grandmother Effect", as reported by Peter Diamandis and Steven Kotler in "Abundance"

See page 175 for a description of "The Grandmother Method".

Adapting the idea for "The Knowledge" forum, it appears that between 5 and a dozen people may take note of activity by individuals which might be reported on the forum.

Activities to be reported could be anything that even remotely increases the chances of survival of knowledge, whether by preserving it, or by preventing its loss.

The existing forum software provides very limited feedback for users, but AT LEAST contributors can see the view count go up over time.

A well written report of activity to preserve knowledge or perhaps prevent its loss might even generate a reply, though chances of that are (obviously) small.

(th)
May every member of The Knowledge forum grow financially, intellectually, socially and beyond.
tahanson43206
 
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Re: Building Activity on discuss.the-knowledge.org

Postby Maurice Goldsmith » Thu Aug 06, 2015 12:56 pm

th - thanks for your thought-provoking post!

I'd like to take up your suggestion and report briefly on my project, which has some similarity to the Grandmother effect described in the book you mention. I've said elsewhere on this board that the knowledge I'd like to preserve is our understanding of neuroscience and consciousness. It's a big project and I don't have the resources to do this on a grand scale, but I'm finding that our economy is producing many new graduates who are unable to find work. I've met quite a few who are willing to get involved, either voluntarily or for a modest wage. They gain much-needed experience, the lack of which may be blocking them from finding a job, and I get help with my project. The learning process is similar to the Grandmother effect, in that I usually give them one or two days introduction and some ongoing support, and they quickly find their own niche and come up with their own results. Most of the information needed is available on-line, it's just a matter of providing some suggestions for direction and some encouragement.

Maurice
I am the author of a post-apocalyptic novel - The Lucifer Bug http://www.theluciferbug.com/
Maurice Goldsmith
 
Posts: 39
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Re: Building Activity on discuss.the-knowledge.org

Postby tahanson43206 » Thu Aug 06, 2015 3:29 pm

Maurice, thank you for your reply!

Thank you for supporting the offer of a direction the members of this forum might proceed, to replace discussion with action.

Discussion of the RESULTS of actions taken are the potential reward to the members for their participation.

There is a minor but important issue of scope of attention that calls for our consideration at the outset.

It is possible for one person to monitor the achievements of many people, but in the environment we may be able to create here, it may prove most effective for those who are willing to "follow" the reports of activity by members to limit their primary focus to about five people.

So! In the context of your campaign to build up a team working on preservation of knowledge of neuroscience and consciousness, I wonder if your team members might be willing to use this forum as a reporting site.

It is possible that Dr. Dartnell might intervene at some point, to guide where he would like more or less growth. However, his PRIMARY role at the moment is to admit new members, with a stated objective of trying to attract and retain folks who will contribute in helpful ways, and who will use good judgement in human relationships in the limited bandwidth of Internet text.

Your initiative (should you decide to pursue it << smile >> ) will surely prove a useful model for other members, who may choose to focus on preservation of specific kinds of knowledge.

It should be borne in mind by everyone that Dr. Dartnell is in position to greatly expand the visibility of this forum.

Let us work together to build a network of ACTIVITY based groups around the world, to not only preserve the knowledge (and wisdom) we humans have accumulated to date, but to protect it by reducing the power of those who would destroy it for whatever reason.

At the same time, we humans must learn how to manage our emotions, so that we can be trusted with the powers our knowledge gives us.

Thus, we humans have shown (so far) that we can trust military officers with the command of nuclear submarines with multiple weapons, as well as ground based missile silos and air based systems of similar capability. The United States has embarked upon a risky experiment to see if every citizen can be trusted with weapons. While there are many failures, the number of failures is small compared to the number of instances of weapon ownership by citizens that do NOT result in mayhem.

As we look out from Earth to the vast reaches of the galaxy where groups of humans will/may eventually create communities, it seems clear that possession of knowledge that can be used for evil is a necessary and inevitable companion of having that same knowledge for positive purposes.

It seems to me that "religion" has evolved to try to address the challenge of raising humans who know the difference between good and evil. It seems pretty obvious (to me at least) that failure of "religion" to reduce the amount of evil expressed in the world and to promote the amount of positive behavior is an ongoing challenge.

(th)
May every member of The Knowledge forum grow financially, intellectually, socially and beyond.
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