Thu 11 Jun 2020 6:50PM

'new economy' concepts and relationships

SG Simon Grant Public Seen by 161

This group is starting at OPEN 2020 and will take forward our commitment to clarify our language around the building blocks of the new economy, enabling better communication and collaboration.


spirit Sat 13 Jun 2020 3:49PM

before responding to the paper (which is an amazing topic), i would also like to propose we create a new standard of "common scientific paper format"

the old style is simply inaccessible to too many and unnecessarily so

i know in order to get respect, things are written in this format — and i know people can enlighten themselves to understand this format better

but it seems there must be a better, more straightforward, clearer, and better way...


Simon Grant Sat 13 Jun 2020 8:06PM

Just to be clear, I'm not suggesting actually talking about the substance of that paper, but yes, it does give an example of what we don't want to do as well as what we want to do. That's the level at which I would say it is helpful.

What makes sense to me as mattering to a commons is what matters to the commoners, not any abstract or imposed definition of what matters. You're right, the current scientific paper format is helpful mainly to scientists in the same discipline. In contrast, many articles in Wikipedia are in my opinion well written for a general audience. The drawback of Wikipedia is that there one must have a neutral point of view NPOV while we have a position on some things; and no original research is permitted. In contrast, for a commons, what the commoners decide needs to be written down for reference (and updating when necessary), irrespective of whether anything has been published about it before.

What do you think of Wikipedia format? Can you find some articles there that you find are genuinely helpful?


spirit Mon 15 Jun 2020 3:34AM

i believe wikipedia is great — but also could use improvement in a number of ways

i think the general idea behind scientific papers is great as well — the orderly standardized format is something that enhances efficiency of knowledge sharing

but some of the terms to define the structure are outdated and not as precise — for example, why isn't the "abstract" simply called the "summary" — that term is more accessible and more to the point

in addition, on medium dot com along with hackmd dot io, there is a multimedia functionality which allows users interacting to ask questions or make comments which are directly attached to a specific paragraph or sentence in the article

this is a great functionality which allows the author or other readers to engage with the content to make further insights or clarify things

and lastly, i'm not sure what would make some of the subject-specific language more accessible in certain scientific domains other than a massive project to universalize and simplify almost all scientific terminology 😂, but i do believe something could be done and hopefully creative ideas can be dreamt up in this domain in the near future :)


mike_hales Mon 15 Jun 2020 9:51AM

Regarding hackmd . . I find it very comfortable as a writing/publishing/co-authoring environment for single documents (although governance of editor rights and actions is not supported in the full featured way of wiki). Except that . . creating a library of docs is VERY poorly supported. There is no file management worth the name in hackmd. This is where wiki wins hands down. I think hackmd needs serious forking, before it can be a serious infrastructure for systematic community learning and exchange. Would be great if that happened.

In terms of the trinity and the stack (outlined in the Open2020 tools session notes), the systematic support of document curating (in the trinity) and shared cloud stewarding (in the stack) is well supported in wiki (well maybe it’s a bit pedantic, but it works, and is at the heart of that medium ).

Sadly medium needs to be set aside as a channel for OpenCoop, since it’s a private publishing medium (in several senses) and isn’t equipped with the affordances that could enable it to be a central repo in a cultural commons.


Simon Grant Mon 15 Jun 2020 10:18AM

Agreed about medium in particular. Nice interface, so an obvious target for emulation by a platform coop. I'm up for helping with the conceptual, not graphical, design.


spirit Mon 15 Jun 2020 11:58AM

i have written down many reflections, ideas, and insights in a doc about all the note-taking and project management apps i've used

with the very purpose in mind to use this doc for the creation of an ultimate open source productivity suite (cal, proj, notes, habits, etc)

i agree with both of your comments and it would be a great boon for the os comm if such a suite was available as part of the foundation for systemic change


Simon Grant Sun 14 Jun 2020 11:48AM

Just a quick note to emphasise that I am not advocating -- not at all! -- doing things like this academic article I cited above does. If you're interested just look at it for interest, and we can all sense for ourselves what the disadvantages are of using this academic format. It may be, however, a useful reference -- for example if someone did an ontology entry for emergence, this could be one of the references added for further reading. To my mind, it is essential that the main, first page that you see when looking on the kind of ontology I would like to see is one that is accessible to most if not all likely readers.


spirit Mon 15 Jun 2020 3:36AM

and yes, i can tell your intention is to be as accessible as possible to all :) <3


JDN Mon 15 Jun 2020 7:01AM

I think there is a reason why scientific papers are written in jargon. It is precision. (At least this is my interpretation.) For certain ”scientific” term in certain context of scientific field has well defined meaning. While the same term (or “laymen counterpart”) in same or some other context could have other meanings as well. We, as commoners, are also working on developing certain well defined terms so that there is no doubt what one is saying. It is the same process. We might as well end up in highly “scientific jargon” at the end.

For that reason I would not venture into “changing” the format of scientific papers, but propose that there is a proper “translation” available of the scientific paper that explains it in laymen language. With a link to the original text in case of disambiguation need.


spirit Mon 15 Jun 2020 1:38PM

agreed, i think translation is a better target — as that would allow other formats of "scientific writing" to emerge with the tools for (quick and easy) translation for those who don't have the background knowledge

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