FAQ

Mike wrote :
{ I must have missed something?
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{ What is going on here?  http://www3.ns.sympatico.ca/kerryo/
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{ Is this your site? It's good! It's interesting! It's confusing!
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{ Am I correct in assuming that you expect your readers to contribute in kind?
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{ What? How? Where?
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What's going on is a convergence, a constellation, a confabulation of cyberspacial phil and psych, natch ;-) From early days on Fido ('89?) I have been concerned with threading, and how clumsy the > 'fences' are (Fido implemented them with senders initials:
	MS>KM> etc
-- something the larger net has never done, for some reason) if one is actually trying to collaborate. HTML came along, and still the momentum has been towards multimedia display rather than enhancing conversation.

In 96-97, Antonio and Rose and Enok and several others held a (determined) conversation about communication as distinct from (free!) 'top-down' 'command-mode' speech. One of the problems we identified was how to move from talking to action; how to implement egalitarianism without lapsing into an authoritarian stance (Sign here! Youre all wet! You take the big guy!).(2)

This summer, Valerie and Enok made the terrible gaffe of posting marked-up mail to Cybermind, and I -- amazed that the reactions were so conservative -- decided it was time to put together a *correspondence spread* (3) which would address these issues.

Where

The role of 'spreadserver' is in Serchan's hands. If you send him your posts, marked-up or not, 'keyed' or not, they shall be distributed over the terrain of the E-Lekh (as have, btw, several CM 'back issue' posts; do please holler if you see something of yours that you no longer wish to claim) for our collective reading pleasure and inspiration. (It's a piece of cake!)

As time goes on, I'm sure the experimental aspect -- how to best key text to topology -- will sort itself out, someone will come up with a way to automate the process, and 'subscribers' will be able to receive notices when and where new material has been winkled into the soil.. (For now, check the URL above (the index is ordered chronologically), the links below, or just poke around using the map.

How

This is the crux, isnt it? The temptation is to take the graphic as a kind of crossword puzzle, a predetermined set of spaces in which you have to write "correctly." But a) there is space for whatever you write (tho the more connections it makes, the easier it will be to locate it -- let's aim for one, as a minimum...), and b) there is no recti-linearity here anyhow. Map coordinates are just a re-presentation of (5-)space; one way to get around is to (obediently) take someone else's directions, but the key is to recognize the neighborhood -- and (not to be too political about it ;-)) whether they recognize you!) From time to time, then, where a post is may change, as its -- or the neighboring patches' -- relevance shifts around. This is the connectivity thing again, and the collaborative nature of the spread; thus c) there is no "beginning" -- and the work is never done.

Think of it, in fact, as you would do a garden. Do you just throw seeds around and hope something comes up? Dont you water and thin and tend them so they find the conditions, and the companion plants, that support their flowering and prospering? The difference here is we are the (hundred!) flowers in our own self-governing garden (I had thought of calling it the Hundred Acre Lexical Wood) -- all you have to do (as you post or on the side) is Let Serchan Know where you think things do best in this horticultural conversation. And even randomly bursting seeds are better than none.


Notes

1.on Cybermind, 7 Sep 1998. Back <--
2. This continues to be a theme of my own contributions, as it seems central to the question of international development education (my Env Engg Master's research topic). <--
3. List' is such a linear word! One of the most insidious linearities/ hierarchies turns on which came first, as if First knows more than anybody else, or a 'response' has to be a 'reply'. By providing/ pro-visioning a field, it's easier to imagine coming between, and avoiding rows ;-). <--
4.These are identifiable in the Indexx by having initial numbers. <-- (Indexxing lets one place two texts side-by-side (or up-and-down, if one is determined).


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