@chikara @freemo I am coming late to this discussion, and I mention what follows with fear and trepidation. I'm curious whether this kind of system has been considered.

I have occasionally admired the results of Slashdot's moderation and metamoderation system even though I certainly heard participants complain about it. I never created an account there and always read anonymously, but I did find the quality of the comments that percolated to the top was generally fairly good even when the site was far more active than it is now.

I don't mean this to be flippant. You guys are talking in terms of peer review. For all its numerous faults, peer review has high ideals. Let experts judge noteworthy work. The Slashdot moderation system is hardly all that.

I am also unsure how exactly a moderation and metamoderation system would translate into the context of a Mastodon instance.

Nevertheless, from the perspective of an outside observer Slashdot did seem to select a fairly reliable set of moderators from a large crowd of mostly anonymous individuals some of whom were openly pushing specific agendas. And with the metamoderation system they took it a step further to answer the question: quis custodiet ipsos custodes?

As I understood it the system tended to select moderators that were long-time readers who did not have a history of negatively-rated comments. That was basically the standard of "expertise" required of a moderator, although there were some instructions to encourage moderating based on how the comment contributed to the discussion, not whether the moderator agreed with it or not.

In any case, I suspect QOTO has attracted a specific kind of participant because of the way it describes itself and the tools it makes available. It would certainly be a shame to see that drowned out in the noise as it grows.

All that said: growing pain is the best kind of pain there is! Congratulations.

@freemo @henksteenbroek Well.

If we're going to be pedantic, proto- derives from Greek πρωτος, not Latin.

Also the inimitable Wikipedia tells me Pascal case is another name for upper camel case.

Wait. What were we talking about? ;)

@freemo @henksteenbroek Incorrect English, perhaps, but perfectly valid upper camel case, no?

Actually, that settles. I don't like camel case either. Voting "Protowaffle."

I like to imagine it has an exotic European pronunciation: pro-TO-waf-LAY.

@freemo "Change its URL once a day ..."

Couldn't help but think of Sci-Hub.

(Not that they have much choice or actually change it that often.)

@freemo (Nothing like marring a beautiful picture of calligraphy with annotation from a non-descript sans serif font.)

@freemo Point taken regarding GPL and freedom.

However, the GPL guys are pretty clear it is the freedom of the user they have in mind. As long as there is a route back to a proprietary product -- which BSD does leave open -- then the freedom of the user to use and inspect the code cannot be preserved.

I am an open source guy at a proprietary software company. I've gotten to see the various licenses in action and how they are used, abused, understood and misunderstood. I tend to see them this way.

GPL or "share-alike": when the biggest threat is "embrace, extend, extinguish," this is the only way to go. It forces all players to stay on common ground -- or not play at all. It seems to work particularly well for large infrastructure projects, but if your project doesn't have the size and clout of, say, the Linux kernel, then the benefits may not be so obvious. At least nobody can extend your code and not share their own.

BSD or BSD-like: The ultimate free in a libertarian sense and "business friendly" because businesses can extend it and bill. But nothing forces the businesses to give back or stay on the common ground, so it is harder to preserve the common. Still, if you want to be the default choice of a business, this is a safe choice.

Proprietary: guarantees salaries are paid as long as the sales team is successful, but otherwise it has very little going for it.

Freemo, this may seem to make your point about freedom, but it depends on what freedom you are trying to preserve. Sometimes to preserve one freedom in a complex world with lots of players -- to preserve, let's say, the user's ability to use and inspect the code -- you have to infringe another, the coder's right to do whatever they want with the code including hiding what they add to an existing code base.


@twovoyagers I vividly remember my first day in the philosophy department's logic class at an engineering school. The professor glared at us and proceeded to say: "To all you electrical engineers in the room: No, you may not use your notation. You must use mine."

@sda Cool! I hadn't seen that. I took the quiz and I doubt it was all that far off for me.

@freemo Thanks for putting me on to this! I joined their Discord server. Looks like real fun.

@freemo @SecondJon Nice! Thanks.

I vaguely remember hearing about this, but I hadn't pursued it.

@SecondJon It stuns me how willing people are to install a live microphone in their home, known to be regularly transmitting what it hears.

I grew up at the end of the Cold War. Didn't that used to be called "a bug"?

There's got to be a layer in between that I trust, a layer that listens and transmits only when I approve it, and leaves me an audit trail of what it sent.

As it stands, though, I can certainly believe all the heavy processing, all the speech recognition, has been off-loaded to the "back end" (ie., Amazon, Google and Apple's computers) and that is truly disconcerting.

@yrabbit @tomasino Thanks! I can confirm the double quotes are not necessary. I should have tried that first.

(I was fighting a nasty problem quoting SQL inside a script earlier in the day. That's my excuse for indiscriminately throwing around quotes.)

@tomasino I got Firefox to handle gopher:// URLs via lynx using this script as my handler:

/usr/bin/gnome-terminal -e "/usr/bin/lynx $1"

Replace /usr/bin/gnome-terminal with the full path to your terminal of choice.

@freemo Fair enough and the EHT guys really are billing it as "the first image of a black hole."

Still ... resolving the shadow and event horizon of a black hole at a distance of 55 million light years with an interferometer that has a baseline roughly the size of the diameter of the earth ... that's pretty cool, wouldn't you say?

Is it too much to start hoping for interferometric imaging with telescopes at the Lagrangian points around the earth? I'm still fuzzy on whether and how observational frequency limits the size of the interferometer.

@Surasanji The Jetsons! Bring back the Googie architecture. en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Googie_a

(Actually, I think that works better in cartoons than real life.)

The image is up! An earth-sized radio telescope gives us the first "direct image" of the event horizon around the black hole at the center of M87: <eventhorizontelescope.org/>

@freemo This is it! The pinnacle of nerd-dom right here.

If you can set your soldering iron on an anti-static mat in your own home and you have the bracelet and you have the mat on the floor, there really isn't any higher level to be achieved.

Just tack a couple Smith charts to the wall for appropriate aesthetics, OK?

GG. I'm envious. ;)

@freemo Yeah, yeah. But how long did you hold the title? ;)

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Qoto Mastodon

QOTO: Question Others to Teach Ourselves. A STEM-oriented instance.

An inclusive free speech instance.
All cultures and opinions welcome.
Explicit hate speech and harassment strictly forbidden.
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