Great Circle Associates List-Managers
(February 2001)

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Subject: Re: how to make mail lists scale well
From: Chuq Von Rospach <chuqui @ plaidworks . com>
Date: Sun, 11 Feb 2001 00:11:14 -0800
To: J C Lawrence <claw @ kanga . nu>, Norbert Bollow <nb @ thinkcoach . com>
Cc: List-Managers <list-managers @ greatcircle . com>
In-reply-to: <25124 . 981865389 @ kanga . nu>
User-agent: Microsoft-Entourage/9.0.2509

On 2/10/01 8:23 PM, "J C Lawrence" <claw @
 kanga .
 nu> wrote:

> The Edited magazine form works very well for
> small populations of authors and more lecture/pontificating
> structures rather than discussionary.

Which was something I experimented back in the late 80's with OtherRealms,
one of the earlier online zines (which is now finally back online as part of Essentially, you're grafting parts of the traditional
publishing environment onto the virtual world -- which cuts noise
dramatically, improves focus and vision, but is very time intensive for the
editor(s). For many things, the tradeoff is probably worth it. Today, if I
were doing it from scratch, I'd seriously consider doing an
unmoderated/moderated hybrid, with an open free-for-all web board, and an
edited mailing list that combines both editorial material and links into key
parts of the open systems.

(hmm. Can anyone think of a place currently using that setup? I can't,

>  Handling scaling of a
> discussion based forum for very large numbers is a problem,
> especially when the normal solution of fracting the subject into
> sub-topics doesn't/can't be applied.

I think you run into the lecture hall problem. You can keep building larger
lecture halls -- the engineeering isn't an issue. But how do you keep
putting more and more students into one large lecture hall and allow them to
be heard above the din?

One approach I find interesting but haven't really researched is to start
building lots of SMALL lecture halls, each of which fits N students, and
each has the same video feed from the professor, but each small hall then
breaks off for an independent discussion. And when it's all done, the
highlights of each independent room could potentially be collated for
distribution to everyone...

Hmm. Thoughts?

Chuq Von Rospach, Internet Gnome <>
[<chuqui @
 plaidworks .
 com> = <me @
 chuqui .
 com> = <chuq @
 apple .
Yes, yes, I've finally finished my home page. Lucky you.

"When his IQ reaches 50, he should sell."

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