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michael sam wild

Intelligent Discussion Sites?

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Because the members of this Forum or so interested in things in general can anyone recommned any good web sites where peole have serious discussions on important subjects about the world. Not blogs or twittering but serious debate or argument without personal acrimony? Preferably subject to peer monitoring or review.

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You have to pick and choose your thread to avoid animosity on some subjects, but a simple appeal for help or information usually works well on mudcat.

 

For example I have asked about the possibility of recycling roofing underfelt (nothing much you can do with it as it can leak nasty chemicals when used as a membrane in the garden, but it can work for clearing a patch of weeds!) and also there are threads about bird watching, astronomy etc.

 

As a possible tortuous link to the origami thread I noticed the other day that one of my school friends, Andrew Baker, is in charge of a site devoted to the subject and discussion of topology, but when I looked the mathematics went straight over my head!

 

Robin Madge

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Not really, but you might like the BS threads over at Mudcat.

 

A wise (intelligent) man once advised me to never argue with someone I disagreed with. I'm of the opinion that protracted discussions are not intelligent so you may be looking for a null set.

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Because the members of this Forum or so interested in things in general can anyone recommned any good web sites where peole have serious discussions on important subjects about the world. Not blogs or twittering but serious debate or argument without personal acrimony? Preferably subject to peer monitoring or review.

 

I regularly visit Slashdot. There's a general technical focus, but you might find some "important subjects about the world" there to interest you. It's not entirely serious debate, nor always without personal acrimony, but the peer-review and moderation system is a gem.

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http://www.reddit.com/ is a very interesting site that would take a long time to describe how it works, but has sub groups (or subreddits) on many subjects. Comments in discussions get upvoted or downvoted so the good stuff tends to stay close to the top. It is quite US centric, but there are subreddits for UK and Europeans. It is a great way to find interesting (and silly) stuff and news articles and to get into discussions with others on the topics of the day. You have to take the time to get to understand how the site works before deciding if it is not for you. As with all social media sites there are idiots, but there is great discussion to be had. Redditors also pride themselves in helping out with worthy causes and have acted together on many occasions to improve peoples lives. Here's a wiki explaining it better than I can http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Reddit

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Yesterday I discovered (again) Hubpages.com -- that may be of interest, though I really don't know much about it. It looks potentially good. I'm not sure if it's mainly a USA site or what.

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The "Just Conversation" page of the Unicycle forum at Unicycle.com has some sensible discussions in between the bullsh. However, almost every discussion in every forum except Concertina.net gets to religion within a dozen replies.

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http://www.reddit.com/ is a very interesting site that would take a long time to describe how it works, but has sub groups (or subreddits) on many subjects. Comments in discussions get upvoted or downvoted so the good stuff tends to stay close to the top. It is quite US centric, but there are subreddits for UK and Europeans. It is a great way to find interesting (and silly) stuff and news articles and to get into discussions with others on the topics of the day. You have to take the time to get to understand how the site works before deciding if it is not for you. As with all social media sites there are idiots, but there is great discussion to be had. Redditors also pride themselves in helping out with worthy causes and have acted together on many occasions to improve peoples lives. Here's a wiki explaining it better than I can http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Reddit

 

I like this website! thanks for suggesting it...fascinating, especially the "askscience" section, I always have questions about science! fun other stuff on there too.

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Well, If you want to get some chatting in, google groups or other BBS/usenet archives might be a good place. People on google groups are generally into their conversations, as long as you can find an active sub coupmmunity. If you don't know, usenet was a network of connected discussions, meant to mimic a bulletin board (hence BBS, ie bulletin board system). This predates the world wide web as we know it, as originally you had to dial into every server separately, and every server over time would update content from other servers. A lot of important things happened on usenet, such as the original work done to create Linux, and you often can find very old and famous posts that changed the computer industry as we know it. A lot of current work by internet developers is still coordinated through usenet, especially in software development and troubleshooting.

 

Since usenet was always stored in multiple locations, google was able to create their own usenet server with the complete archive, and have a fun and easy to use interface. By posting on google groups, you are joining a community that is older than the Internet. There is no moderation on usenet, but people take it very seriously. People are not there because it is quick and easy, but because it allows you to have in depth discussions. Some of these discussions used to last years, and the entire community is divided into more subtopics than you would have time to think about.

 

Check it out and see what you think: http://groups.google.com/

 

For an example of how many top level categories there are, look here: http://groups.google.com/groups/dir?sel=gtype%3D0 . The numbers following each line are the number of secondary headings, not posts or groups... google estimates about 48,000 separate groups....

Edited by david_boveri

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