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The Next Generation of Message BoardsWhat will the next generation of message boards be like? I envisage that they will contain features that allow debates to take place on a fairer and more solid basis so that the truth will come to the top and be made clearer.
Have you ever wandered why some arguments have plagued humanity for centuries and yet still seem no nearer to being resolved? For example the Theist/Atheist argument-is there a God or not?
There are thousands of forums on the web discussing this and related questions but the discussions seem to be going round and round in circles-never reaching any solid conclusions.
People use distraction techniques and employ logical fallacies to evade the truth and falsely cling to their old beliefs. Some times someone posts a series of logical arguments only to have the best ones ignored as the other person "cherry picks" the arguments that he wishes to answer. A lot of time and space are taken up with irrelevant side-issues and sometimes insults and misplaced humor etc.
Even when a particular point is clearly put across and accepted by the other person, future participants in the debate have to trawl through pages of rubbish to find the point in question.
I envisage the next generation of message boards to have an advanced categorisation and voting system so that the good logical arguments are retained, easy to find and highlighted whilst the rubbish, distraction techniques and verbal "slight of hand" logical fallacies are clearly identified and labeled as such.
Many logical arguments take one of only a few basic forms. A template could be provided so that the poster could input his argument in a set and recognized way. Each argument of the same basic form could be automatically categorised together. With each argument a place would be provided for real world evidence to be inputted for and against the argument.
The basic types of evidence would also be categorised eg Testimony, Famous Experiment, Observable Phenomena etc.
People could give each individual argument a vote on a scale of 1 to 10 for example. In addition they could label an argument with a particular logical fallacy from a pre-determined list of basic fallacies.
Over time, a logical fractal like structure would develop, clearly showing the strengths and weaknessess of each philosophical position.
At each part of the structure, traditional free-form message boards could be automatically created for people to play around with ideas and debate in a less formal way. Each of these free form message boards would have the potential to contribute to the conceptual hierarchy-the logic fractal.
If you can see the value in the idea then contact me about it.
You may be interested in this external link which is related to this article:
Aust Think.org: Austhink is a critical thinking research, training and consulting group specializing in complex reasoning and argumentation.