In Why don't long running conversations happen on LessWrong? adamzerner writes:
Here is how things currently work:
- Someone writes a post.
- It lingers around the front page for a few days. During this time, conversations emerge in the comments section.
- After a few days, the post no longer persists on the front page and conversations largely fizzle out.
I'd like to try and have a longer polymath project style collaboration focused on answering a question together. Instead of each person working to give their individual answers to the question, we'd come up with an answer together through an extended discussion.
When/if we've reached some sort of milestone by either answering the question, or making some interesting progress towards answering the question, we show the results of our collaboration to lesswrong in the form of a new post.
As a starting point, here are my proposed rules (up for negotiation):
- Each top level answer to this post should be its own question. Please state the question at the top of your comment. Then you can give background information or try to convince us that your question would be a good one to pick for this exercise. The question can be one already asked on lesswrong.
- Each person can submit a maximum of 3 questions.
- We have 5 days to submit questions and receive feedback or requests for clarification.
- Please only submit questions that you yourself are willing to work on.
- Once the 4 days are up, all the top level (non-meta) questions will be compiled into a new post to be voted on. (Hopefully that will help with the problem of the earliest submitted questions getting more upvotes).
- We work on whichever question gets the most votes.
- We can sort out the logistics of the collaboration (where should discussion take place? should we use a wiki or google doc? how long should we commit to working?etc) once we've sorted out what question we're working on and who is willing to contribute.
- If you'd like to comment on this idea itself without submitting a question for the group's consideration, use a "comment" instead of an "answer."
I have no idea how many people would be interested in doing this. But I'd guess it only takes 2 people for this thing to work. And at least one person is interested (me). So worst case scenario the person with the top voted question will have at least one other person to work with.
I'm willing to commit to working for at least a week in my free time (which I have a lot of at this point). Hopefully at least myself and the person who posted the question will be willing to put in a decent amount of effort. But I'd like to leave the collaboration open to very casual contributions.