Tristan Burgess

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Change the world a little bit

I think this a useful message for many on this website. I would potentially word the college humanities essay example differently, as if the student is proud of their work irregardless of how much impact it has it does not seem to be a good example of what you're trying to refer to. No 'incorrect' value function and all that. I might reword it to more explicitly state how they are proud of how impactful it was, or how they were 'speaking truth to power', or something along those lines, or potentially use a different example. Overall though, very interesting read that seems relevant to my own journey and that I will try to keep in mind in future, so thank you.

What are the best online tools for meetups and meetings?

That's a reasonable point, I hadn't considered differences in hardware, and I think controlling for that would probably explain a lot of the difference in my experience performance wise between the two. Thank you for the input, after that I'd update my conclusion to the main benefit of Zoom being ease of use, and the main benefit of Discord being the functionality provided in addition to calling, with significantly less confidence in any diffferences in performance.

What are the best online tools for meetups and meetings?

This answer will be addressing the use of software for social life. Recently my extended family has been making use of Zoom to celebrate birthdays, while my friends have been primarily using Discord. Overall, I've found Discord provides a better user experience.

Of the two, Zoom has been comparatively easier to set up and run, however, the audio and visual quality seemed variable while we were using it. Also of note is the multiple security issues that have been raised with Zoom recently. Another advantage of Zoom that I've found is that it seems better able to handle large numbers of participants, as Discord generally starts to slow down and cause connection issues above ~10 people, though your mileage with that may vary as internet speeds are not great in Australia. Zoom also seems to be easier (though not easy) for people less familiar with digital technology to navigate.

The main benefits of Discord are better quality audio and video with under ten users, and the ability to create servers and chats that last for more than one call. From using Discord fairly regularly since before the pandemic began for keeping on contact with friends I haven't seen recently, their servers are fairly stable and the audio quality does not suffer significantly from slow internet connections. The ability to create servers and chats is also very useful for keeping in contact with friends and family, as it means you can organise meetings and chat outside of them in the same place. As a result of sharing a server, I have been able to keep significantly closer to my friends due to the low level of effort required to send a message and ask them about their day or share an interesting video.

To summerise, Zoom seems more appropriate for large meetings, where low-quality audio and visuals is not a game-breaker, and where people who may struggle with navigating user interfaces will be present, whereas Discord is better suited to smaller groups who wish to keep in regular contact easily.