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Stone Soup FAQs, and Mechanics of Information Gathering



Paul Ferguson wrote:

> An additional note:
> 
> I appreciate Tim's effort to compile a document we can all call our
> own. In my opinion, its been a long time in coming.

Thanks...I also think my doc has been slow in coming. Like I said,
it's taken too long to write.

Out of curiousity, I did a search of the doc for Paul's name and was
surprised to see that I'd only used one of his quotes. Oh well. 

People should bear in mind the random nature of how I pulled quotes.
Since there may be some interest in this, I'll comment:

- Though the FAQ covers material going back for _years_, especially
the past 2 years, more recent material is more heavily weighted. That
is, recent stuff is likelier to be used.

- In particular, once the overall structure took shape (the major
chapter headings, the themes), I often would see something that looked
"interesting" and would directly attach it, with some massaging of the
text, selective elisions, etc., to the appropriate branch of my
outline structure. 

- This means that postings in the last several months are
over-represented as compared to earlier stuff from the "archives."

(Side Note: I spent perhaps too long, several months back, laboriously
using Eudora to sort into folders the many thousands of posts I had on
nearly as many topics. The result was awe-inspiring: an optical
cartridge containing folders on every conceivable variant of digital
money, for example, and containing many hundreds of folders on other
topics. The *usefulness* of all this effort--which was by no means a
"set it up and walk away" filtering job, as I had to decide on the
search criteria, created the filters, etc.--has been less
awe-inspiring, as I don't have time to _re-read_ the sorted posts to
find good stuff!  Still, on each and every topic in the FAQ, I can
call up multiple posts by people, and I could probably double the size
of the FAQ just by including tidbits from these posts. The Cypherpunks
have written a truly astounding amoun to good stuff.)

I also don't want to leave the impression that I am not looking for
additional comments and elaborations. I am. 

But there's great danger in people using the points made in the FAQ to
just expand or elaborate on. I know how addictive it is to comment on
what people have written....

So, send your comments.

I'm skeptical of "stone soup FAQs" ("Here's a short outline...send me
stuff"), which is why I've written what I've written. But comments and
corrections are always welcome, as I make clear in the accompanying
docs.

--Tim May


-- 
..........................................................................
Timothy C. May         | Crypto Anarchy: encryption, digital money,  
[email protected]       | anonymous networks, digital pseudonyms, zero
408-688-5409           | knowledge, reputations, information markets, 
W.A.S.T.E.: Aptos, CA  | black markets, collapse of governments.
Higher Power: 2^859433 | Public Key: PGP and MailSafe available.
"National borders are just speed bumps on the information superhighway."