The Margaritaville Yellow Pages v3.1

Discussion in 'Welcome New Users' started by Kadue, Jun 23, 2001.

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  1. Kadue Jedi Grand Master

    Member Since:
    Jun 20, 2000
    star 5
    The Margaritaville Yellow Pages and Glossary: v3.1

    Previous versions:
    The Margaritaville Yellow Pages and Glossary: v2.0 by Shar Kida
    The Margaritaville Yellow Pages and Glossary by Shar Kida (has since been deleted by Snowboards move/pruning)

    First I?d like to thank Shar Kida, whose idea this was originally, I would have had no idea what to do without this thread.
    I?d also like to thanks Son of the Suns, keokiswahine and Valiowk. All three of these were doing this stuff before I can, and all three helped in getting this together in some form or another.
    And then also to the admins whose material I have ?borrowed?. They are the ones who made the rules here, they enforce them, and in many of the cases, I can not find a better way of putting it than they have.


    Table of Contents

    1. Forum Rules and Regulations


    2. General JC Information

    a) General JC links
    b) Useful information and frequently asked questions
    c) How do I ...?
    d) The Ten Commandments of Internet posting and e-mail
    e) The "Golden Rule" of Internet posting and e-mail
    f) Written (but currently inaccessible) JC rules
    g) Unwritten JC Rules

    3. What To Do If You Are Banned


    4. Current Administrators and Contact Information

    a) Current Administrators
    b) Former JC Administrators

    5. Indices and Almanacs

    a) E2&3 Index
    b) Literature Index
    c) Cross-Forum Literary/Historical, Philosophical, and Eclectic Indices
    d) The GL Pronouncements and Almanac

    6. Links to Archived Threads (the UBB versions)

    a) The Phantom Menace archive
    b) The Star Wars archive
    c) The JC Community archive
    d) The Humour archive
    e) The Fan Fiction archive
    f) The Literature archive
    g) The All things Imperial archive
    h) The Collecting archive
    i) The Community Archive

    7. A Proposed Internet Code of Conduct


    8. Essays On The Nature Of The Internet Community

    a) Truth and the Internet
    b) Preserving and promoting the ?Internet culture?
    c) A slice of life in my virtual community
    d) A cybernaut's eye view
    a) Conclusion: ?the end??
  2. Kadue Jedi Grand Master

    Member Since:
    Jun 20, 2000
    star 5
    1. Forum Rules and Regulations
    - Dark Lady Mara [her old mod colors] (3/3/01)

    This is a community first and foremost for Star Wars fans. We reserve the right to remove ANY posts and ANY individuals who threaten the integrity of this community. By becoming a user, you acknowlege that any posts deemed offensive, harassing, baiting, or otherwise inappropriate will be removed and the originator of the post will likewise be banned from further posting. Considering the real-time nature of this bulletin board, it is impossible for us to review messages or confirm the validity of information posted.

    Please remember that we do not actively monitor the contents of this board and are not responsible for any messages posted. We do not vouch for or warrant the accuracy, completeness or usefulness of any message, and are not responsible for the contents of any message. The messages express the views of the author of the message, not necessarily the views of the site moderators and owners.

    You agree, through your use of this service, that you will not use this board to post any material which is knowingly false and/or defamatory, inaccurate, abusive, vulgar, hateful, harassing, obscene, profane, sexually oriented, threatening, invasive of a person's privacy, or otherwise violative of any law. Advertisements, chain letters, pyramid schemes, and solicitations are inappropriate on this board.

    The posting of identical threads to multiple forums simultaneously is not permitted, and any threads started on the same topic as another extant thread will be locked as a courtesy to the author of the original thread.

    If you see a post which you feel violates the terms in the above paragraphs, please contact the moderators by emailing jc-admins@theforce.net, which gets through to all the moderators at once. The moderators have the ability to remove objectionable messages and/or ban the person who posted them, and will make every effort to do so within a reasonable time frame if they determine that removal is necessary. Also, please remember that the people who administrate do so on a voluntary basis, and are human. Thus, there will be times where no admins are currently monitoring the forums, so please realize that such messages
    may not be removed immediately.

    Private messages sent to other users on this system are subject to the same rules as posts. If you receive a PM that violates these rules, forward a screen shot of the message to a moderator, who will take appropriate action against the sender.

    If you are banned from this system, do not continue to post here under an alias. If you are found to be doing so, the duration of your ban will be doubled and/or the ban will be upgraded to an IP ban, which will prevent anyone in your local area from using this service. Instead, send an unban request to the moderators, who will consider your request to be reinstated. You will automatically be given a form to fill out. Under no circumstances should you attempt to make a deal with one of the moderators individually, as your unban request must be approved by all of us.

    You remain solely responsible for the content of your messages, and you are responsible for your username under all circumstances. You agree to indemnify and hold harmless this board, any owners of this board, and their agents with respect to any claim based upon transmission of your message(s).

    We also reserve the right to reveal your identity (or whatever information we know about you) in the event of a complaint or legal action arising from any message posted by you.

    And of course, may the Force be with you!
  3. Kadue Jedi Grand Master

    Member Since:
    Jun 20, 2000
    star 5
    2. General JC Information

    a) General JC Links

    An Important Message from the Mayor (FreeBeer.com) - Hey Newguys, Yeah you!: (the first two points are UBB oriented, but the rest holds true)
    Bugs, Glitches or Problems? ? Communications Forum
    General Questions? - Communication's Frequently Asked Questions v3.0, and Other Useful Information
    Jedi Council Handbook:
    - Commentary: The Official JCN Handbook
    Jedi Council News ? Announcements Forum
    Useful Threads: Saving Threads (found on the latest page)

    These threads are here for posterity:
    Proposals (JC administration)?: Balance to the Forums
    Proposals (Snowboard)?: Proposed changes for future upgrades: The Definitive List
    Bugs (Snowboard)?: Snowboard Bugs: The Definitive List


    b) Useful Information & Frequently Asked Questions

    About TFN: Profiles
    Abbreviations, common: see The JC Glossary - "Welcome" Edition by Son of the Suns
    Archives: see section 5.
    Colors: Complete color listsing
    Date the Jedi Council was created: July 8, 1998
    Fan Force: As an extension of TFN, FanForce is about getting all fans together and helping them meet and interact with other fans in their "physical" community. It is a place to meet other Star Wars fans in your city/area. For more info, see the FAQ Page.
    Frequently Asked Questions (Snowboard): Snowboard FAQ
    Frequently Asked Questions (TFN): TFN FAQ
    Highest Snowboard post count =DarthBoba (~16,350, but who is counting?)
    JC Time: The JC is currently set to Pacific Standard Time.
    Number of stars: Stars are a feature of Snowboards that are currently turned off on the JC, but can still be seen by clicking on the ?Who is Watching You? link in your user profile. A star is awarded to users once they make a certain number of posts.
    * 1 star is awarded at 50 posts.
    ** 2 stars are awarded at 250 posts.
    *** 3 stars are awarded at 500 posts.
    **** 4 stars are awarded at 1000 posts.
    ***** 5 stars are awarded at 5000 posts.
    Posters that have reached the 10,000 mark: 6 (DarthBoba, mt1881, farraday, [hl=#a6cb
  4. Kadue Jedi Grand Master

    Member Since:
    Jun 20, 2000
    star 5
    3. What To Do If You Are Banned
    - Vertical

    The Banned-User Guide: Instructions for banned users

    So, you logged on today, and found yourself banned, eh? Well, that means one of two things: you either 1) broke the rules and are currently banned for that infraction, or 2) have been caught in a case of mistaken identity, or are mixed up in an IP ban that was not intended for you. I'll explain all that lingo later on...

    First, I'd like to talk about the first scenario: You broke the rules, and are now banned.

    If you know what you did...
    If you know what you did, that's half the battle. In this case, simply fill out an 'unban request form', indicating why you feel that you should be allowed back into the forums, despite having broken the rules. What you should be trying to relate on this form is that you understand the rules, respect the rules, have no intention of breaking them again, and that you understand that if you do break them again, you will be permanently banned from the Jedi Council forums.

    Once you have filled out an unban request, you should hear back from the administration within 1-3 days. It could be faster than that, but I'm not about to promise speedy results. You broke the rules, after all, so you're not exactly our top priority. Hope you understand.

    If, after 2-3 days you still haven't gotten a response, drop the administration a line at jc-admins@theforce.net, explaining your situation, and enquire why you haven't received a response to your unban request. Please include your banned username at the JC. That's all that's necessary.

    Should you fail to receive a response to that email, you may use this final method, but only for this express purpose - you may create another username on the JC which you may use to send a Private Message to an admin. Check the Users Online page to see which admins are on at that time, or check the Interactive Moderator List for a list of all the mods, and links to their profiles (where there's a link to send them a Private Message). Please note: You may not use this alias to post with. Use it only to send Private Messages to moderators. If you post with this alias, the length of your ban will be doubled.

    If the Moderator fails to reply, try again with another moderator. By this time, you will hopefully have already received a response, so it should never come to this, but in the event of some strange phenomenon, where all of these steps do not get you a response, simply keep trying different mods. Someone will answer you.
    If you have no idea what you did...
    Now, if you have no earthly idea why you are banned, which happens a lot, you can do a few things:

    1) Send an email to jc-admins@theforce.net, informing us of your situation. Please be sure and include your username that is banned at the JC. If you don't tell us who you are, we can't help.

    2) Fill out an unban request form, and state that you do not know why you are banned, and could someone please help.

    We'll get back to you on these requests as soon as we can. Sometimes, there are accidental bans, mistaken identities, or members get caught in IP bans that weren't intended for them. All of these problems can be sorted out quickly, and you'll be back posting in no time. This does not apply to a situation where you (as a banned member) say "I don't think what I said was flaming/trolling/spamming". That's not your call. If a mod thinks it was, you're banned. the only situation where you will be unbanned immediately is if it's proven that you were not the person that the ban was intended for.

    If, however, it turns out that you broke the rules, and that's why you're ba
  5. Kadue Jedi Grand Master

    Member Since:
    Jun 20, 2000
    star 5
    4. Current Administrators and Contact Information


    a) Current Administrators (JC.N): JC-admins@theforce.net

    Administrators:

    Managers:
    Azeem - (TFN Staff, focus: FanFilms)
    - theater@theforce.net
    - ICQ 391036
    Britany - (TFN Staff)
    - starwars@theforce.net
    Chyren - (focus: ALL)
    - chyren@whoever.com
    - ICQ 11796793
    Darth Ludicrous - (focus: Literature)
    - ICQ 32076811
    Darth Sebious - (TFN Staff)
    - darth_sebious@yahoo.com
    - ICQ 60850943
    - Yahoo! ID: darth_sebious
    Joanzia - (FanForce - SW RSA, Global Support, TFN Fanfilms Staff)
    - joanzia@theforceiswithus.com
    Joshua Griffin - (TFN Staff)
    - josh@theforce.net
    - ICQ 30116728
    Missninfan - (focus: ALL)
    stinrab - (focus: ALL)
    - ace61@mania.com.au
    - ICQ 1699737
    Vertical - (focus: ALL)
    - ryan-costello@mediaone.net
    - ICQ 85315450

    Moderators:
    ArtyEwok - (focus: Fan Art)
    - amara@flyingarmadillo.com
    BoB
    - write_2_bob@hotmail.com
    - ICQ 35170289
    Carter-TFN ? (TFN Staff)
    - carter@theforce.net
    Darth Sushi
    - ICQ 18011615
    epic - (also FanForce mod: Australia RSA )
    [link=mailto:epic@fanforce.n
  6. Kadue Jedi Grand Master

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    Jun 20, 2000
    star 5
  7. Kadue Jedi Grand Master

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  8. Kadue Jedi Grand Master

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  10. Kadue Jedi Grand Master

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  11. Kadue Jedi Grand Master

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  12. Kadue Jedi Grand Master

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  13. Kadue Jedi Grand Master

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  14. Kadue Jedi Grand Master

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  15. Kadue Jedi Grand Master

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  16. Kadue Jedi Grand Master

    Member Since:
    Jun 20, 2000
    star 5
    ?The Internet is what gives a Jedi his power. It's an energy field created by all living things. It surrounds us and penetrates us, and binds the galaxy together.?


    7. A Proposed Internet Code of Conduct


    Although this draught document dates from 1994, it addresses many of the same issues that the JC is only beginning to discover: and so bears careful consideration.


    Guidelines For Conduct On and Use Of Internet
    - Vint Cerf, President, Internet Society
    http://www.isoc.org/internet/conduct/cerf-Aug-draft.shtml


    Introduction

    This document is an attempt to characterise various constructive models of Internet conduct both by those who use the system and by those who provide its services. It is written from the perspective that, taken as a whole, the Internet is a global and shared infrastructure whose utility is, in part, a function of the ability of constituents to cooperate. In particular, the conclusion should be noted that users need to cooperate with users, service providers with other service providers and users and service providers with one another.

    The use of the term "infrastructure" is very deliberate here. Although still modest in scale compared to the global telephone system and far less pervasive that national road systems, the Internet has reached the point where it can be reasonably characterised as an infrastructure upon which vital activities are now dependent. A significant part of the R&D community is very dependent on the daily and reliable operation of the Internet and various business and government enterprises are becoming more so. The general public is only just beginning to discover and explore the potential of this mode of telecommunication.

    As is true of many other kinds of infrastructure, users and service providers commingle in complex ways. There are some parallels with the road system. There are privately owned roads and driveways which interlink with public thoroughfares and highways. Vehicles are owned and operated by all sectors. In the Internet, users own computers and local networks and routers (or, at least, the user's institutions own these assets). Service providers own or lease switching equipment and telecommunications facilities. Private and public network operators must cooperate and users often also serve as information suppliers by operating anonymous FTP archives, Web servers, gopher servers, email distribution lists, and so on.

    The collection of users and service providers affect one another in complex ways and it is partly because of these interactions that commonly-held codes of conduct are important to develop and to observe. As any system approaches infrastructural proportions, concern for public well-being is a natural development. The Internet already touches such a large community that concerns over privacy, security, treatment of intellectual property and various kinds of torts (harmful, damaging incidents) have been raised in legislative bodies. The Internet community can contribute to informed discussion on these matters through production of documents such as this one. Without informed debate, there is always the possibility that laws will be created which are inimical to achieving the potential benefits of a global information infrastructure.

    This paper makes the assumption that there are only three ways to influence behaviour: technical constraints, legal constraints and moral constraints. Technology can be used to limit the scope of behaviour and where that fails, legal remedies may be sought. Ultimately, appeal may be made to moral principles. In reality, all of these tools are commonly applied to channel behavioural choices.


    History

    In the earliest days of Internet development, starting roughly in 1973, the activity was essentially part of a research program sponsored by the US Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency (ARPA). The ARPANET was the principal backbone of the system and local host and network systems were owned and operated
  17. Kadue Jedi Grand Master

    Member Since:
    Jun 20, 2000
    star 5
    8. Essays on the Nature of the Internet


    The following essays on the nature of the Internet are from The Electronic Frontier Foundation?s (EFF) Guide to the Internet (http://www.eff.org/papers/eegtti/eeg_toc.html#SEC289). They are relevant to the JC only insofar as the JC has evolved into a true Internet community.


    a) Truth and the Internet
    - Vinton G. Cerf, President, Internet Society


    Truth is a powerful solvent. Stone walls melt before its relentless might. The Internet is one of the most powerful agents of freedom. It exposes truth to those who wish to see it. It is no wonder that some governments and organisations fear the Internet and its ability to make the truth known.

    But the power of the Internet is like a two-edged sword. It can also deliver misinformation and uncorroborated opinion with equal ease. The thoughtful and the thoughtless co-exist side by side in the Internet?s electronic universe. What?s to be done?

    There are no electronic filters that separate truth from fiction. No cognitive ?V-chip? to sort the gold from the lead. We have but one tool to apply: critical thinking. This truth applies as well to all other communication media, not only the Internet. Perhaps the World Wide Web merely forces us to see this more clearly than other media. The stark juxtaposition of valuable and valueless content sets one to thinking. Here is an opportunity to educate us all. We must truly think about what we see and hear. We must evaluate and select. We must choose our guides. What better lesson than this to teach our young children to prepare them for a new century of social, economic and technological change?

    Let us make a new Century resolution to teach our children to think more deeply about what they see and hear. That, more than any electronic filter, will build a foundation upon which truth can stand.
  18. Kadue Jedi Grand Master

    Member Since:
    Jun 20, 2000
    star 5
    b) Preserving and Promoting the ?Internet Culture?
    - Peter Deutsch


    There's something special about the Internet. Anyone with even a passing exposure to this eighth wonder of the world will vouch for the accuracy of this claim, but explaining exactly what the fuss is all about to someone who has not yet experienced its delights first hand can be a real challenge.

    Now, we can be sure it's not the nifty technology. The fact is, although there is a certain sense of magic in logging onto a machine in another country for the first time there are other technologies that offer a similar sense of wonder or power. Besides, the majority of Internet users don't really care what all those acronyms stand for. At this point, even the majority of us involved in creating the stuff would probably admit that in our hearts we know that this is just the glue that holds everything together. The real excitement lies elsewhere.

    Nor is the magic to be found in the mountains of information that the Internet makes available to its users. Let's face it, despite the fact that there is quite a lot of useful stuff out there, in reality the "Information Age" promise of the Internet is still more potential than reality. At this point, content is best measured in quantity, not quality.

    No, if there is one thing that seems to captivate people more than anything else from the moment they first make contact with the Internet, it is that inexplicable sense of civic pride and community spirit that bonds each of us to every other user on the net. When you find another Internaut at a traditional social function and end up swapping email addresses, you're affirming your membership in a group with its own rituals, rites and secret handshakes. You're affirming your membership in a semi-secret society that appears to be well on the way to changing the world.

    It seems to me that "knowing the secret Internet handshake" is the real thrill here. It leads to a form of communal bonding that makes swapping email addresses the cyberspace equivalent of inviting someone into your house for dinner. This sharing of your secret name is an act of faith, a demonstration that your newfound friend can be trusted to fit in with your current set of friends and neighbours, that a newcomer has in fact shown that they know the secret handshake and are worthy of your acceptance and support.

    Part of this sense of community is probably fuelled by our simple but compelling need for help if we are to survive those lonely nights in the Internet wilderness, for the Internet is still a land where user interfaces are "red in tooth and claw" and loners don't last long. Without a guiding hand in those early stages few of us would have avoided fairly prompt Darwinian selection and thus there's lots of incentive to learn to "play nicely with the other kids" if you really want to get any work done.

    But there's more to it than that. This sense of community is surely sustained by the ease with which such help is sought and given. Most users readily admit that they need the extra eyes and ears of their "extended family" to bring them news of new offerings and found treasures. Newcomers seem to rapidly and naturally find the appropriate mailing lists, newsgroups, archives or gopher servers that cater to their own particular needs and in the process they cluster together with others who share similar interests in various "virtual villages". That's where the real excitement of the Internet is to be found, in joining and building the cyberspace frontier.

    I've been incredibly fortunate over the past couple of years to be able to travel and meet Internet users from around the world. In the process, I've been amazed at how similar we are all under the skin.

    Here's just a sampling of some of the interesting people I share my net with:

    Naswa, an Arab woman responsible for the first Internet link into her country, who once told me tales of pulling cable under false floors in the middle of the night and eating sandwiches over the terminal while st
  19. Kadue Jedi Grand Master

    Member Since:
    Jun 20, 2000
    star 5
    c) A Slice of Life in my Virtual Community
    - Howard Rheingold


    NOTE: In 1988, Whole Earth Review published my article, "Virtual Communities." Four years later, I reread it and realised that I had learned a few things, and that the world I was observing had changed. So I rewrote it. The original version is available on the WELL as `/uh/72/hlr/virtual_communities88'.

    Portions of this will appear in Globalizing Networks: Computers and International Communication, edited by Linda Harasim and Jan Walls for MIT press. Portions of this will appear in "Virtual Communities," by Howard Rheingold, Addison-Wesley. Portions of this may find their way into Whole Earth Review.

    This is a world-readable file, and I think these are important issues; encourage distribution, but I do ask for fair use: Don't remove my name from my words when you quote or reproduce them, don't change them, and don't impair my ability to make a living with them.

    I'm a writer, so I spend a lot of time alone in a room with my words and my thoughts. On occasion, I venture outside to interview people or to find information. After work, I re-enter the human community, via my family, my neighbourhood, my circle of acquaintances. But that regime left me feeling isolated and lonely during the working day, with few opportunities to expand my circle of friends. For the past seven years, however, I have participated in a wide-ranging, intellectually stimulating, professionally rewarding, sometimes painful, and often intensely emotional ongoing interchange with dozens of new friends, hundreds of colleagues, thousands of acquaintances. And I still spend many of my days in a room, physically isolated. My mind, however, is linked with a worldwide collection of like-minded (and not so like-minded) souls: My virtual community.

    Virtual communities emerged from a surprising intersection of humanity and technology. When the ubiquity of the world telecommunications network is combined with the information-structuring and storing capabilities of computers, a new communication medium becomes possible. As we've learned from the history of the telephone, radio, television, people can adopt new communication media and redesign their way of life with surprising rapidity. Computers, modems, and communication networks furnish the technological infrastructure of computer-mediated communication (CMC); cyberspace is the conceptual space where words and human relationships, data and wealth and power are manifested by people using CMC technology; virtual communities are cultural aggregations that emerge when enough people bump into each other often enough in cyberspace.

    A virtual community as they exist today is a group of people who may or may not meet one another face to face, and who exchange words and ideas through the mediation of computer bulletin boards and networks. In cyberspace, we chat and argue, engage in intellectual intercourse, perform acts of commerce, exchange knowledge, share emotional support, make plans, brainstorm, gossip, feud, fall in love, find friends and lose them, play games and metagames, flirt, create a little high art and a lot of idle talk. We do everything people do when people get together, but we do it with words on computer screens, leaving our bodies behind. Millions of us have already built communities where our identities commingle and interact electronically, independent of local time or location. The way a few of us live now might be the way a larger population will live, decades hence.

    The pioneers are still out there exploring the frontier, the borders of the domain have yet to be determined, or even the shape of it, or the best way to find one's way in it. But people are using the technology of computer-mediated communications CMC technology to do things with each other that weren't possible before. Human behaviour in cyberspace, as we can observe it and participate in it today, is going to be a crucially important factor. The ways in which peo
  20. Kadue Jedi Grand Master

    Member Since:
    Jun 20, 2000
    star 5
    d) A Cybernaut's Eye View
    - Howard Rheingold


    The most important clues to the shape of the future at this point might not be found in looking more closely at the properties of silicon, but in paying attention to the ways people need to, fail to, and try to communicate with one another. Right now, some people are convinced that spending hours a day in front of a screen, typing on a keyboard, fulfills in some way our need for a community of peers. Whether we have discovered something wonderful or stumbled into something insidiously unwonderful, or both, the fact that people want to use CMC to meet other people and experiment with identity are valuable signposts to possible futures. Human behaviour in cyberspace, as we can observe it today on the nets and in the BBSs, gives rise to important questions about the effects of communication technology on human values. What kinds of humans are we becoming in an increasingly computer-mediated world, and do we have any control over that transformation? How have our definitions of "human" and "community" been under pressure to change to fit the specifications of a technology-guided civilisation?

    Fortunately, questions about the nature of virtual communities are not purely theoretical, for there is a readily accessible example of the phenomenon at hand to study. Millions of people now inhabit the social spaces that have grown up on the world's computer networks, and this previously invisible global subculture has been growing at a monstrous rate recently (e.g., the Internet growing by 25% per month).

    I've lived here myself for seven years; the WELL and the net have been a regular part of my routine, like gardening on Sunday, for one sixth of my life thus far. My wife and daughter long ago grew accustomed to the fact that I sit in front of my computer early in the morning and late at night, chuckling and cursing, sometimes crying, about something I am reading on the computer screen. The questions I raise here are not those of a scientist, or of a polemicist who has found an answer to something, but as a user -- a nearly obsessive user -- of CMC and a deep mucker-about in virtual communities. What kind of people are my friends and I becoming? What does that portend for others?

    If CMC has a potential, it is in the way people in so many parts of the net fiercely defend the use of the term "community" to describe the relationships we have built online. But fierceness of belief is not sufficient evidence that the belief is sound. Is the aura of community an illusion? The question has not been answered, and is worth asking. I've seen people hurt by interactions in virtual communities. Is telecommunication culture capable of becoming something more than what Scott Peck calls a "pseudo-community," where people lack the genuine personal commitments to one another that form the bedrock of genuine community? Or is our notion of "genuine" changing in an age where more people every day live their lives in increasingly artificial environments? New technologies tend to change old ways of doing things. Is the human need for community going to be the next technology commodity?

    I can attest that I and thousands of other cybernauts know that what we are looking for, and finding in some surprising ways, is not just information, but instant access to ongoing relationships with a large number of other people. Individuals find friends and groups find shared identities online, through the aggregated networks of relationships and commitments that make any community possible. But are relationships and commitments as we know them even possible in a place where identities are fluid? The physical world, known variously as "IRL" ("In Real Life"), or "offline," is a place where the identity and position of the people you communicate with are well known, fixed, and highly visual. In cyberspace, everybody is in the dark. We can only exchange words with each other -- no glances or shrugs or ironic smiles. Even the nuances of voice and intonation are stripped away. On top
  21. Kadue Jedi Grand Master

    Member Since:
    Jun 20, 2000
    star 5
    e) "Conclusion: the End?"
    - Adam Gaffin


    The revolution is just beginning.

    New communications systems and digital technologies have already meant dramatic changes in the way we live. Think of what is already routine that would have been considered impossible just ten years ago. You can browse through the holdings of your local library -- or of libraries halfway around the world -- do your banking and see if your neighbour has gone bankrupt, all through a computer and modem.

    Imploding costs coupled with exploding power are bringing ever more powerful computer and digital systems to ever growing numbers of people. The Net, with its rapidly expanding collection of databases and other information sources, is no longer limited to the industrialised nations of the West; today the web extends into once remote areas from Siberia to Zimbabwe. The cost of computers and modems used to plug into the Net, meanwhile, continue to plummet, making them ever more affordable.

    Cyberspace has become a vital part of millions of people's daily lives. People form relationships online, they fall in love, they get married, all because of initial contacts in cyberspace, that ephemeral "place" that transcends national and state boundaries. Business deals are transacted entirely in ASCII. Political and social movements begin online, coordinated by people who could be thousands of miles apart.

    Yet this is only the beginning.

    We live in an age of communication, yet, the various media we use to talk to one another remain largely separate systems. One day, however, your telephone, TV, fax machine and personal computer will be replaced by a single "information processor" linked to the worldwide Net by strands of optical fibre.

    Beyond databases and file libraries, power will be at your fingertips. Linked to thousands, even millions of like-minded people, you'll be able to participate in social and political movements across the country and around the world.

    How does this happen? In part, it will come about through new technologies. High-definition television will require the development of inexpensive computers that can process as much information as today's workstations. Telephone and cable companies will compete to see who can bring those fibre-optic cables into your home first. High-speed data networks, such as the Internet, will be replaced by even more powerful systems.

    The Clinton administration, arguably the first led by people who know how to use not only computer networks but computers, is pushing for creation of a series of "information superhighways" comparable in scope to the Interstate highway system of the 1950s (one of whose champions in the Senate has a son elected vice president in 1992).

    Right now, we are in the network equivalent of the early 1950s, just before the creation of that massive highway network. Sure, there are plenty of interesting things out there, but you have to meander along two-lane roads, and have a good map, to get to them.

    Creation of this new Net will also require a new communications paradigm: the Net as information utility. The Net remains a somewhat complicated and mysterious place. To get something out of the Net today, you have to spend a fair amount of time with a Net veteran or a manual like this. You have to learn such arcana as the vagaries of the Unix cd command.

    Contrast this with the telephone, which now also provides access to large amounts of information through push buttons, or a computer network such as Prodigy, which one navigates through simple commands and mouse clicks.

    Internet system administrators have begun to realise that not all people want to learn the intricacies of Unix, and that that fact does not make them bad people. We are already seeing the development of simple interfaces that will put the Net's power to use by millions of people. You can already see their influence in the menus of gophers and the World Wide Web, which require no complex computing skills but which open the gates to thousands of informatio
  22. Kadue Jedi Grand Master

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    Jun 20, 2000
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  23. Nejaa_Halcyon Jedi Knight

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  24. Kadue Jedi Grand Master

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    Jun 20, 2000
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  25. Kadue Jedi Grand Master

    Member Since:
    Jun 20, 2000
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