[FoRK] my dream mailing list software

Lion Kimbro <lionkimbro at gmail.com> on Fri Jul 20 14:09:11 PDT 2007

On 7/17/07, Luis Villa <luis at tieguy.org> wrote:
> As I said in the first email, a specific goal is that this be
> implementable within standard mail clients (caveat: if your mail
> client is not HTML-aware, your mail client is no longer standard). I
> think 90+% of a collaborative modding/scoring system could easily be
> implemented by clicking on links in footers, which would send data
> back to a smart server, which would process later mails in each thread
> appropriately.
> Luis

  We discussed something ~like this~ in CommunityWiki, a long
  time ago,...


  ...but that was for a different context, different problem.

  Presently, we have just sort of one genre of mailing list-
  "Get the mail, ship it everywhere.  Archive it.  Show the archives."

  But I can envision that different types of groups have different
  sorts of needs, and could use mailing lists in very different ways.

  I can envision many features:

  * wiki-like linking

  Name pages or threads, and then refer back to them by [[name]].
  Include hyperlinks at the bottom of the page.

  * rooms

  --like you were saying.  Click "continue this thread," to see
  more in that vein.

  * message URL included

  -- like someone (you?) were saying --
  put the unique URL identifying the message, at the end of the message,
  for giving the link to others.

  * moderators

  Perhaps rooms could have optional moderation features, determined
  by the person starting the thread.  "Start this thread, here's the initial
  post, make me the moderator for discussion in this thread."

  * personal profiles

  Send the URL to the person's posting history, or something, out with
  the email as well.

  * overhearing

  Send a personal email to someone, but through the list.  It sends it to
  the target, and nobody else.  But it lists it in the archives, and you
  can see some web ui, who they're talking with, and so on.
  Conversations can begin as personal things, but grow into social things.
  (I'm working on doing this for IM via Jabber, right now.)

  If a community is willing to do HTML mail, you could probably do
  a whole lot more.

  I think that, with a forum software, you should be able to connect with
  it in any number of ways-- by the web, by the email client, by an
  instant messaging platform, and so on.  The capabilities and traffic
  of one wouldn't necessarily reflect in all of the others, (if I send an
  IM to you, it doesn't necessarily show up on the email list,) but it'd
  be part of the messaging system that the group interacts with.

  Is this stuff you're interested in working on?
  Do you know anybody working on these things?

  I'm tempted to go back and rework
  CommunityWiki:MailingListsReplacement, to include these
  various ideas.

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