Loomio
Thu 16 Apr

A Public Resource Management System

NC
Nathan Cravens Public Seen by 147

How can we benefit the cooperative, peer-to-peer, open source design community, and social enterprise and more broadly apply it to our living environments? How the web can better engage people with the material world, while also enriching the social and strengthening personal bonds.

This briefer proposes the development of a public resource management widget for Loomio.

This can start by:

Building a knowledge and design database and library of ‘things’, ‘services’, ‘transport networks’, and the ‘places’ they inhabit that link to top experts that theorize, build, and maintain them.  

As leading experts are identified, the hunt for the dream development team can begin—a team that may include some of these fields:

Operations Managers | UX Designers / Data Visualizers / Sensory Artists | Engineers: Software / Automation & Robotics | Product Designers | Materials Scientists | Hospitality | Architects | City Planners | Agriculturists & Landscape Artists

Those disciplines and more would address the following areas:

Agriculture and Fishing | Manufacturing | Repair and Installation of Machinery and Equipment | Electricity, Gas, and Water | Construction | Wholesale and Retail Trade | Transport Storage and Communication | Accommodation and Food Services | Information and Communications | Financial and Legal Activities | Professional, Scientific, and Technical Activities | Rental and Leasing Activities | Administrative and Support Services | Public Administration and Defense | Human Health and Social Work Activities | Community / Voluntary Services

The daunting complexity of the task can be narrowed by starting with a single location and a small set of processes. Company partners can distribute the workload while working in tandem. The framing can start with a single shop, factory, or transport route—and once templates are formed—expand to include city blocks, districts, and whole cities. From the beginning of development, the design principles must enable models flexible enough as not to require continuous work from scratch, by identifying core elements that can transfer to a variety of designs. 

Loomio was based on saving time by making decisions more efficiently. This proposal shares the principle of time efficiency with the insanely ambitious goal of a publicly owned resource management application. It will require extensive modeling, roadmapping, and coordination of practically every known discipline on an unprecedented scale. It is here Loomio can leverage the talent of corporations and governments, with the aim of streamlining and integrating the processes of production, service, and decision making better aligned with user feedback, particularly with products and services in mind.  

With this a public project, all processes should be made as transparent as possible, so long as it does not endanger any individuals. Mirror worlds generated by participants contributing 3D imagery, sound, and location data, in addition to other ways of data visualization and sensory output, will better enable the cooperation of both users and experts to accelerate innovation, not only for the Loomio platform, but in every field the platform facilitates. Placed in map view, logistics channels can be color coded with icons to provide clarity in depicting the type of good or service when observing streams.

Building this now is important. Facing the pandemic, with the need for lockdown measures, a publicly observable management system can greatly reduce the need for workers, reducing the spread of contagion, and enable the monitoring of processes, including the use of telerobotics to perform tasks, in a variety of locations from the safety of one’s home. Were this system already in place, thousands of lives would have been saved, as a single platform that coordinates a variety of efforts with ability to observe and anticipate demands, items such as ventilators and personal protective equipment, including the ability to direct the person in need to go to locations that can meet medical requirements, could have been utilized. A public resource management system would prevent corrupt governments and opaquely ineffective companies from holding the people that depend on their services to ransom and instead hold them to account. Just as materials, processes, and places become public knowledge, so too, those executing orders and fulfilling tasks. Having such a tool would not only save lives, but enrich life.

Once the proper connections from this proposal are made, with a list of lead developers and projects onboard, a document can be written up and collectively signed to make a proposal to a city, like Amsterdam, that is keen on implementing these ideas. Amsterdam seems like a good partnership considering they have recently expressed an effort to pursue Kate Raworth's Doughnut Economics framework. (https://bit.ly/34MlwQ0) Madrid and Barcelona may also be interested, given it has a healthy social centre culture. This would obviously include the use of Loomio to facilitate municipal decision making, and more ambitiously, may work to democratize the European Union itself, rapidly spanning the globe as an international framework. (See: DiEM25)

One pilot project can involve the partnership with or something like MIT's OpenAg initiative, able to provide food sustainably for the city, while reducing transport miles from imports. The various aspects of manufacturing, warehousing and feedstocks, transport, and construction can follow, outfitting the city with sensors that provide dashboards for non-experts to assess the health of the city, including the ability to participate in planning, product design, and all the other functions required to operate and manage a city.

OpenAg can be one of many partners that supply the open source restaurant, a concept demostrated by the Waag community in 2009. (waag.org/en/project/instructables-restaurant) Local farm and supply partners will be aware of each open restaurant, while the resturant will be aware of all participating projects that might serve it.

In simple terms, this proposal is advocating to become something like Docker in that it provides a framework for any variety of projects to launch quickly and work and communicate with everyone else in the ecosystem, while also retaining a vision, roadmap, and collective mentorship that encourages the thriving population of that ecosystem, including mobilization to attract interest from and to convert legacy systems. Widgets or design elements must be assembled into an intuitively navigable library similar to that of Git, also coupled with a prediction engine that automatically draws up a list of widgets for each problem area as it is pursued within the design process.

Hack on! Such systems can develop using a planned staging of hackathons. The following tools assembled by the hackathon team at EUvsVirus are a go-to for making viable products from hackathons:

  • Miro: team collaboration, charts and planning

  • Airtable: collect data via a form view and manipulate it via table view

  • Bubble: build full apps without coding (database, view, logic)

  • Glide: build mobile web apps in minutes

  • Firebase: powerful and easy to setup backend with api and websocket support

  • Backendless: powerful and easy to setup backend with api and websocket support

  • InVision: easy to use design tool with click-dummy features

  • Workstreams: results-oriented, data-driven task management solution & kanban board app integrated to Slack

A number of hackathons can be planned to take on each sector and each area within a sector. It can start with the most vital areas such as energy, agriculture, manufacturing, logistics, services, and the most labor intensive aspect of the economy: maintenance.

Business plan. Once people and projects are onboard, having remotely and collectively developed a white paper and roadmap, we can then work to drum up funding. The funding would go to 'core support': cloud services, a core programming and design team, marketing/promoting/outreach and customer support. The program would be open source and free to use, enabling rapid adoption and networking of users within the ecosystem. Donation campaigns can be tried, as they seem to work for the Wikimedia and Mozilla foundations, but if needed, a monthly fee can be introduced to high volume users, with free use for low volume, small business/governments until, in time, the protocols are tweaked and usable without need for core support nor funding.

Thank you for considering and discussing this proposal. Feel free to contact me at knuggy@gmail.com. You can find me on Twitter: @nwcrav. For further context, see my writings at https://wiki.p2pfoundation.net/Nathan_Cravens. I'm up for a video chat. Once we have a sizeable group: brainstorming, outlining-detailing, and roadmapping can begin with an experienced facilitator or two privy to remote collaboration. Or, one can quietly apply this information to one's own work. I hope it inspires further development in the directions mentioned!

Compatible projects mentioned in the discussion below include:

Projects that may adopt one or more of the above tools:

What other people or projects might be helpful?

Concluding on a meditation:

Inspiration:

Eva Gladek: Sustainable Urban Systems and Circular Cities of the Future

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=7o0qpe0vDwk&feature=emb_logo

DS

Danyl Strype Fri 17 Apr

@pukkamustard how does this proposal by Nathan fit with the vision for OpenEngiadina?

DS

Danyl Strype Fri 17 Apr

@Nathan Cravens are you aware of Murmurations?

"Rather than creating centralised data sets, The Murmurations protocol makes it easy for Organisations to host data about themselves on their own web sites.

The data is structured in a way that it can be automatically ‘crawled’ and aggregated, based on specific filterable criteria, so that directories and maps are automatically updated about an organisation from a single authoritative source. That source being the organisation itself!"

There's a discussion about Murmurations on the SocialHub forum for ActivityPub developers.

NC

Nathan Cravens Fri 17 Apr

The ability to crawl and aggregate and automatically generate directories and maps, sounds very useful!

NC

Nathan Cravens Fri 17 Apr

@pukkamustard Looks like a good starting point.

JF

Josh Fairhead Fri 17 Apr

This sounds quite like REA accounting, have a look at valueflo.ws - theres a Holochain implementation getting established if your wanna find @pospi and say hello. Bob and Lynn will also be able to point you in the same direction

HE

Hemi Edwards Fri 17 Apr

There's a group of us who have been working on a concept to build something like this system for about a year.

Its taken awhile to nail down the specifications for the project because of its ambitious scope but we're making progress.

Our main systems architect, Gerry Gleason, first proposed it some time ago on the Open Manufacturing Google Group.

We're actually looking to build upon Decko, an open source wiki/database platform, which probably will fulfill our requirements without too much work. We're looking at the possibility of embedding Loomio proposal discussions/voting/decisions into Decko. People were discussing this back in 2015. Is there any update on whether this is possible yet?

https://www.loomio.org/d/ivga1ORm/embeddable-discussions-and-voting?p=11

HE

Hemi Edwards Fri 17 Apr

"This is a really good point. I'm not sure how to find out what similar resources are going under-used in my area. All of this could be solved with a great website to map the resources. Both the physical/capital resources and the human ones. Maybe more important is that we develop the right kind of database and visualization tools to create and maintain an overall development roadmap. I hear that in other comments as well, the need to know what is done, and in particular to map out the parts of the roadmap for the shared tools, like this website to do the mapping.

My biggest open source contribution has been to a Wiki/Database platform that already has all the necessary core features, and I'm hopping to engage teams in extending/customizing it. It is currently called "WAGN", http://wagn.org/ but will be rebranded as Decko sometime soon. It is the underlying platform for WikiRate http://wikirate.org. This customization for this project has been funding for a couple of years by an EU grant."

https://groups.google.com/forum/#!msg/openmanufacturing/FFEJWG90tuw/PELsRn4QAgAJ;context-place=msg/openmanufacturing/FFEJWG90tuw/sOEwbKBuBQAJ

NC

Nathan Cravens Fri 17 Apr

On valueflo.ws: mapping of resource and process with tracking and tracing are vital. Holochain looks good for managing and securing data and perhaps hosting a credit system for a basic income.

NC

Nathan Cravens Fri 17 Apr

Added a city focus at the conclusion of the proposal with an eye on Amsterdam and Madrid: Once the proper connections from this proposal are made, with a list of lead developers and projects onboard, a document can be written up and collectively signed to make a proposal to a city, like Amsterdam, that is keen on implementing these ideas. Amsterdam seems like a good partnership considering they have recently expressed an effort to pursue Kate Raworth's Doughnut Economics framework. (https://bit.ly/34MlwQ0). Madrid may also be interested, given it has a healthy social centre culture. This would obviously include the use of Loomio as to facilitate municipal decision making, and who knows, may work to democratize the European Union itself, rapidly spanning the globe. (See: DiEM25)

HE

Hemi Edwards Sat 18 Apr

We're looking to make a proposal to a VC fund in Chicago where Gerry is based.
https://www.theimpactengine.com/venturecapital

HE

Hemi Edwards Sat 18 Apr

I have a couple of connections in Christchurch too.

https://www.aemslab.org.nz/from_the_ground_up

LF

Lynn Foster Sat 18 Apr

@Nathan Cravens this is a really interesting idea, as a loomio widget and also as accessible from wherever. I would be really happy to participate from the ValueFlows side, and I'm guessing others might as well. And with people bringing up various projects in this thread, and I know there are others, it sounds like there could be lots of possibilities for fruitful collaboration. (Hey, let's do an OAE! 🙂 )

Specifically related to REA/VF: @Josh Fairhead mentioned Holo-REA, a holochain economic framework implementing ValueFlows that other projects can build upon. A lot of that is built, with a handful of features remaining. Another project that recently became quite active is CommonsPub, a child of the fediverse that is extending ActivityPub (social networking protocol) with ValueFlows to combine the social and economic sides. Loomio as decision making might fit in with that. I suspect either of those projects would be happy to be a distributed VF backend to something like this proposal.

Another possibly interesting connection: The EU funded ReFlow project plans on using CommonsPub as a backend in piloting circular economy work in 6 cities, including Amsterdam.

Or, something completely new. Happy to contribute ValueFlows in any context that wants to build something for the next economy - seems like we have an unprecedented opportunity to fill a void and shape some of the future....

NC

Nathan Cravens Sat 18 Apr

I have no experience in attracting VC funding, but I'd be happy to comment on your proposal if you like.

NC

Nathan Cravens Sat 18 Apr

That perspective will come in handy roadmapping this project.

NC

Nathan Cravens Sat 18 Apr

Amazing. ReFlow addresses the key points in the proposal and appears to have a solid ecosystem and partnerships that perfectly match the goals of the project. I will get in touch with them.

NC

Nathan Cravens Sat 18 Apr

OAE sounds good. :)

LF

Lynn Foster Sat 18 Apr

Cool, will be interested in your results. If it helps, Bob and I are doing some work with the "backend" team from Dyne - but the project is way bigger than that, it is a bunch of coordinated teams from different organizations. From our limited point of view, we have the sense that Amsterdam could be the most involved and forward-looking pilot city; they are focusing on the textile industry as their pilot.

NC

Nathan Cravens Sat 18 Apr

Added the paragraph:

One pilot project can involve the partnership with or something like MIT's OpenAg initiative, able to provide food sustainably for the city, while reducing transport miles from imports. The various aspects of manufacturing, warehousing and feedstocks, transport, and construction can follow, outfitting the city with sensors that provide dashboards for non-experts to assess the health of the city, including the ability to participate in planning, product design, and all the other functions required to operate and manage a city.

NC

Nathan Cravens Sun 19 Apr

Added: In simple terms, this proposal is advocating to become something like Docker in that it provides a framework for any variety of projects to launch quickly and work and communicate with everyone else in the ecosystem.

P

pukkamustard Sat 25 Apr

Thanks for the mention @Danyl Strype!

@Nathan Cravens It is an ambitions vision! I like the idea of a "Docker" for variety of projects.

I agree that narrowing on a specific use-case and encouraging diverse initiatives to tackle their specific problems is a good way to face the daunting complexity. I believe the only thing required is agreeing on a common interoperable data-model, that is expressive enough to capture many different use-cases.

Finding such a minimal data-model that allows interoperability is a research question we are trying to approach with openEngiadina. We are focusing on a subset of RDF, the data-model of the Semantic Web, that has been proven to be extremely expressive and inter-operable. We are working on some details to make RDF usable in completely decentralized systems.

Examples of structured data that build on RDF and would just work include:

Like CommonPub (mentioned below) we are using ActivityPub (protocol for federated social networking) for creating, managing and disseminating content. This may be seen as an admission that data-management is primarily a social activity.

One little secret about ActivityPub is that the data-model is RDF. ActivityPub natively supports all existing RDF based vocabularies/ontologies.

openEngiadina was conceived for the management of "local knowledge". E.g. things such as events, local organizations and businesses, points of interest and status of infrastructure. The use-case might overlap with the system proposed.

AS

Arnold Schrijver Mon 27 Apr

Hi @Nathan Cravens and hi everyone here. I am new to this group, intro about me in my profile. If you are targeting Amsterdam, then you should be aware of Waag, a very cool organisation that is into these things already. It is led by Marleen Stikker, an internet pioneer from the start, and now often on Dutch TV talking about privacy concerns in corona tracing apps developed by Dutch government.

NC

Nathan Cravens Tue 28 Apr

@aschrijver Waag looks like a great project. I'll be in touch.

HE

Hemi Edwards Wed 29 Apr

didn't he work with the founder of Instructables on an open source restaurant concept?

AS

Arnold Schrijver Wed 29 Apr

Do you mean Marleen Stikker? Could well be. I am just following Waag on Mastodon and LinkedIn (both Dutch only, unfortunately).

NC

Nathan Cravens Wed 29 Apr

That's neat. I may have mentioned the idea of an open cafe on the open manufacturing list around that time. Great to see some of those ideas were put into action. A public resource management system could make a return of that concept thrive, as local farm and supply partners will be aware of each open restaurant, while the resturant will be aware of all participating projects that might serve it. Placed in map view, logistics channels can be color coded with icons to provide clarity in depicting the type of good or service when observing streams.

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AS

Arnold Schrijver Sat 2 May

@pukkamustard I am really interested in openEngiadina and the combination of technologies you intend to use. One that I also had for an idea - the open innercircles community (sorry, teaser-only still) - I've been walking around with for a long time, and recently started to elaborate further. On a practical level innercircles will offer federated tech in support of residential communities. This is the part where I'm now communicating publicly about. On a higher level innercircles is a methodology of 'applied philosophy', with the intention to make adoption easier (ideally create a snowball effect) and tackle the complexity. But I'll not elaborate on the philosophy, as I do not intend to teach it. That does never work. It should be slowly grasped, interpreted, understood and adopted by free will. Giving this high level a good start - for me - is hardest part.

Back to technical. ActivityPub had as problem that it went from spec to implementations too quickly, and now the spec has serious catching up to do. In linked data circles the problem is that things are way to much in technical and academic realms. Many - otherwise very good applications - just don't catch people's fascination, and never reach a broader public. I see this too for instance in the Solid forum, where I made a bunch of comments of that nature.

The approach of openEngiadina is spot on. It's what is needed for the fediverse at large: to have frameworks that can deal with any linked data ontologies and exchange + process messages containing data that correspond to them. It should go much further than sending a Like and an Announce and e.g. Mastodon supporting one additional property there which is not in the spec. And there should be concrete practical applications that go further than standard blog and social media features. Which is why it is nice to have common ontologies - well-analysed business domains - be the basis.

Regarding openEngiadina project and tech approach.. it would be great if we tackle things from documentation and spec perspective from the start. Synergy between like-minded initiatives. You are programming now in Guile, but I will - probably, if things get that far - go for NodeJS and Typescript, because it has a way larger developer base. Imho we should avoid everyone inventing their own way of doing things. Curious about your thoughts in this regard..

PS. My mind was blown when in 2016 viv.ai announced a linked data-like service - "the universe of capabilities" - to be accessible and extensible by every developer for creating end-user applications in an ever growing semantic web (proprietary probably). See this video from 8:50min. They were acquired by Samsung, never heard of again.. until recently. Now hiring again. Hope we won't have proprietary semantic web in the near future.

NC

Nathan Cravens Wed 6 May

@hemiedwards Great. How can we move this forward?

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M

mike_hales Sun 10 May

OMG - testosterone anybody! Actually, look a little more deeply - at Blum Labs, Milken Foundation, Ergoinvest, ‘Find your city’s Maker Economy’, CityOS Foundation. Actually, it’s quite hard to find any background on CityOS Foundation - like, whose money is at work here. This kind of gloss and hype and penthouse offices doesn’t just rise from the streets - there must be VC underneath - or worse. On CityOS Labs . . .

The lab is located in the penthouse of the Energoinvest building. Link

On Ergoinvest . .

Bloomberg News noted in October 2015 that some portion of the $10 billion in mirror trades manipulated by Deutsche’s Moscow office involved monies associated with Putin associates and childhood friends Arkady and Boris Rotenberg. The Rotenberg brothers are known to have a long association with Ukrainian oligarch Dmitry Firtash, who in turn has long-time ties to Paul Manafort. Firtash is a member of the board of directors of Strategic Communications Laboratory Group (SCL Holding company), parent to Cambridge Analytica . . . etc Link

On Milken Foundation . . .

Michael Robert Milken (born July 4, 1946) is an American financier and philanthropist. He is noted for his role in the development of the market for high-yield bonds ("junk bonds"),[3] and his conviction and sentence following a guilty plea on felony charges for violating U.S. securities laws.[4] Since his release from prison, he has also become known for his charitable giving.[5][6][7][8] Milken was pardoned by President Donald Trump on February 18, 2020 Wikipedia

Note the white male global superprofessionals and dark money men - rather than the poor black women whose images get pasted on the front page of campaign literature (just like the Libracoin hype, which aims to annex the small-scale trading of the world’s unbanked).

Just sayin’ . . . this is a tangled sticky web. Tread carefully. CityOS is not from or for the streets, imo. Geeks - shouldn’t be suckered, maker spaces are being bugged and harvested, just like ‘free’ social media.

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M

mike_hales Sun 10 May

It is quite hard to find information on CityOS Foundation, and what kind of money is behind it. When I followed links searching for more info, the above is the kind of content that came up. This is a tangled web. There was no straightforward answer to the question in plain sight. There was some quite disturbing stuff that did come into sight. This is not insinuation, it's an unresolved puzzle - why did one kind of material show up, and not another?

My opening comment about testosterone is a personal response to "“Zero to Hero” bootcamps" and the gung ho tone of the promo material for CityOS. My gut response made me want to discover where this glossy macho (yes, I think - maybe I'm too sensitive) stuff was coming from. Others may not have that same gut reaction - the material is there for others to check it out. But I didn't expect to find what did turn up. I guess I expected venture capital. I didn't expect dark money.

Equally, folks can assess for themselves whether 'Find your city's maker economy' is an approach coming from the streets or somewhere else. The link is there. My reading is, this isn't particularly dark, just the everyday kind of corporate capital tapping into community initiative and self-help.

Rather than being a tirade, most of my comment is clips from pages that showed up in the search. My reference to "white male global superprofessionals and dark-money men" and poor black women is because those were what appeared as I followed the links. What manifestly didn't appear was the plain answer to the question. I do believe that the question of the funding for CityOS is relevant in this group, since we know very well how insecure the financial/ownership basis of open source projects can make them, in relation to corporate power - we needn't look further than Microsoft and GitHub. The 'openness' of app ecosystems doesn't just refer to the codebase or the tech protocol?

So I feel 'tread carefully' is pertinent. William Burroughs used to say: Be careful whose money you pick up.

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NC

Nathan Cravens Sat 16 May

I wrote a preamble to the proposal you can read here: https://docs.google.com/document/d/e/2PACX-1vTySYsOelibFjJuXufPOB4c-Gz0eOz7JVanHqX1zrVd6D4PEgzlE7uXVNyTg8JkbxO-wQSjUzMUPyjq/pub I suppose now it is a matter of outlining, then detailing a more specific project this generalized system can inhabit; and work out the finer details as we go along. Feel free to point out areas I may have missed or any other projects that may relate to the proposal under discussion. I'm up for a one-on-one video chat. When it comes to brainstorming, outlining-detailing, and roadmapping, it would be best to do this with an experienced facilitator or two privy to remote collaboration.

NC

Nathan Cravens Sat 16 May

Also, I tried getting in touch with the ReFlow Project and have yet to hear back. I would think they'd be very interested in working on this if not in some way already.

LF

Lynn Foster Sat 16 May

@Nathan Cravens just so you are aware, Reflow is already funded, staffed by several teams through competitive proposals, has its goals already set by the EU plus lots of ideas of their own, and is well on its way working with specific user requirements and coding. So they aren't really at a stage to explore synergies with other potential projects in the idea stage. Maybe if you think they are doing what you want to do, all the code is open source afaik, and you could wait for it, and/or start your work with the pieces that are coming together soon.

NC

Nathan Cravens Sat 16 May

The great thing about this proposal is its essentially creating a meta program that can accommodate and push forward a variety of projects, which would help similar projects get to know one another and for the outside world to get to know them in a way a child can understand with the ability to dig into the complexity for those interested in adding code or easy copy-paste widgets to their own projects.

So once we've identified and have onboard people and projects interested in this, having remotely and collectively developed a white paper and roadmap, we can then work to drum up funding. The funding would be for 'core support', including cloud services, a core programming and design team, marketing/promoting/outreach and customer support. The program would be open source and free to use to enable rapid adoption and networking. Donation campaigns can be tried, as they seem to work for Wikipedia, but if needed, a monthly fee can be introduced to high volume users, with free use for low volume, small business/government users until, in time, the protocols are tweaked and usable without need for core support nor funding.

I will revise the above proposal to reflect these ideas and the others posted.

AS

Arnold Schrijver Sun 17 May

I like your preamble, Nathan, although I have to admit I had great hesitation to open the Google Doc. It is against my principle, as I de-google from this big player that is only extractive to the local community. In this domain where we want to bring heads together, there are more with these same sentiments. Can we use other tools?

NC

Nathan Cravens Sun 17 May

@aschrijver Thanks for making the exception, Arnold. I'm happy to adopt a different platform that provides the same function at your suggestion. In the hackathon section of the proposal there are programs listed that may also be detrimental to community building in the long term. Its really a delicate balance between pragmatism and an ethics based on openness and freedom, leaning too far either way, or relying too heavily on one set ideology, can create arbitrary boundaries or vulnerabilities that prevent goals from being achieved that could better serve local communities in the near term. In other words, as the thinking goes: to make great art sometimes the best tools are ones that are more exclusive and come at a price, but such tools when used toward the ethics of local community enrichment, endeavoring to quickly enable the creation of better tools than the ones used, made available sooner as open and free versions that are not just copies, but considerably more attractive and useful.

In the new paragraph on the business plan for this proposal my ethical view is clarified. Nothing is set in stone as it needs to first meet the needs of those interested in developing this project. I try to strike the balance if or when a need for funding is required to continue a standard quality of use and service expected of potential competitors, such as the services provided by SAP, Autodesk, and the like: first by campaigning regularly for funding, but if that were to fail or not be enough, add a paywall for high volume users, again, to keep users happy or at least happy enough not to rely on proprietary products. ReFlows is based on government funding, so that's an option I'll add to the proposal, but even government funding may not be enough, especially if the political climate continues to favor the privatization of government. If this meta-platform can take on two or three prioprietary product functions simulatenously, that would be a huge boon to the promise of openess and freeness, while maintaining privacy settings to the best degrees possible.

This line of thinking (what is good?) is reminding me to consider (what is useful?) the list of tools and projects related, featured toward the conclusion of the proposal, and asking the question, ideally having articulate-yet-concise answers from the developers of these tools—some who have graciously contributed to this conversation—how they might work in the context of this proposal. I'm more than willing to correct or narrow the complexity at the start, with the aim of meeting higher goals later, if it means adjusting a bit to enable a widget that already shows results with a willing and skilled group behind it. I also feel a need to elaborate (what is it exactly am I proposing?) a bit further on the function of the public resource management system by relating it to other applications, which incidently are proprietary, like SAP (operations management and logistics) and Autodesk (modeling operations real or imagined), as well as comparing it to LinkedIn (a platform that enables networking of expertise within an ecosystem) and Wix (a way a nonexpert or small child can design something easily that functions as it should). Again, these examples are proprietary, but well known for the sake of communication, with its potential detriment to emulating too completely, requiring an ongoing exercise in leaning or reaffirming toward the good—as we all work toward—enriching local communities.

I highly suggest Naomi Klein's latest article, 'Screen New Deal', which outlines Eric Schmidt et al.'s idealization toward the technological acceleration of the Silicon Valley profile during the pandemic. I've been thinking on this article quite a bit. It is a sort of reaction to 'IT’S TIME TO BUILD' by Marc Andreessen. (https://a16z.com/2020/04/18/its-time-to-build/) The technologies Schmidt and I advocate are the same, but how they are used (or rather who they would benefit) would differ, so the article provides a cautionary tale as we move forward in a post-pandemic world.

Naomi Klein, 'Screen New Deal' (https://theintercept.com/2020/05/08/andrew-cuomo-eric-schmidt-coronavirus-tech-shock-doctrine/) "If tech companies win their ferocious lobbying campaign for remote learning, telehealth, 5G, and driverless vehicles — their Screen New Deal — there simply won’t be any money left over for urgent public priorities..."

AS

Arnold Schrijver Sun 17 May

Thank's for your response. Yes, I've read 'Screen New Deal'. Regarding information, I am sorry, but I may not be aware of all the documentation you are mentioning (e.g. the business plan, etc.). I'm a newbie to this space :)

Regarding tools.. it depends on the use case, of course. In the Google Docs I saw only 1 page, view-only mode. So that could be contained in some kind of markdown doc, wiki or issue tracker, or even a markdown-based static site generator, without hosting costs. If collaborative editing is a thing, then there are also FOSS, and - I think - free hosted alternatives for that too. These may even export to .docx for those that only use that, otherwise PDF may be a common distribution format.

Interesting tools in the proposal, btw, I have to pay them a visit still.

I don't know the stance of people participating in this group, but I would be strongly in favor that all tools that were used project-wise and all the deliverables in code + documentation would have FOSS (preferably copyleft) and open content licenses. Please excuse me if this discussion did already take place. This can also be a 'selling' point to any of the cities approached with the concept.

Finally something about the proposal. There is a bit of mixing of concerns that could be given more clarity (maybe you already did that elsewhere). There is mention of the proposal creating a Loomio widget, other widgets, of the 'lead developers and projects onboard' (Loomio organizations?), a 'Docker for any project to join the ecosystem' (again Loomio, the new public RMS, local community project in general?). There need to be clear distinction between specifications / standardization (to be on the same page, not reinvent wheels) and implementation-specific stuff (where many projects make their own choices). WDYT?

NC

Nathan Cravens Sun 17 May

I suppose, boiling it down, is a need for a project(s) lead / coordinator with experience in the key software projects that a PRMS would rely on. @lynnfoster @hemiedwards @pukkamustard and @lynnfoster (hint-hint lol) come to mind. If you think you should be @ed, let’s go! 

I’m a newb to this forum, but have viewed and participated in a number of conversations in a variety of forums that often start with a questioning or deliberation of what is ethical. This includes the topic of “who decides who decides,” and so on. That’s usually a sign discussion is in the early stages. Forgive me for moving on. 

Once we have a project lead(s), we will have identified what software projects to cobble together to build the PRMS, followed by a collaboration on the white paper that articulates along with a collectively generated roadmap, which states the bite-sized, micro-project development goals and timeframe targets. Anyone who wishes to join this project can themselves write their own preamble to this proposal which reminds them of why they joined.  I feel the focus should be more on the proposal itself. It should represent something ever more tangible, something I hope through continued discussion, I can build from until the time is right for a collaboratively generated document. I say this with experience in starting a good number of dead collaborative documents. In other words, this is very much a work in process with an aim at building up to the steps required, so they can be better addressed by those with the knowledge and experience to address them. I hope that’s clear.     

What you say in the end is key: “There need to be clear distinction between specifications / standardization (to be on the same page, not reinvent wheels) and implementation-specific stuff (where many projects make their own choices).” And I hope we can further investigate other options or conclude those are as good as we got and begin to focus on detailing the ones now listed in the proposal for further elaboration into how that system will specifically function.   

LF

Lynn Foster Sun 17 May

@Nathan Cravens thank you, but sorry I don't want to lead this. Got a lot of projects going already, and need to focus on what I can best contribute, which is not starting a project from scratch (lots of people can do that) and especially not fundraising (no skills). In general, we focus our work on projects that have a user group on the ground that needs some software and will participate in its development, and we advise that to anyone starting a project. Even "meta" projects, which actually would apply to the 2 most active projects we are involved in. We don't really think that "good ideas" are enough to base development effort on, including our own "good ideas". 🙂 Noting that you initially mentioned several possible on-the-ground use cases way up top, so maybe that is or will be there too.

On the other hand, I'm happy to actively help any project with implementing or using ValueFlows vocabulary, if there is a dev team engaged (lots of detail work involved, including if looking for existing software), because I think VF (or something like it) is strategic for an open app economic ecosystem of the future. And I do like your idea, and I do think VF would be a big help. And at this stage of VF development, any project that uses VF is both about the project goals and improving VF.

NC

Nathan Cravens Sun 17 May

@lynnfoster Thanks Lynn. Do you know of anyone that might be interested that have done similar projects to this one? I keep coming back to ReFlows that seems to relate most to this proposal. I've still not heard back from them. It has been a while, so I'll send them another message.

AS

Arnold Schrijver Mon 18 May

@Nathan Cravens a very interesting video to watch created by Glen Simister where he used SAFE network as the backend, and also has a video where he combines SAFE with GunDB graph database to easily create websites. He is now doing similar things with Solid Project.

DS

Danyl Strype Mon 18 May

I don't think issuing ultimatums is helpful. @mike_hales has raised a valid issue about the funding behind some of the code your projects may end up depending on. Perhaps he's got his wires crossed on some of the details, but surely the best response is to clarify exactly which projects you're referencing and what funding sources they have (if any), and leave it at that? We're all on the same team here; team human :) Be excellent to each other!

DS

Danyl Strype Mon 18 May

@Arnold Schrijver

I don't know the stance of people participating in this group, but I would be strongly in favor that all tools that were used project-wise and all the deliverables in code + documentation would have FOSS (preferably copyleft) and open content licenses.

That's certainly my preference, simply because that way, the contents matches the label on the tin (Open App Ecosystem).

Please excuse me if this discussion did already take place.

There's a thread for the discussion here, focused on what can be used as replacements for the datafarms:

https://www.loomio.org/d/yZ1Ei4uJ/stable-well-supported-platforms-we-can-for-this-group-instead-of-corporate-datafarms

DS

Danyl Strype Mon 18 May

@Nathan Cravens it seems like you are playing a community developer role here, rather than a software developer one. This is something I have some experience with, so may I offer some suggestions?

Firstly, the world is full of good ideas and new projects. Most of these acorns will become squirrel food, rather than mighty trees, so people with in-demand practical skills are very selective about what they work on, especially when being asked to volunteer. It's not enough that the intentions are good, the project has to look like it actually has legs. So you need to be - and appear to be - a well organized project manager.

Once you've sketched out your basic concept a bit, apply the Kalashnikov principle, and publicly document the results of your investigations:

> "Before attempting to create something new, it is vital to have a good appreciation of everything that already exists in this field."

Here's a great example of this from the Snowdrift Co-op, who plan to build a new crowdfunding site:

https://wiki.snowdrift.coop/market-research/other-crowdfunding

In many cases, this process will reveal that there are already one or more projects working on something that at least approximates your vision. In which case, it's often better to support existing projects and facilitate them working together where that makes sense, rather than to try to fragment the available resources further by starting a new project. It's with this in mind that I worked on getting you in a (virtual) room with folks like @Lynn Foster , @pukkamustard , @Hemi Edwards , and the Murmurations devs, who are working on existing projects that seem at least somewhat aligned to your vision (the Offerbots dev might also be worth connecting with).

If you're sure you really have something significantly different to offer, the next step is separating out project goals, UI expectations, and back-end implementation ideas (existing code components that could be used). A one page summary, with a section for each, is helpful to give people an overview of your project. These can then be expanded on as much as you like, for those who want more details. YMMV but I find a wiki really useful for documenting all this, and linking all the relevant bits together. Perhaps you could consider trying the Smallest Federated Wiki?

As you continue to flesh out your vision, continue to research, and to make contact. More importantly perhaps, find ways to help out with projects that might one today provide components for (or inter-operate with) your project. That's one of the best ways to get to know people and build a reputation as someone who is pleasant to work with, and gets stuff done. That goodwill is crucial to getting people to volunteer their skills and time to help you with your project.

I hope some of this is helpful, and I will watch the evolution of your project with great interest.

M

mike_hales Mon 18 May

A good reminder of that thread @strypey - which is still hanging, a year later, with no resolution. This issue of infrastructure hasn’t gone away, although (elsewhere) I hear numbers of ppl saying they are fed up with it, and just want to get on with things. I continue to find the issue (the alternatives) more complex than I have time or brainspace to properly attend to.

Anybody feel like cranking it up again? Any new dimensions available now?

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DS

Danyl Strype Wed 20 May

@mike_hales

Anybody feel like cranking it up again? Any new dimensions available now?

I've probably said enough in that thread for the time being, but I'm
always keen to read other folks' thoughts and tool suggestions. The more
we know about what open tech already exists, the more wheel reinventing
work we can avoid.

In order to avoid hijacking this thread any further, I've replied to
your comment about infrastructure in a bit more detail, on the
fediverse:
https://libranet.de/redir/58448?url=display/0b6b25a8-165e-c520-1e19-4a5544107574

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NC

Nathan Cravens Thu 21 May

@strypey Thank you for your observations and advice. I needed some time to think on the subject, realizing I'd gone ahead of myself. I will take what you say onboard moving forward and appreciate your particular input in the future.

The community developer role may be too much for me to chew at the moment, but something I will endeavor to work toward as we go along. Much of my life on this topic has been as a networker of ideas with hopes they are put into practice. For instance, after founding the open manufacturing discussion list, I had then hoped the ideas surrounding that topic would have been well in place and of use by now. Instead, the atmosphere of the web has become less optimistic or hospitable over time, perhaps largely due to social networks feeding upset, until perhaps our present time, but it remains hard to guage until events and hindsight further develop. My health and living conditions prevented any further momentum on my part until recently, but like most of us, remains confined economically. Change always happens suddenly and from a minority group, so that's something to keep in mind in view of innovation...

ReFlows seems to ring true to this discussion, and though I've not heard back after a third attempt, I will keep an eye on it.

I think it would be a good first step as @aschrijver suggested to make the proposal editable as a wiki or some other similar collaborative writing platform. Perhaps in the near future Loomio can provide permissions on editing a proposal to save time switching from one platform to the next? Let me know what you might like to use. My standard go-to is gdocs, but I understand the need to stay true to free/open and platform cooperatives where possible. I'll look into Smallest Federated Wiki.

To summarize and conclude, I still feel this proposal needs further elaboration and a better picture of what projects are available to prevent unnecissary reinventing of the wheel and to make the proposal going forward as easy as possible to realize.

Those of you that have contributed to the discussion: @Lynn Foster @pukkamustard @hemiedwards @strypey @aschrijver and those that wish to continue it, please feel free to view and edit 'Proposing A Public Resource Management System for Loomio' at the following link:

https://docs.google.com/document/d/1jnCRM-ewUUjPrWGOVZlj1Fo3QDjD_1Rq_O_RobJTgb0/edit?usp=sharing

Thanks for contributing to the proposal if you decide to. Thanks to all of you for reading this far and contributing to this conversation. I'm very grateful.

Once we are happy with the proposal we can move onto breaking the proposal down into parts that are further detailed as well as roadmapping and talent seeking. I'm eager to hear what this community thinks might move this proposal forward.

HE

Hemi Edwards Fri 22 May

I accept your apologies and I regret to some extent my shortness with you, but I do not appreciate it when people think that just because they have the right to free speech that they are entitled to opine on whatever they have a mind to no matter how ill informed they are or how unsolicited their opinion is. I am directing that at Mike whose instead of politely engaging in a meaningful exchange with me just vomited out random accusations and insinuations in the most discourteous and uncivil fashion. He didn't even have the grace to withdraw the comment, even when I specifically asked him to and clearly showed he was in error. I must say this who debacle has made me feel particularly unwelcome especially when both you and Danyl dismissed my concerns and took Mike's side when he was clearly in the wrong.

NC

Nathan Cravens Sun 24 May

@Lynn Fosteer @pukkamustard @hemiedwards @strypey @aschrijver If you wish to comment or edit this proposal, feel free here: https://docs.google.com/document/d/1jnCRM-ewUUjPrWGOVZlj1Fo3QDjD_1Rq_O_RobJTgb0/edit This link is also at the head of the proposal. Thanks for inviting others into this conversation.

DS

Danyl Strype Mon 25 May

Perhaps in the near future Loomio can provide permissions on editing a proposal to save time switching from one platform to the next?

LLoomio already allows this.

The box under the thread title, containing the text you opened the thread with, is known as the 'context Box'. Like your own comments, the text in the context box can be edited by clicking the 'edit' button beneath the text. Unlike your comments, the context box can be edited by any group member. An edit history is kept, noting what what changed, and by who.

So we don't need a separate tool at all to edit a proposal text together, although at present, context box editing has limited features compared to a tool like Etherpad. The Loomio devs have a more advanced version in development, using components from a third-party tool called ProseMirror.

DS

Danyl Strype Mon 25 May

@Nathan Cravens FYI some of the discussion in this earlier thread, and the projects referenced, may also be useful in developing your project: https://www.loomio.org/d/utVYf1Ga/ecosystems-for-cities-tooling-up-smart-citizens

@everyone The thread at that link is a definite candidate for updating the context box, to better reflect the contents. @mike_hales would you be willing to have a crack at that at some stage? Anyone else?

M

mike_hales Mon 25 May

This thread is a definite candidate for updating the context box, to better reflect the contents. @mike_hales would you be willing to have a crack at that at some stage? Anyone else?

I would be glad if anyone else picked this up. I haven’t been following the discussion at a detail level, just occasionally dipping in.

NC

Nathan Cravens Tue 26 May

Mozilla Hubs, although intended as hangouts, the open source code may be useful for creating explorable 3D models of the real world, like the home or to better visualize supply channels based around a product, business, or government or monitor rewilding sites.

DS

Danyl Strype Sat 6 Jun

Just for clarity, when I said "this thread" I meant the thread I linked. It would have been less ambiguous to say "that linked thread", so I'll edit it to say that. Sorry about any confusion caused 😆

DS

Danyl Strype Sun 7 Jun

The folks from the Communecter project might also have some insights to offer about Nathan's proposal for a Public Resource Management System. @Julien Lecaille @Tibor Katelbach ?

AFAIK this is the latest code:
https://github.com/pixelhumain/communecter

NC

Nathan Cravens Sun 7 Jun

Communecter looks like a great project. I'd love to connect and know what you think.