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Thursday, May 21, 2015

Brainstorming

I felt last night's event went fairly smoothly, all things considered. Even though we went about 15 minutes longer than scheduled, I wasn't able to address all of the questions in detail, but the chat server worked, as did both of the recordings. Transcripts will be sent out to everyone who signed up as soon as they are completed.

If you're interested in signing up on an annual basis for a 20 percent discount, you can do so now, otherwise you can just sign up on a monthly basis as your schedule and interests permit for $25 per event.

The next event is a free one and will feature an interview with Martin van Creveld, the Israeli military historian, on Sunday 31 May at 3 PM Eastern time. Members will have priority seating; I don't know yet if there will be 100 or 500 seats available.

If you attended and want to share your opinion about how it went, for good or ill, feel free to do so. Three panelists seemed to work pretty well, but in the future I we'll definitely want to nail down the three primary subjects, one per panelist, ahead of time.

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56 Comments:

Blogger Nate May 21, 2015 12:39 PM  

it would've gone better if we had stickwick on video too. Lets face it... She's easier to look at than you are.

Blogger Nate May 21, 2015 12:42 PM  

I think 3 panelists works well but we need more going on with the panel itself. Ideally the panel will be able to use the questions as jumping off points to move their own discussion along.

Blogger VD May 21, 2015 12:53 PM  

I think 3 panelists works well but we need more going on with the panel itself.

Agreed. That's why I think the prearranged subjects are a good idea. It was obviously very helpful that Greg was able to familiarize himself with the literature, for example.

Anonymous Mark #0038 May 21, 2015 12:54 PM  

I thought it went very well, especially for the first one. Having a few more predetermined topics would probably be beneficial but I appreciated being able to ask questions on the fly. Looking forward to the next session.

Anonymous Porky May 21, 2015 12:54 PM  

Had I known Stickwick was a panelist I would have signed up.

Blogger Tank May 21, 2015 1:01 PM  

I thought it went generally smoothly for a first run.

1. It started off slow (for me), but got more and more interesting as the discussion went along.

2. Clearly, you need to tell your guest panelists what you expect to have them talk about so that they can prepare in advance. It would also be easier for VD if his guests "anchored" parts of the session so that he did not have to carry the whole program.

3. Does VD refer to his wife as Spacebunny in casual conversation, or is that only for the internet?

4. I did not clearly ask this question: We've (you've) had great push back against the SJW's in gamergate (gaming) and the Hugos (writing SF). What other areas beside games and SF books might be ripe for this kind of pushback? What other groups are brave enough and secure enough to fight back?

5. Looking forward to van Creveld in this format. That should be good.

Blogger Alexander May 21, 2015 1:29 PM  

Spacebunny is actually her real name. It has to be, since we now have in on authority that people only refer to other people by one name, every time, all the time, forever.

Blogger Lana J May 21, 2015 1:31 PM  

I thought it went pretty well for the first try and all the panelists had good input. All the topics covered were interesting. I agree that having topics determined before the event would be an excellent benefit. It really would have been nice to have some idea of the topics for the attendees so that we could do some preliminary reading in order to be up to speed when the event begins.

Personally, I would be very interested in exploring pattern recognition.

Blogger Nate May 21, 2015 1:33 PM  

"3. Does VD refer to his wife as Spacebunny in casual conversation, or is that only for the internet?"

She really is referred to as Spacebunny in real life quite a bit... and lots of Vox's friends refer to him as Vox in real life as well.

I don't know why this is a big deal... they're nicknames people.

I call my wife DrWho in real life...

Blogger Sean May 21, 2015 1:50 PM  

I thought it was fantastic. The range of topics was great and unexpected. It was what I hoped it would be.

It was mentioned that one of the goals was for the mingling of intelligent people to spur thought and ideas, would it be preferred if folks like myself, who are at least 2-3 IQ levels below most of the participants, leave the spots open for people with more ability to help achieve that goal?

Blogger VD May 21, 2015 1:56 PM  

Another improvement would be if those being questioned had their mikes unmuted and were able to ask the questions themselves as well as a follow-up or two instead of me reading their questions from the screen. What I think I'll do is have people with audio - be it webcam or headset - end their typed question with a (A). Then I can simply call on them and let them speak for themselves.

I thought it was fantastic. The range of topics was great and unexpected. It was what I hoped it would be.

Good.

would it be preferred if folks like myself, who are at least 2-3 IQ levels below most of the participants, leave the spots open for people with more ability to help achieve that goal?

No. I think anyone who is genuinely interested, open-minded, and willing to think should be welcome.

Blogger Sean May 21, 2015 1:56 PM  

One of the things I have always appreciated on this blog is the way Vox has always protected his family when he does talk about them.

Blogger ajw308 (#98) May 21, 2015 2:05 PM  

We get nicknames.

Isn't there a meme "4 guys go out to eat, they greet each other as Ace, Beef, Slice, and Muttu. 4 women do the same, they greet each other as Susan, Bethany, Amber, and Samantha..."

This is just further anecdotal evidence SJW's are feminine at some intellectual level.

I came in late and logged out early, but listened to the end. It would have been informative to see the question feed Vox was reading.

We're in the forming stage, figuring out how to collaborate. We just need Vox to create the OS for the wet parallel processor he's setting up.

Anonymous AlteredFate (#92) May 21, 2015 2:08 PM  

I thought it went very well and I look forward to future sessions.

Anonymous Nathan May 21, 2015 2:11 PM  

Between scheduling conflicts and an unwillingness to take a seat away from someone who can contribute to the conversations at hand, will there be a transcripts/recording only version, or would an interested person only get those if they were a pariicipant?

(If the answer is on the CH page, I apologize. I can't get to it on the corporate network I'm using.)

Blogger VD May 21, 2015 2:13 PM  

Between scheduling conflicts and an unwillingness to take a seat away from someone who can contribute to the conversations at hand, will there be a transcripts/recording only version, or would an interested person only get those if they were a pariicipant?

Anyone who registers gets a transcript, whether they participate or not. No recordings. Transcripts from free events can be purchased by anyone.

Blogger Douglas Wardell May 21, 2015 2:17 PM  

I really enjoyed it. I'm glad that it appears we have a great mix of some real subject matter experts in their respective areas.

Anonymous AlteredFate (#92) May 21, 2015 2:21 PM  

Then I can simply call on them and let them speak for themselves

This. My own question I should have clarified more and cited an example but I didn't want you to have to read off an entire paragraph and the point still not be abundantly clear. Working it with the individual being called on would solve this issue.

Blogger Patrikbc #0344 May 21, 2015 2:30 PM  

I enjoyed it quite a it and thought it went fairly smooth as well... I was a little freaked out the first time Box leaned up to read the Q's, as I thought he was going to climb out of screen. It's true, stickwick should have been on video... When she started talking about dark matter and its biblical support, I was tempted to submit the question "so, what are you wearing?"

@Nate, if you get a chance get that info to me about the Austin gig Vox mentioned in reference to my question about our own VoxCon lol.

Blogger SirHamster (#201) May 21, 2015 2:37 PM  

Anyone who registers gets a transcript, whether they participate or not. No recordings. Transcripts from free events can be purchased by anyone.

Transcripts of non-free events cannot be obtained at all, or would there be an option to purchase those as well? Purchases limited to subscribing members, perhaps?

Blogger Tallawampus May 21, 2015 2:41 PM  

From a panelists perspective…
Chat server? Did I miss those instructions somewhere? That might have been nice to see. Was that what Markku was filtering questions through?

It was hard to judge the level of interest in the subject. If we were all together in one room I’d be able to see eyes drifting, people shuffling feet to let me know it was time to shut up and move on. As it was last night I didn’t get a lot of feedback from the participants. Would I have gotten that feedback from the chat server?

Letting people ask their own questions would be great. Easier for follow up questions and clarifications – and going off topic on interesting subjects.

I had some prep time for the subject, which was nice, but prep time for the participants would be nice too.

For future panelists:
It was confusing at first but there are two different chat boxes that apply to panelists. One allows the panelists to chat amongst themselves which is pretty self-explanatory and one was only for questions.

The questions dialog is moderated - by Markku last night - and only shows questions that are directed at you; so I couldn’t see Vox’s or Stickwick’s questions, only ones sent to me. I didn’t notice until the end but in that questions chat window there was a place to type an answer, and a button for send privately (must be to just the asker) and another button that I think was either for send to all or just to moderator – I can’t remember which. I was trying not to screw things up so I didn’t mess with it, but that may be helpful in the future for questions on the side.

#0198

Blogger Markku May 21, 2015 2:45 PM  

Ah, right, I only sent the instructions to the email list from castaliahouse.com and you weren't a paying member. Hold on, I'll see if I can find your email address and I'll send you the instructions. It's a restricted chat, only to Brainstormers. The entire history of the chat is still there to see.

Blogger Douglas Wardell May 21, 2015 2:46 PM  

@Tallawampus:

I got an email from books@castalia with the chat server details. It was a separate email from the one with the conference details.

Blogger Markku May 21, 2015 2:51 PM  

The panelists aren't EXPECTED to keep track of the chat per se; it's for the audience to be able to talk to each other. Stickwick was there, though. But the only thing a panelist is expected to do is to look at the questions assigned to him. And yes, I was doing the assigning.

Blogger Tallawampus May 21, 2015 2:58 PM  

@Markku

I did pay through Castalia for the session, but I didn't get the server e-mail for some reason. I dug back through emails and it's not there. I've got other emails from @castalia but not that one for whatever reason.

I have it now though, thanks for sending it.

Blogger Markku May 21, 2015 2:58 PM  

As you'll see, it was pretty hectic there. It won't be all that easy for a panelist to keep tabs on the chat while still managing to concentrate on the webinar.

Blogger Markku May 21, 2015 3:00 PM  

Ok, then the reason is probably that Vox removed your email from the spreadsheet because you were to be sent a panelist invite.

Anonymous DavidKathome May 21, 2015 3:05 PM  

Do we sign up through Castalia for this Sunday's interview?

Anonymous Stickwick May 21, 2015 3:11 PM  

Nate: it would've gone better if we had stickwick on video too. Lets face it... She's easier to look at than you are.

Thank you, Nate. But count your blessings that you couldn't see me. As everyone who listened in could tell, I was pretty sick; I probably looked about as good as I sounded. I also do not have nearly as cool a backdrop for video as Vox, with that library and ornate chair. And, for those of us who've never actually seen Vox before, seeing him that way had the effect of humanizing him. Because, let's face it, most of us are picturing Vox blogging from something more like this.

Anyway, I thought the session went well. I very much enjoyed not only being a panelist, but listening to Vox and Tallawampus hold forth on some interesting topics.

Blogger VD May 21, 2015 3:11 PM  

Transcripts of non-free events cannot be obtained at all, or would there be an option to purchase those as well? Purchases limited to subscribing members, perhaps?

Transcriptions of non-free events are provided free to subscribing members.

Do we sign up through Castalia for this Sunday's interview?

To be guaranteed a spot, yes. Otherwise, I'll post the link the day of the event.

Anonymous Michael Maier May 21, 2015 3:11 PM  

Vox / Markku: you should give out the first transcript. Like Larry C. did with the 1st Monster Hunter book... get us addicted.

Blogger VD May 21, 2015 3:23 PM  

Because, let's face it, most of us are picturing Vox blogging from something more like this.

The funny thing is that looks like my chair, right down to the red padding. Except, of course, that I've got lion heads in the place of cobras.

Blogger Douglas Wardell May 21, 2015 3:25 PM  

I alwasy pictured Vox more like this: http://archive.thearnoldfans.com/pictures/costars/sven/12_throne.jpg

Anonymous Alexander May 21, 2015 3:28 PM  

I thought the whole thing went down very well, one criticism though:

Tallawampus's professional opinion clearly played a clear role on the first topic.

I thought that what stickwick had to say was good, but more just from 'very intelligent person commenting'. It would have been nice to have tailored a topic to her areas of expertise, because as it was it felt like a missed opportunity for me as a lay listener.

I would have preferred something along:
Topic A, primarily Vox & Panelist A, with some general insights or additional commentary from Panelist B when necessary, and then 'flipped' for B. Ending as we did on a more general topic of interest was perfect as-was.

So four stars from me. Well worth doing and I've already bought my pass, but a more strategic use of panelist's areas of expertise would have been an improvement in my book.

Blogger RL (#0052) May 21, 2015 3:38 PM  

As a member of the audience, I thought everything went well. It was good enough that I want to attend future sessions. I will sign up on a monthly basis depending on the topic to be discussed and whether I am able to attend.

Blogger Blackburn #0040 May 21, 2015 3:46 PM  

does it make sense to have the subjects somewhat related? For instance, the medical subject discussed and the genetics of race; Astrophysics, creation and end times, the SJW war and 4GW.

The panelists might be able to vibe off each other a little more. Also sometimes it's easier to see links between related fields, at least for the sub 145s. Though counter to that some of the bigger breakthroughs probably come from recognizing patterns from widely disparate fields.

Blogger Josh May 21, 2015 4:02 PM  

I thought it went really well, the part that I was there for, anyway. Looking forward to reading the transcript of what I missed.

Blogger SirHamster (#201) May 21, 2015 4:11 PM  

Transcriptions of non-free events are provided free to subscribing members.

So a year from now, a new subscribing member gets access to all of the older non-free event transcripts? Or is that only for non-free events "current" to the subscription?

Anonymous AlteredFate May 21, 2015 4:25 PM  

Someone asked whether the chat will continue to work or if it was going to be shut down between Brainstorm events. Has there been any clarification?

Anonymous Leonidas May 21, 2015 4:25 PM  

Couldn't actually make the brainstorm because y'all chose Wednesday nights, which I absolutely can't do... but my wife and I were listening to a podcast Vox was on about RP a few weeks ago. We both commented that if his critics had to listen to his blog posts in his actual voice instead of the evil, maniacal voice they conjure up in their own heads, some of the frothing rage would go away.

Some, but not all.

Blogger Markku May 21, 2015 4:28 PM  

The chatroom's "Always open general chat" will remain permanently active, unless you folks make it too demanding for me to moderate. General rules: Don't say anything criminal, like how you should blow up federal buildings, and don't pile on people if it seems like they don't want to be piled on. Normal, mutual Ilk roughhousing is fine.

Anonymous VFM.0157 aka Forrest Bishop May 21, 2015 4:33 PM  

I was expecting to see an iron mask and at least one (1) Hellhound, preferably more.

Blogger VD May 21, 2015 5:04 PM  

Or is that only for non-free events "current" to the subscription?

They go out after the event. So "current", yes.

Anonymous AlteredFate May 21, 2015 5:23 PM  

@Markku

Thank you!

Blogger SirHamster (#201) May 21, 2015 5:46 PM  

@ VD

Time limited exclusive. Got it, thanks.

Blogger Buddy E. May 21, 2015 5:47 PM  

Id truthfully like to participate in these but personal reasons right now make impossible. Not to thread Jack but dad terminal in ICU, and he's not a believer, heading home which is 2000 miles away and simply don't have time or funds to do so. Will they be continuing, and are the seats locked and limited?

Blogger Azimus May 21, 2015 5:57 PM  

I may have missed this in previous posts: is this first session available as a video to watch and learn post mortem?

Blogger Azimus May 21, 2015 5:59 PM  

Blogger Azimus May 21, 2015 5:57 PM I may have missed this in previous posts: is this first session available as a video to watch and learn post mortem?

Nevermind just caught the comment above.

Blogger Patrikbc #0344 May 21, 2015 6:25 PM  

I also did not get a link to the general chat. I did pay through Castalia house as well,

Blogger Sean May 21, 2015 6:26 PM  

Azimus- I don't think video was necessary unless you want to watch Vox talk and listen for 90 minutes. I ended up just listening to the call on my bluetooth headset.

Blogger Sean May 21, 2015 6:27 PM  

The audio quality was as good as the device the people were speaking into. Vox and Stickwick were easier to listen to than the Dr that was on, but that could have been my connection.

Blogger Markku May 21, 2015 7:49 PM  

Patrick, please email books@castaliahouse.com from the same email you ordered the membership from, and I'll email you the info. In the future I'll put it in the receipt, but the chat was a last minute idea. Didn't have much time to think it all through.

Blogger Patrikbc #0344 May 21, 2015 10:16 PM  

@ Markku, thanks, however, I searched my Email for Castalia and sure enough it WAS there.

Blogger Daniel May 21, 2015 10:20 PM  

General Patton had neither a blog nor George C. Scott's voice. Plenty of people still thought he was the devil incarnate.

Anonymous Jack Amok May 22, 2015 1:17 AM  

I enjoyed it, especially the first topic. From my perspective, the value in these would be exactly that sort of non-standard information (i.e. the info you're not going to get from the standard credentialled gatekeeper), especially delivered by someone who is not simply a "journalist" reporting on a subject but someone who for personal and important reasons has made an effort to understand the topic.

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