[ih] Historical Tracing from Concept to Reality over 5 decades?

Dave Crocker dhc at dcrocker.net
Tue Jul 14 13:06:59 PDT 2020

On 7/14/2020 12:40 PM, Jack Haverty via Internet-history wrote:
> Fifty years later, I can see some of that kind of
> functionality operating now, in various kinds of online forums, and
> social media sites.  But, AFAIK, all of these contemporary mechanisms
> are single-site in nature.  A user must connect to each individual site
> to join that conversation, and "cross-posting" is often discouraged or
> impossible.
> There is no endemic and widespread standard for supporting the more
> complex interactions of Licks' vision, although technologies such as XML
> and MQTT seem (to me at least) to be now filling in some of the
> pieces.

There were some efforts do do structured 'workflow' and the like, over 
email, but yes, in a proprietary fashion.  If remember, Winograd 
participated in the Higgins system product.  What I've taken from the 
history of problems these efforts had is that the enhancements need to 
be optional, rather than coercive.

It's been frustrating to see the apparent lack of interest in 
distributed, open standards for these kinds of functions.

I keep think that widespread frustrations with the operations of the 
major social networking sites might be a useful motivator for a careful 
effort to replicate social/busines/etc. messaging-based functionality on 
top of email.  So far, I haven't found a set of folk interested in 
working on that, though.

By way of the smallest example, I keep finding myself reading a posting 
to a mailing list and wanting to signal a simple thumbs up icon.  Or 
sadness, or.  And it would be such a simple standard to write and 
implement, if only the MUA builders were interested...


Dave Crocker
Brandenburg InternetWorking

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