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A platform for concise definitions

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Darko Savic
Darko Savic Sep 05, 2021
A platform where people aim to define things in the simplest way possible without losing the meaning.

A few examples of trying to define some concepts concisely:
  • Creativity: using your imagination to envision something.
  • Problem-solving: using your imagination to envision solutions to problems.
  • Inventing: using your imagination to envision solutions that are new and non-obvious.
  • Innovating: using your imagination to make existing solutions useful in new ways.
  • Science: using your imagination to envision ways of answering open questions.
  • Serendipitous discovery: using your imagination to make sense of something that happened by chance.

Example of cutting excess words while preserving the meaning:

The above example is basically how I imagine the dynamics on the platform. Playful way for people to out-concise each other.

Why?

  • Pracitce high signal, low noise communication
  • Create a wealth of concise information for the internet (Google could use the definitions)
  • Browsing the platform would be the fastest way of broadening ones horizons of knowledge
  • Serendipitous discovery of interesting fields one would have never thought about

How it works

  1. People post requests for definitions.
  2. Anyone can submit their attempt at the most concise definition they can come up with.
  3. Any platform user can vote for ONE definition only - whichever they think is best.
  4. When new definitions are submitted under a request, anyone that participated or voted gets notified to review their vote if it's still valid and check the new definition, if it can be improved upon.
  5. In time, the most concise definitions surface to the top. Everythin else is a fun practice of summarizing skills.
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Creative contributions

Moderation on entries that change the meaning

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Shubhankar Kulkarni
Shubhankar Kulkarni Sep 08, 2021
I definitely like idea.

Do entries that alter the meaning more than a certain threshold need to be removed?

Also, how do you decide this threshold? A concise meaning sufficient for me may not be sufficient for a language expert. Synonyms are phrases with similar meanings and not the same meaning. For example, from the session image, although "to the point" and "brief" are synonyms, they mean slightly different things. "To the point" pertains to the quality and "brief" pertains to the quantity. Similar issues will surface once the platform goes live. Also, should people be able to comment and explain why their entries are better or why some other entry is not? Should "commenting" be even an option?

I agree you described this as a playful way but it will surely get competitive and people would want to judge the entries (using some parameters). Or I am overthinking it and we should just let the upvotes decide the best "most concise" entry?
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Darko Savic
Darko Savica month ago
All good points. Some with no straightforward solutions.

I guess there could be some kind of consensus/voting from a panel of people that have demonstrated their exceptional knowledge in this arena. I imagine there would be a rating system for people's content. Experts would emerge based on that rating. From there on it's "to the victor go the spoils". Someone has to define/improve language. Why not people who seem to be good at it and have an active interest in doing this.

The top-voted definitions remain on the internet forever and have a chance of becoming the norm.

New words will emerge

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Shubhankar Kulkarni
Shubhankar Kulkarni Sep 08, 2021
Newer concise words or phrases will emerge from this exercise. For example, "juxting", which, as the author describes, is "coming up with ideas by randomly juxtaposing two things and seeing the ways they could relate to each other". "Juxting" is not a common word from English but it fits the action perfectly. As we perform newer and newer actions, coming up with newer words feels consequential.

I think this is a good thing although some language experts may feel otherwise.

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