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Where does this Brainstorming platform fit within the internet jungle?

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Antonio Carusillo
Antonio Carusillo Nov 23, 2020
I want to start this session with the definition of the Ecological niche: " Ecological niche is a term for the position of a species within an ecosystem, describing both the range of conditions necessary for the persistence of species and its ecological role in the ecosystem". The hope of the session is also to collect feedback from both the Brainstorming team taking care of the website but also from the users reading the content.

Like a new living being, Brainstorming - as a new platform - should locate itself in the "jungle" of other more established platforms. When I think about the Brainstorming platform, I can't help to draw connections for example to Quora or Researchgate. The former in particular:
  • has a similar " Questions and Answers " based system
  • gathers experts from different fields
  • questions can give rise to more branched discussions, like a brainstorming indeed
So, considering that there is no lack of competitors out there, the first question is:
  • how similar is Brainstorming to already existing platforms?
Once that this is established, then the question should evolve in:
  • what features are unique to Brainstorming?
  • can we envision Brainstorming as a tool that you would use together with Quora? For example, translating a question on Quora in a "brainstormable session" here and maybe bring the final discussion back on Quora. This would somehow reduce the competition with similar platforms and maybe even synergise with them.
By defining the "niche" of Brainstorming in respective of other platforms we may also better define the audience: layman vs rocky scientists.

To this end, would it beneficial to have a questionnaire to be filled up by the visitors, before being able to access the website? The questions provided should serve the purpose to understand the background of the user. In the long run, we may understand not only how many people sign in, but whether they are for most scientists.

If this is the case, should we try to keep a medium-high standard in our content? Cause, experienced scientists may be put off by content tailored to laymen audiences and instead opt for Researchgate or PubMed.

So, to retain a scientific audience we should prove high-quality material that can be comparable to what you would read in a post in Resrarchgate or Scientific Journal for Example. My questions to you are:
  • what feature may render Brainstorming unique?
  • to what type of audiences would you recommend Brainstorming and why?
  • how Brainstoming may be used together with other platforms to promote knowledge sharing?
  • Where in the internet jungle should Brainstorming make a place for itself?
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Creative contributions

Brainstorming is about collaborative thinking rather than answers

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Darko Savic
Darko Savic Nov 24, 2020
You would go to Quora when you need answers, but you would come to Brainstorming when:
  • You are working on the creation of new knowledge, a new or significantly improved way of doing something.
  • The answers don't yet exist, are difficult to recognize, or require a team effort to assemble.
  • To join forces with other people in advancing worthy ideas. To participate in the convergence of different perspectives towards a common worthy goal.
  • To synergize with other people in identifying creative solutions to hard problems, especially problems that are inherently diverse in nature.
  • When you need your thought process unstuck and boosted by fresh perspectives.

Before this platform came into existence, I once tried to create this session on biology.stackexchange but was turned away with this message:
He was right. That said, you can brainstorm with people on pretty much any social media platform that will allow it. Youtube's comment section is great for this because there are loads of people and they are interested in the respective video topic. While brainstorming is not what youtube is about, you can still do it there. The fact that people try to do it in places that were not designed for it shows the need for such a platform. We are filling this need.
  • This Brainstorming platform is about maximizing intellectual collaboration.
  • People here have the mindset that anything worthwhile they encounter, they will try to think about constructively/creatively and suggest improvements or worthy additional directions to explore.
  • People here know, that even if the topic is not within their expertise, they can still contribute some useful bits from their unique perspective (synergy of perspectives). Experts can then tie things together by drawing clues from such fresh, unexpected perspectives.
  • You would come here when you want to "think on steroids" and need all the help you can get.
To grossly simplify: Quora and Stackexchange are about answers, Brainstorming is about collaborative thinking.
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Subash Chapagain
Subash Chapagaina year ago
Very nicely put, Darko Savic, you are so clear in your expression. The term 'collaborative thinking' indeed sets this platform apart.
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Antonio Carusillo
Antonio Carusilloa year ago
Indeed this is my thought to: Quora has born to answer question. I think that what we may be missing in my opinion - is to really deliver What Brainstoming is about. You made it clear with both sessions and the newslette, however for some reasons we still experienced sessions which were more indicated for Quora ( lik the sessions about books). I wonder how can we either design the platform or the content to make it really scream " here we brainstorm, if you look for a yea/no answer, it's not really the place "
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Darko Savic
Darko Savica year ago
Antonio CarusilloWe have yet to formulate a definite set of rules and procedures on how to deal with content that doesn't fit the platform. This will be ready by the time moderation tools are launched (a few weeks from now)

The rewritten tour https://docs.google.com/document/d/1W3y1-8eaVPl22LF6X1B2KCLN_Y8bD1KkufE7ddfvcIs/edit?usp=sharing hopefully does a good job defining what goes on here. What do you think?

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