Sean Moorman

Parabolic Forum


Parabolic Forum is an electronic forum that seeks actionable decisions from the collective knowledge of a group of people with a shared interest. Its design principles seek to mimic the act of a community gathering at a public square to make a decision. It wants strong arguments to be made for and against an issue in the interest of persauding the body politic to the merits of a proposal. Its decisions on proposals should be ones that maximize the utility of the group at large without inhibiting desires of the minority.

The forum creates users for each member of a community. A user with access to a community will be able to view, comment, and vote on referenda. Users will have a profile and identity associated with a community and will expect to be verified by a method that can certify they are a member of the community and only registered once for a community they have joined. The profile will associate any group specific details the user wants to provide as well as a personal bio, relevant accredations, interests, education, etc. Communities should be made up of people who have a vested interest in a shared issue. In the case of a community made of members of a cooperative apartment they have a strong shared interest in the maintence and improvement of their building. Parents of a parent teacher association have a strong shared interest in the well being and education of their children.

Small communities like parent teacher associations or coop residents are most likely use to meeting and debating issues in a group setting. They have trust and knowledge about the other members of the group. They should be well equipped to debate and know who is educated on particular subject matters that might be relevant to an issue. For larger communities with less personal interaction a network of trust can be built by and associated with users. Users can verify people they know in the community hold specific credentials or work in a specific occupation that might lend credence on a particular subject matter. They can also increase their trust with a person as they interact with them on the forum.

Firstly, Parabolic Forum wants to enhance debate on subject issues in an informed and respectful manner. Ultimately, Parabolic Forum wants decisions to be made that the group can take action on. For the voting process users will be issued credits for each set of refereda that go for a vote or over the time period that a certain number of referenda are expected to occur. They will use these credits in a quadratic manner to signify their level of desire for or against a particular referendum.

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To participate in the demo on this site create a profile or login. Parabolic Forum is in development and will see features rolled out in the coming weeks. Any feedback, interest, or general conversation items can be sent to me by email (seanmoorman at gmail dot com) or on twitter (smoorman1024).