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mySociety.org's Future Use

FROM: Jake

What NEED does this meet?
As can be seen from this site, there are a lot of us with a lot of ideas, and a lot of these have already been deeloped: we either just don't know about their existence, partly because they're hard to find, or they aren't up to sufficient standard. A couple of these ideas will (hopefully) be funded/run by mySociety.org in the near future. A lot will not. However, no doubt many of these ideas will still be developed external to the charity.

This site can therefore continue with its current use (submission and discussion of future proposals) whilst encouraging visitors to get together and develop ideas not taken on by the charity themselves, whilst also providing a one-stop database of useful projects already existing, ranked in various ways. The web is a maze of information: mySociety.org can help to lead us through that maze.

What is the APPROACH?
It must be search oriented. If you've got an idea for a web system, searching on various keywords will find if the idea already exists or whether there are fellow visitors who wish to develop a similar idea. Visitors will add links to existing sites, ranking those sites on various scales such as '8/10 usabiilty', '5/10 features', '3/10 privacy/spam related' and writing about important features such as 'owned by Zurich', 'non-profit organisation', 'patents restrictively owned by site owner' or 'site needs development help'.

As in discussion forums, users will have 'moderator' etc. powers. Certain users will write-up features on ideas and also showcase ideas in need of help.

Perhaps, when an idea or system reaches a critical mass, mySociety.org can help sponsor it if needed.

What are the BENEFITS to people?
We're all here, we all want to help 'make the world a better place', so let's start doing it! Let's not replicate our ideas again and again, creating a de-centralised mess of information which ultimately fails due to reduced user levels at each site.

What is the COMPETITION?
Google links to web pages, as do all search engines/directories. But we don't want to just link to web pages, but to web systems. Halfbakery.com and various other sites discuss ideas, but they don't follow those ideas on into development.

This idea will link idea creation and consolidation with real world development.

What BUDGET & LOGISTICS are required?
Very low budget. The biggest obstacle will be creating a self-moderating and autonomous system. When launched, a good PR and marketing campaign is crucial to ensure the site becomes *the* site for its purpose, and not just creating another fish in the ocean.

October 31, 2003 in mySociety.org improvement suggestion | Permalink