Not sure that comment was addressed to me as one of the "either", but the new comment was called to my attention, and perhaps I should clarify three points about my comment.
First, I am taking a broad view of "project management" as including all the people and factors that contribute to the ultimate success and failure of a project. That includes knowing the criteria by which success will be evaluated BEFORE the project begins.
Two, my wording about failures was unclear. I was referring to projects sponsored by those three websites, not the metrics of those websites. However, in terms of evaluating such websites, I think the success ratio of the sponsored projects should probably be the most important metric.
Third, I know that I should be more trusting of people, but I am not so rich that I feel like throwing money at every nice sounding project. Of course wealthy donors will check to see how their donations are being spent, but small donors like me need help in seeing what happens, which is the essence of my suggestion. (My version of the broader topic is under "reverse auction charity shares".)
I'm not saying that you would buy anything concrete. This 'reverse auction charity share' idea is still a form of charity, and I think that all you would get for it would be mention on a list of donors. Maybe there would be an incentive program with gold stars. For example, a magazine using this mechanism might give gold stars to the 'early investors' in an article that led to something significant like a Pulitzer Prize.
The main difference is that this is a way that would allow small donors to have some influence and control over the charitable projects. As it stands now, small donors are mostly ignored and have no real idea how their money is spent, whereas large donors get to call the shots.
I think she's legit. She said she would make a bunch of music for the money. I think she was even up front about the kind of music and that not everyone will like her music. However, I have two problems with this approach:
(1) There is no basis to say how much her music is worth. Kickstarter sort of said it was worth over $1 million. More power to her, but really?
(2) What if she just took the money and ran away? Actually, I'm sure that happens pretty often, but I'm even more sure that Kickstarter doesn't talk about those cases on their website.
I think there should be some control over the project. To make it concrete, the people proposing a project should say how much it will cost to do what they propose and how much they want to receive in exchange for doing it. I think the parent organization should even provide help in such things as describing projects in a meaningful way, helping them with the budgeting, and providing evaluation criteria to say whether or not a project was successful. It shouldn't be like a gold mine where people are trying to strike it rich, but if the project does succeed, then they can submit another project, hopefully a more ambitious one.
I actually visualize it as a kind of 'charity brokerage'. Near as I can tell, Kickstarter basically runs a website, but the brokerage would support project management and have a vested interest in helping the projects succeed. My longest description is called 'reverse auction charity shares', for what little that is worth. The idea actually goes back before I ever heard of Kickstarter, IndyGogo or CrowdRise. (I bet there are others by now...)
Thanks for the URL, though I already suspect it is inferior to 'reverse auction charity shares'.
Now for the censorship topic: Ever heard of Nick Hanauer? Not on TED you won't, though his TED talk video is somewhat available elsewhere. I know that interest is a subjective thing, but I really defy you to find anyone who is unable to find at least one talk they find LESS interesting posted on TED. I personally have seen at least a dozen off the top of my head. Actually I think the keywords for this talk would be "true" and "important", or maybe even the local keyword "insightful"--but you will NOT see it on TED.
The reason I mention "interest" is because TED claimed that was the basis for censoring it. In reality, the reason was obviously that what Mr Hanauer said would offend at least some of their rich donors, and TED is VERY interested in keeping the money flowing.
In fact, TED says his topic is so unimportant and uninteresting that they will not even permit discussions of the matter. I actually had the temerity to suggest that it had become MORE relevant at a later time. In case you didn't know, TED moderates all comments. Not just to prevent spam, but to CENSOR topics they don't want discussed. Is it possible that Nick Hanauer's talk has become more interesting over time? I actually think so, and there will be periodic peaks into the future, too--but NOT for any discussion on TED.
I admit that I am really sensitive about censorship. I think even the worst ideas cannot be made to go away simply by pretending they don't exist--but there are plenty of times when good ideas are censored precisely because they bother someone who is defending a worse idea. I'm not sure what is the best example to cite... Did you know that FM radio was effectively censored for many years because GE held the key patents and didn't want to interfere with their profits from AM radio? Or maybe the google's new censorship policies is a better example?
Back to the topic at hand: TED censors certain talks and then lies about why. No TED for me.
Well, that's exactly why I visit it as a kind of charity brokerage. You wouldn't invest in expectation of any profit, though you could choose to be listed on the page of sponsors, or maybe earn a gold star. However, just as a stock brokerage assesses the companies that want to be listed so they can sell shares, the charity brokerage would assess the people who want to do projects.
Actually, at first they should be pretty cautious before they give out the money. Before they get experience in recognizing the trouble signs they should make sure the projects have lots of relatively small milestones and give the funds periodically. However, if someone has a solid track record for past projects, then they can be more flexible.
The essential idea is to give small donors something like the power of large donors. The problem with a large donor project is that it only works until the large donor starts making mistakes. Look at Unbuntu, eh?
Crowdsourced funding needs to be incorporated with project management. I don't have time to say much this morning, but look at "reverse auction charity shares" for one approach. It would basically provide detailed planning WITH a managed budget and evaluation criteria, and the projects would commit after enough donors joined in.
No, the REAL reason it failed was bad project management, though of course you can argue that is the real reason every project fails. Not limited to Kickstarter, of course, but look at the failures of IndyGoGo, CrowdRise, and my personal favorite graveyard of good ideas, SourceForge. Reiterating that I do NOT speak for my large and supposedly successful employer, but there's a reason my employer values and even highly rewards project managers.
My own economic model to solve this problem for charitable projects actually goes back before I ever heard of Kickstarter. The idea is similar, but with integrated project management. "Reverse auction charity shares" if anyone is interesting. Or should I just wish well to an old acquaintance who also struck it rich on Kickstarter with a project that gathered vastly more money than he had proposed? I don't think crowd-based funding should be another kind of lottery or goldmine, but management is hard and I admit that I personally wouldn't want to do it.
I think that Aaron Swartz's death is mostly yet another metric of the increasing insanity of American society. While I still think things will get better over the long term, none of us get to live so long. In particular, I think that secrecy is collapsing at such a rate that pretty soon no one will be able to afford it. I'd like to think that will cure some of the problems, but at least it will change the games...
However, this topic obviously ties to the police trying to gain privacy by deleting recordings. Are you aware that you can set your phone to immediately transfer a copy to a remote server? I use google+, though the increasingly evil google poses its own set of intrusive threats.
Well, I see that I left my story in suspense, and that was about 5 months ago. Anyway, I did receive the new ink cartridge, and it is working well, and I'm even making a bit of an effort to print on a more regular basis in hopes of preventing this one from dying prematurely. I'm not exactly thrilled, but I still think that HP is mostly being treated too harshly in most of the other posts here. (And no, I'm not working anywhere in the HP food chain, though (as mentioned below) I once sold their printers among other brands.)
I offer my poor joke about how all printers after Benjamin Franklin are the spawn of Satan, and their only goal is to mangle and ruin as much paper as possible. Having said that, I basically think that HP is the best of the troubled lot. My own personal experience with printers has been kind of limited to three or four brands over 30+ years, but there was a period when I was in sales in a computer store, and I collected lots of stories from my customers, so I feel like I have a pretty broad view. In conclusion, I feel the printers have mostly gotten less evil over the years, and HP deserves a lot of credit for the inkjet technology that brought color printing to the masses.
Having said that, I doubt I'll refill this particular HP again, so I'll be shopping for a new one when it dies, and support for extremely low-volume printing will be a feature that I'll be searching for.
The Darwinian approach may seem brutal, but the genes are steering backwards. May I strongly recommend The Blind Watchmaker by Richard Dawkins? It is only our human ability to look beyond the fact of death that allows us to create such things as Darwin Awards, and perhaps to learn from the fatal mistake without making it.
Having said that, I think the Darwin Awards need to evolve to be more accurate. There should be categories and rankings depending on the degree of Darwinism involved. In particular, they often award Darwin Awards for people who are too old to reproduce, and in such cases there is no Darwinian penalty. Only a young person who dies from stupidity BEFORE reproducing has truly earned the standard Darwin Award. In contrast, if an older person dies by idiocy while killing some descendents, now that does merit a Darwin Award, perhaps with a gold cluster for each descendent. Of course the grand prize should be reserved for true Darwinian idiots who manage to take their ENTIRE family with them.
"Warranty" means something after all. When I looked at it yet again and more closely, I realized the printer cartridge in question had a FUTURE date written on it. Only two months in the future, but there's still no way to interpret that as a manufacturing date or anything along those lines, at least not without a time machine.
Armed with this new information, I returned to the HP website. That was actually kind of unpleasant because of the language issues, but I don't want to make a big issue of it because when I finally managed to find the right phone number and received the return call from the right person, they quickly agreed to replace the ink cartridge. It hasn't arrived yet, but I'm confident it will soon. The policy of quickly standing behind their warranty actually makes a lot of sense, though I still think they could do a bit better--except that it seems they have now gone the other route...
He told me that the ink cartridges for their their new printers no longer integrate the print head. I actually think this is a bad decision for the consumers, but probably more profitable for HP. I guess I'll have to rest content as a HP shareholder, and just mask my consumer-level dissatisfaction behind the replacement ink cartridge.
Still, on balance I have to give kudos to HP on this one. Not sure if I'll have to buy another printer given how rarely I need to print these years, but I'll probably go with HP if it happens. (Don't get me started on my evil experiences with printers...)
For whatever it's worth, I've seen this kind of thing repeatedly with my oldish HP 2750 printer. However, I'm pretty sure it can't be hard-coded on a date in the print cartridge. One reason is that HP can't be sure the printer will know the correct date. Even if it's a network printer, it may not have any access to a time server. The other reason is just from the evidence of my latest round of experiences. First it fails, then it works, then it fails, then it works... Right now it's working, and the sensor apparently reports 3/4 full, but I definitely haven't printed much with this cartridge.
Having said that, I don't print a lot and this printer has been fairly problematic over the years. Less so than other brands I've tried, but about par for HP. My guess is that it's just in their interest to allow the ink to clot up after a while. It's confusing because touching a tissue to the print head seems to show plenty of ink coming out, but I'm guessing the ink has actually changed its consistency enough so that the printer thinks it's dry. Perhaps there is a temperature-related aspect, too.
If you want to put it in more polite terms, why should HP try to make print heads that last a long time even if you only print a little? They just optimize for the needs of most of their customers, and you can always 'restore' the printer with a new print cartridge since that includes a new print head.
Yeah, I feel a bit swindled with ink that I didn't use, and I wish they sold an even smaller cartridge for my case, but it's still better to spend $30 for a new cartridge than much more for a new printer--except that the new printer would have various new features.
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