Phil 10.31.17

7:00 – 4:30 ASRC MKT

    • Wrote up notes from yesterday’s meeting
    • Look for JCMC requirements
    • Change the rest of the “we” to “I” in the DC, then submit. Done, did a spell check because I had forgotten to integrate a spell checker!
    • Saw this today on the Google Research Blog: Closing the Simulation-to-Reality Gap for Deep Robotic Learning. In it they show how simulation can be used to improve deep learning because of the vast increase in conditions that can be simulated rather than found or built in the real world. The reason that it’s important in my work is that the simulation can feed and support the training of the classifiers once the simulation becomes sufficiently realistic.
    • Because I can’t stop reading horrible things, ordered Totalitarianism, Terrorism and Supreme Values: History and Theory, by  Peter Bernholz
    • Not the most exciting thing, but yay!
      ID	posted		message					playerID	parentID
      1	1509458541	message 0 of 20 by Abbe, Karleen	5	6	
      2	1509458541	message 1 of 20 by Abbey, Abbi	7	6	
      3	1509458541	message 2 of 20 by Abbey, Abbi, responding to message 1	7	6	2
      4	1509458542	message 3 of 20 by Abbe, Karleen, responding to message 2	5	6	3
      5	1509458542	message 4 of 20 by Abbe, Karleen, responding to message 1	5	6	2
      6	1509458542	message 5 of 20 by Abbe, Karleen, responding to message 4	5	6	5
      7	1509458542	message 6 of 20 by Abbe, Karleen, responding to message 3	5	6	4
      8	1509458542	message 7 of 20 by Abbe, Karleen, responding to message 1	5	6	2
      9	1509458542	message 8 of 20 by Abbe, Karleen, responding to message 1	5	6	2
      10	1509458542	message 9 of 20 by Aaren, Abbie, responding to message 2	3	6	3
      11	1509458542	message 10 of 20 by Abbey, Abbi, responding to message 5	7	6	6
      12	1509458542	message 11 of 20 by Abbe, Karleen, responding to message 10	5	6	11
      13	1509458542	message 12 of 20 by Abbey, Abbi, responding to message 7	7	6	8
      14	1509458542	message 13 of 20 by Aaren, Abbie	3	6	
      15	1509458542	message 14 of 20 by Abbe, Karleen, responding to message 8	5	6	9
      16	1509458542	message 15 of 20 by Abbe, Karleen, responding to message 11	5	6	12
      17	1509458542	message 16 of 20 by Abbe, Karleen	5	6	
      18	1509458542	message 17 of 20 by Abbe, Karleen, responding to message 4	5	6	5
      19	1509458542	message 18 of 20 by Aaren, Abbie, responding to message 14	3	6	15
      20	1509458542	message 19 of 20 by Aaren, Abbie, responding to message 2	3	6	3
    • cleaning up some cases where scenario is set to null. Fixed. It’s the first array index problem. Grrrrr. Ok, broke some things trying to make things better….
    • Then it’s time to make some REST interfaces
    • Meeting with Cindy. Much progress!
      • User-specified scenarios, seeded with some fun topics like conspiracy theories
      • Private deliberations.
      • Esperanto for verdict: verdikto
      • Lobbies for collecting users
      • Game starts when an DM-specified minimum is met, though there may be time to accumulate into a max as well
      • Game ‘dies’ if no contribution (by all players?) in a certain window
      • One user can kill a game by withdrawing. This can be attached to a user (troll), so the player can anonymously block in the future
      • Games can be respawned, optionally without a triggering troll from the last time
      • Games/Scenarios can be cloned
      • Highest-quality games that reach a verdict are featured on the site. Quality could be determined by tagging or NLP+heuristics.


2 thoughts on “Phil 10.31.17

  1. Cindy Flatley

    Meeting recap:

    The big breakthrough to come out of this meeting is the idea of allowing users to generate their own scenarios to discuss to unanimity.
    – Scenario questions could range across diverse topics, from ethical scenarios to conspiracies to pop culture, “What did the ending of Lost mean?” “Who really killed JFK?” “What if there’s a zombie outbreak on a plane?” etc.
    – Scenarios would need to have debatable suggestions that people can convince others to agree to (not judgments of right/wrong, just reaching consensus).
    – We could seed some initial scenarios into the system, from the ethical dilemmas or conspiracy theories list.
    – Users would need:
    * Edit scenarios
    * Send invites, set min/max participants
    * Clone scenarios (Open a new round of the same discussion)
    * Scenario limits
    ^ How long to wait for people to join
    ^ Minimum and maximum numbers of people joining (4-12?) (If minimum participants not met, kill game or ask creator to respawn? If maximum hits, respawn new instance?)
    ^ How long to keep scenario active
    # How long after the last activity?
    # Set a time limit to reach a consensus?
    # Close scenario upon reaching unanimous agreement
    * Phases:
    ^ Create/clone/edit scenario question
    ^ Joining, including inviting
    ^ Activity – Posting, replying, up or down voting, agreement
    ^ End – reaching agreement, end of waiting period after last activity, quitting (we might want to track how many quit, who quits, who else in in room, etc)
    # When someone quits, ask if sure and provide options:
    + Quit
    + Respawn scenario, reinvite some existing group members (presumably excluding a troll)
    + Respawn and edit scenario
    – As NationStates has a ticker (World Activity), we discussed options of what to display to visitors
    * Scenario creation
    * Lobby of scenarios open to join or clone
    * Comments across all games ticker (maybe also rankings of participants, like top games won, top contributions, top upvote/agree?, to encourage participation)
    * Completed games (highest quality)
    ^ Show scenario question with agreed-upon answer and click-through to entire discussion
    ^ Allow users to clone scenarios to have their own discussions about the topic
    ^ Allow users/observers to rate quality? (Use ratings/reviews as tagging to train system to identify quality discussions)
    * Private games (by account)
    – Options for private, invite-only discussions, like “What should we do about getting good care for Grandma as her health declines?”
    * Minimum participants – 2
    * Phil said it would be nice for people to be able to refer back to these scenarios in the future.
    * I think this might be a useful tool for families, businesses, etc., and may benefit from some additional design/tools that help encourage groups to reach unanimity.
    * Security considerations to protect private data/sensitive discussions
    – Options to encourage people to have high quality discussions
    * Playing for fun tends to produce different results than playing for money
    * Incentivize people to have high quality discussions (rewards based on quality, track contributions and upvotes/agreement, display highest-quality discussions to site visitors, allow observers to rate)
    – Needs a catchy, easy-to-pronounce, easy-to-spell name. Phil likes “Verdikto.” He suggests we could bootstrap the name through discussion. 🙂

    On the game user interface:
    – Scenario and comments in the center, group members bottom right, game agreement level top right, possible posting of trending terms/suggestions on the left. (new – We might need a tab or pull-down for user account info, status of score, etc., on top right. Also, although I originally designed with user avatar pictures in the suggestions space, it wouldn’t necessarily be needed when showing the teammates just to the right of the chat; usernames should be sufficient and save space.)
    – Phil likes the interface of the Twitter desktop and the Facebook mobile layout. Mobile design constraints need consideration.
    – Phil liked the idea of having an agreement button that can only be used for one suggestion at a time during the discussion. We will probably need a means of showing how many others in the group have agreed to each suggestion – probably a number display or pie-chart background – and design needs to be clear when it’s used, maybe making the button glow and all others gray out, and it needs to be easily undo-able, probably using a single click.
    – Though I initially suggested a disagree button as well, I don’t think Phil thought it would be necessary and I think I agree. Upvotes or downvotes will probably work just as well for this purpose.
    – I’d suggested adding an upvote button, to allow people to mark a suggestion as good even if they don’t agree with it. Phil extended this suggestion by suggesting that it might be some sort of analog slider between upvote and downvote, to get a better view of positive or negative sentiment. (My initial thoughts on that are to create an upvoter tool that allows you to pull the arrow up or down, but not sure how to make that utility obvious to users.)
    – I’d suggested a “flag for trolling” button. Phil pointed out that rather than putting up with trolling, a good way to deal with trolling would be for the user to just quit the game. It would come at a cost – the progress in the discussion would essentially be lost – but the cost would also apply to the troll, which would act as a disincentive for both trolling and rage quitting. So this could be achieved through a quit button. (I’m thinking right bottom, right below the group members, because it would be well away from the other buttons and also below the agreement display and group members to remind the user that quitting will have a cost for everyone involved.)

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