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Technocrat.net Shut Down

timothy posted more than 5 years ago | from the best-wishes-good-luck-and-too-bad dept.

The Media 326

twitter writes "Bruce Perens has pulled the plug on Technocrat.net. 'The technocrat.net public discussion site is shut down. This has happened because the site never achieved the ability to financially sustain its editorial staff and system expenses with its revenues. When it became evident that Technocrat was un-viable as a business, I found that I did not wish to keep supporting the site as a hobby. Certain elements of the community that developed here, unfortunately, creep me out. At the end I faced the decision of asking for donations to keep the site running, or letting it die, and it became clear to me that I'd feel better if it would just die. I am very busy building a new software business, with some great new (and yet unannounced) Open Source software in development. I must focus on that for now. Best holiday wishes to you all.'"

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326 comments

eat my shorts, slashdot !! (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#26234371)

Eat my shorts, slashdot !!

Dear Bruce, (1)

donstenk (74880) | more than 5 years ago | (#26234373)

happy New Year to you too. Pity I missed out on the creepy community. Never heard of that forum. Just as well that is gone then.

Re:Dear Bruce, (4, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#26234391)

It's a shame. I thrive on reading the work of trolls and the drama they incite. Can't say I'm much good at trolling myself, but that's they way it goes.

Anyway, I think that's why Slashdot succeeds. It strikes the right balance between interesting and informative content, misguided zealotry, blatant outright trolls and vandalism.

I read it as much for the Unix pissing contents as I do for the antics of the various trolls.

It's tough competition.

P.S. Long live twitter. :P

Re:Dear Bruce, (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#26234393)

I've never been to Technocrat, but here's my story:

I dropped a brown rope this morning the size of a small black child. At one point, I wasn't sure if I was taking a shit, or it the shit was taking me. And while I'm on that point, what's the deal with taking a shit? Shouldn't it be leaving a shit? I'm certainly not taking anything with me when I'm done.

But back on topic, Technocrat suck ass.

Re:Dear Bruce, (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#26234397)

Uh, ever heard of 4chan?

Re:Dear Bruce, (5, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#26234433)

Yeah, it's okay, but it doesn't get the balance right. Balance, man. It's all about balance.

Re:Dear Bruce, (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#26234479)

Oh for some goddamn modpoints!!

Re:Dear Bruce, (0, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#26234459)

I'm with you buddy. The troll quality on slashdot has gone down, replaced with copypasta. Occassionally, I'll see something so outrageous (like n*gg*r instruction manual) it makes me laugh.
One thing you might do is post a "mirror" of the article with a comment somewhere in the middle about CmdrTaco molesting a boy. Another thing you can do is claim to know the person in question, then make over-the-top-but-still-plausible claims about them.

If all else fails, post instructions for having dolphin sex or amputating your pecker.

Re:Dear Bruce, (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#26234495)

Personally, I miss the GNAA. They were trolls of great artifice.

Re:Dear Bruce, (5, Insightful)

Sheetrock (152993) | more than 5 years ago | (#26234873)

Fuck trolling. Every time I start getting into a good thread about the relative merits of the GPL vis a vis the BSD license, or a deep legal examination of the ramifications of massive copyright theft, or the advantages of using strongly statically typed languages like Perl over Python for implementing LAMP servers... whammo, there's something gaping, oozing, or epitheting the middle of a decent conversation.

Enough already. Why don't you guys go troll a worthier target already, like the mainstream media or Canada. We're trying to literally make the future of the Internet here and you're ruining all over it.

Re:Dear Bruce, (4, Insightful)

Neoprofin (871029) | more than 5 years ago | (#26234923)

Wait, is that delusions of granduer or a God complex? Both?

Can't say I like the trolls, but pretending that what happens on the semi-productive section of Slashdot is of some grand importance seems like a bit of a reach.

Re:Dear Bruce, (5, Informative)

Daengbo (523424) | more than 5 years ago | (#26234493)

I can't believe you don't remember the "great exodus" maybe five/six years ago. A bunch of people (mostly the journal writers) left Slashdot for Technocrat. I don't remember the reason for the boycott. Sorry about that. I think it had something to do with deleted posts and editor mod points.

The stories on TC were really good to start with and the conversation was clean. The platform was slashcode. The site worked pretty well for a month or two, but then died out. I've checked in on it a couple times a year since then.

Re:Dear Bruce, (2, Interesting)

Whiteox (919863) | more than 5 years ago | (#26234767)

Actually, I saw in Google Zeitgeist that Slashdot readership is also gradually falling last 12 months). I wonder if it is the case with other forum type sites?

Re:Dear Bruce, (2, Interesting)

khallow (566160) | more than 5 years ago | (#26235027)

Looks like the cause is Facebook [google.com] . Alexa shows it [alexa.com] as well. Alexa has facebook going from 4% of "daily reach" to 13%. Given that the site serves a similar sort of purpose as Slashdot, I think it's sucking readers away. Here's a comparison [google.com] with the top sites [alexa.com] that Google will allow you to compare facebook to (they don't list statistics for google.com or youtube.com).

Re:Dear Bruce, (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#26234795)

I can't believe you don't remember the "great exodus" maybe five/six years ago. A bunch of people (mostly the journal writers) left Slashdot for Technocrat.

Yes, thereby greatly improving the quality of both sites.....

neverheardofit (3, Funny)

sleekware (1109351) | more than 5 years ago | (#26234525)

"neverheardofit" would be a good tag for this article. It could be just me, but I've been reading tech news sites for a few years now and haven't heard of this one...

Creeping him out? (3, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#26234375)

What is?

A shame. (4, Interesting)

haeger (85819) | more than 5 years ago | (#26234379)

I enjoyed technocrat while it lasted. I got to understand a lot about americans and how they think. Especially those who don't share my "european liberal views" have been very interesting to communicate with.

I think that I've learned a lot about human cultures from technocrat. Sad to see it go.

And I hope I'm not one of the ones that creep Bruce out. ;-)

 

.haeger

Re:A shame. (-1, Troll)

.Bruce Perens (150539) | more than 5 years ago | (#26234791)

haeger,

I am very fond of many of the posts you made to the forum. I would like to continue communication with you even though the site is down. I do hope that you have more pictures of yourself with bananas stuffed up your asshole.

Re:A shame. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#26234963)

Note the . in front of the name, a troll account impersonating another.

Re:A shame. (2, Insightful)

Neoprofin (871029) | more than 5 years ago | (#26234993)

From what I just read in a later post about some of the writers there I hope you don't think think right-wing survival nuts, "sovereign citizens", income tax evaders, so on and so forth are anything but the most thin of a fringe group of people.

There are plenty of people who own guns, or who keep some emergency food on hand just in case some disaster should befall them. Most of them were somewhat vindicated for their beliefs when Rita and Katrina hit, but they are normal everyday folks. Talking to them about disaster preparedness is awful, but that's true with a lot of people on a lot of things.

If you were just being sincer forget I said anything.

Again? (4, Informative)

Chyeld (713439) | more than 5 years ago | (#26234385)

January 04, 2001 (8:00:00 AM) - 7 years, 11 months ago [linux.com]

Bruce Perens: "Well, it's been about a year and a half, and unfortunately Technocrat.net has not flourished. I take the blame, I've not had enough time to run the site, and plans to fund a professional staff for the site fell through. Readership has gone low enough that there's no longer much reason to keep the site alive. Thus, I will no longer be accepting new articles or comments, and will take the site down in a week or so."

Re:Again? A fake (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#26234425)

That's is a fake

Re:Again? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#26234523)

Can I have the domain?

But looks permanent this time (5, Interesting)

an.echte.trilingue (1063180) | more than 5 years ago | (#26234741)

It was shut down before, but Bruce had this to say on the site:

Hi Folks. Well, a lot of you seem to be disappointed about the site shutting down, and several people have offered to keep it going. I've turned down those offers. Technocrat was intended to get technology experts (us) involved in technology policy. It didn't succeed in that, although it was a good discussion site. The goal of getting people involved in tech policy is still a good one.

Thus, Technocrat will be re-launched with a new format. It will not be a discussion site any longer. Instead, it will offer tech stories and legislation alerts to be syndicated by other web sites, including discussion sites. There will also be some other features that I'll keep quiet about until the new site is on the air.

The goal is still to get more technology experts involved in setting technology policy.

Thanks
Bruce

That new format was slashcode, but looking at the most recent archives, he was only getting a couple posts per story (prolly mostly from twitter). Of course, slashcode's moderation system exists to try to separate the cream from the milk, but at the volumes he was getting, it was all just yogurt. To bad, though.

Re:But looks permanent this time (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#26234995)

That new format was slashcode

If I recall correctly, the relaunch involved a rewrite for Ruby on Rails, and at the beginning, had virtually no features beyond simple login.

community (2, Interesting)

Councilor Hart (673770) | more than 5 years ago | (#26234399)

Certain elements of the community that developed here, unfortunately, creep me out.

I am not familiar with the community at Technocrat or the site itself for that matter. Anyone care to elaborate?

Re:community (2, Funny)

phunhippy (86447) | more than 5 years ago | (#26234405)

they are a creepy community obviously!

Re:community (5, Funny)

noidentity (188756) | more than 5 years ago | (#26234431)

I am not familiar with the community at Technocrat or the site itself for that matter. Anyone care to elaborate?

Come on man, just visit the website and see for yourself. Er, oh...

Re:community (0, Offtopic)

Councilor Hart (673770) | more than 5 years ago | (#26234445)

This is \. Even if I could, I wouldn't read the article. Or in this case, visit the website.

Re:community (1)

Councilor Hart (673770) | more than 5 years ago | (#26234457)

Too much \latex today.

Re:community (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#26234473)

Too much latextoday?

Re:community (1)

Councilor Hart (673770) | more than 5 years ago | (#26234551)

It is /. and not \.
Latex, which I have been using the last few days uses \ for commands (e.g. \frac{}{}).

Re:community (1)

tehBoris (1120961) | more than 5 years ago | (#26235065)

If you don't put a {} pair after \LaTeX there won't be any spaces between it and the next word :-)

Re:community (1, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#26234435)

Check out the story submitter. Coincidence?

Re:community (2, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#26234491)

BWAHAHAHAHA

OH SHIT, I can just imagine it

Perens: Wow, I can't believe it -this story has 30 whole comments from -what is this? Ten new users!

*checks the IP logs*

Perens: Oh -wait. what? Aw Fuck I can't believe this shit!

*closes website*

kaptcha: "decayed"

Re:community (1)

JonJ (907502) | more than 5 years ago | (#26234577)

It's just copypasted off technocrat.net though, so it's not twitter that has written it. AFAIK.

Re:community (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#26234723)

Think the other way around.

Re:community (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#26234469)

> Certain elements of the community that developed here, unfortunately, creep me out.

Obviously he's referring to individual DEVELOPERS there who creep him out.

Begs the question, why not just fire them?

Might help the whole "business viability" thing.

Everyone's doing it.

Re:community (1)

Councilor Hart (673770) | more than 5 years ago | (#26234585)

I don't think that is how the sentence should be read. You don't refer to people as elements, you would use members to do so.
I read it as that a certain mindset within the community creeps him out. A mindset that was not originally present, and certainly not planned for. I am merely wondering what that would be.

Re:community (5, Funny)

sleeponthemic (1253494) | more than 5 years ago | (#26234509)

Certain elements of the community that developed here, unfortunately, creep me out.

I am not familiar with the community at Technocrat or the site itself for that matter. Anyone care to elaborate?

There has been some talk of scripting a live action Jar Jar Binks movie on there.

Re:community (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#26234759)

Jar Jar Binks is adorable.

Re:community (2, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#26234549)

It was all the guys fawning over the famous Bruce Perens and pesterim him to send them his used underwear. In the end Bruce relented and open sourced the "blueprints" for his underwear, but it was too little too late.

Re:community (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#26234749)

Bruce relented and open sourced the "brownprints" for his underwear

FTFY.

Re:community (5, Informative)

bhima (46039) | more than 5 years ago | (#26234659)

I had been reading Technocrat daily for I guess 9 or 10 years, I can't really comment on what facets of the community that Bruce objected to, so I will comment only on my observations.

The regular contributors of Technocrat were a pretty small group, so whenever one (or perhaps some) found themselves with a lot of spare time and an axe to grind they became the center of gravity of the site and swung the nature of the site to their particular interest, gripe, political view... or whatever. As contributors lost employment, ended relationships, faced large medical bills, and whatever other trials and tribulations people face they have a tendency to become vocal and extreme (while this is apparent to me in hindsight, as a daily observer, it can not possibly be apparent to casual readers).

The summary of the interests of the regular contributors includes disaster preparedness and self sufficiency... which occasionally crossed the line of rationality took on the appearance of armed lunatics holed up in their self constructed secret bunkers, prepared for a shooting war with both revenuers and the starving populous streaming out of the cities (and sometimes I suspected they expected zombies).

I know that a couple of the regulars have mental health issues and I suspect the number to be slightly higher than just 2. Not that I in anyway hold this against them... but I often wondered how our (very public) conversations must look to the outside world.

On several occasions, the world's circumstances focused most of the community on a single topic for comparatively long durations... and for some reason convinced the group that they were experts. The most recent of which is the global international econpocalypse, which convinced most of the group that they were expert economists, bankers, politicians, &tc. The result of this was long passionate diatribes of thinly veiled bigotries and prejudices of every possible flavor (which we all have)... Which naturally created flame wars increasing in extremist rhetoric. Combined with the interests I described above, the theme on Technocrat would take on this protracted dommerish theme... Perhaps we were never really able to overcome "John Gabriel's Greater Internet Fuckwad Theory".

Some of the most frequent Technocrat contributors habitually proselytized non-mainstream ideology which I personally found alarming and repugnant: Market Fundamentalist / Extremist Libertarianism, Nationalism & Jingoism, Christian Reconstructionism, Militancy, Fascism, Racism ... it's a profoundly scary list.

Oh... and naturally we had trolls: two of them.

Now having said all of that... I feel like I should make a few disclaimers:

I was a contributor of technocrat. I also participated in these discussions and I also injected my own bigotries and prejudices into the conversation. Doubtless some christians and or capitalists were uncomfortable with or offended by some of my past comments. However I am not doing so in ostensibly in connection with my private business enterprise... this is a point lost on many of my fellow contributors at Technocrat, I think. And in this way I feel that we treated Bruce unfairly. Bruce is an important member of the Open Source community and it was very gracious of him to provide a sand box (or perhaps soap box) for us to play in. However I don't think we sufficiently recognized how the resultant community reflected on him.

If you look here on Slashdot you will find all of this, and more, in a single day... but generally it is overwhelmed by the volume of normal and reasonable comments... and the moderation system. such that it is.

You may get the impression that I intensely dislike many of the regulars at Technocrat. For the most part this is not the case, nearly all of them are good people, I would gladly have a number of them over to dinner and introduce to my "in real life" family. (excepting the trolls of course).

I have to say, I am profoundly disappointed in Bruce's decision. BUT, I completely understand and agree with it. I think Bruce is a really great guy... and I'd much rather see that he have more of an impact in our community than just running Technocrat

Re:community (4, Insightful)

Goaway (82658) | more than 5 years ago | (#26234769)

Sounds like you got a larger than usual dose of The Internet in there. It can get pretty caustic when concentrated!

Seriously, you'll see the same thing happen anywhere where self-declared smart people congregate. Slashdot gets some of it, reddit gets even more of it, and so on. I can see why Bruce would just want to get rid of the whole mess, if it got that bad.

Re:community (3, Insightful)

Neoprofin (871029) | more than 5 years ago | (#26235021)

It's always fun trying to explain away that assumption that some people seem to get that there's a right or wrong answer to anything, and that even if there was people wouldn't choose a wrong answer because it's more fitting to their personal opinions.

Dealing with a large group of people who think they know everything, and this is true for slashdot as well, is frequently boring, sometimes highly enlightening, and always at risk of showing just what terrifying abuse a person will subject truth and reason to.

Thanks for the information! (2, Interesting)

King_TJ (85913) | more than 5 years ago | (#26234891)

I, too, was never a user of Technocrat. (As many of us on Slashdot as are saying the same, no wonder it wasn't self-sustaining as a business model!)

But it sounds like I web site I would have enjoyed, actually.

I think you bring up a really interesting point about people tending to become more "vocal and extreme" in their opinions when faced with adversity in their personal lives. If I look in the mirror, I realize I spent more time on the net ranting about political issues while I was going through a divorce. I'm not sure if I was saying more "extreme" things than I really believed though? Possibly ... but I think it was more a matter of wanting to get things off my chest. Ideas of mine I may have "watered down" otherwise, in the interest of promoting a more open discussion, I probably tended to speak "exactly as I felt" instead.

In any case though, you can find plenty of places to voice opinions on the Internet. If you want to be verbal about it, you can podcast or create a series of youtube videos. More often, it's put in writing, anyplace from blogs to Slashdot or ArsTechnica, or even anonymous Craigslist forums.

The problem is, most of those places either let you control the direction of the whole discussion (such as making your own podcast or blog), or the political commentary is secondary to the overall "theme" of the site (such as Technology and Science themed web sites where it always creeps in).

Technocrat sounds like the entire theme WAS political discussion, and let's face it - politics is ugly. So I can see how the site would have some "disturbing qualities" to it. It comes with that territory.

Re:community (2, Interesting)

karnowski (313582) | more than 5 years ago | (#26234953)

I also participated in the conversation regularly. Who do you think were the two trolls?

Re:community (0)

Bartab (233395) | more than 5 years ago | (#26235013)

Doubtless some christians and or capitalists were uncomfortable with or offended by some of my past comments.

Two things really creep me out in this world: People who present a dogma of the lack of faith as somehow superior to a dogma of faith, and those who continue to press economic systems that are known to be fundamental failures.

You sir, encompass both categories.

Creepy (1)

ultrabot (200914) | more than 5 years ago | (#26234407)

Typically, announcemet about shutting a site down would have more of a "we had a good ride, and the great atmosphere of the site will be missed" tone to it. Here, we have quite the opposite, and nosy personalities will surely want to know the dirty details...

(Apart from the obvious ones,such as the internet being full of a*holes)

Re:Creepy (2, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#26234413)

(Apart from the obvious ones,such as the internet being full of a*holes)

Yeah, like Bruce Perens.

(Sorry, it had to be said. And yes, feel free to add me to the list, too; I deserve it.)

Re:Creepy (1)

m.ducharme (1082683) | more than 5 years ago | (#26234705)

Except we can't add you to the list, as you're an anonymous coward.

Re:Creepy (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#26234845)

Except we can't add you to the list, as you're an anonymous coward.

That guy creeps me out.

Re:Creepy (3, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#26234421)

I'm gonna guess he got a lot of "ZOMG BRUSE PERENS" sycophants, and was unable to financially justify continuing the site. Hell, last time I looked if a story had two comments in it, it was a red-letter day.

Basically he thought he could throw up a slash installation and that a community would magically form around it. It didn't; and instead he got trolls, jerks and brown-nosers (you know -the usual /. fare).

I always thought perens was decent enough, seeing him here on /.; but it looks like he's just as full of himself as ESR.

Re:Creepy (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#26234709)

I always thought perens was decent enough, seeing him here on /.; but it looks like he's just as full of himself as ESR.

Ha! Compared to Perens, ESR is the acme of humility!

Re:Creepy (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#26234747)

Well, you sure have to be pretty full of yourself to make a public announcement on slashdot about closing down a website almost no one has heard of.

Classic Perens.

Re:Creepy (2, Informative)

Dun Malg (230075) | more than 5 years ago | (#26234933)

No, Twitter submitted the article, which consists of 9 words of his own, followed by a copy-paste quotation from Bruce.

...or are you saying that Twitter is a Bruce Perens sock puppet?!?!?! (ZOMGWTF!)

Re:Creepy (1)

drinkypoo (153816) | more than 5 years ago | (#26234517)

Typically, announcemet about shutting a site down would have more of a "we had a good ride, and the great atmosphere of the site will be missed" tone to it. Here, we have quite the opposite, and nosy personalities will surely want to know the dirty details...

That's because this is just another bid for attention, like the last time he "took the site down". This time maybe he'll really do it, before bringing up a new site.

(Apart from the obvious ones,such as the internet being full of a*holes)

Those are speed holes.

Re:Creepy (1)

wilder_card (774631) | more than 5 years ago | (#26234761)

ultrabot said:"(Apart from the obvious ones,such as the internet being full of a*holes)" Really? I hadn't noticed! ;)

Running a crap slashdot knock off unprofitable? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#26234409)

Whoda thunk it?

Good (-1, Flamebait)

midnighttoadstool (703941) | more than 5 years ago | (#26234415)

Anyone who supports Stallman is supporting the philosophy of failure, the creed of ignorance, and the gospel of envy.

Re:Good (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#26234429)

In short: they're wrong, they refuse to accept they're wrong and they're jealous of the people who are right?

Re:Good (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#26234743)

Spot effing on.

Re:Good (1)

loonycyborg (1262242) | more than 5 years ago | (#26234443)

What do does this rant based on strawman arguments has to do with Technocrat.net?

Re:Good (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#26234453)

I think Churchill said it about communism.

Re:Good (-1, Troll)

midnighttoadstool (703941) | more than 5 years ago | (#26234559)

Stallman's philosophy, of which Perens is a supper and not just a fan, is anti-business. The failure for commercial reasons of his enterprise is fitting and just.

Re:Good (1)

loonycyborg (1262242) | more than 5 years ago | (#26234973)

Stallman's philosophy, of which Perens is a supper and not just a fan, is anti-business.

I'm sorry that Stallman's philosophy hurts your religious feelings, but it's just a philosophy. Get a life.

Re:Good (1)

midnighttoadstool (703941) | more than 5 years ago | (#26235043)

Feelings, religion? Consider that you might be presuming upon a Vulcan.

In anycase "it's just a philosophy" is an illogical response. Marxism could be called 'just a philosophy', but equally with Stallman's position it causes human misery and removes human satisfactions by contradicting your nature.

I merely point this matters out for your information, since I am not affected by them in anyway, so that you may live long and prosper.

Re:Good (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#26234471)

I suggest we have a witch trial to smell out those who are guilty of Stallmanism. If you ever used the GPL for anything... good luck getting a job, you dirty Stallmanie. All you pinko BSD people had better watch out too - you're next!

Yours sincerely,
J McCarthy
Council for Anti-Microsoft Activities

Re:Good (-1, Flamebait)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#26234519)

Soviet Russia achieved more under Stalin in 10 years than what took most of the Western hemisphere a century.

But let me digress a moment: the idea that envy is wrong is a very Abrahamic one. Judaism and its offshoots have all been about keeping people suffering today with the promise of high life in the afterlife. Great con; now eat your gruel and continue to pay tithes to your master. As part of this, people have been taught that it is wrong to envy.

Nuh-uh. It's very human to want what someone else has, and perfectly natural to question - and object to - someone having more than you. It was the gospel of envy that freed the slaves and gave the vote to women. May envy continue to motivate progress, and leave contentment to those who prefer stagnation.

I hate living in the Western "free" world, and would love to have lived in a Russia of the '20s, or a Soviet Union of the '70s, where I would have been thoroughly nurtured for my abilities in mathematics, and been given the opportunity to maintain an establishment based on egalitarianism (at least in the first period, and far closer than anything in the West in the second). Those with less mental acuity, less opportunity and worse physical health would have, through the gospel of envy, rightly hated me had I not lived in a system designed to lift them toward me, while at the same time not lifting me too high.

Academia maintains rigour and mental preparedness but stifles productivity; I refuse to enter industry until the appearance of another state which comes at least remotely close to the ideals of communism. Fortunately, I am still young, and look forward to the rise and fall of new empires in the next 20-30 years.

(Incidentally, if on reading this you think "but look at the great conditions in which I live in the free world!" then you are the minority kulak so hated in early communist Russia not just because of the gospel of envy but because you were honestly blind to just how much better off you are than the average man living in your country. Because you measure the worth of yourself and your country by your ability to buy ten televisions rather than two, you are rightly destroyed as useless and harmful.)

Re:Good (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#26234693)

Soviet Russia achieved more under Stalin in 10 years than what took most of the Western hemisphere a century.

In Russia, you make progress. In Capitalist America, progress make you!

Re:Good (3, Informative)

MRe_nl (306212) | more than 5 years ago | (#26234917)

"Soviet Russia achieved more under Stalin in 10 years than what took most of the Western hemisphere a century."

What, 20 million dead Russians?
Some archival researchers have estimated the number of victims of Stalin's repressions to be 4 million in total or less, others believe the number to be considerably higher.Russian writer Vadim Erlikman, for example, makes the following estimates: executions, 1.5 million; gulags, 5 million; deportations, 1.7 million out of 7.5 million deported; and POWs and German civilians, 1 million - a total of about 9 million victims of repression.

Some have also included the 6 to 8 million victims of the 1932-1933 famine as victims of repression. This categorization is controversial however, as historians differ as to whether the famine was a deliberate part of the campaign of repression against kulaks or simply an unintended consequence of the struggle over forced collectivization.

Certainly, it appears a minimum of around 10 million surplus deaths--4 million by repression and 6 million from famine -- are attributable to the regime, with a number of recent books suggesting a likely total of around 20 million.Adding 6-8 million famine victims to Erlikman's estimates above, for example, would yield a total of between 15 and 17 million victims. Researcher Robert Conquest, meanwhile, has revised his original estimate of up to 30 million victims down to 20 million.Others continue to maintain their earlier much higher estimates are correct.

Re:Good (3, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#26234959)

If you read your history there's a period from ~1910-1940 or so when the Soviets were far and away accomplishing more than the west: they built up modern roads and water systems and electrified their nations over that period, while the west dragged its heels and fell into the great depression.

They never really recovered from losing ~15m lives in WWII.

Bringing up the body count is certainly a fair critique, but you have to have some kind of blinders on to think it's in any way a uniquely soviet thing: if you include "surplus" deaths over all of American history, you have to bring in the entire native population of the content, who somehow dwindled from 20-100m in 1776 to 1m today, with almost all such deaths directly attributable to American actions (both public and private) over a 100 year period.

Clearing out space for a new economic system and society is always messy, and it's not exactly intellectually honest to start your timeline from well after the time you guys wrapped up your mass extermination of inconvenient peoples.

upside down kingdumb righting itself? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#26234439)

could happen. not likely to be an instantaneous process. nothing much to do with mr. perens, who has taken his self-assigned duty to us quite seriously. he is correct about the 'creepiness' in the 'community'. like gangsters. thank you sir.

Godspeed, man. (5, Interesting)

transiit (33489) | more than 5 years ago | (#26234449)

It's been my experience that reading too much into an implied tone in the slashdot summaries just gets me in trouble, so in brief:

Thanks, Bruce, for your efforts and contributions over the years and may your next project(s) be successful and fulfilling.

THIS IS NEWS? (1)

ionix5891 (1228718) | more than 5 years ago | (#26234505)

http://www.alexa.com/data/details/traffic_details/technocrat.net [alexa.com]

come on slashdot, slow news day?

Re:THIS IS NEWS? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#26234801)

Yeah. Instead, let's get more stories on new crappy iphone applications and such.

Re:THIS IS NEWS? (2, Insightful)

hairyfeet (841228) | more than 5 years ago | (#26234841)

Man, that is just sad. Even PC Hell [alexa.com] which looks like it was designed in 1993 and filled with old crap like how to remove the Blaster worm and a guide to Win95 OSR2 totally kicked their ass. But considering that I have been surfing tech sites for Deity knows how many years and I had never ever heard of it makes it not so surprising. Maybe he should have advertised? Or gotten the site put on Freshnews or the Daily Rotation? But surely he didn't expect to just throw up a website, never advertise, and have it magically turn into Slashdot just because of who he is, did he?

Why "donations"? (1)

ortholattice (175065) | more than 5 years ago | (#26234511)

At the end I faced the decision of asking for donations to keep the site running, or letting it die, and it became clear to me that I'd feel better if it would just die.

Hosting services with essentially unlimited bandwidth can cost as little as $5 per month. I use ixwebhosting myself for a hobby site, but I don't feel the need to ask for donations from my audience to support it, since it barely costs me more than a couple of cups of coffee a month. I assume he needs no staff, and since the code is written the site would be essentially self-maintaining. And if the traffic became too much for a cheap hosting service, then it would be high enough for ad support. I'm sure he has his perfectly valid reasons for shutting it down. Maybe he doesn't want to spend time moderating a site he is no longer interested in, for example. But it seems odd to imply that one of them is that he is unable to afford to run it as a hobby without donations.

(BTW I was a technocrat subscriber, although I posted very rarely. There were certain seemingly self-important posters, who I'll leave nameless, whose long rambles I just ignored. Other topics were often interesting, though, somewhat like /. but a little broader in scope, and I monitored the RSS feed every day or two.)

Re:Why "donations"? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#26234529)

There were certain seemingly self-important posters, who I'll leave nameless, whose long rambles I just ignored.

coughGUYFAWKEScough

Re:Why "donations"? (1)

larry bagina (561269) | more than 5 years ago | (#26234687)

Your $5/month account doesn't have unlimited bandwidth, but more importantly, it doesn't have the RAM and CPU needed to host SLASH (which is a resource hog).

Wait (4, Funny)

eclectro (227083) | more than 5 years ago | (#26234513)

Has Netcraft confirmed this??

Re:Wait (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#26234557)

in Soviet Russia, technocrats shut YOU down!

Blah (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#26234567)

How is this news ? Who the hell has ever heard of that site before...

Technorati (1)

MrCrassic (994046) | more than 5 years ago | (#26234615)

I think most will be confused with the much more popular site Technorati (http://www.technorati.com/). I thought I heard of this web site, until I remembered that it was actually this one I've heard of.

Re:Technorati (2, Interesting)

Blimey85 (609949) | more than 5 years ago | (#26234745)

Thank you for clearing that up. I'll admit, I was one of the confused.

New rule: confusing shit is not to be posted until mid-afternoon so that we may have a chance to get enough caffeine into our weary bodies that we just might notice the slight difference in the name. Or, if that's too much to ask, pertinent info such as this could be included in the fucking summary.

Really the best way to handle this? (5, Interesting)

anothy (83176) | more than 5 years ago | (#26234641)

speaking as a relatively frequent poster: wtf?

i like Bruce, but this is very poorly done. if the primary concern is financial, there's ways to mitigate that. if he wasn't happy asking for donations (which i can certainly respect, even if i wouldn't have that problem myself), you can look at both revenue and expenses independent of that. on expenses: it's never been clear to me what the "professional editorial staff" actually did, besides stick a comment on some stories - a comment which wasn't reliably better than any other on the site. for revenue, using the ad hoc advertising was also probably a poor choice compared to using something like google's service. and if the issues was primarily the creepy community, there's ways to deal with that, too: moderation systems, or even (at the size it's at) just kickban individual users (after talking to and/or warning them).

and if you've given up on all that, the shutdown itself was not well done. no notice? that's kinda disrespectful to the people who've put in work to build what's there. i would've loved a few days to copy some of the comments i've made there, or links others have posted, or discuss where to go from here. and that last one, of course, could have included handing the community - or even the site, wholesale - off to another host. that last part in particular stings; it kinda feels like "if i can't have it - on my terms - nobody can".

Bruce, if you're out there, look: thanks for all the work you've done. it was great. i'd really like to keep it going. let me know if we can talk about options.

Re:Really the best way to handle this? (4, Funny)

edittard (805475) | more than 5 years ago | (#26234821)

it's never been clear to me what the "professional editorial staff" actually did

I've been saying that for some time. Rumour has it it's nearly as bad over at technocrat.net

Looking in the mirror? (4, Insightful)

NaCh0 (6124) | more than 5 years ago | (#26234653)

Out of all the self-proclaimed open source leaders, Bruce Perens creeps me out the most. I really don't know why people follow him. Everything he touches is lackluster at best.

Others like Stallman (GNU) and ESR (CatB) have caused major philosophical movements. The same can't be said for Perens.

I see Perens to Linux as Sean Hannity is to Conservatism. He's there and not afraid to pipe up. But he really hasn't offered any original ideas that have been worth much.

How much of a loss was it? (4, Interesting)

Timex (11710) | more than 5 years ago | (#26234719)

There were a few people there that I liked, because they showed that they put thought into their commentary. Their logic was sound, even if I disagreed with them.

One writer seems to have attempted to make the site his personal Blogging page.

I stopped going there around October because Bruce felt the need to put banner adverts up for the Obama campaign. I don't go to "Geek sites" for political adverts.

At least this way, Bruce will be able to focus his energies on more interesting projects.

Re:How much of a loss was it? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#26235003)

At least this way, Bruce will be able to focus his energies on more interesting projects.

....or, at least, less annoying ones......

I know what did it (2, Interesting)

Degrees (220395) | more than 5 years ago | (#26234809)

I know what did it:

Certain elements of the community that developed here, unfortunately, creep me out.

In the interest of living a life a certain good book suggests (turning the other cheek), most of the people who donated to Bruce's site were Novell employees.

Re:I know what did it (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#26235067)

Creeped out by Novell, eh? Well then... he's not alone.

To Summarize the Summary (2, Funny)

Greyfox (87712) | more than 5 years ago | (#26234877)

Ya'all creepy! I'm going to go over here now! Merry Christmas!

Anyone care? (2, Insightful)

SwashbucklingCowboy (727629) | more than 5 years ago | (#26234949)

Is Bruce Perens even relevant anymore?

He seems like the Jessie Jackson of FOSS...

Re:Anyone care? (1)

ultrabot (200914) | more than 5 years ago | (#26235025)

Is Bruce Perens even relevant anymore?

For some reason, bringing up B.P. evoked a sense of weird nostalgia.

Remember UserLinux? Remember time before Ubuntu, the time when Linux was trying to "make it" - and we didn't know for certain what distro was capable of doing that?

Re:Anyone care? (1)

HanzoSpam (713251) | more than 5 years ago | (#26235085)

Is Bruce Perens even relevant anymore?

He seems like the Jessie Jackson of FOSS...

Yes, forever trying to get out in front of a parade that has already left without him.....

Not the first time (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 5 years ago | (#26235007)

Bruce Perens has a long string of failed and aborted initiatives behind him. His catapult to fame was the establishment of a constitution for Debian. Soon after he left Debian. He started Linux Capital Group but soon left his investors in the doldrums. He started the OSI with Eric Raymond, but has abandoned his role there too. If you check his CV, there is a string of similar engagements that end with Bruce jumping ship.

I trusted Bruce on his old merits once, and I would think very carefully before doing so again.

What was it, and how do I read it all? (1)

PurplePhase (240281) | more than 5 years ago | (#26235009)

If the site has been up for 8 or more years, there's got to be some interesting stuff there. My question includes, as a lot of people here: How do I learn more about it? (since I haven't heard of it before), and especially if there are "creepy" things... is the wayback machine the only saviour, or is he going to tgz the site and put it on BitTorrent? I don't even see a mention in Wikipedia...

8-PP

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