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[liberationtech] Flaming on the List? vs. Information Theory's application to the Social Decision Process.!

Rohan Dixit rohandixit86 at
Mon Feb 21 12:34:38 PST 2011

hey Peter,

Thanks for posting your paper- I am currently reading it through. The
pair-wise ranking rapidly gets to be a lot of comparisons (as the number of
comparisons increases linearly, the number of needed rankings increases as
(n^2/2 - n)). But it's interesting especially in that the result is a
"directed" network (or graph) for every *election*, with an edge leading
from one candidate to another if the voters preferred that candidate over
his competitor. Can detailed network structure like that be used to, say,
organize the U.S. congress pecking order of committee chairs and seniority?

I'm pretty new to voting methodologies and, as I'm sure many would agree,
it's an interesting topic that deserves more scrutiny. Regarding the
Anonymous posting/flame, I'll just say: It takes only a few bad apples to
sour the punch, and it would be a shame to allow the equivalent to occur on
this list-serve-- it's the source of a lot of great crosspollination of
ideas and often diametrically opposed viewpoints. Stick around.


On Mon, Feb 21, 2011 at 2:36 PM, Peter Lindener <lindener.peter at>wrote:

>    Dear fellow Lib-Techys -
>     I don't want place a damper on robust discussion of real issues
> regarding the critical need for transparency of Government from a more
> Information Theoretic point of view.... That is.. If government is to be
> effectively regulated, It kind of goes with out saying that the true nature
> of that government, by necessity would need to be properly visible to those
> who are doing the regulation.
>    Then, Stanford tends to be a place where fairly bright people, tend to
> cover topics in more thoughtful ways.... and the "On Anonymous" thread
> seems to be a bit more charged than truly leaves me feeling
> comfortable.....
>   The topic I bring to this thread, The nature of Information Theory's
> relationship to the very definition of genuin democracy, and the Internet
> era ramifications,  Is in deed (for some) a seemingly charged topic.....
> mostly because it promises to profoundly reshape our socio-political
> landscape.  On the other hand, It is the intelect, and inclination towards
> very thoughtful, mutually respecting discussion that is apt to be the reason
> most all of us have subscribed to this list.
>    My own preference is that if there is a conflict going on between
> someone on the list and "Anonymous", that dragging the conflict into
> Stanford's more thoughtful community for discussion should be done with
> hesitation....   I value the possibility that those choosing to think more
> deeply about how Information as well as Game theory may come to profoundly
> shape our world in the internet era,  Thus I feel it would be a true shame
> for this list to instead be taken over by those who would might just be
> wanting to flame about there already established conflict on the web..
>    Did any one see my Intro titled "Lib-tech list Intro, Information
> Theoretic Democracy..."
> I tend to be a bit dryer in my analysis of things....  prioritization of
> edges in cyclical ranked pairwise majority's,   probability density
> functions representing Voter uncertainty over wide open Ranked Choice spaces
> resolved from crowed sourced distillation process of the very best
> thinking...and the like.
> I cherish the privilege of also enjoying and being part of Stanford's
> intellectual community.
>     It would be great if someone were to respond with some sense of a
> welcome response.
>     -Peter
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