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Footpad, your words are pure wisdom.
I've followed this discussion, and some others quite similar, on the CB with a lot of interest.

And almost everytime I whitnessed the same problem :

When there's SERIOUS a problem in a communication, any attempt to clarify/reduce noise is a failure.
It's normal beccause if you can't communicate, you OFTEN can't communicate on your way to communicate...
To use your signal analogy you can't transmit a new protocol
for a better communication on a weak communication channel.
To my mind, it's important to setup the 'error handling/correcting' part of the protocol before any communication.

So why don't we just do it for communication between monks ?
Spot the common problems, and write rules (mantra;-) for a correct communication.

Here are some common problems I've seen and the proposed mantras,
please feel free to complete/modify this list/mantras...

  • Rudeness/sarcasm.
    If you find that your listenner is angry and seems to not listen to what you're saying
    and/or argue on the WAY you say thing, chances are that you have been too rude.
    Thinking "it's not what I say it's the way they take it", is not an answer.
    Think in term of efficiency : when cummunicating with a client/server using a weird protocol
    if you want to be understood you'll have to adapt to this protocol,
    the same goes when talking with someone you'll have to adapt to the way he PERCEIVE things...
    And the fact is that people rarely feel offended to be corrected/commented when you use a kind tone.
    If what you want is to be hear, just give it a try, you'll be amazed on how many door a smile could open :-)

    Mantra: If you want to be listenned try to put a smile on your face, and find a common language

  • Ambiguity.
    If there's any chance that what you say could be misinterpreted, don't fear to clarify.
    (Error correcting code are REDUNDANT.)
    emoticon, re-sating your sentence a different way,...
    Whatever the way use it until you're sure your listenner get your ideas.

    Mantra: Said it once,twice or a thousand times but say it DIFFERENTLY until it becomes clear.

  • Hidden informations.
    If you want to communicate properly you should both have the same info
    In the signal analogy, think about 'state' of communicating clients/server,
    common encoding, same constants..
    It could be a good thing to make sure that both parties have the same elements
    before starting communicating on a subject, or at least
    give the info to your listenner when you think that your listennerdon't have it.
    I remember once, I thought everybody was quite rude with a newbie on the CB,
    I started to defend him, argue with others until someone /msg'ed me
    to explain me all that this newbie did before I arrived
    (flooding the CB, mass posted dumb things..)
    needless to say that this radicaly changed my point of view...
    The moral is double : First an hidden info is often an effective way to 'syncronize' a communication,
    and BEFORE talking everyone should gather ALL the informations available :-)

    Mantra: 'Informations light the path to wisdom'

  • Subjectivity.
    People are biased, it's fact, what happened to you, your education,
    even your language change the way you think, talk.
    First you must be aware of it. Then you should try to correct it !
    It's not that you're WRONG or that others are RIGHT, think in terms of efficiency again,
    try to communicate with FACTS, if you are subjective spot it, and underline it
    (IMHO, To my mind, AFAIK...are never overused to my mind ;-)
    Using the signal analogy again : remove unnecessary encoding to to be sure that the data are received correctly, avoid transcoding problems.

    Mantra : You are not the Truth, Facts are the Truth


"Only Bad Coders Badly Code In Perl" (OBC2IP)

Edit 2001-04-19 by tye


In reply to (Communication's Mantras) Re: On Online Communication by arhuman
in thread On Online Communication by footpad

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