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Levels

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Levels

In discussions woh Words on Fire, the phrase "take PM to the next
level" has come up often. I thought of trying to quantify this
roughly in terms of five levels based on what the organization
would be able to do based upon its annual income. In the list
below, I give a rough estimate of the income required and what
additional things it would allow the organization to do beyond
the preceeding levels.

Level 1: $1000

Register the PM domain and pay other such basic expenses. Keep the
website up and running but not do much else in the way of improving
the the platform.

Level 2: $10000

Be able to hire contract work for small items such as bug fixes and
improvements to features. Reimburse travel expenses associated
with promoting and publicizing the project.

Level 3: $40000

Fund work on such projects as autolinker development, scholium
system research, reputation system reaearch, and forum redesign.
Hire a permanent (part-time) system administrator.

Level 4: $ 200000

Rewrite Noosphere completely so as to permit feature unheard of
in the current version such as the ability to make private
subinstances and multiple interfaces. Have several permanent
positions.

Level 5: 1000000

Be in the same league with Wikipedia and professional associations.
Support a reasearch and development program for collaborative
platforms and free software for mathematics. Make our own
real-world conference. Fund content projects by members. Buy copyrights and release math books into the public domain.

For the first few years we were at level 1. Last year, we made it
to level 2. It would be wonderful if we could make it to level 3
next year and have some concrete plans and strategies for working
our way towards level 4.


I concur... the general sketch here certainly jibes with what I've been thinking.

apk

Some things to bear in mind.

I. Each level maintains the activities of the previous level(s).
II. Each level describes ongoing (per annum) budgets and activities.

In light of this and my thoughts about what we could do with these
sorts of resources, here are some suggested revisions. In particular,
I am merging most of Level 5 into Level 4 and adding in an essentially
new Level 5. Please check it out!

Level 1: $1000/an.

Keep the website up and running but not do much else in the way of
improving the the platform.

Level 2: $10000/an. (current)

Maintain previous level, and:

Be able to hire contract work for small items such as bug fixes and
improvements to features. Reimburse travel expenses associated with
promoting and publicizing the project.

Level 3: $40000/an.

Maintain previous levels, and:

Fill outstanding and ongoing feature requests. Fund R&D on such
projects as the autolinker, the scholium system, reputations, and
improvements to the forum software. Hire a permanent (part-time)
system administrator.

Level 4: $200000/an.

Maintain previous levels, and:

Implement thoroughgoing revisions to Noosphere. These would integrate
and extend things worked out in the separate projects we were able to
support at Level 3, and include things like the ability to make
private subinstances, multiple user interfaces, and connections
between other online resources (including new Planets). Support
several permanent positions related to research and development
programs for collaborative platforms in general. Support at least one
full-time equivalent for work on community outreach. Piggy-back on
academic conferences to combine PlanetMath communications with
outreach opportunities (provide some travel scholarships for members
of the PM community to come to these meetings). PlanetMath starts to
become *the place* to go to learn math; and over time, at this level
and with sufficient investment by both old and new contributors, other
Planets become similarly viable.

Level 5: $1000000/an.

Maintain previous levels, and:

We aren't just "PlanetMath" anymore: content includes not just
coverage of the different disciplines, but strong connections between
them (this goes well beyond the content-interlinking facilities
described Level 4), as well as thorough coverage of material for both
pre-college and post-college learners. Run a small, free, virtual
college or institute, where we fund approximately 20 Research Fellows
per year. Run or partner with an ink-and-paper press that sells
free-as-in-freedom books, and that buys copyrights and releases texts
into the public domain. Partner with other groups interested in
access to knowledge, freedom, and enhancing the human condition
worldwide.

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