Joel Uckelman on 12 Oct 2000 19:29:05 -0000

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Re: spoon-discuss: comments on judgement

Quoth Matthew G Potter:
> I initially had these as bracketed comments in my judgement, but they 
> aren't really germane to the judgement itself, and as such probably 
> shouldn't be included with it in any sort of permanent record.  I'll give 
> them here.
> Dammit Joel, the definition of active rules in 222/0 sucks.  It says, "Live 
> Proposals not deactivated are 'active'; all other Live Proposals are 
> 'inactive'."  Active proposals are defined by not being inactive, and 
> inactive proposals are defined by not being active.  I know jack about 
> symbolic logic, so for all I know this may work just fine, but it would be 
> nice to have an independent statement on what constitutes an active or 
> inactive proposal in there for those of us who don't necessarily believe 
> language is essentially mathematical. :P

The definition is not reducible to "active = not inactive" because 
(de)activation is an action and "(in)active" is a state. What it comes to 
is that any live proposal that no one has bothered to deactivate is in an 
active state, and any that someone has deactivated are in an inactive 
state. By analogy:

Your lights are "off" by default. When someone activates your lights, they 
are considered to be "on", and if no one has touched your lights, they must 
still be "off". The state of your lights is defined in reference to actions 
that affect them.

Does that help, or do you still see it as problematic? 

> As it stands, the beginning voting period creates a de facto 'end of the 
> nweek,' since any proposals made after the beginning of the voting period 
> will fall on the subsequent nweek's ballot as though they were activated in 
> that nweek.  While it sort of works, this lame duck period is ugly and I'm 
> sure will offend Joel's sense of taxonomical clarity.  We should probably 
> resolve it somehow in the near future.
> Potter 

Maybe it would make more sense to start the nweek when voting *starts* 
rather than when voting ends...


Play Nomic!