Difference between revisions of "Debate tools"

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An online debate tool facilitates the act of debating by helping to manage the structure of argumentation. This distinguishes it from general purpose communication tools such as wikis and forums. Some online debate tools provide graphical representations of arguments, but this is not a requirement.
 
An online debate tool facilitates the act of debating by helping to manage the structure of argumentation. This distinguishes it from general purpose communication tools such as wikis and forums. Some online debate tools provide graphical representations of arguments, but this is not a requirement.
  
This wiki page gives a list and characterization of debate tools. Debate tools were previously [http://lesswrong.com/lw/1qq/debate_tools_an_experience_report/ discussed on the blog].
+
This wiki page gives a list and characterization of debate tools. Debate tools were previously.
  
Note: Perhaps discussion should go on [[Talk:Debate_tools|the discussion page]], or the comments thread of [http://lesswrong.com/lw/1qq/debate_tools_an_experience_report/ the original post].
+
Note: Perhaps discussion should go on [[Talk:Debate_tools|the discussion page]], or the comments thread of.
  
 
==List of debate tools==
 
==List of debate tools==
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Summary: This...  is pretty much exactly what we were looking for, isn't it?  Though it doesn't do anything with probabilities.
 
Summary: This...  is pretty much exactly what we were looking for, isn't it?  Though it doesn't do anything with probabilities.
 
*first mentioned:
 
*first mentioned:
**[http://lesswrong.com/lw/1qq/debate_tools_an_experience_report/20v5 a comment by Peer Infinity]
+
 
 
*pros:
 
*pros:
 
**collaboratively edit argument maps
 
**collaboratively edit argument maps
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Summary: Argunet enables you to create argument maps of complex debates online or offline, on your own or in a team.
 
Summary: Argunet enables you to create argument maps of complex debates online or offline, on your own or in a team.
 
*first mentioned:
 
*first mentioned:
**[http://lesswrong.com/lw/1qq/debate_tools_an_experience_report/ the original article]
+
 
 
*pros:
 
*pros:
 
**collaboratively edit argument maps
 
**collaboratively edit argument maps
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Summary: a simple canvas for creating a tree diagram of a debate.
 
Summary: a simple canvas for creating a tree diagram of a debate.
 
*first mentioned:
 
*first mentioned:
**[http://lesswrong.com/lw/1qq/debate_tools_an_experience_report/ the original article]
+
 
 
*pros:
 
*pros:
 
**easy to use
 
**easy to use
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**[http://morendil.bcisiveonline.com/spaces/989ae551bc100d0365c96a7bcc20f188d95fb58d/ a map of Morendil's current thinking on cryonics]
 
**[http://morendil.bcisiveonline.com/spaces/989ae551bc100d0365c96a7bcc20f188d95fb58d/ a map of Morendil's current thinking on cryonics]
  
===[http://www.takeonit.com/ TakeOnIt - A publicly editable database of expert opinions]===
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======
*[http://lesswrong.com/lw/1kl/takeonit_database_of_expert_opinions/ Discussion of TakeOnIt on Less Wrong]
+
 
 
Summary:
 
Summary:
 
# Every debate is expressed as a yes-no question.
 
# Every debate is expressed as a yes-no question.
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*first mentioned:
 
*first mentioned:
**[http://lesswrong.com/lw/1qq/debate_tools_an_experience_report/1kz1 a comment by BenAlbahari]
+
 
 
*pros:
 
*pros:
 
**a simple interface
 
**a simple interface
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**all it does is yes/no questions (creator of tool claims this simplicity is a strength)
 
**all it does is yes/no questions (creator of tool claims this simplicity is a strength)
 
*examples:
 
*examples:
**[http://www.takeonit.com/question/5.aspx The global warming debate]
+
 
**[http://www.takeonit.com/question/318.aspx The cryonics debate]
+
 
**[http://www.takeonit.com/expert/656.aspx Robin Hanson's Opinions]
+
 
**[http://www.takeonit.com/expert/693.aspx Eliezer Yudkowsky's Opinions]
+
 
  
 
===[http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Flow_%28policy_debate%29 Flow]===
 
===[http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Flow_%28policy_debate%29 Flow]===
 
Summary: a specialized form of note taking called "flowing" within the policy/CEDA/NDT debate community.
 
Summary: a specialized form of note taking called "flowing" within the policy/CEDA/NDT debate community.
 
*first mentioned:
 
*first mentioned:
**[http://lesswrong.com/lw/1qq/debate_tools_an_experience_report/1kx1 a comment by JenniferRM]
+
 
 
*pros:
 
*pros:
 
**lots of people have used this technique, and it has been proven to work well
 
**lots of people have used this technique, and it has been proven to work well
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Summary: a DSL in python for (non-recursive) Bayesian models and Bayesian probability computations.
 
Summary: a DSL in python for (non-recursive) Bayesian models and Bayesian probability computations.
 
*first mentioned:
 
*first mentioned:
**[http://lesswrong.com/lw/1qq/debate_tools_an_experience_report/1kx3 a comment by Steve_Rayhawk]
+
 
 
*pros:
 
*pros:
 
**it does Bayesian calculations
 
**it does Bayesian calculations
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===[http://www.demoscience.org/ MACOSPOL]===
 
===[http://www.demoscience.org/ MACOSPOL]===
 
*first mentioned:
 
*first mentioned:
**[http://lesswrong.com/lw/1qq/debate_tools_an_experience_report/1kt6 a comment by Morendil]
+
 
 
*examples:
 
*examples:
 
**[http://medialab.sciences-po.fr/controversies/ mapped controversies]
 
**[http://medialab.sciences-po.fr/controversies/ mapped controversies]
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Summary: this is designed to point out hidden contradictions (or at least tensions) between one's beliefs, by using programmed in implications to exhibit (possibly long) inferential chains that demonstrate a contradiction.
 
Summary: this is designed to point out hidden contradictions (or at least tensions) between one's beliefs, by using programmed in implications to exhibit (possibly long) inferential chains that demonstrate a contradiction.
 
*first mentioned:
 
*first mentioned:
**[http://lesswrong.com/lw/1qq/debate_tools_an_experience_report/1ku8 a comment by wnoise]
+
 
 
*pros:
 
*pros:
 
**it does lots of stuff
 
**it does lots of stuff
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**[http://www.gitorious.org/worldview/worldview/blobs/master/topics/libertarianism.wvm The model of libertarian ideas]
 
**[http://www.gitorious.org/worldview/worldview/blobs/master/topics/libertarianism.wvm The model of libertarian ideas]
  
===[http://canonizer.com/ Canonizer.com]===
+
======
 
Summary: Canonizer.com is a wiki system with added camp and survey capabilities.  The system provides a rigorous way to measure scientific / moral expert consensus.  It is designed for collaborative development of concise descriptions of various competing scientific or moral theories, and the best arguments for such.  People can join the camps representing such, giving a quantitative survey or measure of consensus compared to all others.  Proposed changes to supported camps go into a review mode for one week.  Any supporters of a camp can object to any such proposed change during this time.  If it survives a week with no objection, it goes live, guaranteeing unanimous agreement to such changes to the petition by all current signers.  If anyone does object, the camp can be forked (taking all supporters of the 'improvement'), or the info can be included in a sporting sub camp.
 
Summary: Canonizer.com is a wiki system with added camp and survey capabilities.  The system provides a rigorous way to measure scientific / moral expert consensus.  It is designed for collaborative development of concise descriptions of various competing scientific or moral theories, and the best arguments for such.  People can join the camps representing such, giving a quantitative survey or measure of consensus compared to all others.  Proposed changes to supported camps go into a review mode for one week.  Any supporters of a camp can object to any such proposed change during this time.  If it survives a week with no objection, it goes live, guaranteeing unanimous agreement to such changes to the petition by all current signers.  If anyone does object, the camp can be forked (taking all supporters of the 'improvement'), or the info can be included in a sporting sub camp.
  
The karma or 'canonization' system enables the readers to select any algorithm they wish on the side bar to 'find the good stuff'.  For example, you can compare the [http://canonizer.com/topic.asp/53/11 mind expert] scientific consensus with the default general population consensus.  Each camp has a forum to discuss and debate further improvements for camps.  The general idea is to debate things in the forums, or elsewhere, and summarize everyone's final / current / state of the art view in the camp statements.  A history of everything is maintained, providing a dynamic quantitative measure of how well accepted any theory is, as ever more theory falsifying (when experts abandon a falsified camp) scientific data / new arguments... come in.
+
The karma or 'canonization' system enables the readers to select any algorithm they wish on the side bar to 'find the good stuff'.  For example, you can compare the scientific consensus with the default general population consensus.  Each camp has a forum to discuss and debate further improvements for camps. EssaysExperts.Com is the company which first and main priority was, is and will be customers� satisfaction with the [http://www.essaysexperts.com essays online]. If you still have no idea where to buy your writing tasks, this company is the best option for you.  The general idea is to debate things in the forums, or elsewhere, and summarize everyone's final / current / state of the art view in the camp statements.  A history of everything is maintained, providing a dynamic quantitative measure of how well accepted any theory is, as ever more theory falsifying (when experts abandon a falsified camp) scientific data / new arguments... come in.
  
 
*first mentioned:
 
*first mentioned:
**[http://lesswrong.com/lw/1qq/debate_tools_an_experience_report/2j4l?c=1 a comment by PeerInfinity]
+
 
 
*pros:
 
*pros:
 
**the whole canonization thing
 
**the whole canonization thing
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**it's kinda complicated
 
**it's kinda complicated
 
*examples:
 
*examples:
**[http://canonizer.com the main list of canonized camps]
+
 
  
 
===[http://www.explore-ideas.com/ Explore-Ideas.com]===
 
===[http://www.explore-ideas.com/ Explore-Ideas.com]===
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* Summary: a tool that we make ourselves, so that it works the way we want it to work
 
* Summary: a tool that we make ourselves, so that it works the way we want it to work
 
*first mentioned:
 
*first mentioned:
**[http://lesswrong.com/lw/1qq/debate_tools_an_experience_report/1l1w a comment by PeerInfinity]
+
 
 
*pros:
 
*pros:
 
**we're writing it, so we can make it work how we want
 
**we're writing it, so we can make it work how we want
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**[http://transhumanistwiki.com/wiki/Peer_Infinity/Chat_With_Fael_About_AI a conversation about AI]
 
**[http://transhumanistwiki.com/wiki/Peer_Infinity/Chat_With_Fael_About_AI a conversation about AI]
 
===Brass Tacks===
 
===Brass Tacks===
* [http://issuepedia.org/Issuepedia:Structured_Debate Structured debate]: a set of rules which debate software could help enforce. Some data design is on paper, not yet transcribed. The plan is to write this first as a MediaWiki extension. [http://issuepedia.org/Category:Debates some mockups]
+
: a set of rules which debate software could help enforce. Some data design is on paper, not yet transcribed. The plan is to write this first as a MediaWiki extension.
  
 
==Other links==
 
==Other links==
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* http://www.visualizingargumentation.info/
 
* http://www.visualizingargumentation.info/
 
* http://www.tandf.co.uk/journals/tarc
 
* http://www.tandf.co.uk/journals/tarc
* [http://issuepedia.org/Structured_debate structured debate]
+
 
* [http://issuepedia.org/Issuepedia:Dispute_Resolution_Technology dispute resolution technology]
+
 
  
 
==Features that a debate tool should have==
 
==Features that a debate tool should have==
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** an easy to use interface
 
** an easy to use interface
  
*from [http://lesswrong.com/user/Morendil/ Morendil]:
+
*from:
 
** a conclusion or a decision, which is to be "tested" by the use of the tool
 
** a conclusion or a decision, which is to be "tested" by the use of the tool
 
** various hypotheses, which are offered in support or in opposition to the conclusion, with degrees of plausibility
 
** various hypotheses, which are offered in support or in opposition to the conclusion, with degrees of plausibility
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** recursive relations between these elements
 
** recursive relations between these elements
  
* from [http://lesswrong.com/user/PhilGoetz/ PhilGoetz]:
+
* from:
 
** an XML-based representation of the data
 
** an XML-based representation of the data
  
* from [http://lesswrong.com/user/PeerInfinity/ PeerInfinity]
+
* from
 
** generates its results from an annotated log of a debate
 
** generates its results from an annotated log of a debate
 
** collaboratively editable, possibly using MediaWiki
 
** collaboratively editable, possibly using MediaWiki
 
** multiple outfut formats: graphs, tables, the raw data
 
** multiple outfut formats: graphs, tables, the raw data
  
* from [http://lesswrong.com/user/Johnicholas/ Johnicholas]:
+
* from:
 
** Compose in ordinary ASCII or UTF-8
 
** Compose in ordinary ASCII or UTF-8
 
** Compose primarily a running-text argument, indicating the formal structure with annotations
 
** Compose primarily a running-text argument, indicating the formal structure with annotations
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==Blog posts==
 
==Blog posts==
  
*[http://lesswrong.com/lw/1qq/debate_tools_an_experience_report/ Debate tools: an experience report] by [[Morendil]]
+
by [[Morendil]]
*[http://lesswrong.com/lw/16u/argument_maps_improve_critical_thinking/ Argument Maps Improve Critical Thinking] by [[Johnicholas]]
+
by [[Johnicholas]]
*[http://lesswrong.com/lw/1kl/takeonit_database_of_expert_opinions/ TakeOnIt: Database of Expert Opinions] by [[Eliezer Yudkowsky]]
+
by [[Eliezer Yudkowsky]]
  
 
==See also==
 
==See also==

Revision as of 23:50, 27 December 2011

An online debate tool facilitates the act of debating by helping to manage the structure of argumentation. This distinguishes it from general purpose communication tools such as wikis and forums. Some online debate tools provide graphical representations of arguments, but this is not a requirement.

This wiki page gives a list and characterization of debate tools. Debate tools were previously.

Note: Perhaps discussion should go on the discussion page, or the comments thread of.

List of debate tools

debategraph.org

Summary: This... is pretty much exactly what we were looking for, isn't it? Though it doesn't do anything with probabilities.

  • first mentioned:
  • pros:
    • collaboratively edit argument maps
  • cons:
    • it doesn't do anything with probabilities.

Argunet

Summary: Argunet enables you to create argument maps of complex debates online or offline, on your own or in a team.

  • first mentioned:
  • pros:
    • collaboratively edit argument maps
  • cons:
    • not entirely straightforward to use, Morendil had trouble figuring out how to move boxes around.

bCisive Online

Summary: a simple canvas for creating a tree diagram of a debate.

  • first mentioned:

==

Summary:

  1. Every debate is expressed as a yes-no question.
  2. Every yes-no question has experts on both sides of the debate.
  3. Every debate can link to a sub-debate (recursively).
  • first mentioned:
  • pros:
    • a simple interface
    • people actually use this tool, many debates are already online
  • cons:
    • all it does is yes/no questions (creator of tool claims this simplicity is a strength)
  • examples:



Flow

Summary: a specialized form of note taking called "flowing" within the policy/CEDA/NDT debate community.

  • first mentioned:
  • pros:
    • lots of people have used this technique, and it has been proven to work well
  • cons:
    • it requires a very specific format for the debate

PyMC

Summary: a DSL in python for (non-recursive) Bayesian models and Bayesian probability computations.

  • first mentioned:
  • pros:
    • it does Bayesian calculations
  • cons:
    • requires literacy in python and bayesian statistics

MACOSPOL

  • first mentioned:

Scott Aaronson's worldview manager

Summary: this is designed to point out hidden contradictions (or at least tensions) between one's beliefs, by using programmed in implications to exhibit (possibly long) inferential chains that demonstrate a contradiction.

  • first mentioned:

==

Summary: Canonizer.com is a wiki system with added camp and survey capabilities. The system provides a rigorous way to measure scientific / moral expert consensus. It is designed for collaborative development of concise descriptions of various competing scientific or moral theories, and the best arguments for such. People can join the camps representing such, giving a quantitative survey or measure of consensus compared to all others. Proposed changes to supported camps go into a review mode for one week. Any supporters of a camp can object to any such proposed change during this time. If it survives a week with no objection, it goes live, guaranteeing unanimous agreement to such changes to the petition by all current signers. If anyone does object, the camp can be forked (taking all supporters of the 'improvement'), or the info can be included in a sporting sub camp.

The karma or 'canonization' system enables the readers to select any algorithm they wish on the side bar to 'find the good stuff'. For example, you can compare the scientific consensus with the default general population consensus. Each camp has a forum to discuss and debate further improvements for camps. EssaysExperts.Com is the company which first and main priority was, is and will be customers� satisfaction with the essays online. If you still have no idea where to buy your writing tasks, this company is the best option for you. The general idea is to debate things in the forums, or elsewhere, and summarize everyone's final / current / state of the art view in the camp statements. A history of everything is maintained, providing a dynamic quantitative measure of how well accepted any theory is, as ever more theory falsifying (when experts abandon a falsified camp) scientific data / new arguments... come in.

  • first mentioned:
  • pros:
    • the whole canonization thing
  • cons:
    • it's kinda complicated
  • examples:


Explore-Ideas.com

Summary: explore-ideas.com is a graph structure forum where users start with a topic and follow arguments they agree with, creating a personalized 'story'.

  • pros: users can link any two comments and merge ideas from different discussions into a single logical argument, as well as make loops in reasoning. Each user comes to his personal 'win' ending based on arguments (s)he agrees with. There is no global 'win' or 'lose' argument.

This forum encourages dynamic debate that goes beyond pro/con binary approach, similar to that employed in Proofs and Refutations.

  • cons: UI is rudimentary.

Debate.fm

Summary: A simple platform to start a debate on any topic. Mainly focused at general user participation.

  • pros: Simple structured content - side by side. Mainly focused at pro/con binary approach
  • cons: Till now not ready for academic use.


Literature

There exists an academic literature on argument mapping and other tools (computer aided or not) for assisting debate. The most recent survey seems to be "Computer-supported argumentation: A review of the state of the art" written in June 2009, which lists 50 tools (starting on page 94).

Ideas for new tools

  • Based on MediaWiki, PHP, GraphViz, and maybe XML
  • Summary: a tool that we make ourselves, so that it works the way we want it to work
  • first mentioned:
  • pros:
    • we're writing it, so we can make it work how we want
  • cons:
    • we would need to write it from scratch
  • examples:

Brass Tacks

a set of rules which debate software could help enforce. Some data design is on paper, not yet transcribed. The plan is to write this first as a MediaWiki extension.

Other links


Features that a debate tool should have

  • from almost everyone:
    • an easy to use interface
  • from:
    • a conclusion or a decision, which is to be "tested" by the use of the tool
    • various hypotheses, which are offered in support or in opposition to the conclusion, with degrees of plausibility
    • logical structure, such as "X follows from Y"
    • challenges to logical structure, such as "X may not necessarily follow from Y, if you grant Z"
    • elements of evidence, which make hypotheses more or less probable
    • recursive relations between these elements
  • from:
    • an XML-based representation of the data
  • from
    • generates its results from an annotated log of a debate
    • collaboratively editable, possibly using MediaWiki
    • multiple outfut formats: graphs, tables, the raw data
  • from:
    • Compose in ordinary ASCII or UTF-8
    • Compose primarily a running-text argument, indicating the formal structure with annotations
    • Export as a prettified document, still mostly running text (html and LaTeX)
    • Export as a diagram (automatically layed out, perhaps by graphviz)
    • Export as a bayes net (in possibly several bayes net formats)
    • Export as a machine-checkable proof (in possibly several formats)
  • from Eliezer Yudkowsky:
    • prevents online arguments from retracing the same points over and over.
    • not just graphical with boxes, because that makes poor use of screen real estate.
    • not have lots of fancy argument types and patterns, because no one really uses that stuff
    • a karma system, because otherwise there's no way to find the good stuff.

(So, now that everything's all neatly arranged in a list, the next step is to decide whether we want to start using any of these tools, or if we want to create our own.)

Blog posts

by Morendil
by Johnicholas
by Eliezer Yudkowsky

See also