Saturday, October 14, 2006

ThinkWell #3 is readable; 28 members on discussion list

ThinkWell #3, which was published on paper in late August, 1991, A.S. XXVI is available here:

The file isn't perfect. There's one footnote mystery (though most of them work perfectly well), and I can clean it up later. The topics links in the righthand column were part of the default file but will be fixed within a day or two.

The text, though, is readable. Feel free to send me corrections. There's an e-mail link at the bottom, and if your e-mail hates those links, use

Tuesday, October 10, 2006

#2 is up, and the discussion list has 21 members

These numbers will be outdated soon, but that's good!

ThinkWell#2, late June 1991
It probably has a few formatting glitches. I got sleepy and so I quit for the evening. The original file was a Word 6.0 on a Mac IIsi which is "blah blah blah" to most people; point is, there are some formatting characters in the text and I might not have gotten them all, but will make other sweeps later. I'll add more internal links, too. I did a couple to make sure they would work.

Meanwhile, over at the discussion list, there are several topics going.

One topic page is actually started and a few more exist in rougher form, but here's the first really established:

tw/ (in a URL) will be for the old ThinkWell, generally, and thinkwell/ will be for the new stuff. Some still needs to be sorted, but that's the plan.

Saturday, October 07, 2006


What makes a good SCA squire?

If you can think of a particular story of a moment when you saw a squire do something that added to the magic of an event for you, or if you've been involved in a squire/knight relationship or close to a good one, what might be some good bits of advice for someone wanting to be a particularly good squire?

Are there existing articles or instructions for squires online that a curious squire could get to?

Input can be left as a comment on this post, e-mailed to me at, sent by mail or you can join the discussion list.

The best bits will end up here: Squires

Friday, October 06, 2006

many doors; welcome in

I've had some good input here and by e-mail about likely problems with an attempted ThinkWell revival. AEdward mentioned synergy. The past month has been a festival of re-connections for me, and new connections. The past dozen years have prepared me for knowing enough about webpages and managing mailing lists to do something cool with a new version of ThinkWell, I believe. And the best thing about ideas is that a few are fine, and a hundred are great, and there's never a point where idea-getting is finished. An hour-long conversation can be fantastic, and the effects can last for years. About the time some people get tired, new people come along for whom it's all new.

No one has to finish, no one has to contribute, and there won't be a test.

Clarity, purity and usefulness are important to me. Cynicism and ethnocentricity will be discouraged.

There are several ways to contribute ideas--blog, discussion list, e-mail, paper mail or links. Details are at

I expect and accept ebb and flow, wax and wane, wax on - wax off. Life is lumpy.

Here's something to remember or consider as news: When ThinkWell used paper and mail, there were many filters through which ideas passed:
Worth writing down?
Worth filling out an envelope for?
Worth buying a stamp?
Worth remembering to mail?

That was before it even got to me. Then I had some filters:
Worth sharing?
Worth transcribing?
Worth formatting?
Worth printing hundreds of copies?
Worth mailing?

Others read all that, and decided:
Worth reading?
Worth considering?
Worthy of comment?

And then they went back to the beginning, deciding whether it was worth writing, mailing...

But even things that weren't worth writing and mailing and transcribing and printing still helped people think. Even readers who never wrote a word benefited from knowing what others thought, and from seeing others grow and change.

Often locals would read ThinkWell and it would inspire in-person discussions, none of which made it back to the larger group. Still, that wasn't a problem.

I think all those things will happen here, but without the benefit of the time and effort that helped rarify the writing on the original ThinkWell.

Put some filters on your own writing, then. Maybe compose it and look at it with an eye toward whether you'd be embarrassed to see it on paper, mailed out. Could it help someone become a better person? Will it make the world better? Will it help someone think? Would you be willing to ask someone to calligraph it (or to calligraph it yourself)?

Again, that link is

Thanks for being here.