Holocene Chat

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Holocene Chat is a patented software concept developed by David Brin. It attempts to make online realtime conversation more useful and productive by re-introducing elements of offline (non-computer) discussion into the user interface.

The software remains at the concept phase at this point (though a limited demo is apparently working), and is looking for a backer to fund development.

This is a growing seedling article. You can help HTYP by watering it.


The following is loosely adapted from materials at the official Holocene Chat web site.

the real "digital divide"

  • The problem: Today's real-time interfaces dumb down thought and conversation
  • The clue: Sophisticated conversation tools that we humans already use in real life. None have yet been brought into the online world!
  • The solution: Holocene's broad range of patented and fundamental tools can revolutionize online communication, letting hosts offer new, attractive services to visitors, users, clients, collaborators
Realms → Aynchronous Realm Synchronous Realm
description → speaker and listener not present simultaneously speaker and listener are present simultaneously
examples →
  • web browsing
  • email
  • file sharing / downloads
  • search, research, collaboration
  • weblogs
  • chat (IRC) and IM
  • interactive gaming
  • virtual worlds
  • avataring
  • telepresence

what happens → Advanced interfaces assist information flow and expression of complex thoughts

Useful to grownups!

Primitive interfaces dumb down discourse to the level of flirting, grunts, mayhem...

Almost useless to serious people!

Holocene impact → Holocene improves this realm. This realm needs utter transformation.

Funding / Marketing Opportunity

The Dismal Competition

to be written/transcribed