A Tour of Fnora

A quick tour of Fnora's features.

This is a public blog, owned by Carl Milsted, Jr.

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The Real Cost of Our Competition

Carl Milsted, Jr on Apr 16 14:26:49

Ad supported social networks are not free. The costs in terms of lost time, lost brainpower, and lost happiness can add up to the equivalent of hundreds, or even thousands of dollars per month!

It's a problem of incentives.

Other social media services are intentionally addictive, inducing you to go into a gambling addict like trance, scrolling down infinite pages so you will see more ads. To keep their news feeds effectively infinite they use viral mind technology to entice you to sign for a firehose of "information" that you cannot possibly keep up with. And then they curate that firehose of information using evil robots, the Modern Inquisition, and layers of Click to see More. You are left with a mentally draining unease that you may have have missed something important.

Which encourages you to come back and waste yet more time and mental energy.

What is Your Time Worth?

How much time do you spend each month:

  • Watching video ads which intentionally make you waste time before they get to the real message, in order to put you into a Sunk Cost mindset so you'll buy their product?
  • Watching addictive Suggested Videos?
  • Rewatching videos that are put on an infinite loop mode?
  • Rewinding videos which autoplay -- with the sound turned off.
  • Reading clickbait Chain Posts which were commented on by your friends? (And what's the deal with math problems using vegetable notation?)
  • Reading "recommended" clickbait posts?
  • Scrolling past posts that you have already read in order to get to the posts that you missed?

Multiply those hours times your hourly wage. Ouch!

Fnora is ad free. We want you to be satisfied, not addicted. Enjoy connecting with friends, family, bloggers, etc. And then leave the screen and enjoy reality.

What is Your Brain Worth?

Viruses can cause illness. Viral media can cause mental illness, or at least mental fatigue and unease. Our competitors can clobber your creativity and peace of mind through several mechanisms.

It Starts with Multitasking

  • A video started autoplaying while you are reading another post.
  • You try to scroll past a playing video and it follows you until you figure out how to turn the [bleep] thing off.
  • A popup! Somebody liked a comment you made yesterday. Whee! Another popup! A friend is trying to message you.
  • Triple multitasking delight! Three friends are messaging you at the same time.
  • What was that? The advertisement in the sidebar changed.

Fnora is designed to let you focus. Single column is the norm. To see what's new you need to go to the dashboard. No notifications while you are doing something else. And, of course, there are no ads.

Then There Are the Context Switches

Imagine a nightmare party where your conversation switches from:

  • An old high school friend.
  • A coworker. An old frat brother or sorority sister. "Remember when you hurled in the mud wrestling pit?"
  • Your mother.
  • Your opinionated Uncle Jake whose ideas would start a riot on a typical modern college campus.
  • Your boss.
  • Your cousin, Nellie. Look at that baby pick. "Awwwww."
  • Another friend from college.
  • A member of the local homeower's association.
  • And now a salesman for Dino BoneĀ®, the all natural supplement that has three times the Placebo PowerTM of V1agra...

We naturally have different behaviors in front of different people. And we load different associations when we meet people from different environments and times. Switching back in forth wears out the brain!

Fnora allows you to browse posts by person and arrange your contacts in an order that makes sense to you. You can minimize contexts switches using Fnora.

What is the cost of lowered energy and IQ points?

What is Your Happiness Worth?

When social networks encourage you to subscribe to an unmanageable firehose of information, and then then task evil robots to filter the flow, you get left with the following troubling questions:

  • Did my friends/connections see my latest post, or was it filtered by an algorithm?
  • What happened to my old friends? I keep seeing the same people in my feed! Have I been defriended or are my old friends' posts buried in the noise?

What is the price of the unnecessary unhappiness?

Fnora gives you full content curation capabilities. And to help you manage your content, Fnora maintains a separate cursor for all new posts by the people, blogs, and groups you are following. You decide whether to skip any posts, and when.

Furthermore, Fnora allows you to set a cursor for comments on any discussion you want to follow. And since Fnora has time-ordered comments with hyperlinks to link replies, you can know exactly where you left off.

No FOMO! (Fear of Missing Out.)

What is Your Country Worth?

The legacy social media are tearing our country apart.

When a platform limits posts down to a few sentences and allows people to hide behind handles, you have a recipe for funny zingers at best, and a national hatefest on average.

When social media platforms censor content to please advertisers or the secret police, you get an atmosphere of paranoia, not increased trust and civility.

And when different factions go off and form their own platforms, the factions grow ever more radical.

What is the cost of a civil war?

Fnora is both a general purpose social networking platform and a platform for higher-brow discussion of ideas and policies.

  • The system encourages more thoughtful, longer form posts.
  • Fnora has the tools for describing deep ideas: full text formatting, tables, equations, proper placement of images, and more.
  • Fnora provides all these tools for commenters as well as posters.
  • And we hope to be able enforce real names to all accounts. People behave better when they don't wear masks.

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