Bad idea of the day:
A "mastodon recommended follower" back-end that picks at random a recent-poster from the same node that has no network overlap at all (or, if that's not possible, one with as little network overlap as possible).
In other words, rather than optimizing for best match, optimize for worst match & see what happens to social interaction.
@enkiv2 I don't think this is a bad idea, but it ideally would be not just on same node
I suggested limiting it to a single node just because nodes often have very different cultures & rules. But, on small nodes this wouldn't work.
Expanding the pool to all already-federated users works too, except on *very* small nodes and *very* large nodes.
*very* small nodes might need to request the local timeline from peers in order to find enough users.
@enkiv2 The different cultures & rules is exactly why this is valuable.
Offline we've always had ability to see meet locals. It's meeting the weird foreigners that the internet really excels at.
@enkiv2 interesting locals*
Yeah, but at the same time it pays to be careful when the cultures differ too much. Going into somewhere and just assuming that friendly signals are universal or that your needs are the same is a good way to start wars.
People are already pretty isolated in social bubbles *within* large instances. (For instance, if it only worked on mastodon.social we'd still see benefit)
Reading instance timelines really isn't feasible on large instances like mastodon.social as a mechanism for finding people to follow.
For one thing, people who post a lot are going to hide people who post less frequently, particularly if they aren't in the same time zone. (If you have relatively few relatively inactive people you follow, then having no overlap in awake time with some of your followers is fine: they appear in the home TL anyway.)
One way to make the bot opt-in is to have the set of suggestions be equal to the set of people following the bot. Then, it could take requests for people to follow, but also (for instance) post #ff messages on fridays.
This would be pretty straightforward but it also means that the pool of potential suggestions is both small and already listed in one place.
@enkiv2 it's easier here than on other social networks. Still the majority or online interactions are quite void of actual diversity of thought as people seem to fear having to be confronted with an actual person with opposing views. Debating the TV talking heads you disagree with is easy, cause they never answer back
I am aware of the discourse. Everybody in my bubble was talking about filter bubbles and their ramifications back when the term "filter bubble" was still un-coined and we called it "the daily me".
I'm interested in automated systems that make opt-in engagement with genuinely different people easier. Often that means avoiding pure randomness in favor of sorting by connection inverted (i.e., find the pair with the least overlap).
I think when it comes to anything involving the words social and/or media, "optimize for worst match" is a very important and severely underrated technique and should be part of the stable of rankings *always*.
(I also think that everything that has a set of semi-independent chunks of text should come with a random page feature, though. So, YMMV.)
mostly actually curious when I ask, via this clip:
I mean, as a human essentially "optimized for worst match" to existing in humanity I just can't see much up side in the notion
I mean, "optimize for outliers" or something probably wouldn't be bad, but "let's match up Klan members and black people" just sounds like the stereotypical daytime talk show game of putting actual enemies in contact for maximum mayhem, maybe I'm misunderstanding
Klan members & black people is a different kind of "worst" than I mean. Like, that's predictable based on a single axis.
I'm thinking more like: match up people whose hobby is vandalizing statues via elaborate knitting projects with people who want to teach their children Volapuk as a first language. Mismatch in terms of what they care about instead of in terms of
vehement disagreement about a shared topic.
that's definitely a different kind of "worst" than I had assumed
yeah, THAT kind of "worst match" would be interesting for people to get outside their usual spheres and typical interests
it's just the kind of thing that gives me pause because it's precisely the kind of notion that's been co-opted by the shitbag regime of late. "look, you gotta start thinking outside your little echo chamber. so here's why the compound I live in is ruled by a living god and we worship the Orange Man."
Yeah. I'm trying to figure out what it means to have meaningful prioritization of new ideas, and how to separate that from the shitty "you don't agree with my hateful views because you haven't heard my speech enough times" thing, because the first is really valuable and the second really isn't.
For a first approximation, just having no topics of interest in common might be a start. (And maybe that can be estimated with differences in language use.)