CSCI 8980, Computation and Deduction, Fall 2004
Online Discussion Using HyperNews
Organization and Purpose
Class discussions should be conducted to the extent possible through
HyperNews. This way, everyone can participate in
and benefit from a discussion that occurs at any point in the
HyperNews allows you to attach messages directly to forums or to
messages posted within the forum by someone else. You would do the
former when you want to start a new discussion and the latter when you
want to participate in an ongoing one. There are three conceptual
forums for this course:
The Class Work forum is to be used for discussions pertaining
to course content. Post concerns and criticisms that you may have with
the progress of the course and the instruction to the Course
Quality forum. Experiment in the Testing forum to get the
hang of the system. Make sure to identify
yourself completely in all articles you create except perhaps
those that you post to the forum for course quality.
References and General Comments
You will need to know something about HyperNews and HTML to make
effective use of this medium. The following articles are useful for
When reading the HyperNews instructions, keep in mind that
they describe a configurable system which is still under
development. In particular, they may not cover local choices made in
the installation that we are using. Some particular points to note are
- You can't use the Admin button - it's only available to
- The Email button leads to a page that allows you to
subscribe or unsubscribe to a particular article or
response. The only point of subscribing is to be notified by
Email of additional responses. I strongly recommend that you
subscribe to the Class Work article.
- The Members button lets you enter, and later modify,
information about yourself. Everyone in the class should
enroll as a member of the local HyperNews discussion group.
- The Add Message button is the only obvious one: it creates a
response. This is the only button that you are likely to use
Special Rules for using HyperNews in CSCI 8980
- You must identify yourself fully and
accurately in each message you post, with the exception of ones
providing feedback on the course and testing anonymous postings.
- Resist the temptation to set up a response in your own directory
and to serve its URL in posts to HyperNews. Rather, type your full
response in the window. This way, it can be entered into the class
archives, with its integrity being dependant on that of the archive as
a whole rather that of your individual account.
- It is best to use the HTML form for the response; plain text can
be annoying to the eyes. HTML is
easy to learn and use, and the
online instructions are excellent.
- Try to use relation icons to mark responses in a manner that
is genuinely informative and not whimsical.
Last modified on September 6, 2004 by firstname.lastname@example.org