It’s called “Idea Cauldron.” I created it in the late 1990s to deal with a plethora of ideas for Halifax Pride Week coming in from a large number of people.

The Problem & Proposal



Kevin, Susan, Kayley and Scott are planning a 20th high school reunion. They start discussing the possible things that could happen. In the tabulation (T) means someone’s offered to be on the team, (L) means someone’s offered to lead the team.

Visit the old haunts Susan(L) Kayley (T) Scott(T)7
Picnic Scott(L) Kayley(T)6
Cocktail party Kevin(L)5
Exhaustive search for alumni Kayley(T) Scott(T)2
Wet tee shirt contest
Book a whole floor in a hotel

Also See


Beautiful. At our next SaturdayHouse gathering, I’ll propose that we try this out. I’ll also propose it to our local Evolver organizer.

We could also try it out locally, but I’m not in postion to make commitments right now (I’m busy working on sustaining SaturdayHouse, writing for SpiriAta, writing for RonHaleEvans? new book, the formation of a local Evolver scene, and keeping a family and a job going.)

If I came back to CommunityWiki, I’d try this out with conversational ideas (SenseMaking) or software implementation ideas.

DanielMacKay, do you mind if I copy this page to the ActionResearchWiki?

Please do. I really could not figure out where it belonged.

A good idea, I think. It might work, will probably take some time. Some software easily calculating results of template fill ins might help. A good idea, me T, team.

NikolaTesla? has been running around promoting his invention - the AC motor - a bit more than a century ago. Nobody wanted it, DC was hip then. Now this type of motor is in every vaccumcleaner etc. Was it not a good idea when he had it? It took some time to be successful.
And still another dicussion would be: “Is the AC motor a good idea?” Apart from being extremely successfull.

The IdeaCauldron has a touch of BarCamp, come together, see whats there and get working. Cool.

To continue adding energy – perhaps we could put this into practice here, by writing out questions that people were interested in researching and talking about together here?

Make an IdeaCouldron? of questions that people are sparked by, that they would lead conversation and research on, or that they would be interested in researching together?

Or software projects they would work on?

Or images/maps they would like to help create?

I like the way the “Idea Cauldron” allows people to say “Yes, I would be willing to work on any one of these 99 projects, but I am not willing to commit to working on all 99 projects”.

If I implement a once-a-day electronic voting forum, some things I am a bit fuzzy about:

  • At the end of the day, how many ideas “win”? Only the top idea of the day? If the top 3 ideas have completely disjoint groups of volunteers, shouldn’t all 3 win?
  • new ideas can be added each day, right?
  • How do I expire votes?
    • start from 0 every day. Flaw: If there are 100 people voting, and the top 10 ideas all get significant support, it seems tedious to force a person who is only interested in idea #10 to vote over and over again every day 10 days in a row until his favorite idea finally bubbles to the top.
    • keep votes until that person retracts. Flaw: If most of the people who voted for #10 are busy working on ideas #1 through #9 and no longer have time for #10, it seems tedious to force those busy people to come back and retract their vote for #10 and each of the other 98 ideas they no longer have time for.
    • Is there some better way of automatically expiring votes?
  • What do you do if the top idea has, say, 5 people who want to work on it, but those 5 people want to leave it on the list as if it were not the top idea? “Start a soccer league” can’t be done with 5 people, it needs at least 22 people (two football teams of 11 people), right?


1. meaning, “to make real”

Define external redirect: RonHaleEvans NikolaTesla IdeaCouldron