Initial rough sketch:

The interface contains:

  • blog-style elements (for posting complete original works and/or commentaries, should people choose to share such on the site);
  • wiki elements for continuity discussion and communal continuity management;
  • and standardised forms for recording applications for permission to use the material commercially (automatically granted upon completion of the form, which requires the user to assign rights back to us), publication of works, and searching for “setting elements” (the catchall term for places, plot events, characters, objects, organisations, ideas etc as individual memes rather than as part of a work as a whole) and attribution data for same.

Setting elements will all have the following information, plus specific fields as appropriate to the type and subtype:

  • element type,
  • author,
  • works in which the elements appears,
  • settings in which element appears,
  • works in which is it referred to,
  • associations to other setting elements,
  • setting-chronological information,
  • content ratings information,
  • other access control information (i.e. is it restricted to particular users or is it fully open).

Works records will all have the following information:

  • author,
  • date of rights assignment,
  • whether published under commercial or CC provisions of license,
  • setting,
  • media of work,
  • chronological information,
  • elements included in the work,
  • elements referred to in the work (not sure about this distinction between reference and direct inclusion),
  • license,
  • site hosts complete work or summary only,
  • locations where full work is available,
  • and for each instance of publication whether the terms of the license have been complied with (appropriate attribution).

The backend database will need to track standard account information (including admin permissions, age restrictions, privacy settings etc), plus contact details. User accounts will be linked to works and to setting elements to flag authorship, store ratings and comments, and also to assemble the personal continuities we discussed. Setting elements will also be linked to works and to each other in a variety of ways, and tagged according to setting chronology, and in the longer term I’ll be looking at ways to link them causally so that people can easily tag two events as incompatible or compatible only under certain conditions, though this will come down the track.

Obviously edit histories will be tremendously important.

Setting elements include the following types:

  • Active entities (characters, creatures etc)
  • Objects (passive entities)
  • Organisations (includes institutions, communities, etc)
  • Places, geographical/cosmological information
  • Memes (ideas/beliefs/philosophies/frameworks blah)
  • Relationships
  • Events & chronological information
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