Certainly. See below.
The newsgroup comp.ai.genetic is intended as a forum for people who want to use or explore the capabilities of Genetic Algorithms (GA), Evolutionary Programming (EP), Evolution Strategies (ES), Classifier Systems (CFS), Genetic Programming (GP), and some other, less well-known problem solving algorithms that are more or less loosely coupled to the field of Evolutionary Computation (EC).
The following guidelines present the essentials of the USENET online documentation, that is posted each month to news.announce.newusers
If you are already familiar with "netiquette" you can skip to the end of this answer; if you don't know what the hell this is all about, proceed as follows: (1) carefully read the following paragraphs, (2) read all the documents in news.announce.newusers before posting any article to USENET. At least you should give the introductory stuff a try, i.e. files "news-answers/introduction" and "news-answers/news-newusers- intro". Both are survey articles, that provide a short and easy way to get an overview of the interesting parts of the online docs, and thus can help to prevent you from drowning in the megabytes to read. Both can be received either by subscribing to news.answers , or sending the following message to <email@example.com>:
send usenet/news.answers/introduction send usenet/news.answers/news-newusers-intro quit
Although USENET is usually characterized as "an anarchy, with no laws and no one in charge" there have "emerged" several rules over the past years that shall facilitate life within newsgroups. Thus, you will probably find the following types of articles:
If multiple different answers can be expected, the person making the request should prepare to make a summary of the answers he/she got and announce to do so with a phrase like "Please e-mail, I'll summarize" at the end of the posting.
The Subject line of the posting should then be something like "Request: X"
The Subject line of the posting should be something like "Question: this-and-that" (Q: this-and- that) or have the form of a question (i.e., end with a question mark)
The subject lines of answers are automatically adjusted by the news software.
In such a case answers should NOT be posted to the newsgroup but instead be mailed to the poster who collects and reviews them. After about 10 to 20 days from the original posting, its poster should make the summary of answers and post it to the net.
Some care should be invested into a summary:
a) simple concatenation of all the answers might not be enough; instead redundancies, irrelevances, verbosities and errors should be filtered out (as good as possible),
b) the answers shall be separated clearly
c) the contributors of the individual answers shall be identifiable unless they requested to remain anonymous [eds note: yes, that happens])
d) the summary shall start with the "quintessence" of the answers, as seen by the original poster
e) A summary should, when posted, clearly be indicated to be one by giving it a Subject line starting with "Summary:"
Note that a good summary is pure gold for the rest of the newsgroup community, so summary work will be most appreciated by all of us. (Good summaries are more valuable than any moderator!)
Announcements should be clearly indicated to be such by giving them a subject line of the form "Announcement: this-and-that", or "ust "A: this-and-that".
Due to common practice, conference announcements usually carry a "CFP:" in their subject line, i.e. "call for papers" (or: "call for participation").
Reports should be clearly indicated to be such by giving them a subject line of the form "Report: this-and-that"
If somebody explicitly wants to start a discussion, he/she can do so by giving the posting a subject line of the form "Start discussion: this-and-that" (People who react on this, please remove the "Start discussion: " label from the subject line of your replies)
It is quite difficult to keep a discussion from drifting into chaos, but, unfortunately, as many other newsgroups show there seems to be no secure way to avoid this. On the other hand, comp.ai.genetic has not had many problems with this effect, yet, so let's just go and hope...
Thanks in advance for your patience!
For information on internet services, see Q15.5.
Mistakes in this page?
Hitch Hiker's Guide to Evolutionary Computation, Issue 9.1, released 12 April 2001
Copyright © 1993-2001 by J. Heitkötter and D. Beasley, all rights reserved.