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A long-felt need to reboot the way discussion boards and forums are hosted has prompted Jeff Atwood to launch Discourse. Discourse is a next-generation, 100% open source and free discussion platform built for the next decade of the Internet. The new startup, Civilized Discourse Construction Kit Inc. was founded by Jeff Atwood to do for discussion board platforms what WordPress did for blogging.

Discussion forums have remained relatively staid through the years and innovations have been rare. Jeff Atwood has the experience of Stack Exchange and its success to back the need for a new kind of discussion platform which would support random and subjective discussions on one hand while keeping the whole community protected from trolls, spammers, and pirate commentators. Discourse is a product that took a year in the making. It promises a slew of features which should ideally raise the standard of online communities and the discussions held within it.

Discourse is designed for hi-resolution tablets and advanced web browsers to begin with. It has in-built moderation tools to keep conversations from being hijacked. Discourse aims to improve conversational flow by omitting pages in favor of just-in-time loading; notifications when you get quoted; threaded and contextual replies; simple image sharing with a paste; a unified search; and an ability to remember where you left off your reading.

Some of these features are already part of other apps we know well. But it is interesting to see their application on discussion boards and forums. As Jeff Atwood says, Discourse is aiming to raise the standard of civilized discourse on the Internet through seeding it with better discussion software. Try it.

Source: Coding Horror


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