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VMs: Solution guidelines

We seem to go through cycles of people who have "solved" the VMS.  I know we have all been there once or twice.   Over time I have learned that the VMS is a sneaky little beast.  It tempts you.  Just when you think you have got it - Gotcha!  

This said, I just have a feeling that a solution is close.  Something has got to give.  So, what I propose is that a Voy Solution set of standards be set.  Naturally, it would not be binding, but it would help people think about all the things that should be done if they think they have the solution.  This is sort of the equivelent to the "Seti Code of conduct" where the SETI teams have a set of rules in place as to what will be done in the case that a signal is received that is deemed to be from another civilization.

Of course, this is not related to minor discoveries (ie - "the picture in f431r is ecto plasticica") Just claims of the solution.

Something like this:

1) Upon discovery of the solution the discoverer should not email the list until the following have been completed:

  a) at least one FULL  page should be completely translated
  b) the translated text should be included in the claim of resolution.
  c) the claim of resolution should include
      i. The original Voy text
      ii. The process for decoding
      iii. The "first stage" translation (ie Latin Text, or whatever)
      iv. The English translation.
  d) any work that the resolution was based upon should be referenced.  For instance, if the resolution is a reworking of the d'Imperio tables he should be cited in the resolution credits

2) It is then the responsibility of the list to verify/debunk the resolution.  
   a) cite places where the resolution fails in the VMS (or is successful!)
   b) reply with consideration.   We have all thought we had the solution once or twice.

3) A resolution is the property of the owner.  If someone should resolve the problem they have first rights to announcement/publication.  

Does some set of similar rules exist in the archives?  I have been reading through them, but have not seen anything of the sort yet.  

I would suggest a 4th rule: "if the resolution has anything to do with FoLDinG - keep it secret" but that wouldn't be fair <ha ha ha> Just joking Steve!

Larry Roux
Syracuse University

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