If you have been browsing the pages of RA you might have noticed that this is not a blog. A blog or a weblog is a recording of data or events as they happen. To log is to record data for later use. If you are sailing on the ocean and want to measure how fast you are going a very primitive way to do the is to strap a log to spring with rope and then trow the log the water so that you drag it along. The tension on the spring will then tell you your relative speed because the spring extend as you speed up. You would then presumably enter your readings of speed in to a “log” to keep track of speed, distance covered and position.
So a log is a recording of data taken from the physical world. And supposedly a blog is the same on the web (blog = weblog). But RA is different from that. This is not an attempt to record physical data. In fact there is precious little here that relates to anything present. Instead this is a major crunch down of data already logged and published. I try to be up to date and incorporate new exciting research, but in this context, research from 2011 is viewed as “news”. Yes, science has a different pace compared to business or politics.
But more to the point, what goes on here is asynchronous and will draw on fairly recent research as well as papers written in the 19th century. This is because the aim is to take a fresh look at the bigger picture. Which in some cases means going back to old bifurcations and choosing another route than mainstream thinking about addiction has done.
There are also a few anormalies in the way that information is presented here. You will find articles and pages that are in any state of devellopment ranging from a finished article to a mere stub.
A stub serves as a resavoir, a bucket or a placeholder for something not yet developed. It helps by providing a placeholder for information that is “pregnant” but does not have a clear and organized context. The content might not be relevant for what is fully understood, but serve as a essential starting point for developing new formulations of truth.
A “sprout” would be a more accurate idiom, but a stub is what it is called. In Wikipedia, a stub is a short article in need of expansion and it serves a starting point around which information can precipitate. Rather than a passive container, stubs are instrumental in the precipitation process.
They might seem like a deviation from a well organized presentation of information. But gaining order by hiding the items that are in development is not really a sign of perfection. Rather it is a sign of resignation and acceptance of a dead, static and ultimately obsolete formulations of truth.
And this is where a RA really differs from a blog. You would never go back and change date entered into a log, as that would be counter to the core purpose of a log. But RA is fixed at the other end: It is goal directed, driven towards a purpose and adapted to each corner on the road leading there.
Stubs also relates to the general no-secrets policy of RA: While I think that RA can present an alternative view on drug addiction and addiction treatment, there is no secrets to the process of development or the final results. It is a slow and messy process that seeks to untangle unseen and obscure dynamics based on a wide variety of sources and inspirations. There is no alternative to the actual chaos that is experienced when old formulations are left behind and new ones are not yet fully formed. This is the human experience and hiding it would not serve any purpose.
But there is another aspect to the open process of rewriting, which is the steps in rewriting the presented information in light of new understanding. This process involves readjusting to new information and to new ideas. It is a slow and messy process. The perfectionists of this world would have you believe that you can complete something worthwhile from a basic idea to the finished product or presentation in one step. This true only for trivial work and is never the case in any true progress.
Here at RA you will find articles that are badly worded, full of esoteric obscure formulations as these are the often necessary first steps toward a more fluid, a more accessible and a downright better formulation. RA is work-in-progress in any way that you can think of. What is hard to read is often a reflection of what is easy to write. But the core principle here is that is it much better to do things badly than to strive for stale perfection. It is higly possible that you will later find that things that were once tentative formulations get a makeover and perhaps even a different spot in the larger context. You might also find that it is later published in a rather fixed form as an ebook or a video presentation. But the central trust of the site is to develop insight, a clear formulation and a credible alternative to the traditional wisdom on addiction. For those reasons you should also expect that quality of any particular article will reflect the point of development that it has reached.