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I've been thinking hard about your proposal for a few days.

Folk who sell stuff in our forum have suggested we put in place an
auction/tender service. e.g.
In this case, RepRap might set it up to get a 2% middle man fee on sales.
(Those same forum folk think 2% may be reasonable.)

To a large extent, I'm not as motivated by money as I am by
documentation.  I've been thinking about having the wiki host the
tender-seller's profile, interweaved with something vaguely related to
functionality like this:

So I do like your idea, but we might make it auction/tender, RepRap
not keeping track of, nor being responsible for users' money, as you
suggest, but I would like to stream information into the user's page
in the wiki.

http://reprap.org/wiki/Main_Page does this with the News Feed, which
comes off the blog, so this may be straightforward.  It might be good
to tie IPs together, so your system feeds only into the wiki, or it
might best improve RepRap to make that a 'badge' that people can host
on their livejournal, deviantart account, or similar.  (I'm favoring
the former, right now, and I don't see a need for badges yet.)

This motivates people to use the wiki, to maintain/nest-build their
RepRap user page, and then, if they're habituated to using the wiki
for their page, some fraction of them will then work on other wiki
pages, which is what makes us happy.

(I'm not sure about the necessity or desireability of keeping track of
Makerbot/Bits From Bytes/etc's prices.  I'm also not sure how
interested they are in participating in a completely efficient
marketplace inasmuch as they're competing with everyone who owns a
RepRap.  :)   )

I'm cc'ing David Buzz, Rob Gilson, and Jonathan Marsden, who do much
of the heavy lifting, mediawiki and server-wise.

I think we all have to think about the idea, but it seems both doable
and positive.  (Aside from not getting 2% off of every RepRap sold.)

-Sebastien Bailard
> Dear Adrian Bowyer,
> My plan is not to make a system with paying options (like Ebay has), but
> a web-app where you can view all the products, sellers, and (a very
> important thing) ratings of other users (reputations, delivery and so
> on), so people can easily see which sellers they can trust, but the
> paying part will not be supported. The users will have to do it like
> they now do: placing it on Ebay or so and announce that on the site. The
> app I'm going to make will feature comparisition with other users, but
> also with big online shops (like makerbor). It's also possible to make a
> system to auto-update the prices (prices on Ebay increment, like you
> know).
> Thomas T.