I`m just waiting for a plane...
Actually, your question goes to the matter of reasoned analysis in conjunction with (or in opposition to) empiric proof.
Can someone make a pronouncment that life on the moon would be
difficult if they`ve never been to the moon? Proponents of logic and
reason would say yes. Those who believe that only personal experience
can be trusted would say no.
Your example of Web critiques offers two basic starting points. The one
is to look at the Web site as a developer-designer. The other is to
look at it as a prospective customer. In most cases, the prospective
customer has no idea how to code a site. Does that mean their opinion
of the viability of the site is useless?
So what if they have or don`t have a site of their own? They`re not
selling anything, they`re looking at a beta version of a site, or an
existing site up for critique and commenting as to why they would or
wouldn`t shop at that site.
What makes SuN much more interesting is that not only can non-technical
people comment on a site, but then technical developers can step in an
explain either how to fix it, or why the other comments are taking
This community is an excellent example of how "The Market" is a close
cousin to Objective Reality. How people interact with that amorphous
"blob" of dispassionate existence is up to each of them.
Human beans have survived and developed mostly due to our capacity to
imagine, talk, write, and reason. Critical analysis is the most basic
part of reasoning, and it uses the other capabilities as well.
The way we separate the truth from the bilge water is with critical
analysis, judgement, evaluation, and comparative logic. For the moment,
this community offers a less immediate, less dramatic way to practice
those skills without getting killed.
Our time in history is particularly notable in its near complete
polarization between people who "feel" they understand reality and the
truth, and those who are "convinced" of that knowledge. The two
perspectives are totally opposed when they`re the ONLY two
perspectives. Properly, we should use a blend of those methods, and
include other perspectives.
SuN offers that blend in each topic that gets picked up for discussion.
It allows for arguments based on both perspectives, and leaves the
reader with the opportunity to try out whatever`s the advice. But that
trial is in a "protected" environment---a simulation, if you
will---that often doesn`t require real investment of real money, or
irrevocable decisions that can`t be changed later.