Buckminster Fuller

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pages: 339 words: 57,031

From Counterculture to Cyberculture: Stewart Brand, the Whole Earth Network, and the Rise of Digital Utopianism by Fred Turner

1960s counterculture, A Declaration of the Independence of Cyberspace, Apple's 1984 Super Bowl advert, back-to-the-land, bioinformatics, Buckminster Fuller, business cycle, Claude Shannon: information theory, complexity theory, computer age, conceptual framework, Danny Hillis, dematerialisation, distributed generation, Douglas Engelbart, Douglas Engelbart, Dynabook, Electric Kool-Aid Acid Test, From Mathematics to the Technologies of Life and Death, future of work, game design, George Gilder, global village, Golden Gate Park, Hacker Ethic, Haight Ashbury, hive mind, Howard Rheingold, informal economy, invisible hand, Jaron Lanier, John Markoff, John von Neumann, Kevin Kelly, knowledge economy, knowledge worker, market bubble, Marshall McLuhan, mass immigration, means of production, Menlo Park, Mitch Kapor, Mother of all demos, new economy, Norbert Wiener, peer-to-peer, post-industrial society, postindustrial economy, Productivity paradox, QWERTY keyboard, Ralph Waldo Emerson, RAND corporation, Richard Stallman, Robert Shiller, Robert Shiller, Ronald Reagan, Shoshana Zuboff, Silicon Valley, Silicon Valley ideology, South of Market, San Francisco, Steve Jobs, Steve Wozniak, Steven Levy, Stewart Brand, technoutopianism, Ted Nelson, Telecommunications Act of 1996, The Hackers Conference, theory of mind, urban renewal, Vannevar Bush, Whole Earth Catalog, Whole Earth Review, Yom Kippur War

“That is why we must, to use them at all, serve these objects, these extensions of ourselves, as gods or minor religions” (46). 25. And in that sense, Fuller’s public persona fit well within what Peter Braunstein has called a “culture of rejuvenation” in the 1960s. See Braunstein, “Forever Young.” [ 270 ] N o t e s t o Pa g e s 5 5 _ 7 2 26. Fuller quoted in Fuller and Snyder, R. Buckminster Fuller, 12. 27. Emerson quoted in Kenner, Bucky, 149 –50. 28. Fuller, Ideas and Integrities, 35 – 43. 29. Ibid., 173. 30. Ibid., 176. 31. Ibid., 63. 32. Brand, “Buckminster Fuller,” 3, 249. 33. Fuller quoted in Fuller and Snyder, R. Buckminster Fuller, 38. By the early 1960s, Fuller was traveling more than two-thirds of every year. Kenner, Bucky, 290. 34. Brand, “Notebooks,” April 21, 1963, quotation in October 9, 1964 entry. For a rich analysis of the role played by Native American symbolism in the counterculture, see Deloria, Playing Indian. 35.

All quotations from materials in the Whole Earth Catalog Records appear courtesy of the Department of Special Collections, Stanford University Libraries. “All Watched Over by Machines of Loving Grace,” from The Pill versus The Springhill Mine Disaster, © 1968 by Richard Brautigan, has been reprinted with the permission of Sarah Lazin Books. Portions of chapter 2 have been adapted from “Buckminster Fuller: A Technocrat for the Counterculture,” in New Views on R. Buckminster Fuller, edited by Hsiao-Yun Chu and Roberto Trujillo, © 2006 Board of Trustees of the Leland Stanford Jr. University, forthcoming from Stanford University Press, used by permission. Parts of chapters 4 and 8 have been drawn from “How Digital Technology Found Utopian Ideology: Lessons from the First Hackers’ Conference,” in Critical Cyberculture Studies: Current Terrains, Future Directions, edited by David Silver and Adrienne Massanari (New York University Press, forthcoming), and are used by permission.

Finally, if the bureaucracies of industry and government demanded that men and women become psychologically fragmented specialists, the technology-induced experience of togetherness would allow them to become both self-sufficient and whole once again. For this wing of the counterculture, the technological and intellectual output of American research culture held enormous appeal. Although they rejected the military-industrial complex as a whole, as well as the political process that brought it into being, hippies from Manhattan to HaightAshbury read Norbert Wiener, Buckminster Fuller, and Marshall McLuhan. Introduction [ 5 ] Through their writings, young Americans encountered a cybernetic vision of the world, one in which material reality could be imagined as an information system. To a generation that had grown up in a world beset by massive armies and by the threat of nuclear holocaust, the cybernetic notion of the globe as a single, interlinked pattern of information was deeply comforting: in the invisible play of information, many thought they could see the possibility of global harmony.


pages: 299 words: 19,560

Utopias: A Brief History From Ancient Writings to Virtual Communities by Howard P. Segal

1960s counterculture, British Empire, Buckminster Fuller, complexity theory, David Brooks, death of newspapers, dematerialisation, deskilling, energy security, European colonialism, Francis Fukuyama: the end of history, full employment, future of journalism, G4S, garden city movement, germ theory of disease, Golden Gate Park, invention of the printing press, Isaac Newton, Jeff Bezos, John Markoff, John von Neumann, knowledge economy, liberation theology, Louis Pasteur, Mark Zuckerberg, mass immigration, means of production, Nelson Mandela, Nicholas Carr, Nikolai Kondratiev, out of africa, Ralph Waldo Emerson, Ray Kurzweil, Ronald Reagan, Silicon Valley, Skype, stem cell, Stephen Hawking, Steve Jobs, Steve Wozniak, Stewart Brand, technoutopianism, Thomas Malthus, Thorstein Veblen, transcontinental railway, traveling salesman, union organizing, urban planning, War on Poverty, Whole Earth Catalog

See my review in Technology and Culture, 28 (July 1987), 697–698 of R. Buckminster Fuller, Inventions: The Patented Works of Buckminster Fuller (New York: St. Martin’s, 1983) and James Ward, ed., The Artifacts of Buckminster Fuller: A Comprehensive Collection of His Designs and Drawings, 4 vols. (New York: Garland, 1985). Both were posthumous publications. The large literature on Buckminster Fuller includes Amy C. Edmondson, A Fuller Explanation: The Synergetic Geometry of R. Buckminster Fuller (Boston: Birkh€auser, 1987); Martin Pawley, Buckminster Fuller (New York: Taplinger, 1990); Robert R. Potter, Buckminster Fuller (Englewood Cliffs: Silver Burdett, 1990); J. Baldwin, Bucky Works: Buckminster Fuller’s Ideas for Today (New York: John Wiley, 1996); Lloyd Steven Sieden, Buckminster Fuller’s Universe (Cambridge: Perseus, 2000); Thomas T.

Baldwin, Bucky Works: Buckminster Fuller’s Ideas for Today (New York: John Wiley, 1996); Lloyd Steven Sieden, Buckminster Fuller’s Universe (Cambridge: Perseus, 2000); Thomas T. K. Zung, ed., Buckminster Fuller: Anthology for the New Millennium (New York: St. Martin’s, 2001); and Michael John Gorman, Buckminster Fuller: Designing for Mobility (New York: Rizzoli, 2005). See Lyman Tower Sargent, Utopianism: A Very Short Introduction (New York: Oxford University Press, 2010), 81–85, for a good summary of these recent developments. The foremost history of the kibbutz is Henry Near, The Kibbutz Movement: A History, 2 vols. (Oxford: Oxford University Press, 1992; London: Vallentine Mitchell, 1997). The first volume is subtitled Origins and Growth, 1909–1939; the second, Crisis and Achievement, 1939–1995. Daniel Gavron, The Kibbutz: Awakening From Utopia (Lanham: Rowman and Littlefield, 2000), 4. This is a very good introduction to the topic. Further studies of the kibbutzim include Yonina Talmon, Family and Community in the Kibbutz (Cambridge: Harvard University Press, 1972); Melford E.

In 2008 and 2009 two major museums, New York’s Whitney and Chicago’s Museum of Contemporary Art, successively exhibited “Buckminster Fuller: Starting with the Universe.” This was the first major retrospective on Fuller since his death in 1983 and, like the New York Public Library exhibit, bespoke a more mature acknowledgment of the continued importance of utopianism, which, in this case, combined utopian writings, structures, and communities.20 In 1968 architectural critic Allan Temko published a provocative essay in Horizon magazine entitled “Which Guide to the Promised Land? Fuller or Mumford?” Without taking sides, Temko insightfully compared the differing visions of contemporaries Buckminster Fuller (1895–1983) and Lewis Mumford (1895–1990), both then at the height of their power and influence. Despite their vastly differing viewpoints, each had become a hero to younger audiences: Mumford because of his increasingly hostile analyses of modern technological advance gone awry, as in the Vietnam War; Fuller because of his steadily more optimistic views of contemporary technology’s potential to transform the world and to create new communities.21 The exhibit provided a remarkably rich perspective.


Norman Foster: A Life in Architecture by Deyan Sudjic

Buckminster Fuller, carbon footprint, credit crunch, cuban missile crisis, Frank Gehry, interchangeable parts, James Dyson, Jane Jacobs, low cost airline, Masdar, megacity, megastructure, Murano, Venice glass, Norman Mailer, Pearl River Delta, Peter Eisenman, sustainable-tourism, The Death and Life of Great American Cities, University of East Anglia, urban decay, urban renewal, white flight, young professional

The plan is for the entire area to be free of cars. The shaded streets are intended to encourage walking – no small ambition in the climate of the Gulf, where in August the temperature is a brutal fifty degrees. In its optimism and its search for answers, Masdar is an echo of the first city of the future that Norman Foster explored with his adolescent imagination growing up in Manchester. Long before he met Buckminster Fuller, he never missed an instalment of Dan Dare: Pilot of the Future. As a young teenager Foster read the comic strip, with its intricate depiction of a world of atomic-powered monorails and levitating taxis (which look a lot like Masdar’s personal rapid transits), every week in the Eagle, the comic aimed at middle-class adolescents in the England of the 1950s. Foster has been thinking about cities ever since.

In a later issue, the Eagle showed another key British building of the 1950s, Basil Spence’s design for Coventry Cathedral, describing it as ‘The Cathedral of the Space Age’. To the impressionable young, the Eagle was highly effective propaganda, not just for modern architecture but for technology. There were images of nuclear-powered ships and gas turbine-engined cars that the Eagle predicted would be the personal transport of the very near future. As portrayed by the Eagle’s artists, these vehicles bear a close resemblance to Buckminster Fuller’s Dymaxion car, shaped like tear drops and driven on three invisible wheels. The cities of the future were going to look like modular collections of pods. One issue had a cutaway drawing of an American Antarctic base that had been clipped together from a series of units half-buried in snow and ice. Ten years later, that drawing would not have been out of place on the pages of an avant-garde architectural magazine.

Pei and Paul Rudolph were taught directly by the refugees. Louis Kahn, Eero Saarinen and Rudolph tried to build a specifically American form of modernism in architecture and they in turn were attracting their own followers. Foster was well aware of the striking direction that their work had taken. He was especially interested in Louis Kahn, who managed to be both monumental and fascinated by the thinking of Buckminster Fuller. For any young architect who wanted to get close to the centre of energy for their subject, America was an essential destination in a way that England was not. What attracted Foster to Yale rather than to Harvard or Princeton were the people that he hoped would be teaching him. In spite of a moment of doubt when he discovered that Kahn had just left New Haven for Philadelphia, Foster had decided that only Yale would do.


From Satori to Silicon Valley: San Francisco and the American Counterculture by Theodore Roszak

Buckminster Fuller, germ theory of disease, global village, Haight Ashbury, Internet Archive, Marshall McLuhan, megastructure, Menlo Park, Norbert Wiener, Silicon Valley, Steven Levy, Stewart Brand, upwardly mobile, Whole Earth Catalog

for Hackers by Steven Levy, copyright 1984. PRAEGER PUBLISHERS Society, edited for quote by Bill Voyd from Shelter and by Paul Oliver, copyright 1969. SAN FRANCISCO FOCUS MAGAZINE view with Stewart Brand in the for quotes from an inter- February 1985 issue. SAN FRANCISCO ORACLE for quotes from issues #6, 1967, and #12, 1967. Reprinted with permission of Allan Cohen, Editor. ST. MARTIN'S PRESS for Buckminster Fuller, An Autobiographical Monologue!Scenario by Robert Snyder, copyright 1970. ST. MARTIN'S PRESS copyright 1978. for Children of Prosperity by Hugh Gardner, The Times They Are A-Changing A shortened version of this essay was presented at San Francisco State University Alvin Fine Lecture. 1985 as the in April A few weeks before the event, student in the Public Affairs Office called arrange some campus publicity.

It 17 seemed to be saying that ingenuity deserved to be celebrated - from the stone axe and American Indian medicine to all human modern Clearly, electronics. so in saying, the Catalog spoke for an audience that wanted to see things that way. Or rather, the voices that could do that job. which it Catalog found the And of all the voices to gave a forum, none was to become more prominent than Buckminster Fuller, the formed a generation that it spaceship called Planet Earth, and write its who presumed to "operating manual" Now, Buckminster career. man who in- was already on board a Fuller had a long, long His prefabricated Dymaxion House of the late twenties (also called "the four dimensional liv- ing machine") dates back to the grandparents of the countercultural ward, his generation. story life From that point went through many ups and downs; but there can be no question (when Fuller was in his seventies) Not only did he make the magazine (in that the sixties were his zenith.

for- Thanks to that 18 him to the at San Bay Area appearance and subse- him quently to the prominence Stewart Brand gave in the Whole Earth Catalog, was launched on and most spectacular phase of the final On Fuller his career. the first page of the Catalog, the full corpus of Fuller's works was generously presented under the inscription: "the insights of itiated this catalog." became From Buckminster Fuller in- that point forward, Fuller the necessary presence at New Age confer- ences, symposia, and workshops: a sort of peripatetic global wizard audience down who might tie his awe-inspired for four or five hours at a stretch while he recited the history of the universe. What was it that made this odd figure so remarkably influential in countercultural circles? In part, it may have been which appealed elders had to young people and finding so to do with his grandfatherly persona, his in search of few.


pages: 467 words: 149,632

If Then: How Simulmatics Corporation Invented the Future by Jill Lepore

A Declaration of the Independence of Cyberspace, anti-communist, Buckminster Fuller, computer age, coronavirus, cuban missile crisis, desegregation, don't be evil, Donald Trump, Elon Musk, game design, George Gilder, Grace Hopper, Hacker Ethic, Howard Zinn, index card, information retrieval, Jaron Lanier, Jeff Bezos, Jeffrey Epstein, job automation, land reform, linear programming, Mahatma Gandhi, Marc Andreessen, Mark Zuckerberg, mass incarceration, Maui Hawaii, Menlo Park, New Journalism, New Urbanism, Norbert Wiener, Norman Mailer, packet switching, Peter Thiel, profit motive, RAND corporation, Robert Bork, Ronald Reagan, Rosa Parks, self-driving car, Silicon Valley, smart cities, South China Sea, Stewart Brand, technoutopianism, Telecommunications Act of 1996, urban renewal, War on Poverty, white flight, Whole Earth Catalog

“Scenarios for Using the ARPANET at the International Conference on Computer Communication,” Washington, DC, October 24–26, 1972, Computer History Museum. And see, e.g., “Demonstration Heralds Next Wave: Connecting a Network of Networks,” Electronics, November 6, 1972. For samples of these conversations, see https://web.stanford.edu/group/SHR/4-2/text/dialogues.html. R. Buckminster Fuller, “Prime Design,” Bennington College Bulletin, May 1960. From R. Buckminster Fuller, Ideas and Integrities: A Spontaneous Autobiographical Disclosure (Baden, Switzerland: Lars Müller, 2009), 329, quoted in Turner, From Counterculture to Cyberculture, 51–58. Ibid., 104–8. Brand, “Spacewar.” Turner, From Counterculture to Cyberculture, chs. 4 and 5. O’Mara, The Code, 124. NBC Nightly News, June 4, 1975, as reproduced in Surveillance Technology: Joint Hearings Before the Subcommittee on Constitutional Rights of the Committee on the Judiciary and the Special Subcommittee on Science, Technology, and Commerce of the Committee on Commerce, United States Senate, Ninety-Fourth Congress, June 23, September 9 and 10, 1975 (Washington, DC: GPO, 1975), 3–8.

Denby and the de Koonings made silent films starring the Safford children, Patty in a swimsuit, her little brother in a rowboat, abducted by pirates, kidnapped by a witch, rescued at the last minute: fairy tales in black and white, tales of sorcery.4 In 1951, when Ed Greenfield and Patty Safford got married, Patty’s father gave them, as a wedding gift, a rambling old wooden Victorian house on the beach. It had a fireplace made of stones from Long Island Sound. Next door, another of Frank Safford’s friends, the visionary and eccentric architect Buckminster Fuller, would build for the Saffords one of his early geodesic domes, a shell of struts of aluminum and triangles of glass and porcelain, intricately balanced, a feat of engineering, a marvel, out of this world: the future summer headquarters of the Simulmatics Corporation.5 Ed Greenfield had big ideas and big ideals, big liberal ideas. For all his hucksterism, he was much more than an ad man: he was a philanthropist earnestly dedicated to midcentury American liberalism.

A mad scramble began, punch cards flying. Greenfield, McPhee, and Yale psychologist Robert Abelson, who had also signed onto Simulmatics, decamped to Pool’s house in Cambridge. Ithiel’s fifteen-year-old son, Jeremy, who was spending the summer with his father, sat in on some of their meetings, watching them pore over endless reams of computer printouts.82 Then they reconvened at Wading River, where Buckminster Fuller was just beginning work on the geodesic dome he was building for Frank Safford, next to Ed and Patty Greenfield’s house.83 They’d have had to send a staffer to take the train into New York, to feed punch cards into and collect printouts from the IBM 704 at Columbia.84 On August 25, they headed to Washington, to submit Simulmatics’ results to Bobby Kennedy and the top campaign staff during a briefing held in RFK’s office.85 Simulmatics’ three new studies were as shrewd as their initial study on black voters.


pages: 441 words: 113,244

Seasteading: How Floating Nations Will Restore the Environment, Enrich the Poor, Cure the Sick, and Liberate Humanity From Politicians by Joe Quirk, Patri Friedman

3D printing, access to a mobile phone, addicted to oil, Affordable Care Act / Obamacare, agricultural Revolution, Albert Einstein, barriers to entry, Branko Milanovic, British Empire, Buckminster Fuller, Burning Man, business climate, business cycle, business process, California gold rush, Celtic Tiger, Charles Lindbergh, clean water, Colonization of Mars, Dean Kamen, Deng Xiaoping, drone strike, Elon Musk, en.wikipedia.org, failed state, financial intermediation, Gini coefficient, happiness index / gross national happiness, income inequality, Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC), joint-stock company, joint-stock limited liability company, Kickstarter, low skilled workers, Machinery of Freedom by David Friedman, Mark Zuckerberg, megacity, minimum wage unemployment, Network effects, new economy, obamacare, offshore financial centre, open borders, paypal mafia, peak oil, Peter H. Diamandis: Planetary Resources, Peter Thiel, price stability, profit motive, Ronald Coase, Ronald Reagan, Shenzhen was a fishing village, Silicon Valley, special economic zone, standardized shipping container, stem cell, trade route, UNCLOS, UNCLOS, undersea cable, young professional

Meinhold, “Inhabitat Interview: Water Architect Koen Olthuis on How to Embrace Rising Sea Levels,” August 28, 2014, http://inhabitat.com/inhabitat-interview-water-architect-koen-olthuis-on-how-to-embrace-rising-sea-levels. Korail Wet Slum in Dhaka, Bangladesh: www.unesco-ihe.org/sites/default/files/floating_city_apps.pdf. “seadromes”: Bill Bryson, One Summer: America, 1927 (New York: Knopf Doubleday, 2013). Buckminster Fuller revealed his detailed vision of Triton City: http://cup2013.wordpress.com/tag/triton-city/. There are three types of floating cities: Buckminster Fuller, Critical Path (New York: St. Martin’s Press), 332–33. The Maldives, a nation of 1,300 or so islands, may soon be submerged: Maldives Most At-Risk Economy in South Asia from Climate Change—Report, August 19, 2014, www.adb.org/news/maldives-most-risk-economy-south-asia-climate-change-report. “This master plan for the Maldives”: http://www.waterstudio.nl/vision.

If the Depression had occurred in the 1959 instead of 1929, we might have colonized the seas in 1969 and laughed at the futuristic notion of walking on the moon. In a world where space stations have been floating in the sky for almost a half century, we shouldn’t be incredulous that sea stations can float on water. Seasteading should have started soon after 1967, when designer and architect Buckminster Fuller revealed his detailed vision of Triton City, a floating city for five thousand residents designed to encourage people to share resources and conserve energy. Triton City is engineered in a tetrahedronal shape to resist tsunamis. Declaring “Three-quarters of our planet Earth is covered with water, most of which may float organic cities,” Fuller published his book Critical Path in 1981 to describe his ongoing aqua project, revealing that the fundamental design proposed by our seasteading engineers had long been in place.

Fuller wrote, “President [Lyndon B.] Johnson took the model with him and installed it in his LBJ Texas library . . . The city of Toronto, Ontario, Canada, and other cities of the U.S.A. are interested in the possibility of acquiring such floating cities. Chances of one being inaugurated are now improving.” Heartbreakingly, municipal and federal regulators stalled the project, which languished until Buckminster Fuller died in 1983. A great idea from one of humanity’s greatest geniuses was never tested because old rules prevented the innovation. No matter. Sea level rise is driving ocean colonization. Sink or Swim The Maldives, a nation of 1,300 or so islands, may soon be submerged. But as island paradises sink, floating cities will rise. It’s not a dream. It’s a business. Koen Olthuis has partnered with hotel and restaurant entrepreneur Paul van de Camp.


pages: 290 words: 72,046

5 Day Weekend: Freedom to Make Your Life and Work Rich With Purpose by Nik Halik, Garrett B. Gunderson

Airbnb, bitcoin, Buckminster Fuller, business process, clean water, collaborative consumption, cryptocurrency, delayed gratification, diversified portfolio, en.wikipedia.org, estate planning, Ethereum, fear of failure, fiat currency, financial independence, glass ceiling, Grace Hopper, Home mortgage interest deduction, Isaac Newton, litecoin, Lyft, market fundamentalism, microcredit, minimum viable product, mortgage debt, mortgage tax deduction, Nelson Mandela, passive income, peer-to-peer, peer-to-peer rental, Ponzi scheme, quantitative easing, Ralph Waldo Emerson, ride hailing / ride sharing, sharing economy, side project, Skype, TaskRabbit, traveling salesman, uber lyft

I have one life to live, and I intend to live it fully. I live with adventure and suck the marrow out of life. I dare to dream and live with passion. I refuse to spend my life doing the bidding of others. I will help others build their dreams but not at the expense of my own. I build my 5 Day Weekend. I live the life I love. “The minute you begin to do what you really want to do, it’s really a different kind of life.” —BUCKMINSTER FULLER Putting the 5 Day Weekend to Work For you, this book may: Be a wake-up call Offer new ideas Crystalize thoughts you’ve had before Challenge you to live life to the fullest Spur you to action It can be read from beginning to end to give you an overview. After finishing the book, you may decide to take the challenge. Then you can go back and use the Calls to Action, the worksheets, and the other applications throughout the book.

Make sure you provide proper maintenance to keep the facility in good working order and attractive to customers. My goal isn’t to give you an exhaustive list of alternative growth investments, but rather to teach you to think outside the box. Do your homework, and you’ll see a world of opportunity beyond what you’re taught by Suze Orman and Money magazine. “Do more and more with less and less until eventually you can do everything with nothing.” —BUCKMINSTER FULLER CHAPTER 19 GO BIG MOMENTUM INVESTMENTS As your cash flow from your Growth investments grows, you’ll be in a position to start considering Momentum investments. You’re probably not in a position yet to even think about Momentum investing, and you may not be for a few years. Still, this section will help to paint a vision of what’s possible and give you something to look forward to.

Your significance will remain forever obscure to you, but you may assume that you are fulfilling your role if you apply yourself to converting your experiences to the highest advantage of others.”19 After this experience, Bucky chose to embark on “an experiment, to find what a single individual [could] contribute to changing the world and benefiting all humanity.”20 He became an architect, systems theorist, designer, inventor, and the author of more than thirty books, and he was hailed as “one of the greatest minds of our times.” A Clear Purpose Unleashes Your Greatness As we learn from Buckminster Fuller, what keeps us stuck in life is a lack of purpose. Having a clear purpose unleashes the best in us and enables us to escape aimlessness, boredom, and mediocrity. “Don’t ask yourself what the world needs. Ask yourself what makes you come alive, and go do that, because what the world needs is people who have come alive.” —GIL BAILIE 5 Day Weekenders are men and women of purpose.


pages: 239 words: 56,531

The Secret War Between Downloading and Uploading: Tales of the Computer as Culture Machine by Peter Lunenfeld

Albert Einstein, Andrew Keen, anti-globalists, Apple II, Berlin Wall, British Empire, Brownian motion, Buckminster Fuller, Burning Man, business cycle, butterfly effect, computer age, creative destruction, crowdsourcing, cuban missile crisis, Dissolution of the Soviet Union, don't be evil, Douglas Engelbart, Douglas Engelbart, Dynabook, East Village, Edward Lorenz: Chaos theory, Fall of the Berlin Wall, Francis Fukuyama: the end of history, Frank Gehry, Grace Hopper, gravity well, Guggenheim Bilbao, Honoré de Balzac, Howard Rheingold, invention of movable type, Isaac Newton, Jacquard loom, Jane Jacobs, Jeff Bezos, John Markoff, John von Neumann, Kickstarter, Mark Zuckerberg, Marshall McLuhan, Mercator projection, Metcalfe’s law, Mother of all demos, mutually assured destruction, Nelson Mandela, Network effects, new economy, Norbert Wiener, PageRank, pattern recognition, peer-to-peer, planetary scale, plutocrats, Plutocrats, post-materialism, Potemkin village, RFID, Richard Feynman, Richard Stallman, Robert Metcalfe, Robert X Cringely, Schrödinger's Cat, Search for Extraterrestrial Intelligence, SETI@home, Silicon Valley, Skype, social software, spaced repetition, Steve Ballmer, Steve Jobs, Steve Wozniak, Ted Nelson, the built environment, The Death and Life of Great American Cities, the medium is the message, Thomas L Friedman, Turing machine, Turing test, urban planning, urban renewal, Vannevar Bush, walkable city, Watson beat the top human players on Jeopardy!, William Shockley: the traitorous eight

There has long been a split in the literature on gaming between narratologists, who emphasize the “stories” that video games generate, and the ludologists, who concentrate on game play as primary. See Ian Bogost, Unit Operations: An Approach to Videogame Criticism (Cambridge, MA: MIT Press, 2006), 68. 26 . The sixth chapter of R. Buckminster Fuller’s Critical Path (New York: St. Martin’s Press, 1981) is devoted to the world game, and the Buckminster Fuller Institute maintains a page on its cite with numerous resources, available at <http://www.bfi.org/our_programs/who_is_buckminster_fuller/design_science/ world_game>. CHAPTER 4: WEB n.0 1. See <http://flickr.com>; <http://www.del.icio.us>. The term was coined by Thomas Vander Wal. See Daniel H. Pink, “Folksonomy,” New York Times Sunday Magazine, December 11, 2005, available at <http://www.nytimes. com/2005/12/11/magazine/11ideas1-21.html?

In the context of the assertions offered in the rest of this book, however, I would say that the pressing issue is whether individual games or games as systems can accrete in such a way as to create 72 UNIMODERNISM what one could call ludic stickiness. One game that was indeed sticky involved players running around a huge and unconventional map of the world, working together to deploy resources and innovative technology to make not just their team but rather the whole globe a better place. More than a generation ago, the polymath futurist and designer R. Buckminster Fuller (of geodesic dome fame) proposed this multiplayer “design science process for arriving at economic, technological and social insights pertinent to humanity’s future envolvement [sic, a signature Fuller neologism] aboard our planet Earth.” Originally called the “great logistics game” and then the “world peace game,” it was best known simply as the “World Game.” Inspired in part by the war gaming that planners engaged in to prepare for the hot battlefields of World War II and the colder, yet protracted conflicts with the Soviet Union that followed, the World Game was a revamping of these strategies to think about how best to use resources to ensure planetary happiness.


pages: 394 words: 108,215

What the Dormouse Said: How the Sixties Counterculture Shaped the Personal Computer Industry by John Markoff

Any sufficiently advanced technology is indistinguishable from magic, Apple II, back-to-the-land, beat the dealer, Bill Duvall, Bill Gates: Altair 8800, Buckminster Fuller, California gold rush, card file, computer age, computer vision, conceptual framework, cuban missile crisis, different worldview, Donald Knuth, Douglas Engelbart, Douglas Engelbart, Dynabook, Edward Thorp, El Camino Real, Electric Kool-Aid Acid Test, general-purpose programming language, Golden Gate Park, Hacker Ethic, hypertext link, informal economy, information retrieval, invention of the printing press, Jeff Rulifson, John Markoff, John Nash: game theory, John von Neumann, Kevin Kelly, knowledge worker, Mahatma Gandhi, Menlo Park, Mother of all demos, Norbert Wiener, packet switching, Paul Terrell, popular electronics, QWERTY keyboard, RAND corporation, RFC: Request For Comment, Richard Stallman, Robert X Cringely, Sand Hill Road, Silicon Valley, Silicon Valley startup, South of Market, San Francisco, speech recognition, Steve Crocker, Steve Jobs, Steve Wozniak, Steven Levy, Stewart Brand, Ted Nelson, The Hackers Conference, Thorstein Veblen, Turing test, union organizing, Vannevar Bush, Whole Earth Catalog, William Shockley: the traitorous eight

Combining his Midwestern roots with a Merry Prankster sense of cosmic adventure, Brand would create in 1968 an irresistible format in the first Whole Earth Catalog. A compendium of stuff patterned after the Sears and L. L. Bean mail-order catalogs crossed with Consumer Reports, the catalog struck a deep nerve that transcended the counterculture. Brand had come upon the idea of a “Whole Earth” two years earlier, after hearing a lecture by Buckminster Fuller. One day in North Beach, he had been sitting huddled in a blanket on the roof of his three-story apartment building looking out over the city. Having taken “a few mikes of LSD,”2 Brand was suddenly struck by the fact that the city’s buildings were not laid out in perfect parallel lines. It seemed to him that, since the surface of the earth was curved, they actually must diverge just slightly.

Although it resembled mainstream catalogs in many respects, it differed in a manner that struck right at a dualism that Brand himself would coin years later: that strange quality about information that was both easy and freely shareable and immensely valuable. “Information wants to be free,” he said, and then he added in typical Brandian fashion, “and it wants to be very expensive.” The first Whole Earth Catalog was a full-on tour of the counterculture, a hodgepodge of product descriptions, advice, commentary, and quirky features laid out in a seemingly haphazard fashion, beginning with Buckminster Fuller and ending with the I Ching; it became an instant bible and a serendipitous tool for finding interesting stuff. In doing so, it also helped a scattered community that was in the process of defining itself find an identity. “We are as gods and we might as well get used to it.” Brand’s introduction began with a phrase borrowed from British anthropologist Edmund Leach that is often remembered and quoted.

Evans decided that he would become the interface between the super-straight world of information technology, SRI, and the wild and free world of the embryonic alternative society that was blossoming on the Peninsula.11 He felt that a lot of the ideas about community that Brand was exploring and the ideas that Engelbart had about a “bootstrapped community” were on the same continuum, and so he started to actively encourage a dialogue between the two worlds. Engelbart, he believed, had a receptive mind. In 1969, at Evans’s urging, Engelbart took a small group of Augment researchers to visit a commune known as Lama that had been started by Steve Durkee and Steve Baer in the mountains north of Taos, New Mexico. Baer was a disciple of Buckminster Fuller and the creator of a novel type of domelike building called a “zome.” Durkee was an artist who was Brand’s former roommate and mentor/guru. As hard as Evans tried to bridge the gap, he ended up increasing the stress on Engelbart, who in principle was open to new ideas but who was increasingly obsessing over losing control of his group. Evans continued in his quest and in doing so became one of the main players in organizing the Paradam Conference, an event held on a farm near Santa Barbara the weekend after the Woodstock music festival.


pages: 335 words: 111,405

B Is for Bauhaus, Y Is for YouTube: Designing the Modern World From a to Z by Deyan Sudjic

3D printing, additive manufacturing, Albert Einstein, Berlin Wall, Boris Johnson, Buckminster Fuller, call centre, carbon footprint, clean water, dematerialisation, deskilling, edge city, Elon Musk, Frank Gehry, Guggenheim Bilbao, illegal immigration, James Dyson, Jane Jacobs, Kitchen Debate, light touch regulation, market design, megastructure, moral panic, New Urbanism, place-making, QWERTY keyboard, Silicon Valley, Steve Jobs, Steve Wozniak, the scientific method, University of East Anglia, urban renewal, urban sprawl, young professional

From the unlikely piece of customization that was the Mark 1, Chapman went on to develop the Lotus 7, the quintessential British sports car. He sold the rights to Caterham Cars, who still manufacture its descendants to this day. What made the Lotus project work was Chapman’s ability to think his way around the production and performance issues on which every new car depends. He wasn’t the first engineer to come up with the idea of using a space frame to make a stiff but lightweight car. Buckminster Fuller had done that decades earlier when he built his Dymaxion car back in the 1930s. While Fuller was far-sighted enough to see the potential of the approach, a fatal crash at its launch blighted the Dymaxion’s future and it was Chapman who was able to make it work in the marketplace. And the brilliant Hans Ledwinka at the Czech car company Tatra – from which FA Porsche took much of the expertise for the Volkswagen – had also worked on the idea of a ‘backbone’ chassis that shaped Lotus’s approach to finding a simple and economical way to stiffen his lightweight fibreglass bodies.

Later on, he was clearly disappointed by the reluctance of his protégés to conform to his idea of what made architecture culturally relevant. He turned his attention to the young Norman Foster, who was capable, in those days, of telling potential clients that the answer to their needs might not be to build anything at all. Most unsettlingly of all for those who took a conventional view of architectural aesthetics, Foster spoke of his admiration for the maverick visionary Buckminster Fuller and his geodesic domes. As time has passed, design history has emerged as an academic subject, somewhere between cultural studies and social anthropology, a shift that I don’t find particularly appealing. But design keeps changing shape, which is why it matters. The clearest, but still not entirely satisfactory, way to define design is through its relationship with mass production. Some objects were mass-produced far earlier than the late eighteenth century, when the Industrial Revolution is conventionally understood to have started – coins, amphorae, Venetian galleys, bullets and arrows, for example – suggesting that design has a longer history than is sometimes claimed.

From the first Paris exposition to the starry-eyed futurism of New York in 1939, from the welfare state optimism of the Festival of Britain in 1951 and the tawdry corporate vision of New York in 1964, each of the fairs sloganized a particular view of urbanism. The most extreme embrace of drip-dry modernity was the Montreal Expo of 1967, with its concrete housing ziggurat designed by Moshe Safdie, its Buckminster Fuller dome for the United States pavilion, and its monorails. The expo, despite all the dross and the expense, is still refusing to lie down and die. The Shanghai Expo of 2010 was the most well attended of all time, the product of the burgeoning mobility of the Chinese labouring class and the determination from governments around the world to make the best possible showing in front of this potentially enormous new market.


The Orbital Perspective: Lessons in Seeing the Big Picture From a Journey of 71 Million Miles by Astronaut Ron Garan, Muhammad Yunus

Airbnb, barriers to entry, book scanning, Buckminster Fuller, clean water, corporate social responsibility, crowdsourcing, global village, Google Earth, Indoor air pollution, jimmy wales, low earth orbit, optical character recognition, ride hailing / ride sharing, shareholder value, Silicon Valley, Skype, smart transportation, Stephen Hawking, transaction costs, Turing test, Uber for X, web of trust

However, advancements in computing and visualization technologies over the past five decades have made it possible to realize the original purpose of the Expo ’67 pavilion. The nonprofit Buckminster Fuller Institute, which is dedicated to finding innovative solutions to some of humanity’s most pressing problems, wants to use the fiftieth anniversary of Expo ’67 as an impetus to finally fully realize Fuller’s dream of creating a control room for Spaceship Earth. By renovating and incorporating modern technology into the fifty-year-old geodesic dome, which is currently the Biosphère Environmental Museum, it hopes to create a global hub for collaborative international problem solving. This tool would be made completely open to all, so that it can be of value to society as a whole. As a result, according to Elizabeth Thompson, executive director of the Buckminster Fuller Institute, “planetary planning could be truly democratized, and changing the course of Spaceship Earth can become a cooperative human effort, rather than a task relegated to policy makers.”

There is no reason a citizens’ group, nongovernment organization, or social enterprise should go it alone. The establishment of this Unity Node would allow us to create “dashboards of Earth,” or a control room for Spaceship Earth, where critical data affecting our global society could be presented in an actionable way. The idea of creating this type of information system is not new. In the 1960s, renowned inventor and visionary Buckminster Fuller popularized the term “Spaceship Earth,” and he devoted his life to identifying and communicating the interconnections between economic, social, and environmental systems to improve life on our planet. Long before environmental stewardship was prevalent in society, Fuller addressed the reality of our interconnectedness and the synergy that could be produced by working together to find ways to stop wasting the planet’s natural resources.


Possiplex by Ted Nelson

Any sufficiently advanced technology is indistinguishable from magic, Bill Duvall, Brewster Kahle, Buckminster Fuller, cuban missile crisis, Donald Knuth, Douglas Engelbart, Douglas Engelbart, HyperCard, Jaron Lanier, John Markoff, Kevin Kelly, Marc Andreessen, Marshall McLuhan, Murray Gell-Mann, nonsequential writing, pattern recognition, post-work, RAND corporation, semantic web, Silicon Valley, Steve Jobs, Stewart Brand, Ted Nelson, Thomas Kuhn: the structure of scientific revolutions, Vannevar Bush, Zimmermann PGP

Bucky Says It All (1947) DESIGN INFLUENCES: Bucky in 1947-8, when I was ten It was 1947, when I was ten, that Buckminster Fuller made all the newspapers. He was trying to mass-produce his Dymaxion House, and there was a lot of publicity for it; I remember reading about Bucky in a number of different places, especially newspapers. (He must have had a very good publicist.) Bucky Fuller believed we could have a new and much better and very different world. This gave me something to hope for in a world I rather disliked. (I have always believed life should be completely different.) He said the educational system was horrible—I totally agreed; and he wanted to fix the world by design—the design of his magnificent car, the design of his house that would come in by helicopter and be lowered on a pole. Buckminster Fuller was my hero ever since. Sophistication, Age 10 I believe that at the age of ten my favorite word was “ostensibly.”

I was a writer and designer and showman. I saw myself becoming perhaps-• a showman-intellectual,* like one of my heroes, Jean Cocteau. * A recent nice term is showman-penseur. • a theoretical explorer in some new area like my hero Benjamin Lee Whorf, an academic outlier (he was in the insurance business) who was nevertheless respected in academia, and created a field of his own. • like my boyhood hero Buckminster Fuller, a “designer and thinker”. Looking back, I tracked on the wavelengths of these three men surprisingly well. But little did I know what this agenda had cost Bucky, or what it would cost me. Perhaps I could create a field of my own, like Whorf and Bucky. Egotistical, you say? Of course. But I was going to bet my life on it. Still a Chance to Make a Movie My grades were fairly poor. I had gone for breadth, not depth, and I thought it was my own business to judge my achievement, not anybody else’s.

Many (including Berners-Lee and Markoff) have called my ideas quixotic and Utopian, i.e. impossible like Tesla’s business plan, and many want me to go feed the pigeons like Tesla (and, like Tesla, in a world so like, and so unlike, what I tried to build). But I’m not ready for that. THE BIG THREE: MY HERO BROTHERS OF OLD I had a number of heroes as a boy, but three of them, I learned later, were actually very like me—Frank Lloyd Wright, Orson Welles, and Buckminster Fuller. It’s not that I imitated them (except perhaps for Bucky), but that I discovered my resemblances to them in my fifties. How I’d detected the psychic resonance as a boy is a mystery. For those readers not familiar with them— • Frank Lloyd Wright, a visionary architect with a very long career, first built houses in stark straight lines, then in later years built buildings with strange wiggles and curves and thematic shapes.


pages: 94 words: 26,453

The End of Nice: How to Be Human in a World Run by Robots (Kindle Single) by Richard Newton

3D printing, Black Swan, British Empire, Buckminster Fuller, Clayton Christensen, crowdsourcing, deliberate practice, disruptive innovation, fear of failure, Filter Bubble, future of work, Google Glasses, Isaac Newton, James Dyson, Jaron Lanier, Jeff Bezos, job automation, lateral thinking, Lean Startup, low skilled workers, Mark Zuckerberg, move fast and break things, move fast and break things, Paul Erdős, Paul Graham, recommendation engine, rising living standards, Robert Shiller, Robert Shiller, Silicon Valley, Silicon Valley startup, skunkworks, social intelligence, Steve Ballmer, Steve Jobs, Y Combinator

He died in 1996 at the age of 83 having published 1,475 academic papers, of which many were monumental and all substantial Tellingly, when people stopped doing mathematics he said they “had died”. When they died he said they “had left”. This unusual use of language reveals something about the way he approached the world and its problems. Of them all, by far the most telling is: “My brain is open”. Buckminster Fuller was one of the great creative forces of his time. He invented the geodesic dome, the term Spaceship Earth, and was President of Mensa He urged people to be more precise in the way they spoke about things so that they could think more effectively. “I suggest to audiences that they say, ‘I’m going “outstairs” and “instairs”.’ At first that sounds strange to them; they all laugh about it. But if they try saying in and out for a few days in fun, they find themselves beginning to realise that they are indeed going inward and outward in respect to the center of Earth, which is our Spaceship Earth.

But if they try saying in and out for a few days in fun, they find themselves beginning to realise that they are indeed going inward and outward in respect to the center of Earth, which is our Spaceship Earth. And for the first time they begin to feel real ‘reality’.” As you know, it didn’t catch on. But it demonstrates the fierce independence of thought that gave him the ability to see and think differently. Paul Erdos and Buckminster Fuller perceived the world differently and so they used different words to label everyday activities and this in turn helped them approach problems and opportunity differently. Now, if you apply such different thinking to the fast-growing entrepreneurial business in the world we live in right now you might get “The Offer”. Zappos, the disruptive, fast-growing online shoe company doesn’t conform to much.


pages: 544 words: 168,076

Red Plenty by Francis Spufford

affirmative action, anti-communist, Anton Chekhov, asset allocation, Buckminster Fuller, clean water, cognitive dissonance, computer age, double helix, Fellow of the Royal Society, John von Neumann, Kickstarter, Kitchen Debate, linear programming, market clearing, MITM: man-in-the-middle, New Journalism, oil shock, Philip Mirowski, plutocrats, Plutocrats, profit motive, RAND corporation, Simon Kuznets, the scientific method

See Walter Hixson, Parting the Curtain: Propaganda, Culture, and the Cold War, 1945–1961 (New York: St Martin’s Press, 1997). 2 American girls in polkadotted knee-length dresses: for photographs of the American exhibition in Sokolniki Park, and of the Muscovite visitors to it, see Life Magazine, vol. 47 no. 6, 10 August 1959, pp. 28–35, with little plastic beakers on p. 31; for descriptions of the exhibits, see Walter Hixson, Parting the Curtain; for a reading of the design politics of Buckminster Fuller’s dome, see Alex Soojung-Kim Pang, ‘Dome Days: Buckminster Fuller in the Cold War’ in Jenny Uglow and Francis Spufford, eds, Cultural Babbage: Technology, Time and Invention (London: Faber & Faber, 1996), pp. 167–92; for press reaction in the US, see New York Times, vol. CVIII no. 37,072, 25 July 1959, pp. 1–4. 3 She had added a green leather belt bought at the flea market: that is to say, at one of the legal bazaars or car-boot sales (without car boots) where Soviet citizens could sell their possessions second-hand.

See Walter Hixson, Parting the Curtain: Propaganda, Culture, and the Cold War, 1945–1961 (New York: St Martin’s Press, 1997). 2 American girls in polkadotted knee-length dresses: for photographs of the American exhibition in Sokolniki Park, and of the Muscovite visitors to it, see Life Magazine, vol. 47 no. 6, 10 August 1959, pp. 28–35, with little plastic beakers on p. 31; for descriptions of the exhibits, see Walter Hixson, Parting the Curtain; for a reading of the design politics of Buckminster Fuller’s dome, see Alex Soojung-Kim Pang, ‘Dome Days: Buckminster Fuller in the Cold War’ in Jenny Uglow and Francis Spufford, eds, Cultural Babbage: Technology, Time and Invention (London: Faber & Faber, 1996), pp. 167–92; for press reaction in the US, see New York Times, vol. CVIII no. 37,072, 25 July 1959, pp. 1–4. 3 She had added a green leather belt bought at the flea market: that is to say, at one of the legal bazaars or car-boot sales (without car boots) where Soviet citizens could sell their possessions second-hand.

Inside, the dome was all one huge room, with no ceiling, just the same crisply flimsy skin, which you could see from here was organised into six-pointed stars or flowers, repeating over and over. Now the result seemed halfway between an organism and a mechanism. It puzzled her a bit that the Americans would pick such a thing as the centrepiece of their exhibition. It was certainly impressive, in its way, but you could tell that it sat lightly on the earth, and would soon be gone. It looked strangely casual. ‘Mm-hmm,’ said Fyodor. ‘… designed by a famous American architect, Buckminster Fuller,’ one of the girls was saying. Right across the big floor of the dome, the same speech was being made to close-packed circles of listeners as more and more people poured in. White-gloved hands pointed to exhibits around the base of the walls, and to the cluster of seven giant white screens overhead, which filled most of the span of the golden wall in front of them. She tried to see the computer they had been told about with the answers to four thousand supposedly comprehensive questions about the United States.


pages: 519 words: 136,708

Vertical: The City From Satellites to Bunkers by Stephen Graham

1960s counterculture, Berlin Wall, Boris Johnson, Buckminster Fuller, Buy land – they’re not making it any more, Chelsea Manning, Commodity Super-Cycle, creative destruction, deindustrialization, digital map, drone strike, Edward Glaeser, Edward Snowden, energy security, Frank Gehry, ghettoisation, Google Earth, Gunnar Myrdal, high net worth, housing crisis, Howard Zinn, illegal immigration, Indoor air pollution, Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC), Jane Jacobs, late capitalism, low earth orbit, mass immigration, means of production, megacity, megastructure, moral panic, mutually assured destruction, new economy, New Urbanism, nuclear winter, oil shale / tar sands, planetary scale, plutocrats, Plutocrats, post-industrial society, Project Plowshare, rent control, Richard Florida, Right to Buy, Ronald Reagan, Skype, South China Sea, the built environment, The Death and Life of Great American Cities, trickle-down economics, urban decay, urban planning, urban renewal, urban sprawl, white flight, WikiLeaks, William Langewiesche

For permission to reproduce images we would like to thank the following in particular: David Coulthard’s car on the Burj Al Arab’s helipad, courtesy of the Jumeirah Group (p. xii); ‘City of Volume’ image, courtesy of Pierre Bélanger (p. xvi); the flat map courtesy of Neil Brenner, from Brenner’s ‘Introducing the Urban Theory Lab’ (p. 8); Lightful by Buckminster Fuller, from Operating Manual for Spaceship Earth (2008), courtesy of the Buckminster Fuller Institute (p. 24); Menwith Hill NSA Base photograph courtesy of Steve Rowell (p. 35); São Paulan executive’s helipad illustration, courtesy of Eduardo Martino (p. 101); designs for Cairo skyscrapers, courtesy of Reese Campbell and Demetrios Comodromos at Method Design (p. 128); Kingdom Tower image, courtesy of Malec (p. 150); London skyscrapers image, courtesy of Darjole (p. 165); Sky Tower billboard in Mumbai, courtesy of Andrew Harris (p. 207); Skybridge in Minneapolis, courtesy of Thunerchild5 (p. 226); Bangkok’s Skytrain, courtesy of Moaksey (p. 231); Fake skyline in Hong Kong, courtesy of Drew; Underneath New York by Harry Granick, book cover (1991), courtesy of Fordham University (p. 280); ‘Sacrifice Zone’, courtesy of Kaitlin Donnally (p. 290); Awaaz Foundation poster, courtesy of the Awaaz Foundation (p. 299); Photograph of Devi Lal, courtesy of Beena Sarwar (p. 338); ‘Palestinian tunneller’, courtesy of Getty Images (p. 351); ‘urban cave’ project, courtesy of Andrea Star Reese (p. 353); ‘Urban Explorer’, courtesy of Bradley Garrett (p. 361) All rights reserved The moral rights of the author have been asserted 1 3 5 7 9 10 8 6 4 2 Verso UK: 6 Meard Street, London W1F 0EG US: 20 Jay Street, Suite 1010, Brooklyn, NY 11201 versobooks.com Verso is the imprint of New Left Books ISBN-13: 978-1-78168-793-2 ISBN-13: 978-1-78168-996-7 (US EBK) ISBN-13: 978-1-78168-995-0 (UK EBK) British Library Cataloguing in Publication Data A catalogue record for this book is available from the British Library Library of Congress Cataloging-in-Publication Data Names: Graham, Stephen, 1965– author.

The motivating idea of the book is that it is only through such fully three-dimensional and critical perspectives that the political, social and urban struggles of our rapidly urbanizing world can possibly be understood. Strap yourself in, then, for a wild and startling ride through the three-dimensional geographies of our world. Part One: Above Social scientists need to raise their eyes from the ground Martin Parker A 1928 drawing by visionary designer, architect and polymath Buckminster Fuller, emphasizing the global, spiritual, practical and vertical challenges facing engineering, architecture and human life inherent within his idea of ‘Spaceship Earth’. (Fuller, Operating Manual for Spaceship Earth, 1968). 1. Satellite: Enigmatic Presence We live in a satellite enabled age. The satellites flying above us are not abstract agents of science but part of the critical life support system we all depend on, every day

Residents in the zones just outside the city’s business district wondered if they could benefit from an extended project or even of a second dome was possible.71 Designers in Beijing are meanwhile looking to upscale the International School’s ideas to a much larger dome enclosing a major new privatised urban park in the city.72 Architects have also suggested burying copper coils under parks to create electrostatic fields which attract smog particles from the immediate atmosphere.73 These examples of the growing interiorisation of ‘nature’ powerfully echo Buckminster Fuller’s influential ruminations between the 1940s and 1960s on the possibilities of dome-like constructions at various scales within which urban air could be precisely controlled. Famously, in 1960 Fuller suggested a giant, 400-tonne glass geodesic dome encompassing Midtown Manhattan which would permanently sustain what he called a ‘Garden of Eden’ climate’.74 Fuller claimed that ‘the cost of snow removal in New York City would pay for the dome in 10 years.’75 Today’s ‘bubbles’ for the precise manipulation of urban air contrast sharply, however, with Fuller’s urban planning ideas in one crucial respect.


pages: 179 words: 43,441

The Fourth Industrial Revolution by Klaus Schwab

3D printing, additive manufacturing, Airbnb, Amazon Mechanical Turk, Amazon Web Services, augmented reality, autonomous vehicles, barriers to entry, Baxter: Rethink Robotics, bitcoin, blockchain, Buckminster Fuller, call centre, clean water, collaborative consumption, commoditize, conceptual framework, continuous integration, crowdsourcing, digital twin, disintermediation, disruptive innovation, distributed ledger, Edward Snowden, Elon Musk, epigenetics, Erik Brynjolfsson, future of work, global value chain, Google Glasses, income inequality, Internet Archive, Internet of things, invention of the steam engine, job automation, job satisfaction, John Maynard Keynes: Economic Possibilities for our Grandchildren, John Maynard Keynes: technological unemployment, life extension, Lyft, mass immigration, megacity, meta analysis, meta-analysis, more computing power than Apollo, mutually assured destruction, Narrative Science, Network effects, Nicholas Carr, personalized medicine, precariat, precision agriculture, Productivity paradox, race to the bottom, randomized controlled trial, reshoring, RFID, rising living standards, Sam Altman, Second Machine Age, secular stagnation, self-driving car, sharing economy, Silicon Valley, smart cities, smart contracts, software as a service, Stephen Hawking, Steve Jobs, Steven Levy, Stuxnet, supercomputer in your pocket, TaskRabbit, The Future of Employment, The Spirit Level, total factor productivity, transaction costs, Uber and Lyft, uber lyft, Watson beat the top human players on Jeopardy!, WikiLeaks, winner-take-all economy, women in the workforce, working-age population, Y Combinator, Zipcar

The importance of purpose We must also keep in mind that it is not only about talent and skills. Technology enables greater efficiency, which most people want. Yet they also wish to feel that they are not merely part of a process but of something bigger than themselves. Karl Marx expressed his concern that the process of specialization would reduce the sense of purpose that we all seek from work, while Buckminster Fuller cautioned that the risks of over-specialization tend “to shut off the wide-band tuning searches and thus to preclude further discovery of the all-powerful generalized principles.”30 Now, faced with a combination of increased complexity and hyper-specialization, we are at a point where the desire for purposeful engagement is becoming a major issue. This is particularly the case for the younger generation who often feel that corporate jobs constrain their ability to find meaning and purpose in life.

_r=0 25 Martin Ford, Rise of the Robots, Basic Books, 2015. 26 Daniel Pink, Free Agent Nation – The Future of Working for Yourself, Grand Central Publishing, 2001. 27 Quoted in: Farhad Manjoo, “Uber’s business model could change your work”, The New York Times, 28 January 2015. 28 Quoted in: Sarah O’Connor, “The human cloud: A new world of work”, The Financial Times, 8 October 2015. 29 Lynda Gratton, The Shift: The Future of Work is Already Here, Collins, 2011. 30 R. Buckminster Fuller and E.J. Applewhite, Synergetics: Explorations in the Geometry of Thinking, Macmillan, 1975. 31 Eric Knight, “The Art of Corporate Endurance”, Harvard Business Review, April 2, 2014 https://hbr.org/2014/04/the-art-of-corporate-endurance 32 VentureBeat, “WhatsApp now has 700M users, sending 30B messages per day”, January 6 2015 http://venturebeat.com/2015/01/06/whatsapp-now-has-700m-users-sending-30b-messages-per-day/ 33 Mitek and Zogby Analytics, Millennial Study 2014 , September 2014 https://www.miteksystems.com/sites/default/files/Documents/zogby_final_embargo_14_9_25.pdf 34 Gillian Wong, “Alibaba Tops Singles’ Day Sales Record Despite Slowing China Economy”, The Wall Street Journal, 11 November 2015, http://www.wsj.com/articles/alibaba-smashes-singles-day-sales-record-1447234536 35 “The Mobile Economy: Sub-Saharan Africa 2014”, GSM Association, 2014.


pages: 411 words: 80,925

What's Mine Is Yours: How Collaborative Consumption Is Changing the Way We Live by Rachel Botsman, Roo Rogers

Airbnb, barriers to entry, Bernie Madoff, bike sharing scheme, Buckminster Fuller, buy and hold, carbon footprint, Cass Sunstein, collaborative consumption, collaborative economy, commoditize, Community Supported Agriculture, credit crunch, crowdsourcing, dematerialisation, disintermediation, en.wikipedia.org, experimental economics, George Akerlof, global village, hedonic treadmill, Hugh Fearnley-Whittingstall, information retrieval, iterative process, Kevin Kelly, Kickstarter, late fees, Mark Zuckerberg, market design, Menlo Park, Network effects, new economy, new new economy, out of africa, Parkinson's law, peer-to-peer, peer-to-peer lending, peer-to-peer rental, Ponzi scheme, pre–internet, recommendation engine, RFID, Richard Stallman, ride hailing / ride sharing, Robert Shiller, Robert Shiller, Ronald Coase, Search for Extraterrestrial Intelligence, SETI@home, Simon Kuznets, Skype, slashdot, smart grid, South of Market, San Francisco, Stewart Brand, The Nature of the Firm, The Spirit Level, The Wealth of Nations by Adam Smith, The Wisdom of Crowds, Thorstein Veblen, Torches of Freedom, transaction costs, traveling salesman, ultimatum game, Victor Gruen, web of trust, women in the workforce, Zipcar

“A Conversation with Daniel Pink,” Information Outlook (November 2001), www.conversationagent.com/2008/04/conversation-wi.html. 19. Christophe Aguiton and Dominique Cardon, “The Strength of Weak Cooperation: An Attempt to Understand the Meaning of Web 2.0,” International Journal of Digital Economics 65 (2007): 51–65. 20. Stephanie Smith, “Good Guide: R. Buckminster Fuller,” GOOD (August 14, 2007), www.good.is/post/good-guide-r-buckminster-fuller/. 21. Jennifer Sharpe, “A Social Experiment: Communes in Cul-De-Sacs,” NPR radio interview (April 2, 2009), www.npr.org/templates/story/story.php?storyId=102651496. 22. Wikipedia definition of a Commune posted at http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Commune_(intentional_community). 23. Ariel Schwartz, “WeCommune: Social Networking Communes,” Fast Company (June 2009), http://origin-www.fastcompany.com/blog/ariel-schwartz/sustainability/wecommune-social-networking-communes?

The worlds of architecture, design, and culture have identified Smith as one to watch with her ideas on low-impact design, mass production, and alternative forms of community. She talks passionately but with authority about archetype typologies, connected lifestyles, and tribal solutions. Smith proudly admits that she is heavily influenced by the thinking of the legendary designer and pioneer of sustainability Buckminster Fuller, sharing his passion to figure out the question: “How we can make the world work for 100 percent of humanity in the shortest possible time through spontaneous cooperation without ecological damage or disadvantage to anyone?”20 Smith was sitting in her offices at Ecoshack, a Los Angeles–based experimental design studio, when she realized that she could no longer afford to be green. It was early in the economic crash of 2008.


pages: 598 words: 183,531

Hackers: Heroes of the Computer Revolution - 25th Anniversary Edition by Steven Levy

air freight, Apple II, Bill Gates: Altair 8800, Buckminster Fuller, Byte Shop, computer age, computer vision, corporate governance, Donald Knuth, El Camino Real, game design, Hacker Ethic, hacker house, Haight Ashbury, John Conway, John Markoff, Mark Zuckerberg, Menlo Park, non-fiction novel, Norman Mailer, Paul Graham, popular electronics, RAND corporation, reversible computing, Richard Stallman, Silicon Valley, software patent, speech recognition, Steve Jobs, Steve Wozniak, Steven Levy, Stewart Brand, Ted Nelson, The Hackers Conference, Whole Earth Catalog, Y Combinator

So Efrem drifted to California, then back East again, then back to California. It took a while for him to see how computers could be used for social good, and each time he glimpsed the possibilities he suspected betrayal. One interesting project he’d been involved with was the World game. A group of California programmers, philosophers, and engineers constructed a simulation of the world. It was based on an idea by Buckminster Fuller, where you could try out all sorts of changes and see their effect on the world. For days, people ran around suggesting things and running the game on the computer. Not much came of it in terms of suggestions on how to run the world, but a lot of people met others with similar views. Not long afterward, Efrem stumbled upon Resource One, with Lee mired in its bowels. He thought it was a crock.

Albrecht was involved in starting the loosely run “computer education division” of the nonprofit foundation called the Portola Institute, which later spawned the Whole Earth Catalog. He met a teacher from Woodside High School on the peninsula, named LeRoy Finkel, who shared his enthusiasm about teaching kids computers; with Finkel he began a computer-book publishing company named Dymax, in honor of Buckminster Fuller’s trademarked word “dymaxion,” combining dynamism and maximum. The for-profit company was funded by Albrecht’s substantial stock holdings (he had been lucky enough to get into DEC’s first stock offering), and soon the company had a contract to write a series of instructional books on BASIC. Albrecht and the Dymax crowd got hold of a DEC PDP-8 minicomputer. To house this marvelous machine, they moved the company to new headquarters in Menlo Park.

He took a few extra chips along with him, and traded the chips with others, eventually winding up with a keyboard and a few RAM chips. “We’re talking outright thievery,” he later explained; but in Homebrew terms, Sokol was liberating a neat hack from the proprietary oppressors. Pong was neat, and should belong to the world. And in Homebrew, exchanges like that were free and easy. Years earlier, Buckminster Fuller had developed the concept of synergy—the collective power, more than the sum of the parts, that comes of people and/or phenomena working together in a system—and Homebrew was a textbook example of the concept at work. One person’s idea would spark another person into embarking on a large project, and perhaps beginning a company to make a product based on that idea. Or, if someone came up with a clever hack to produce a random number generator on the Altair, he would give out the code so everyone could do it, and by the next meeting someone else would have devised a game that utilized the routine.


pages: 165 words: 45,397

Speculative Everything: Design, Fiction, and Social Dreaming by Anthony Dunne, Fiona Raby

3D printing, augmented reality, autonomous vehicles, Berlin Wall, Buckminster Fuller, Cass Sunstein, computer age, corporate governance, David Attenborough, en.wikipedia.org, Fall of the Berlin Wall, game design, global village, Google X / Alphabet X, haute couture, life extension, Mark Zuckerberg, mouse model, New Urbanism, Peter Eisenman, RAND corporation, Richard Thaler, Ronald Reagan, self-driving car, Silicon Valley, social software, technoutopianism, Wall-E

Ronan and Erwan Bouroullec, Algue, 2004. 0 Tahon and Bouroullec. Ronan and Erwan Bouroullec, Algue, 2004. Photograph by Andreas Sutterlin. 0 Vitra. Vehicle design, too, has a strong tradition of concept cars designed to be displayed in shows to communicate future design directions and gauge customer reaction. Roland Barthes's famous essay celebrating the Citroen DS in Mythologies captures the magic of these visions at their high point. Buckminster Fuller's 1930s prototype Dymaxion car promoted new ways of thinking about safety and aerodynamics. More recent studies have focused on style and imagery; Marc Newson's 027C (1999) for Ford aimed to introduce new cultural references to car design, and Chris Bangle's GINA (2008) concept car for BMW suggested replacing current materials with futuristic shape-shifting materials that adjust the car's aerodynamics on the move.

BIG DESIGN: THINKING THE UNTHINKABLE Although inspirational, these externalized dreams and fantasies are still quite modest in scale-a disadvantage of working outside official systems, semiunderground, or in the privacy of one's home or studio. There are also dreamers working within the system of industry, funding organizations, universities, and markets, who are attempting to imagine a better world for all, even if sometimes they might reflect their own personal obsessions. Buckminster Fuller would usually spring to mind as an example of this but his visions are a little too technological and rational for us. Norman Bel Geddes, however, mixed modern, everyday technologies with dreams, fantasy, and the irrational. He went well beyond problem solving, using design to give form to dreams. In his Highways & Horizons exhibit, better known as Futurama, for the General Motors pavilion in the 1939 New York World's Fair, Bel Geddes designed an environment of large-scale models featuring a national network of expressways, illustrating its implications and possibilities twenty years into the future.


pages: 343 words: 101,563

The Uninhabitable Earth: Life After Warming by David Wallace-Wells

"Robert Solow", agricultural Revolution, Albert Einstein, anthropic principle, Asian financial crisis, augmented reality, basic income, Berlin Wall, bitcoin, British Empire, Buckminster Fuller, Burning Man, Capital in the Twenty-First Century by Thomas Piketty, carbon footprint, carbon-based life, cognitive bias, computer age, correlation does not imply causation, cryptocurrency, cuban missile crisis, decarbonisation, Donald Trump, effective altruism, Elon Musk, endowment effect, energy transition, everywhere but in the productivity statistics, failed state, fiat currency, global pandemic, global supply chain, income inequality, Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC), invention of agriculture, Joan Didion, John Maynard Keynes: Economic Possibilities for our Grandchildren, labor-force participation, life extension, longitudinal study, Mark Zuckerberg, mass immigration, megacity, megastructure, mutually assured destruction, Naomi Klein, nuclear winter, Pearl River Delta, Peter Thiel, plutocrats, Plutocrats, postindustrial economy, quantitative easing, Ray Kurzweil, rent-seeking, ride hailing / ride sharing, Sam Altman, Silicon Valley, Skype, South China Sea, South Sea Bubble, Steven Pinker, Stewart Brand, the built environment, the scientific method, Thomas Malthus, too big to fail, universal basic income, University of East Anglia, Whole Earth Catalog, William Langewiesche, Y Combinator

There is not much carbon in the air, all told, just 410 parts per million, but it is everywhere, and so relying on carbon capture globally could require large-scale scrubbing plantations nearly everywhere on Earth—the planet transformed into something like an air-recycling plant orbiting the sun, an industrial satellite tracing a parabola through the solar system. (This is not what Barbara Ward or Buckminster Fuller meant by “spaceship earth.”) And while advances are sure to come, bringing costs down and making more efficient machines, we can’t wait much longer for that progress; we simply don’t have the time. One estimate suggests that, to have hopes of two degrees, we need to open new full-scale carbon capture plants at the pace of one and a half per day every day for the next seventy years. In 2018, the world had eighteen of them, total.

There will be those, as there are now, who insist that there is only one way to respond to the unfolding ecological catastrophe—one productive way, one responsible way. Presumably, it won’t be only one way. Even before the age of climate change, the literature of conservation furnished many metaphors to choose from. James Lovelock gave us the Gaia hypothesis, which conjured an image of the world as a single, evolving quasi-biological entity. Buckminster Fuller popularized “spaceship earth,” which presents the planet as a kind of desperate life raft in what Archibald MacLeish called “the enormous, empty night”; today, the phrase suggests a vivid picture of a world spinning through the solar system barnacled with enough carbon capture plants to actually stall out warming, or even reverse it, restoring as if by magic the breathability of the air between the machines.

., “Past and Future Global Transformation of Terrestrial Ecosystems Under Climate Change,” Science 361, no. 6405 (August 2018): pp. 920–23. James Lovelock: His “The Quest for Gaia” was first published in New Scientist in 1975, and over the years Lovelock became less and less sanguine. In 2005, he published Gaia: Medicine for an Ailing Planet, in 2006 The Revenge of Gaia, and in 2009 The Vanishing Face of Gaia. He has also advocated geoengineering as a last-ditch effort to stop climate change. “spaceship earth”: Buckminster Fuller popularized the term, but it appeared originally almost a century before him, in Henry George’s 1879 work Progress and Poverty—in a passage later summarized by George Orwell in The Road to Wigan Pier: The world is a raft sailing through space with, potentially, plenty of provisions for everybody; the idea that we must all cooperate and see to it that everyone does his fair share of the work and gets his fair share of the provisions seems so blatantly obvious that one would say that no one could possibly fail to accept it unless he had some corrupt motive for clinging to the present system.


pages: 286 words: 94,017

Future Shock by Alvin Toffler

Albert Einstein, Brownian motion, Buckminster Fuller, Charles Lindbergh, cognitive dissonance, Colonization of Mars, corporate governance, East Village, global village, Haight Ashbury, information retrieval, invention of agriculture, invention of movable type, invention of writing, longitudinal study, Marshall McLuhan, mass immigration, Menlo Park, New Urbanism, Norman Mailer, post-industrial society, RAND corporation, social intelligence, the market place, Thomas Kuhn: the structure of scientific revolutions, urban renewal, Whole Earth Catalog, zero-sum game

Comments on FUTURE SHOCK C. P. Snow: "Remarkable ... No one ought to have the nerve to pontificate on our present worries without reading it." R. Buckminster Fuller: "Cogent ... brilliant ... I hope vast numbers will read Toffler's book." Betty Friedan: "Brilliant and true ... Should be read by anyone with the responsibility of leading or participating in movements for change in America today." Marshall McLuhan: "FUTURE SHOCK ... is 'where it's at.'" Robert Rimmer, author of The Harrad Experiment: "A magnificent job ... Must reading." John Diebold: "For those who want to understand the social and psychological implications of the technological revolution, this is an incomparable book." WALL STREET JOURNAL: "Explosive ... Brilliantly formulated." LONDON DAILY EXPRESS: "Alvin Toffler has sent something of a shock-wave through Western society."

Less patrician New Yorkers, whose ancestors landed in America more recently, arriving there from the barrios of Puerto Rico, the villages of Eastern Europe or the plantations of the South, might voice their feelings quite differently. Yet the "Vanishing past" is a real phenomenon, and it is likely to become far more widespread, engulfing even many of the history-drenched cities of Europe. Buckminster Fuller, the designer-philosopher, once described New York as a "continual evolutionary process of evacuations, demolitions, removals, temporarily vacant lots, new installations and repeat. This process is identical in principle to the annual rotation of crops in farm acreage—plowing, planting the new seed, harvesting, plowing under, and putting in another type of crop ... Most people look upon the building operations blocking New York's streets ... as temporary annoyances, soon to disappear in a static peace.

Throughout the advanced technological societies, and particularly among those I have characterized as "the people of the future," commuting, traveling, and regularly relocating one's family have become second nature. Figuratively, we "use up" places and dispose of them in much the same that we dispose of Kleenex or beer cans. We are witnessing a historic decline in the significance of place to human life. We are breeding a new race of nomads, and few suspect quite how massive, widespread and significant their migrations are. THE 3,000,000-MILE CLUB In 1914, according to Buckminster Fuller, the typical American averaged about 1,640 miles per year of total travel, counting some 1,300 miles of just plain everyday walking to and fro. This meant that he traveled only about 340 miles per year with the aid of horse or mechanical means. Using this 1,640 figure as a base, it is possible to estimate that the average American of that period moved a total of 88,560 miles in his lifetime.* Today, by contrast, the average American car owner drives 10,000 miles per year—and he lives longer than his father or grandfather.


pages: 335 words: 104,850

Conscious Capitalism, With a New Preface by the Authors: Liberating the Heroic Spirit of Business by John Mackey, Rajendra Sisodia, Bill George

Berlin Wall, Buckminster Fuller, business process, carbon footprint, collective bargaining, corporate governance, corporate social responsibility, creative destruction, crony capitalism, cross-subsidies, en.wikipedia.org, Everything should be made as simple as possible, Fall of the Berlin Wall, fear of failure, Flynn Effect, income per capita, invisible hand, Jeff Bezos, job satisfaction, lone genius, Mahatma Gandhi, microcredit, Nelson Mandela, Occupy movement, profit maximization, Ralph Waldo Emerson, shareholder value, six sigma, social intelligence, Social Responsibility of Business Is to Increase Its Profits, Steve Jobs, Steven Pinker, The Fortune at the Bottom of the Pyramid, The Wealth of Nations by Adam Smith, too big to fail, union organizing, wealth creators, women in the workforce, zero-sum game

Such leaders have learned the secret of the “helpers’ high:” we feel good when we make other people happy. It creates value for the giver and the recipient, as well as for the larger community. Servant leaders cultivate the noble virtue of generosity. They embrace transpersonal values—such as goodness, justice, truth, love, the alleviation of suffering, the salvation or enlightenment of others—that lift them to higher levels of consciousness.8 The story of Buckminster Fuller provides a great illustration of the power of servant leadership. At age thirty-two, Fuller was living in low-income public housing in Chicago. His daughter had recently died from polio and spinal meningitis. Fuller was drinking heavily, chronically depressed, and seriously considering committing suicide. One night, while standing on a bridge and trying to decide whether to jump to his death, he asked himself questions about the meaning of life.

He would begin “an experiment, to determine how much a single individual could contribute to changing the world and benefiting all humankind.”9 The answer, it turns out, is “quite a lot.” Over the next fifty-five years until his death, he patented over two thousand inventions, wrote twenty-five books, and went down in history as one of the greatest thinkers, inventors, and servant leaders who ever lived. The Buckminster Fuller game of doing as much good as possible to benefit the world is a game we can all play. Servant leaders show us how to do exactly this.10 Integrity: The Synthesis of the Virtues Perhaps the most important virtue of conscious leaders is integrity. Honesty is often used as a synonym for integrity, but integrity is a more comprehensive virtue because, while it is partly about honesty, it goes beyond just telling the truth.

Danah Zohar and Ian Marshall, Spiritual Capital: Wealth We Can Live By (San Francisco: Berrett-Koehler, 2004), 3. 5. John A. Byrne, World Changers: 25 Entrepreneurs Who Changed Business as We Knew It (New York: Portfolio/Penguin, 2011), 52. 6. We first heard this articulated by Debashis Chatterjee. 7. Liu, Conversations on Leadership. 8. Zohar and Marshall, Spiritual Capital, 55. 9. Wikipedia, s.v. “Buckminster Fuller,” last modified June 18, 2012, http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Buckminister_Fuller. 10. The best book we are aware of on servant leadership is still the one that identified it originally: Robert K. Greenleaf, Servant Leadership: A Journey into the Nature of Legitimate Power and Greatness (New York: Paulist Press, 1977). 11. Robert C. Solomon, A Better Way to Think About Business: How Personal Integrity Leads to Corporate Success (New York: Oxford University Press, 1999), 40–43. 12.


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Dawn of the New Everything: Encounters With Reality and Virtual Reality by Jaron Lanier

4chan, augmented reality, back-to-the-land, Buckminster Fuller, Burning Man, carbon footprint, cloud computing, collaborative editing, commoditize, cosmological constant, creative destruction, crowdsourcing, Donald Trump, Douglas Engelbart, Douglas Hofstadter, El Camino Real, Elon Musk, Firefox, game design, general-purpose programming language, gig economy, Google Glasses, Grace Hopper, Gödel, Escher, Bach, Hacker Ethic, Howard Rheingold, impulse control, information asymmetry, invisible hand, Jaron Lanier, John von Neumann, Kevin Kelly, Kickstarter, Kuiper Belt, lifelogging, mandelbrot fractal, Mark Zuckerberg, Marshall McLuhan, Menlo Park, Minecraft, Mitch Kapor, Mother of all demos, Murray Gell-Mann, Netflix Prize, Network effects, new economy, Norbert Wiener, Oculus Rift, pattern recognition, Paul Erdős, profit motive, Ray Kurzweil, recommendation engine, Richard Feynman, Richard Stallman, Ronald Reagan, self-driving car, Silicon Valley, Silicon Valley startup, Skype, Snapchat, stem cell, Stephen Hawking, Steve Jobs, Steven Levy, Stewart Brand, technoutopianism, Ted Nelson, telemarketer, telepresence, telepresence robot, Thorstein Veblen, Turing test, Vernor Vinge, Whole Earth Catalog, Whole Earth Review, WikiLeaks, wikimedia commons

Plants had no choice but to work within the constraints of these forms. I became convinced our home should be made of spherical structures resembling those found in plants. Ellery said he thought I might enjoy another book, in that case. This turned out to be a roughly designed publication in the form of an extra-thick magazine called Domebook. It was an offshoot of Stewart Brand’s Whole Earth Catalog.5 Buckminster Fuller had been promoting geodesic domes as ideal structures, and they embodied the techie utopian spirit of the times. Initially I was skeptical of going geodesic. “I don’t want our house to be like any other house, and other people are building geodesic domes,” I complained. Ellery argued that I’d have to get approval from the authorities to build a design, and a few geodesic domes were already standing in hippie enclaves in the same county.

It was easy to be invited to an event in an amazing home, perhaps a renovated old prospector’s shack by a stream way up high in the redwood forests, to hear tales about how flying saucers, chanting, LSD, unconventional sex, or other exotica would save the soul and the world. A fair number of these events had a technological fetish, even so long ago. The points of tech culture reference were different. Idealist techies might have been enchanted by Buckminster Fuller and his notion of world games, or of the Allende regime’s lost cause to create a cyber-Marxist utopia in Chile. This was the circuit in which I started to give talks. I hadn’t thought I was the kind of person who would enjoy speaking to an audience, but a public persona started to pop up within me like a baby desert plant that hides for years, only to reveal itself for the first time after a big rain.

The giant cave of dreams for every kid growing up in New Mexico. So big that the sky is rock. A friend from Italy said it was better than the Vatican. Chapter 3 1.   Harold Scott MacDonald “Donald” Coxeter was the great geometer of the twentieth century. He explored the majestic domain of symmetrical forms of which geodesic domes are only a first peek. Aside from his stature in mathematics, he directly inspired not only geodesic dome architect Buckminster Fuller, but the artist M. C. Escher. 2.   Bateson was an anthropologist as well as one of the most prominent philosophers of cybernetics. I can’t possibly summarize his work here, but I will say that he charted a way out of the terrifying vision revealed by Wiener. He suggested a humble approach to technology, in which people don’t think of themselves as being placed above nature, but embedded within a larger system. 3.   


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What Technology Wants by Kevin Kelly

Albert Einstein, Alfred Russel Wallace, Buckminster Fuller, c2.com, carbon-based life, Cass Sunstein, charter city, Clayton Christensen, cloud computing, computer vision, Danny Hillis, dematerialisation, demographic transition, double entry bookkeeping, Douglas Engelbart, en.wikipedia.org, Exxon Valdez, George Gilder, gravity well, hive mind, Howard Rheingold, interchangeable parts, invention of air conditioning, invention of writing, Isaac Newton, Jaron Lanier, Joan Didion, John Conway, John Markoff, John von Neumann, Kevin Kelly, knowledge economy, Lao Tzu, life extension, Louis Daguerre, Marshall McLuhan, megacity, meta analysis, meta-analysis, new economy, off grid, out of africa, performance metric, personalized medicine, phenotype, Picturephone, planetary scale, RAND corporation, random walk, Ray Kurzweil, recommendation engine, refrigerator car, Richard Florida, Rubik’s Cube, Silicon Valley, silicon-based life, Skype, speech recognition, Stephen Hawking, Steve Jobs, Stewart Brand, Ted Kaczynski, the built environment, the scientific method, Thomas Malthus, Vernor Vinge, wealth creators, Whole Earth Catalog, Y2K

Genetics, 180 (1). http://www.genetics.org/cgi/content/abstract/180/1/431. 127 “all outcomes would be different”: Sean Carroll. (2008) The Making of the Fittest: DNA and the Ultimate Forensic Record of Evolution. New York: W. W. Norton. 128 precisely, but elegantly, backward: Stephen Jay Gould. (1989) Wonderful Life: The Burgess Shale and Nature of History. New York: W. W. Norton, p. 320. 128 Buckminster Fuller once said: Richard Buckminster Fuller, Jerome Agel, et al. (1970) I Seem to Be a Verb. New York: Bantam Books. 7. Convergence 132 strung across our countryside: Christopher A. Voss. (1984) “Multiple Independent Invention and the Process of Technological Innovation.” Technovation, 2 p. 172. 132 “claimed by more than one person”: William F. Ogburn and Dorothy Thomas. (1975) “Are Inventions Inevitable?

Every living organism is on its way to becoming. And the human organism even more so, because among all living beings (that we know about) we are the most open-ended. We have just started our evolution as Homo sapiens. As both parent and child of the technium—evolution accelerated—we are nothing more and nothing less than an evolutionary ordained becoming. “I seem to be a verb,” the inventor/philosopher Buckminster Fuller once said. We can likewise say: The technium is a tendency, not an entity. The technium and its constituent technologies are more like a grand process than a grand artifact. Nothing is complete, all is in flux, and the only thing that counts is the direction of movement. So if the technium has a direction, where is it pointed? If the greater forms of technologies are inevitable, what is next?


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The Stack: On Software and Sovereignty by Benjamin H. Bratton

1960s counterculture, 3D printing, 4chan, Ada Lovelace, additive manufacturing, airport security, Alan Turing: On Computable Numbers, with an Application to the Entscheidungsproblem, algorithmic trading, Amazon Mechanical Turk, Amazon Web Services, augmented reality, autonomous vehicles, basic income, Benevolent Dictator For Life (BDFL), Berlin Wall, bioinformatics, bitcoin, blockchain, Buckminster Fuller, Burning Man, call centre, carbon footprint, carbon-based life, Cass Sunstein, Celebration, Florida, charter city, clean water, cloud computing, connected car, corporate governance, crowdsourcing, cryptocurrency, dark matter, David Graeber, deglobalization, dematerialisation, disintermediation, distributed generation, don't be evil, Douglas Engelbart, Douglas Engelbart, Edward Snowden, Elon Musk, en.wikipedia.org, Eratosthenes, Ethereum, ethereum blockchain, facts on the ground, Flash crash, Frank Gehry, Frederick Winslow Taylor, future of work, Georg Cantor, gig economy, global supply chain, Google Earth, Google Glasses, Guggenheim Bilbao, High speed trading, Hyperloop, illegal immigration, industrial robot, information retrieval, Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC), intermodal, Internet of things, invisible hand, Jacob Appelbaum, Jaron Lanier, Joan Didion, John Markoff, Joi Ito, Jony Ive, Julian Assange, Khan Academy, liberal capitalism, lifelogging, linked data, Mark Zuckerberg, market fundamentalism, Marshall McLuhan, Masdar, McMansion, means of production, megacity, megastructure, Menlo Park, Minecraft, MITM: man-in-the-middle, Monroe Doctrine, Network effects, new economy, offshore financial centre, oil shale / tar sands, packet switching, PageRank, pattern recognition, peak oil, peer-to-peer, performance metric, personalized medicine, Peter Eisenman, Peter Thiel, phenotype, Philip Mirowski, Pierre-Simon Laplace, place-making, planetary scale, RAND corporation, recommendation engine, reserve currency, RFID, Robert Bork, Sand Hill Road, self-driving car, semantic web, sharing economy, Silicon Valley, Silicon Valley ideology, Slavoj Žižek, smart cities, smart grid, smart meter, social graph, software studies, South China Sea, sovereign wealth fund, special economic zone, spectrum auction, Startup school, statistical arbitrage, Steve Jobs, Steven Levy, Stewart Brand, Stuxnet, Superbowl ad, supply-chain management, supply-chain management software, TaskRabbit, the built environment, The Chicago School, the scientific method, Torches of Freedom, transaction costs, Turing complete, Turing machine, Turing test, undersea cable, universal basic income, urban planning, Vernor Vinge, Washington Consensus, web application, Westphalian system, WikiLeaks, working poor, Y Combinator

While it names the organization of a planetary-scale computing infrastructure, my purpose is to leverage it toward a broader program for platform design. In the depiction of this incipient megastructure, we can see not just new machines but also still-embryonic geopolitical institutions and social systems as well. For these, The Stack is powerful and dangerous, both remedy and poison, a utopian and dystopian machine at once (it can go either way, and as Buckminster Fuller said, it will be touch and go until the last instant). As a model, The Stack is simultaneously a portrait of the system we have but perhaps do not recognize, and an antecedent of a future territory, and with both at hand, we hope to prototype the alien cosmopolitanisms these engender for us and suggest to us. Planetary-scale computation both distorts and reforms modern jurisdiction and political geography and produces new forms of these in its own image.

He used the example of Google and said it was a pity that although Google had retreated from China, its service was still accessible in China: “It's like the relationship between riverbed and water. Water has no nationality, but riverbeds are sovereign territories, we cannot allow polluted water from other nation-states to enter our country.”13 This is an amazingly succinct rehearsal of the older European nomos's juridical separation of land and sea, fixed and liquid, made into parable.14 While Fang likely was not familiar with Buckminster Fuller's admonition that “the fearful sovereign nation politicos will find that trying to arrest networking is like trying to arrest the waves of the ocean,” Fuller, it is more certain, was never given the assignment, as Fang was, of building a glass dome for a billion Internet users.15 Shifting the figure of water from a metaphor to geography, consider that for Schmitt's history of the nomos (that is, Carl Schmitt, not Eric Schmidt), the territorial domain of nations was always defended by the naval capacity over the omnidirectional glacis of the ocean in light of Google's filed patent on water-based data centers.16 This floating cyberinfrastructure would, in principle, greatly reduce the energy and cooling costs of hosting and serving the peta- and exabytes of data that will constitute an eventual planetary cloud computing platform.

John Battelle's Search Blog, November 4, 2011, http://battellemedia.com/archives/2011/11/what-role-government.php. 13.  See Jin Ge, “The Father of China's Great Firewall Re-defines Internet Sovereignty,” http://www.88-bar.com/tag/sovereign-internet/. Thanks to Tricia Wang for alerting me to this quote. 14.  See Xu Wu, Chinese Cyber Nationalism: Evolution, Characteristics, and Implications (Lanham, MD: Lexington Books, 2007). 15.  R. Buckminster Fuller, Grunch of Giants (New York: St. Martin's Press, 1983). 16.  Katie Fehrenbacher, “Google Floats Idea of Wave Powered Data Center,” Gigaom, September 8, 2008, https://gigaom.com/2008/09/08/google-floats-idea-of-wave-powered-data-center/, and “Google to Switch on Seawater-Cooled Data Center This Fall,” Gigaom, May 24, 2011, https://gigaom.com/2011/05/24/google-to-switch-on-worlds-first-seawater-cooled-data-center-this-fall/.


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The Innovators: How a Group of Inventors, Hackers, Geniuses and Geeks Created the Digital Revolution by Walter Isaacson

1960s counterculture, Ada Lovelace, AI winter, Alan Turing: On Computable Numbers, with an Application to the Entscheidungsproblem, Albert Einstein, AltaVista, Apple II, augmented reality, back-to-the-land, beat the dealer, Bill Gates: Altair 8800, bitcoin, Bob Noyce, Buckminster Fuller, Byte Shop, c2.com, call centre, citizen journalism, Claude Shannon: information theory, Clayton Christensen, commoditize, computer age, crowdsourcing, cryptocurrency, Debian, desegregation, Donald Davies, Douglas Engelbart, Douglas Engelbart, Douglas Hofstadter, Dynabook, El Camino Real, Electric Kool-Aid Acid Test, en.wikipedia.org, Firefox, Google Glasses, Grace Hopper, Gödel, Escher, Bach, Hacker Ethic, Haight Ashbury, Howard Rheingold, Hush-A-Phone, HyperCard, hypertext link, index card, Internet Archive, Jacquard loom, Jaron Lanier, Jeff Bezos, jimmy wales, John Markoff, John von Neumann, Joseph-Marie Jacquard, Leonard Kleinrock, Marc Andreessen, Mark Zuckerberg, Marshall McLuhan, Menlo Park, Mitch Kapor, Mother of all demos, new economy, New Journalism, Norbert Wiener, Norman Macrae, packet switching, PageRank, Paul Terrell, pirate software, popular electronics, pre–internet, RAND corporation, Ray Kurzweil, RFC: Request For Comment, Richard Feynman, Richard Stallman, Robert Metcalfe, Rubik’s Cube, Sand Hill Road, Saturday Night Live, self-driving car, Silicon Valley, Silicon Valley startup, Skype, slashdot, speech recognition, Steve Ballmer, Steve Crocker, Steve Jobs, Steve Wozniak, Steven Levy, Steven Pinker, Stewart Brand, technological singularity, technoutopianism, Ted Nelson, The Coming Technological Singularity, The Nature of the Firm, The Wisdom of Crowds, Turing complete, Turing machine, Turing test, Vannevar Bush, Vernor Vinge, Von Neumann architecture, Watson beat the top human players on Jeopardy!, Whole Earth Catalog, Whole Earth Review, wikimedia commons, William Shockley: the traitorous eight

Instead of deploring computers as tools of the old power structure, he argued that they could aid the shift in social consciousness if they were made more personal: “The machine, having been built, may now be turned to human ends, in order that man once more can become a creative force, renewing and creating his own life.”9 A technotribalism began to emerge. Tech gurus such as Norbert Wiener, Buckminster Fuller, and Marshall McLuhan became required reading in communes and dorms. By the 1980s the LSD evangelist Timothy Leary would update his famous mantra “Turn on, tune in, drop out” to proclaim instead “Turn on, boot up, jack in.”10 Richard Brautigan was the poet-in-residence in 1967 at Caltech, and that year he captured the new ethos in a poem, “All Watched Over by Machines of Loving Grace.”11 It began: I like to think (and the sooner the better!)

“The Trips Festival marked Stewart Brand’s emergence as a countercultural entrepreneur—but in a deeply technocratic mold,” wrote the cultural historian Fred Turner.17 A month after the Trips Festival, in February 1966, Brand was sitting on his gravelly rooftop in San Francisco’s North Beach enjoying the effects of 100 micrograms of LSD. Staring at the skyline, he ruminated on something that Buckminster Fuller had said: our perception that the world is flat and stretches indefinitely, rather than round and small, is because we have never seen it from outer space. Abetted by the acid, he began to grok the smallness of the earth and the importance of other people appreciating that as well. “It had to be broadcast, this fundamental point of leverage on the world’s ills,” he recalled. “A photograph would do it—a color photograph from space of the earth.

Its subtitle was “Access to Tools,” and it combined the sensibilities of the back-to-the-land counterculture with the goal of technological empowerment. Brand wrote on the first page of the first edition, “A realm of intimate, personal power is developing—power of the individual to conduct his own education, find his own inspiration, shape his own environment, and share his adventure with whoever is interested. Tools that aid this process are sought and promoted by the Whole Earth Catalog.” Buckminster Fuller followed with a poem that began, “I see God in the instruments and mechanisms that work reliably.” The first edition featured such items as Norbert Wiener’s book Cybernetics and a programmable HP calculator, along with buckskin jackets and beads. The underlying premise was that a love of the earth and a love of technology could coexist, that hippies should make common cause with engineers, and that the future should be a festival where a.c. outlets would be provided.20 Brand’s approach was not New Left political.


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Mysteries of the Mall: And Other Essays by Witold Rybczynski

additive manufacturing, airport security, Buckminster Fuller, City Beautiful movement, edge city, Frank Gehry, Guggenheim Bilbao, Jane Jacobs, kremlinology, Marshall McLuhan, new economy, New Urbanism, out of africa, Peter Calthorpe, Peter Eisenman, rent control, Silicon Valley, the High Line, urban renewal, young professional

The solutions were a mixed bag, ranging from the touching entry of two young girls who live in Cabrini-Green to the sort of conceptual posturing that characterizes so much of contemporary architecture. One entry mysteriously linked Cabrini-Green to the tidal cycles of Lake Michigan, another incorporated an amusement park into the public housing project, yet another nastily suggested “circling the wagons for safety” by creating fortresslike housing structures surrounded by masts with batteries of high-intensity spotlights. One designer, apparently a devotee of Buckminster Fuller, produced a solution to low-income housing based on prefabricated concrete spheres: the houses resembled lightbulbs. The winning project was the work of two assistant professors of architecture at North Dakota State University in Fargo and a newly graduated student. Jim Nelson, Don Faulkner, and Larry Carcoana’s proposal brims with midwestern good sense. Rebuild the old street grid, the designers suggest, and fill in the open spaces with traditional row houses oriented to the streets.

Since I wrote this, Stern’s eclecticism has expanded to include modernism—in a number of campus buildings and in several office towers, notably the fifty-eight-story, all-glass Comcast Center in Philadelphia. Thus far at least, the residential work remains stylistically traditional, although a number of apartment interiors have been modernist, and with Stern you never know. A Humble Architect Montreal’s Expo 67 was the last world’s fair where architects were treated as stars. The two most impressive national pavilions were Frei Otto’s tentlike West German pavilion and Buckminster Fuller’s U.S. pavilion, a large geodesic dome. Arthur Erickson’s delicate wood pyramid housing Man and Health made up for the rather lackluster Canadian pavilion. But the brightest star at Expo was a newcomer, Moshe Safdie, a twenty-eight-year-old Israeli-born Canadian who, according to legend, had turned his student thesis into the fair’s most striking attraction. The British magazine The Architects’ Journal called Habitat “one of the most advanced housing projects ever conceived and certainly the boldest exercise in industrialized building methods attempted to date.”


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Memory Machines: The Evolution of Hypertext by Belinda Barnet

augmented reality, Benoit Mandelbrot, Bill Duvall, British Empire, Buckminster Fuller, Claude Shannon: information theory, collateralized debt obligation, computer age, conceptual framework, Douglas Engelbart, Douglas Engelbart, game design, hiring and firing, Howard Rheingold, HyperCard, hypertext link, information retrieval, Internet Archive, John Markoff, linked data, mandelbrot fractal, Marshall McLuhan, Menlo Park, nonsequential writing, Norbert Wiener, publish or perish, Robert Metcalfe, semantic web, Steve Jobs, Stewart Brand, technoutopianism, Ted Nelson, the scientific method, Vannevar Bush, wikimedia commons

These notes describe Nelson’s vision in detail. They cover the ELF design, Xanadu, StretchText and Nelson’s screen-based graph display idea. Nelson didn’t want to hover around in the background watching the team build a part of his vision; he wanted the design to be produced as faithfully as possible. ‘Let’s put it this way: I feel that van Dam should have treated me the way he would have treated Buckminster Fuller if he’d asked Buckminster Fuller to come in’ (Nelson 2011). That didn’t happen. As observed previously, van Dam and his team wanted to explore the hypertext concept, but they also had their own plans (which Nelson strenuously opposed). The team set out to design a dual-purpose system for authoring, editing and printing text documents, which could also be used to browse and query written materials nonsequentially.


The Unicorn's Secret by Steven Levy

Albert Einstein, Buckminster Fuller, card file, East Village, financial independence, Golden Gate Park, Haight Ashbury, index card, John Markoff, Marshall McLuhan, Ralph Nader, rolodex, Saturday Night Live, Steven Levy, Stewart Brand, Thomas Kuhn: the structure of scientific revolutions, upwardly mobile, Whole Earth Catalog

(If his poetry, as well as some of his public pose, owed a lot to Allen Ginsberg, Ginsberg himself—while not regarding the work very highly—was not bothered. “There were several hundred fat Jews with beards that I got confused with constantly,” Ginsberg says of those times.) In a sense, Einhorn was venturing far beyond the anarchist Yippie Movement; he was applying educated analysis of the world in terms of systems. Kiyoshi Kurimaya, a founder of Penn’s Free University and later an editor of Buckminster Fuller’s writings, claims that Ira was a master teacher for that very reason: “Ira seemed to have a complete system. He had a unique analysis of world events and contemporary culture that was not available in any other source that I had come in contact with. And they were ideas that were later confirmed through study, sometimes a year later, and sometimes ten years later.” With those ideas, Ira Einhorn was ready to broaden his constituency, from a counterculture leader who was covered by media to a bridge between the counterculture and the Establishment, working toward a cause everyone shared in common.

So Librach contacted Einhorn, who invited the Penn student to his apartment in the Piles. When Librach appeared, he was thrown immediately off balance. For one thing, the apartment seemed to be some sort of weird communal arrangement where an unclear number of adults came and went at will. For another thing, the walls of the place were filled with bookshelves—but the shelves were empty except for one book. Its author was Buckminster Fuller, and Ira held up the book and told Librach that “Everything is in here. This is philosophy, this is history, this is art, this one book has it all.” When Ira Einhorn offered Librach some banana bread, he accepted it with dread, hoping that some hallucinogenic drug was not among the ingredients. Finally—and this bothered the fairly straitlaced Austin Librach most of all—Ira Einhorn had answered the door naked and remained so throughout the visit.

Meanwhile, the ringleader would have a lot of fun, and not a little publicity. The latter was no small factor in Ira Einhorn’s campaign to lose—he never pretended otherwise—the Democratic nomination for mayor. “Publicity helps me to create a myth about me and I have to use that myth to do what I have to get done,” he explained to Philadelphia Magazine. At the time, Ira was hanging out with an informal aggregation that called itself The Synergy Group, in honor of Buckminster Fuller’s philosophies. The idea was to generate energies to strengthen community, particularly an undeveloped area on South Street, just below the city’s historic area. Synergy’s dominant personalities were Curt Kubiak, whom Ira had been close with since the Free University, and Tom Bissinger, a bean pole–slim playwright who had recently been in charge of the avant garde Philadelphia Theater of the Living Arts.


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With Liberty and Dividends for All: How to Save Our Middle Class When Jobs Don't Pay Enough by Peter Barnes

Alfred Russel Wallace, banks create money, basic income, Buckminster Fuller, collective bargaining, computerized trading, creative destruction, David Ricardo: comparative advantage, declining real wages, deindustrialization, diversified portfolio, en.wikipedia.org, Fractional reserve banking, full employment, hydraulic fracturing, income inequality, Jaron Lanier, John Maynard Keynes: Economic Possibilities for our Grandchildren, Joseph Schumpeter, land reform, Mark Zuckerberg, Network effects, oil shale / tar sands, Paul Samuelson, profit maximization, quantitative easing, rent-seeking, Ronald Coase, Ronald Reagan, Silicon Valley, sovereign wealth fund, the map is not the territory, The Spirit Level, The Wealth of Nations by Adam Smith, Thorstein Veblen, transaction costs, Tyler Cowen: Great Stagnation, Upton Sinclair, Vilfredo Pareto, wealth creators, winner-take-all economy

And third, though recycled rent requires government action to get started, it has the political virtue of avoiding the bigger/smaller government tug-of-war that paralyzes Washington today. It is, after all, property income that doesn’t enlarge government. It could therefore appeal to, or at least not offend, voters and politicians in the center, left, and right. A TRIM TAB IS A TINY FLAP ON A SHIP or airplane’s rudder. The designer Buckminster Fuller often noted that moving a trim tab slightly turns a ship or a plane dramatically. If we think of our economy as a moving vessel, the same metaphor can be applied to rent. Depending on how much of it is collected and whether it flows to a few or to many, rent can steer an economy toward extreme inequality or a large middle class. It can also guide an economy toward excessive use of nature or a safe level of use.


pages: 370 words: 97,138

Beyond: Our Future in Space by Chris Impey

3D printing, Admiral Zheng, Albert Einstein, Alfred Russel Wallace, AltaVista, Berlin Wall, Buckminster Fuller, butterfly effect, California gold rush, carbon-based life, Charles Lindbergh, Colonization of Mars, cosmic abundance, crowdsourcing, cuban missile crisis, dark matter, discovery of DNA, Doomsday Clock, Edward Snowden, Elon Musk, Eratosthenes, Haight Ashbury, Hyperloop, I think there is a world market for maybe five computers, Isaac Newton, Jeff Bezos, Johannes Kepler, John von Neumann, Kickstarter, life extension, low earth orbit, Mahatma Gandhi, Marc Andreessen, Mars Rover, mutually assured destruction, Oculus Rift, operation paperclip, out of africa, Peter H. Diamandis: Planetary Resources, phenotype, private space industry, purchasing power parity, RAND corporation, Ray Kurzweil, RFID, Richard Feynman, Richard Feynman: Challenger O-ring, risk tolerance, Rubik’s Cube, Search for Extraterrestrial Intelligence, Searching for Interstellar Communications, Silicon Valley, skunkworks, Skype, Stephen Hawking, Steven Pinker, supervolcano, technological singularity, telepresence, telerobotics, the medium is the message, the scientific method, theory of mind, There's no reason for any individual to have a computer in his home - Ken Olsen, wikimedia commons, X Prize, Yogi Berra

The dreams of elevator operators looked like they couldn’t be realized with conventional materials.16 Then nanotechnology burst on the scene in the 1990s. The ability to manipulate matter at the level of atoms or molecules opened up new technologies and a dizzying array of potential new applications. Some of the most exciting materials were made of pure carbon. Fullerenes are carbon molecules in the form of spheres, tubes, and other shapes. The name is a nod to the architect and designer Buckminster Fuller, since the first of the new molecules to be created was a tiny spherical cage made of sixty carbon atoms, resembling one of Fuller’s geodesic domes. Soon after buckyballs were isolated, scientists learned how to create carbon nanotubes, interlinked carbon atoms rolled in a cylinder a millionth of a meter across. Carbon nanotubes are stable and they conduct heat and electricity extremely well.

Their mission was to live in a self-sustaining environment for two years, as a prototype of how humans might one day live on Mars, or in space.1 Texas billionaire Ed Bass sank $150 million into the project, and it was variously characterized in the press as a utopian dream or a rich man’s folly. The occupants wore jumpsuits out of Star Trek—which, depending on your point of view, made them look like either consummate professionals or inmates at a county jail. Few had serious scientific credentials. The soaring architecture was inspired by Buckminster Fuller’s geodesic domes, but there was also a darker backstory associated with founder John Allen, who ran a commune in New Mexico that had the trappings of a cult. Allen was a metallurgist and Harvard MBA who experimented with peyote and spent the late 1960s lecturing in San Francisco’s Haight-Ashbury district. In 1974, when young Yale dropout Ed Bass arrived at Allen’s Synergia Ranch, the two men instantly hit it off, based on their shared interest in the environment.


The Buddha and the Badass: The Secret Spiritual Art of Succeeding at Work by Vishen Lakhiani

Buckminster Fuller, Burning Man, call centre, Colonization of Mars, crowdsourcing, deliberate practice, Elon Musk, fundamental attribution error, future of work, Google Glasses, Google X / Alphabet X, iterative process, Jeff Bezos, meta analysis, meta-analysis, microbiome, performance metric, Peter Thiel, profit motive, Ralph Waldo Emerson, Silicon Valley, Silicon Valley startup, skunkworks, Skype, Steve Jobs, Steven Levy, web application, white picket fence

It’s about unlocking your dream and sharing it with such potency that the world is drawn to you. The people you need come. And together you bend reality with more force than one person ever could alone. “I’ll Drain Brains from Other Countries” One sleepless night it hit me. What if I could create a workplace so attractive that talent from around the world would willingly relocate to Malaysia and help me build my dream company? In my head, a Buckminster Fuller quote was on replay. Bucky once said: You never change things by fighting the existing reality. To change something, build a new model that makes the existing model obsolete. This vision of building a new type of business, the World’s Greatest Workplace, fueled me. And it wasn’t going to be in New York, or Silicon Valley, or London or Berlin, or in any of the world’s most popular cities.

To the teachers who provided wisdom for this book: Drima Starlight, for being pivotal in the early days of Mindvalley and for your values process that has been key to our continued success and now the success of countless others; Cameron Herold, for your Vivid Visioning technique that took my business to new heights; Srikumar Rao, for your sage wisdom, mentorship, and support through the highs and lows; Lisa Nichols, for believing in me early on, and for your friendship and partnership in the field of personal growth; Reverend Michael Beckwith, for your spiritual guidance, your Life Visioning process, and your commitment to transformation on the planet; Naveen Jain, for blowing me away with your moonshot ideas that have expanded the way I think I run my business; Richard Branson, for suggesting I write the first book that led to this book and for inviting me to mastermind with you on Necker, and being an example of how business and life can flow together with ease; Bob Proctor, for kicking my butt and getting me to think better; Ken Wilber, for being the Father of Integral Theory whose models have shaped me, my work, and many of the ideas in this book; Tim Urban, for your genius blog that tackles the most relevant topics the world needs to know about in a way that’s witty and engaging; Tom Chi, for your stand for humanity and for setting an example for how leaders should conduct themselves in business; John Ratcliff, for inspiring other leaders to truly see their people with your Dream Manager program; Daniel Pink, for your commitment to compassionate leadership and teams that thrive; Patty McCord, for reminding the world that people are already leaders the moment they walk in a door; Elon Musk, for being a trailblazer who sets an impeccable standard for how to think ten years ahead; Barack Obama, for your mentorship and inspiration; Larry Page, for sharing the OKR system that’s transformed how we work at Mindvalley; Doug McGuff, for your super slow training, and helping me reverse my biological age; Simon Sinek, for emphasizing the importance of sharing your why; Jim Collins for encouraging me to get the right people on my bus. To the thought leaders who are no longer with us but who have influenced my life and the ideas in this book: Buckminster Fuller, for showing me how to tackle impossible problems; Terrence McKenna, for your stand for people living self-expressed lives, for your mind-bending wisdom, and for contributing to my worldview; Rumi, for your spiritual guidance and your poems that have stuck with me and shaped the way I work; Martin Luther King Jr., for inspiring us all to live bravely; and Abraham Maslow, for revolutionizing the field of human psychology with your Hierarchy of Needs.


pages: 289 words: 112,697

The new village green: living light, living local, living large by Stephen Morris

back-to-the-land, Buckminster Fuller, clean water, cleantech, collective bargaining, Columbine, Community Supported Agriculture, computer age, cuban missile crisis, deindustrialization, discovery of penicillin, distributed generation, energy security, energy transition, Fellow of the Royal Society, financial independence, Firefox, index card, Indoor air pollution, Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC), invisible hand, Kevin Kelly, Louis Pasteur, Mahatma Gandhi, mass immigration, McMansion, Menlo Park, Negawatt, off grid, peak oil, rolodex, Silicon Valley, Steve Jobs, Stewart Brand, Whole Earth Catalog, Whole Earth Review

” — Neva Goodwin Co-director, Global Development And Environment Institute, Tufts University “ It’s hard to overstate the impact of Hurricane Katrina and the public response.” — Nancy Jack Todd Editor, Annals of Earth newsletter “ Hurricane Katrina will be remembered as the most important turning point in the world's awareness and reaction to global warming.” — Jeffrey Hollender President & Chief Inspired Protagonist, Seventh Generation “ We can thank Herman Daly for the concept of full cost accounting, Buckminster Fuller for the power and possibility of thinking differently, and E.F. Schumacher as the father of the act locally/think globally movement.” — Jeffrey Hollender 96 chapter 4 : The End of Nature “ I’ve heard lots of criticism of Al Gore’s film, An Inconvenient Truth, from inside the green movement, but we’re already converted. The mainstream media coverage and my conversations with non-movement people have convinced me that it has done so much to bring them on board

Plan B 2.0: Rescuing a Planet Under Stress and a Civilization in Trouble, by Lester Brown. W.W. Norton & Co., 2006. Earth in the Balance: Ecology and the Human Spirit, by Al Gore. Plume, 1993. The Last Hours of Ancient Sunlight: The Fate of the World and What We Can Do Before It’s Too Late, by Thom Hartmann. Three Rivers Press, 1998. Beyond Growth: The Economics of Sustainable Development, by Herman Daly. Beacon Press, 1992. Critical Path, by Buckminster Fuller. St. Martin’s Press, 1981. The Home Energy Diet: How to Save Money by Making Your House Energy Smart, by Paul Scheckel. New Society Publishers, 2005. The Company We Keep: Reinventing Small Business for People, Community, and Place, by John Abrams. Chelsea Green, 2005. The NEW VILLAGE GREEN 99 5 ONE-STRAW REVOLUTION “ If we throw mother nature out the window, she comes back in the door with a pitchfork.” — Masanobu Fukuoka 100 T he most profound learning experience of my college career was reading Robert Ardrey’s African Genesis: A Personal Investigation into the Animal Origins and Nature of Man, long since out of print, but available, used, on Amazon.


pages: 362 words: 95,782

Stephen Fry in America by Stephen Fry

Bretton Woods, Buckminster Fuller, call centre, Charles Lindbergh, Columbine, Donald Trump, illegal immigration, intermodal, jimmy wales, Jony Ive, Kickstarter, Mark Zuckerberg, Menlo Park, Richard Feynman, Ronald Reagan, Rosa Parks, Saturday Night Live, Silicon Valley, Steve Jobs, Upton Sinclair, urban sprawl, Yogi Berra

Skyscrapers Music is not the only cultural product that Chicago has exported around the world: I will come to that dread bitch, comedy, in a moment, but first it is worth remarking on Chicago’s pre-eminence as a centre of great architecture. Most people who have visited both would agree that the quality of Chicago’s skyscrapers is every bit as good, if not better, than New York City’s. Mies van de Rohe, Frank Lloyd Wright and Buckminster Fuller are just the best-known architects to have lived and worked in Illinois; they and their reputations attracted hundreds of others. From its completion in 1973 until the erection of the Petronas Towers in Kuala Lumpur, the tallest building in the world was the Sears Tower in Chicago’s Loop, the historic heart of downtown. The view from the Sears Tower Sky Deck at night shows that Chicago is still a heartstoppingly beautiful city, one of the greatest in the world.

* * * ILLINOIS KEY FACTS Abbreviation: IL Nickname: Land of Lincoln, The Prairie State Capital: Springfield Flower: Illinois Native Violet Tree: White Oak Bird: Cardinal Snack food: Popcorn Motto: State sovereignty, national union Well-known residents and natives: Abraham Lincoln (16th President), Ulysses S. Grant (18th President), Ronald Reagan (40th President), Richard J. Daley, Adlai Stevenson, Louis Farrakhan, Jesse Jackson, Richard M. Daley, Hillary Clinton, Barack Obama, Al Capone, Frank Nitti, Eliot Ness, Enrico Fermi, Ernest Hemingway, James T. Farrell, David Foster Wallace, John Deere, Marshall Field, Montgomery Ward, Richard Sears, Frank Lloyd Wright, Buckminster Fuller, Mies van de Rohe, Walt Disney, Gregg Toland, Michael Mann, Roger Ebert, Gene Siskel, Jack Benny, Burl Ives, Rock Hudson, Dick van Dyke, Gene Hackman, Richard Pryor, George Wendt, Vince Vaughn, Miles Davis, Muddy Waters, Buddy Guy, Bo Diddley, Herbie Hancock, Alison Krauss, Kanye West, Michael Jordan, Oprah Winfrey, Hugh Hefner, Cindy Crawford. * * * Absolutely not my thing. I may have started my life in comedy, but this kind of improvising is as alien and embarrassing to me as the prospect of ballet or powerlifting in public.


pages: 304 words: 87,702

The 100 Best Vacations to Enrich Your Life by Pam Grout

Albert Einstein, Buckminster Fuller, clean water, complexity theory, David Brooks, East Village, Electric Kool-Aid Acid Test, global village, Golden Gate Park, if you build it, they will come, Maui Hawaii, Mikhail Gorbachev, Nelson Mandela, Ralph Nader, Ralph Waldo Emerson, Ronald Reagan, supervolcano, transcontinental railway, urban sprawl, Yogi Berra

There is no charge to volunteer, but get your dibs in early. More than 800 people are already on the volunteer list. HOW TO GET IN TOUCH Theodore Roosevelt Medora Foundation, P.O. Box 198, 301 Fifth Street, Medora, ND 58645, 800-633-6721 or 701-623-4444, www.medora.com. CHAPTER 3 brain retreats I always say to myself, what is the most important thing we can think about in this extraordinary moment? —R. Buckminster Fuller, American visionary, architect, and inventor When you were five, you wanted the answers to everything. You wanted to know where rain came from, why some people were bald, how music came out of that little box called a radio. Back then, it was okay not to know everything. It was perfectly acceptable to ask questions, wonder why, want to know more. But at some point, you figured out it wasn’t “cool” to admit you didn’t know something.

Although these days you can find a yoga studio and a Gestalt center on every corner, the two retreat centers listed below are the veritable godfathers of the human potential movement. They both have incredibly beautiful campuses, workshop leaders that are a veritable who’s who, and a long list of enlightening workshops. Esalen Institute. Perched on a rocky ledge overlooking the Pacific Ocean, this 140-acre institute in Big Sur is where Gestalt therapy guru Frederick “Fritz” Perls coached Rita Hayworth and where Ida Rolf pioneered Rolfing. Joseph Campbell, Buckminster Fuller, and Linus Pauling have all given workshops here. The weathered redwood buildings and geodesic domes sprinkled about the grounds go back to the early 1960s, when Stanford graduate students Michael Murphy and Richard Price gave life to their vision of a sanctuary where thinkers of all stripes—philosophers, psychologists, artists, academics, spiritual leaders—could come together to pursue the “exploration of unrealized human capacities.”


pages: 372 words: 94,153

More From Less: The Surprising Story of How We Learned to Prosper Using Fewer Resources – and What Happens Next by Andrew McAfee

back-to-the-land, Bartolomé de las Casas, Berlin Wall, bitcoin, Branko Milanovic, British Empire, Buckminster Fuller, call centre, carbon footprint, clean water, cleantech, cloud computing, Corn Laws, creative destruction, crony capitalism, David Ricardo: comparative advantage, decarbonisation, dematerialisation, Deng Xiaoping, Donald Trump, Edward Glaeser, en.wikipedia.org, energy transition, Erik Brynjolfsson, failed state, Fall of the Berlin Wall, Haber-Bosch Process, Hans Rosling, humanitarian revolution, hydraulic fracturing, income inequality, indoor plumbing, intangible asset, James Watt: steam engine, Jeff Bezos, job automation, John Snow's cholera map, joint-stock company, Joseph Schumpeter, Khan Academy, Landlord’s Game, Louis Pasteur, Lyft, Marc Andreessen, market fundamentalism, means of production, Mikhail Gorbachev, oil shale / tar sands, Paul Samuelson, peak oil, precision agriculture, profit maximization, profit motive, risk tolerance, road to serfdom, Ronald Coase, Ronald Reagan, Scramble for Africa, Second Machine Age, Silicon Valley, Steve Jobs, Steven Pinker, Stewart Brand, telepresence, The Wealth of Nations by Adam Smith, Thomas Davenport, Thomas Malthus, Thorstein Veblen, total factor productivity, Uber and Lyft, uber lyft, Veblen good, War on Poverty, Whole Earth Catalog, World Values Survey

This combination of self-interest and innovativeness caused two things: a wide-ranging search for more of the resource, and an equally ardent search for substitutes. As one or both of these quests succeeded, Simon reasoned, the original scarcity would be eased, and the resource’s price would go back down. In the most extreme and intriguing case, the substitute for the resource would be… nothing at all. In his 1968 book, Utopia or Oblivion, the architect and inventor R. Buckminster Fuller wrote, “I made many calculations, and it seemed increasingly clear that it was feasible for us to do so much with so little that we might be able to take care of everybody. In 1927 I called this whole process ‘Ephemeralization,’ ” by which he meant satisfying human desires for consumption while using fewer resources from the physical world—fewer molecules, in short. The geodesic domes popularized and named by Fuller are a good example of this phenomenon: they use fewer materials and weigh a great deal less than conventional buildings of the same size, yet can support heavier loads.

The first Foxfire book sold more than 9 million copies: Tove Danovich, “The Foxfire Book Series That Preserved Appalachian Foodways,” NPR, March 17, 2017, https://www.npr.org/sections/thesalt/2017/03/17/520038859/the-foxfire-book-series-that-preserved-appalachian-foodways. “Are we now ‘entering an age of scarcity’?”: Julian Simon, The Ultimate Resource (Princeton, NJ: Princeton University Press, 1981), 3. “I made many calculations”: R. Buckminster Fuller, Utopia or Oblivion (Zurich: Lars Müller, 1969), 293. “Ephemeralization… is the number one economic surprise of world man”: Ibid., 297. The real price of all five metals had fallen by late September of 1990: Ed Regis, “The Doomslayer,” WIRED, December 15, 2017, https://www.wired.com/1997/02/the-doomslayer-2/. “smart but lucky”: Paul Kedrosky, “Taking Another Look at Simon vs. Ehrlich on Commodity Prices,” Seeking Alpha, February 19, 2010, https://seekingalpha.com/article/189539-taking-another-look-at-simon-vs-ehrlich-on-commodity-prices?


pages: 571 words: 124,448

Building Habitats on the Moon: Engineering Approaches to Lunar Settlements by Haym Benaroya

3D printing, biofilm, Black Swan, Brownian motion, Buckminster Fuller, carbon-based life, centre right, clean water, Colonization of Mars, Computer Numeric Control, conceptual framework, data acquisition, Elon Musk, fault tolerance, gravity well, inventory management, Johannes Kepler, low earth orbit, orbital mechanics / astrodynamics, performance metric, RAND corporation, risk tolerance, Ronald Reagan, stochastic process, telepresence, telerobotics, the scientific method, urban planning, X Prize, zero-sum game

O’Neill, father of the modern space colony, author of The High Frontier and tireless proponent of the ‘humanization of space’, is another very significant professional influence, as is the work of Dr. John Lewis, author of Mining the Sky and other publications. However stellar the previous ‘influencers’ may be, the prime motivator of my intellectual life, my alpha inspiration, the ‘north star’ of my attitudes, beliefs and feelings about science , technology, nature and philosophy, as well as the ‘mentor’ I always return to, is R. Buckminster (Bucky) Fuller (1895-1983). I met Bucky Fuller briefly twice, once in the late 1960s when I was a college student and once in 1975 while I was still in medical school. In my opinion Bucky Fuller, Gerry O’Neill and perhaps Carl Sagan, whose writings and insights continue to inspire me to this day, were the last visionary geniuses of the 20th century (unfortunately none have appeared yet in the 21st century).

The Mars mission is about 1000 days instead of a lunar maximum ~ 34 days. ( 10 ) A Mars mission involves aerothermal entry, descent, and landing at Mars. The challenge for reliability on Mars is to extend that “three nines” or better for a mission about 30 times longer than the Moon and much greater complexity. Who would you consider as your key influence in your pursuit of space studies? Who inspired you? I suppose I can name a few influences: Buckminster Fuller, Frank Lloyd Wright, Erich Mendelsohn, and other early Modern architects. I wrote about Bucky in my 2014 paper The Continuum of Space Architecture , describing how his reorganization of the Platonic Solids by vertices spurred my analysis for the Triangular-Tetrahedral Space Station configuration. ( 11 ) Of course, the Mercury, Gemini, and Apollo programs played a formative role in my early thinking that the space program was the story of my life.

The apartments open to the circular corridor within the ring beam that leads to the entrance. The entrance consists of a separate structure that accommodates an air lock and a storage area for the space suits. Figure 4.23.Layout of Four-Apartment PSSMS. (Courtesy T.Y. Lin International) Moore et al. proposed two inflatable concepts, one based on Chow and Lin, and the other based on the work of Buckminster Fuller. ( 45 ) This conceptual study suggested possible interior configurations for the Chow and Lin structure. TransHab TransHab is a unique hybrid structure that has an inflatable shell surrounding a central hard structure core. ( 46 ) ( 47 ) It has the packaging and mass efficiencies of an inflatable structure, and the advantages of a load -carrying hard structure. It is viewed as a first step to creating habitable structures in space and on the Moon.


pages: 432 words: 124,635

Happy City: Transforming Our Lives Through Urban Design by Charles Montgomery

2013 Report for America's Infrastructure - American Society of Civil Engineers - 19 March 2013, agricultural Revolution, American Society of Civil Engineers: Report Card, Bernie Madoff, British Empire, Buckminster Fuller, car-free, carbon footprint, centre right, City Beautiful movement, clean water, congestion charging, correlation does not imply causation, East Village, edge city, energy security, Enrique Peñalosa, experimental subject, Frank Gehry, Google Earth, happiness index / gross national happiness, hedonic treadmill, Home mortgage interest deduction, housing crisis, income inequality, income per capita, Induced demand, Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC), invisible hand, Jane Jacobs, license plate recognition, McMansion, means of production, megacity, Menlo Park, meta analysis, meta-analysis, mortgage tax deduction, New Urbanism, Panopticon Jeremy Bentham, peak oil, Ponzi scheme, rent control, ride hailing / ride sharing, risk tolerance, science of happiness, Seaside, Florida, Silicon Valley, starchitect, the built environment, The Death and Life of Great American Cities, the High Line, The Spirit Level, The Wealth of Nations by Adam Smith, trade route, transit-oriented development, upwardly mobile, urban planning, urban sprawl, wage slave, white flight, World Values Survey, zero-sum game, Zipcar

How do we build systems that truly make us free in cities? Sometimes it takes a radical shift in the urban imagination to point the way. 9. Mobilicities II Freedom Automobiles are in no way responsible for our traffic problems. The entire responsibility lies in the faulty roads, which are behind the times. —Norman Bel Geddes, 1940 Possession is becoming progressively burdensome and wasteful and therefore obsolete. —Buckminster Fuller, 1969 In 1969 a consortium of European industrial interests charged a young American economist with figuring out how people would move through cities in the future. There was a lot of money to be made by whoever could divine the single technology most likely to capture the market in the coming decades. It was the era of James Bond gadgets and Apollo 11. Everyone was sure that some fabulous new machine would emerge to change everything.

British trains: Clark, Andrew, “Want to Feel Less Stress? Become a Fighter Pilot, Not a Commuter,” The Guardian, November 30, 2004, www.guardian.co.uk/uk/2004/nov/30/research.transport (accessed October 06, 2012). “freaks and weirdos”: See http://www.boingboing.net/2003/04/15/gm-apologizes-for-fr.html for correspondence. 9. Mobilicities II: Freedom Norman Bel Geddes: Bel Geddes, Norman, Magic Motorways (New York: Random House, 1940). Buckminster Fuller: Fuller, R. Buckminster, Operation Manual for Spaceship Earth (Carbondale: Southern Illinois University Press, 1969). also its limitations: Evans, Gary, Richard Wener, and Donald Phillips, “The Morning Rush Hour: Predictability and Commuter Stress,” Environment and Behavior, 2002: 521–30. anxiety of waiting: Evans, John E., “Transit Scheduling and Frequency,” in Traveler Response to Transportation System Changes,” TCRP Report 95 (Washington, DC: Transportation Research Board, National Academy Press, 2004.)


pages: 194 words: 49,310

Clock of the Long Now by Stewart Brand

Albert Einstein, Brewster Kahle, Buckminster Fuller, Colonization of Mars, complexity theory, Danny Hillis, Eratosthenes, Extropian, fault tolerance, George Santayana, Internet Archive, Jaron Lanier, Kevin Kelly, knowledge economy, life extension, longitudinal study, low earth orbit, Metcalfe’s law, Mitch Kapor, nuclear winter, pensions crisis, phenotype, Ray Kurzweil, Robert Metcalfe, Stephen Hawking, Stewart Brand, technological singularity, Ted Kaczynski, Thomas Malthus, Vernor Vinge, Whole Earth Catalog

(3) Technology can be good for the environment. My old biology teacher, Paul Ehrlich, has a formula declaring that environmental degradation is proportional to “population times affluence times technology.” It now appears that the coming of information technology is reversing that formula, so that better technology and more affluence leads to less environmental harm—if that is one of the goals of the society. “Doing more with less”—Buckminster Fuller’s “ephemeralization”—is creating vastly more efficient industrial and agricultural processes, with proportionately less impact on natural systems. It is also moving ever more of human activity into an infosphere less harmfully entwined with the biosphere. Given its roots, the Packard Foundation is particularly well suited to evaluate and foster what a Buddhist engineer might call right technology.


pages: 98 words: 29,610

From Bauhaus to Our House by Tom Wolfe

Bonfire of the Vanities, Buckminster Fuller, Electric Kool-Aid Acid Test, Peter Eisenman, plutocrats, Plutocrats, The Chicago School, urban renewal

Because it was written, in the scriptures, by Gropius himself: “The fundamental pedagogical mistake of the academy arose from its preoccupation with the idea of individual genius.” Gropius’ and Mies’ byword was “team” effort. Gropius’ own firm in Cambridge was not called Walter Gropius & Associates, Inc., or anything close to it. It was called “The Architects Collaborative.” At Yale the students insisted on a group project, a collaborative design, to replace the obscene scramble for individual glory. NOW, IN THE LATE 1940s AND EARLY 1950s , BUCKMINSTER Fuller came into his own. Fuller was an American designer with an endless stock of ingenious notions, one of which was his geodesic dome, a dome created of thousands of short, thin metal struts arranged in tetrahedra. Fuller’s dome fit in nicely with the modern principle of creating large structures with light surfaces out of machine-made materials and using tensions and stresses to do the work that massive supports had done for the old (bourgeois) order.


pages: 357 words: 100,718

The Limits to Growth: The 30-Year Update by Donella H. Meadows, Jørgen Randers, Dennis L. Meadows

agricultural Revolution, Buckminster Fuller, clean water, Climatic Research Unit, conceptual framework, dematerialisation, demographic transition, financial independence, game design, income per capita, informal economy, Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC), longitudinal study, means of production, new economy, purchasing power parity, Ralph Waldo Emerson, Ronald Reagan, University of East Anglia, urban sprawl, Whole Earth Review

They are put forth to manipulate, lull, or entice, to postpone action, to justify self-serving action, to gain or preserve power, or to deny an uncomfortable reality. Lies distort the information stream. A system cannot function well if its information streams are corrupted by lies. One of the most important tenets of systems theory, for reasons we hope we have made clear in this book, is that information should not be distorted, delayed, or sequestered. `All of humanity is in peril," said Buckminster Fuller, "if each one of us does not dare, now and henceforth, always to tell only the truth and all the truth, and to do so promptly-right now"5 Whenever you speak to anyone, on the street, at work, to a crowd, and especially to a child, you can endeavor to counter a lie or affirm a truth. You can deny the idea that having more things makes one a better person. You can question the notion that more for the rich will help the poor.

Examples of networks known to the authors and in their field of interest are the Balaton Group (www.unh.edu/ipssr/Balaton.html), Northeast Organic Farming Association (NOFA), Center for a New American Dream (CNAD; wwwnewdream.org), Greenlist (www.peacestore.us/Public/Greenlist), Greenclips (wwwgreenclips.com), Northern Forest Alliance (wwwnorthernforestalliance.org), Land Trust Alliance (wwwlta.org), International Simulation and Gaming Association (ISAGA; wwwisaga.info), and Leadership for Environment and Development (LEAD). 4. Such an intermediate step is illustrated by ICLEI, an international association of (currently 450) local governments implementing sustainable development. See www.iclei.org. 5. R. Buckminster Fuller, Critical Path (New York: St. Martin's Press, 1981). 6. Abraham Maslow, The Farthest Reaches of Human Nature (New York: Viking Press, 1971). 7. J. M. Keynes, foreword to Essays in Persuasion (New York: Harcourt Brace, 1932). 8. Aurelio Peccei, One Hundred Pages for the Future (New York: Pergamon Press, 1981), 184-185. Appendix 1. Changes from World3 to World3-03 1. Dennis L. Meadows et al., Dynamics of Growth in a Finite World (Cambridge, MA: WrightAllen Press, 1974). 2.


pages: 323 words: 95,939

Present Shock: When Everything Happens Now by Douglas Rushkoff

algorithmic trading, Andrew Keen, bank run, Benoit Mandelbrot, big-box store, Black Swan, British Empire, Buckminster Fuller, business cycle, cashless society, citizen journalism, clockwork universe, cognitive dissonance, Credit Default Swap, crowdsourcing, Danny Hillis, disintermediation, Donald Trump, double helix, East Village, Elliott wave, European colonialism, Extropian, facts on the ground, Flash crash, game design, global pandemic, global supply chain, global village, Howard Rheingold, hypertext link, Inbox Zero, invention of agriculture, invention of hypertext, invisible hand, iterative process, John Nash: game theory, Kevin Kelly, laissez-faire capitalism, lateral thinking, Law of Accelerating Returns, loss aversion, mandelbrot fractal, Marshall McLuhan, Merlin Mann, Milgram experiment, mutually assured destruction, negative equity, Network effects, New Urbanism, Nicholas Carr, Norbert Wiener, Occupy movement, passive investing, pattern recognition, peak oil, price mechanism, prisoner's dilemma, Ralph Nelson Elliott, RAND corporation, Ray Kurzweil, recommendation engine, selective serotonin reuptake inhibitor (SSRI), Silicon Valley, Skype, social graph, South Sea Bubble, Steve Jobs, Steve Wozniak, Steven Pinker, Stewart Brand, supply-chain management, the medium is the message, The Wisdom of Crowds, theory of mind, Turing test, upwardly mobile, Whole Earth Catalog, WikiLeaks, Y2K, zero-sum game

Most of this work is unpublished, but for more on his approach, see David Alan Goodman, “Declare Your Independence,” Scientist 17 (12), June 16, 2003, p. 13. 27. Joel C. Robertson, Natural Prozac: Learning to Release Your Body’s Own Anti-Depressants (New York: HarperOne, 1998). 28. All quotes from Mark Filippi are from interviews I conducted with him in February and March 2012. 29. “Tensegrity” is a term used most famously by Buckminster Fuller to describe the structural integrity of various systems. See R. Buckminster Fuller, “Tensegrity,” 1961, at www.rwgrayprojects.com/rbfnotes/fpapers/tensegrity/tenseg01.html. 30. See http://Lifewaves.com or http://somaspace.org. 31. Steven Johnson, Where Good Ideas Come From (New York: Riverhead, 2010). 32. Kutcher Tweeted in defense of a fired college football coach, only learning later that the coach had covered up a child molestation.


pages: 199 words: 57,599

Secrets of the Millionaire Mind by T. Harv Eker

Buckminster Fuller, Build a better mousetrap, Donald Trump, fear of failure, high net worth, Maui Hawaii, Parkinson's law, passive income

It’s about living true to your mission and reason for being here on this earth at this time. It’s about adding your piece of the puzzle to the world. Most people are so stuck in their egos that everything revolves around me, me, and more me. But if you want to be rich in the truest sense of the word, it can’t only be about you. It has to include adding value to other people’s lives. One of the greatest inventors and philosophers of our time, Buckminster Fuller, said, “The purpose of our lives is to add value to the people of this generation and those that follow.” We each came to this earth with natural talents, things we’re just naturally good at. These gifts were given to you for a reason: to use and share with others. Research shows that the happiest people are those who use their natural talents to the utmost. Part of your mission in life then must be to share your gifts and value with as many people as possible.


pages: 224 words: 62,551

Now I Sit Me Down: From Klismos to Plastic Chair: A Natural History by Witold Rybczynski

A Pattern Language, Buckminster Fuller, Frank Gehry, interchangeable parts, invention of movable type, Isaac Newton

The Luckhardt brothers also designed chairs for Thonet’s Berlin-based competitor, Deutsche Stahlmöbel (German Steel Furniture), known as DESTA. The owner of DESTA was Anton Lorenz, a significant if somewhat shadowy presence on the Berlin prewar avant-garde furniture scene. Lorenz was neither an architect nor a craftsman; he is sometimes described as a businessman, but he wasn’t exactly that either. In some ways he resembles his contemporary Buckminster Fuller—an inventor-entrepreneur. Born in Budapest, Lorenz accompanied his wife, Irene, an opera singer, to Leipzig. In time, he acquired a metalworking business that made locks. In Berlin, Lorenz met his compatriot Kalman Lengyel and became a partner in Standard Möbel, fabricating Marcel Breuer’s tubular furniture in his workshop. After the company was taken over by Thonet, Lorenz continued in the chair business on his own.


pages: 220 words: 64,234

Fewer, Better Things: The Hidden Wisdom of Objects by Glenn Adamson

big-box store, blood diamonds, blue-collar work, Buckminster Fuller, carbon footprint, crowdsourcing, dematerialisation, dumpster diving, haute couture, informal economy, Jacquard loom, Joseph-Marie Jacquard, Mason jar, race to the bottom, trade route, white flight

The only difference is that our ecosystem is much, much bigger, so it reacts to materials like off-gassed formaldehyde relatively slowly; but this doesn’t change the fact that it is reacting all the time. The sad fact is that, as Adams puts it, “most plastics are just not compatible with life.” As a space architect, Adams is in an unusual position. She does not enter her created microcosms imaginatively, like a child with a dollhouse, but literally, shaping a miniature prototype of our whole planetary situation.9 We are all living, as the visionary scientist Buckminster Fuller used to say, on Spaceship Earth. By understanding the difference between the material environment we actually inhabit and the one we would need in order to survive on Mars, without the abundant resources of our own lushly habitable planet, we may be able to get some measure of the distance between the way we live now and the type of existence that would be permanently sustainable on Earth.


pages: 798 words: 240,182

The Transhumanist Reader by Max More, Natasha Vita-More

23andMe, Any sufficiently advanced technology is indistinguishable from magic, artificial general intelligence, augmented reality, Bill Joy: nanobots, bioinformatics, brain emulation, Buckminster Fuller, cellular automata, clean water, cloud computing, cognitive bias, cognitive dissonance, combinatorial explosion, conceptual framework, Conway's Game of Life, cosmological principle, data acquisition, discovery of DNA, Douglas Engelbart, Drosophila, en.wikipedia.org, endogenous growth, experimental subject, Extropian, fault tolerance, Flynn Effect, Francis Fukuyama: the end of history, Frank Gehry, friendly AI, game design, germ theory of disease, hypertext link, impulse control, index fund, John von Neumann, joint-stock company, Kevin Kelly, Law of Accelerating Returns, life extension, lifelogging, Louis Pasteur, Menlo Park, meta analysis, meta-analysis, moral hazard, Network effects, Norbert Wiener, pattern recognition, Pepto Bismol, phenotype, positional goods, prediction markets, presumed consent, Ray Kurzweil, reversible computing, RFID, Ronald Reagan, scientific worldview, silicon-based life, Singularitarianism, social intelligence, stem cell, stochastic process, superintelligent machines, supply-chain management, supply-chain management software, technological singularity, Ted Nelson, telepresence, telepresence robot, telerobotics, the built environment, The Coming Technological Singularity, the scientific method, The Wisdom of Crowds, transaction costs, Turing machine, Turing test, Upton Sinclair, Vernor Vinge, Von Neumann architecture, Whole Earth Review, women in the workforce, zero-sum game

New York: Houghton Mifflin. 2 Aesthetics Bringing the Arts & Design into the Discussion of Transhumanism Natasha Vita-More “Transhumans want to elevate and extend life … let us choose to be transhumanist not only in our bodies, but also in our values … toward diversity, multiplicity … toward a more humane transhumanity …”1 Imagine a future designed by Frank Gehry that models elements of a “great logistic game” as conceived by Buckminster Fuller, within a monumental Christo installation, kinetically lit by James Turrell, scored by Philip Glass, and sung by Adele. Introduction The emergent course of technology is at once explicable and baffling. It has precipitated questions about a shifting human paradigm that remain unanswered by postmodernism. Considering the climate, discussions about speculative and emerging technologies need to include scientific realism and cosmic chance – a unity and plurality.

The most referred to methods for enhancement include regenerative medicine, nanomedicine, and brain preservation. 4 Primarily as suggested by Manfred Clynes and Nathan Kline in “Cyborgs and Space” (1960) and tangentially as suggested by Donna Haraway in Simians, Cyborgs, and Women: The Reinvention of Nature (Haraway 1990). 5 As suggested in The Prosthetic Impulse: From a Posthuman Present to a Biocultural Future (Smith and Morra 2007). 6 Primarily as understood by transhumanists as a stage of human transformation, succeeding transhuman, and tangentially as suggested in How We Became Posthuman: Virtual Bodies in Cybernetics, Literature, and Informatics (Hayles 1999). 7 As understood by Randal Koene as “whole brain emulation” and more recently “substrate-independent minds.” http://www.kurzweilai.net/pattern-survival-versus-gene-survival. 8 Life expansion means increasing the length of time a person is alive and diversifying the matter in which a person exists (Vita-More 1997 [revised 2011]). 9 “Transcentury UPdate,” a cable public TV show aired in Los Angeles and Telluride, Colorado, from 1986 through 1993, and broadcast numerous segments on the political and ethical issues of technology and segments on building scenarios for the global distribution of technology (green energy etc.), the latter largely based on Buckminster Fuller’s distribution plan (Fuller 1982). References Ascott, Roy (1989) Aspects of Gaia: Digital Pathways Across the Whole Earth. Paper presented at annual Ars Electronica, Linz, Austria. Broderick, Damien (1997) The White Abacus. New York: Avon Books. Burgess, Lowry (2008) Studio for Creative Inquiry, Carnegie Mellon University. http://www.cmu.edu/studio/fellowships/index.html. Chislenko, Alexander “Sasha” (1996) “Intelligent Information Filters and Enhanced Reality.” http://penta.ufrgs.br/edu/telelab/10/enhanced.htm.

Avatars point out to us that enhancement is not merely a matter of increasing the ­effectiveness of a person in taking action, but also can mean an altered form of consciousness that expands opportunities for experiences, and escape from the conventional system of moral constraints. Especially noteworthy is the fact that one individual may have many different ­avatars, thereby becoming a multiplex or protean personality. Decades ago, psychiatrists described this as multiple personality neurosis or some form of split personality (Thigpen and Cleckley 1957; Lifton 1971), but in future we may decide that the most effective mode of being is ­pluralism. Buckminster Fuller (1970) used to say, “I seem to be a verb.” Perhaps today we should say, “I am a plural verb in future tense.” Avatars and Simulation Under the right conditions an avatar in a virtual world can substantially enhance the abilities of the user – the person who owns and operates it. Since ancient times, philosophers have debated the meaning of reality. Transhumanist philosophers have suggested varied viewpoints of ­simulation, consciousness, and existence, and notably argued whether humans could or do reside within a simulation (Moravec 1998; Bostrom 2003).


pages: 239 words: 45,926

As the Future Catches You: How Genomics & Other Forces Are Changing Your Work, Health & Wealth by Juan Enriquez

Albert Einstein, Berlin Wall, bioinformatics, borderless world, British Empire, Buckminster Fuller, business cycle, creative destruction, double helix, global village, half of the world's population has never made a phone call, Howard Rheingold, Jeff Bezos, Joseph Schumpeter, Kevin Kelly, knowledge economy, more computing power than Apollo, new economy, personalized medicine, purchasing power parity, Ray Kurzweil, Richard Feynman, Robert Metcalfe, Search for Extraterrestrial Intelligence, SETI@home, Silicon Valley, spice trade, stem cell, the new new thing

., Harold Kroto, and Richard Smalley … Who fought each other … And the world … To discover and build … New molecules … Out of the world’s most studied element … Carbon.4 Before 1985, no one knew … That you could lattice carbon … To build geodesic molecules (which look like soccer balls)… On a nano scale. The structure of these compounds resembles the domes that a famous architect … Named R. Buckminster Fuller … Used to design … So they are called fullerenes … And may be the key to building nano scale … Medicine transporters … Super-strong tubes … Transistors.5 In February 2000, IBM scientists announced that they were starting to think about designing a computer on a molecular scale … A computer that could float through the air. A seemingly crazy idea until you realize that ENIAC … The first all-electronic digital computer (1946) … Weighed thirty tons and was 100 feet long … But was far less powerful than the chip in your PC, which can fit on your fingertip.


pages: 124 words: 40,697

The Grand Design by Stephen Hawking, Leonard Mlodinow

airport security, Albert Einstein, Albert Michelson, anthropic principle, Arthur Eddington, Buckminster Fuller, conceptual framework, cosmic microwave background, cosmological constant, dark matter, fudge factor, invention of the telescope, Isaac Newton, Johannes Kepler, John Conway, John von Neumann, luminiferous ether, Mercator projection, Richard Feynman, Stephen Hawking, Thales of Miletus, the scientific method, Turing machine

That may sound as outrageous as the theory in which the table disappears whenever we leave the room, but in this case the theory has passed every experimental test to which it has ever been subjected. N 1999 A TEAM OF PHYSICISTS in Austria fired a series of soccer-ball-shaped molecules toward a barrier. Those molecules, each made of sixty carbon atoms, are sometimes called buckyballs because the architect Buckminster Fuller built buildings of that shape. Fuller’s geodesic domes were probably the largest soccer-ball-shaped objects in existence. The buckyballs were the smallest. The barrier toward which the scientists took their aim had, in effect, two slits through which the buckyballs could pass. Beyond the wall, the physicists situated the equivalent of a screen to detect and count the emergent molecules. If we were to set up an analogous experiment with real soccer balls, we would need a player with somewhat shaky aim but with the ability to launch the balls consistently at a speed of our choosing.


pages: 144 words: 43,356

Surviving AI: The Promise and Peril of Artificial Intelligence by Calum Chace

"Robert Solow", 3D printing, Ada Lovelace, AI winter, Airbnb, artificial general intelligence, augmented reality, barriers to entry, basic income, bitcoin, blockchain, brain emulation, Buckminster Fuller, cloud computing, computer age, computer vision, correlation does not imply causation, credit crunch, cryptocurrency, cuban missile crisis, dematerialisation, discovery of the americas, disintermediation, don't be evil, Elon Musk, en.wikipedia.org, epigenetics, Erik Brynjolfsson, everywhere but in the productivity statistics, Flash crash, friendly AI, Google Glasses, hedonic treadmill, industrial robot, Internet of things, invention of agriculture, job automation, John Maynard Keynes: Economic Possibilities for our Grandchildren, John Maynard Keynes: technological unemployment, John von Neumann, Kevin Kelly, life extension, low skilled workers, Mahatma Gandhi, means of production, mutually assured destruction, Nicholas Carr, pattern recognition, peer-to-peer, peer-to-peer model, Peter Thiel, Ray Kurzweil, Rodney Brooks, Second Machine Age, self-driving car, Silicon Valley, Silicon Valley ideology, Skype, South Sea Bubble, speech recognition, Stanislav Petrov, Stephen Hawking, Steve Jobs, strong AI, technological singularity, The Future of Employment, theory of mind, Turing machine, Turing test, universal basic income, Vernor Vinge, wage slave, Wall-E, zero-sum game

Some think it could be less than a decade, others are convinced it is centuries away. One thing that is clear, though, is that the belief that AGI could arrive within a few decades is not the preserve of a few crackpots. Sober and very experienced scientists think so too. It is a possibility we should take seriously. Creating an AGI is very hard. But serious consideration of exponential growth makes very hard problems seem more tractable. Buckminster Fuller estimated that at the start of the twentieth century the sum of human knowledge was doubling every century, and that by the end of the second world war that had reduced to twenty-five years. (40) Now it takes 13 months and in 2006 IBM estimated that when the internet of things becomes a reality the rate would be every 12 hours. (41) The football stadium thought experiment illustrates how progress at exponential rate can take you by surprise – even when you are looking for it.


pages: 138 words: 40,525

This Is Not a Drill: An Extinction Rebellion Handbook by Extinction Rebellion

3D printing, autonomous vehicles, banks create money, bitcoin, blockchain, Buckminster Fuller, car-free, carbon footprint, clean water, Colonization of Mars, crowdsourcing, David Attenborough, David Graeber, decarbonisation, deindustrialization, Donald Trump, Elon Musk, Ethereum, ethereum blockchain, feminist movement, full employment, gig economy, global pandemic, ice-free Arctic, Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC), job automation, mass immigration, Peter Thiel, place-making, quantitative easing, Ray Kurzweil, Sam Altman, smart grid, supply-chain management, the scientific method, union organizing, urban sprawl, wealth creators

A huge cheer went up: it was as though the sound system had re-started and the area felt busy again. These aren’t happy accidents. Different sites request help with at least half an hour’s notice; roving support teams moving between sites help report potential issues in advance and coordinate reinforcements. Make sure that all reinforcements are heavily armed with chocolate bourbon biscuits – I personally believe these to be the true power source of a successful rebellion. — Buckminster Fuller 24/ A POLITICAL VIEW CAROLINE LUCAS MP Climate breakdown is inseparable from politics. The melting ice caps, the scorching heatwaves and the staggering declines in animal and insect populations are the direct result of failures by people in power. Irreversible changes to the natural world are taking place because our economy is built on the assumption that precious minerals, fresh air, clean water and rare species can magically regenerate themselves in an instant.


pages: 390 words: 125,082

Years of the City by Frederik Pohl

Albert Einstein, Buckminster Fuller, card file, East Village, Maui Hawaii, medical malpractice, pattern recognition

City planners—and the common run of human beings, for that matter—had thought of cities in that way for years. They hadn’t always realized the implications of that thought, of course; that was why so many cityscapes from about 1920 showed tall, skinny skyscrapers dominating the scene—that was so everyone could have an outside window, or something like it, and so the city could breathe. But that was before air-conditioning. That was before Buckminster Fuller, reasoning from energy considerations, declared the skyscraper a disaster. If you wanted, said Fuller, to design a nearly perfect radiator—which was to say, a system that would waste as much energy as it possibly could—you would come up with something very like the skyline of almost any city in the world. Especially New York, for it had started the fashion; but everywhere else, too, as rapidly as the others could catch up.

What does a bear do to keep from being frozen or boiled? The bear has two strategies. Clothe itself in fur; dig into a cave in winter. The same strategies were open to City-Bear, and Brandon knew where to find out about them. He pulled out the Feigerman & Tisdale report and studied it. Yes. His memory had been correct; the strategies were there. City-Bear could enclose itself, like the fur of an animal, in a thermally opaque coat—as Buckminster Fuller proposed, a great dome over the city. Or City-Bear could bury itself in a deep cave, where the worst winter winds could not follow. Below the ground the temperature is steady and bearable all year round—thus the art of “terratecture,” to take advantage of this free gift. Not entirely free, Brandon discovered. Cities do not need only to be protected from outside heat. They generate heat of their own—from industry, from home heating, from their vehicles—and that was why New York City was generally a degree or two warmer than its neighbors in winter, and why landlocked interior cities like Saint Louis left the “footprint” of that extra warmth in altered precipitation patterns that could be measured for many miles downwind.


Howard Rheingold by The Virtual Community Homesteading on the Electronic Frontier-Perseus Books (1993)

Apple II, Brewster Kahle, Buckminster Fuller, commoditize, conceptual framework, Douglas Engelbart, Douglas Engelbart, Electric Kool-Aid Acid Test, experimental subject, George Gilder, global village, Hacker Ethic, Haight Ashbury, Howard Rheingold, HyperCard, John Markoff, Kevin Kelly, knowledge worker, license plate recognition, loose coupling, Marshall McLuhan, Menlo Park, meta analysis, meta-analysis, Mitch Kapor, packet switching, Panopticon Jeremy Bentham, profit motive, RAND corporation, Ray Oldenburg, rent control, RFC: Request For Comment, Ronald Reagan, Saturday Night Live, Steve Jobs, Steve Wozniak, Steven Levy, Stewart Brand, technoutopianism, Ted Nelson, telepresence, The Great Good Place, The Hackers Conference, urban decay, Whole Earth Catalog, Whole Earth Review, young professional

The Whole Earth Catalog originally emerged from the Haight-Ashbury counterculture as Stewart Brand's way of providing access to tools and ideas to all the communards who were exploring alternate ways of life in the forests of Mendocino or the high deserts outside Santa Fe. The Whole Earth Catalogs and the magazines they spawned--Co-Evolution Quarterly and its successor, Whole Earth Review--seem to have outlived the counterculture itself, since the magazine and catalogs still exist after twenty-five years. One of Whole Earth's gurus, Buckminster Fuller, was fond of using the analogy of the tiprudder--the small rudder on very big ships that is used to control the larger, main rudder. The tiprudder people who steer the movements and disciplines that steer society--the editors and engineers, scientists and science-fiction writers, freelance programmers and permaculture evangelists, grassroots political activists and congressional aides--continued to need new tools and ideas, even though they were no longer a counterculture but part of the mainstream.

It's literally, as I have said tongue in cheek before, working as an electronic analogy for telepathy. I don't even think that's right. I think it's something more. I think, in a sense, it is shared consciousness. In the 1980s, Frank Odasz and his wife, Reggie, worked in rural Montana as educators who were determined to improve the living conditions for their community by "thinking globally and acting locally," as Buckminster Fuller advised. They were enthusiastic about the educational potential of computer technology, especially the kind of CMC technology they had seen through Chariot, the conferencing system Dave Hughes and his partner Louis Jaffe ran in Old Colorado City as a successor to Dave's original "Rogers' Bar" BBS. Frank and Reggie Odasz had been looking for ways to use new technologies to improve the communication problems inherent in an area where very small schools are spread out over a large amount of countryside.


pages: 212 words: 49,544

WikiLeaks and the Age of Transparency by Micah L. Sifry

1960s counterculture, Amazon Web Services, banking crisis, barriers to entry, Bernie Sanders, Buckminster Fuller, Chelsea Manning, citizen journalism, Climategate, crowdsourcing, Google Earth, Howard Rheingold, Internet Archive, Jacob Appelbaum, John Markoff, Julian Assange, Network effects, RAND corporation, school vouchers, Skype, social web, source of truth, Stewart Brand, web application, WikiLeaks

What was emerging was a greatly expanded notion of the role of citizen not just as a passive consumer of political information and occasional voter, but as an active player, monitoring what government and politicians were doing, demanding a seat at the table and a view of the proceedings, sharing self-generated news of what was important, and participating in problem solving. The back-channel was coming to the foreground. The modern transparency movement was about to take off. 48 MICAH L. SIFRY 3 From Scarcity to Abundance You never change things by fighting the existing reality. To change something, build a new model that makes the existing model obsolete. ––R. Buckminster Fuller The fundamental change powering the networked age of politics is the shift from scarcity to abundance. Thanks to the rapid evolution of computer processing power, all kinds of goods that were once expensive to produce have become cheap. Beyond the declining price of a personal computer or a backup drive, elemental changes in the economics of information, connectivity, and time have occurred: y Information: The cost of making an electronic copy of any kind of data and sharing it with others has dropped to almost zero.


pages: 183 words: 51,514

Mission to Mars: My Vision for Space Exploration by Buzz Aldrin, Leonard David

Buckminster Fuller, Charles Lindbergh, Colonization of Mars, Elon Musk, gravity well, high net worth, Isaac Newton, Jeff Bezos, low earth orbit, Mars Rover, orbital mechanics / astrodynamics, Peter H. Diamandis: Planetary Resources, Ronald Reagan, telepresence, telerobotics, transcontinental railway, Tunguska event, X Prize

Some of these conversations involved the great thinkers of our time. When my dad came up with an idea, he would seek out the people who were doing the most creative thinking at the moment. They would usually pick up the phone when he called. At one point he began to look critically at the design of the space station. The structure just didn’t seem efficient. I recall that he became enamored with geodesic structures, so he naturally called on Buckminster Fuller. Now that was an amazing set of conversations. At the time it seemed like competing soliloquies. But I began to see many more of Bucky’s ideas creep into the design. And it is not just the well known and famous who captured my father’s attention. If anyone had an idea that fit in my dad’s vision of the future, he would go and talk to them. Often he became the tireless advocate for their ideas.


Design of Business: Why Design Thinking Is the Next Competitive Advantage by Roger L. Martin

asset allocation, Buckminster Fuller, business process, Frank Gehry, global supply chain, high net worth, Innovator's Dilemma, Isaac Newton, mobile money, QWERTY keyboard, Ralph Waldo Emerson, risk tolerance, six sigma, Steve Ballmer, Steve Jobs, supply-chain management, Wall-E, winner-take-all economy

They focus your attention and clarify your thinking.” 13 Rather than an enemy, constraints are features that make the task at hand more exciting, the problem more wicked, and the status for releasing the constraint that much loftier. Constraints point the validity-oriented design thinker to the locus of needed innovation. They frame the mystery that needs to be solved. Instead of telling us what we cannot do, constraints help us reframe the problem and discover new opportunities in the process. Buckminster Fuller is a hero to designers because he was inspired, not discouraged, by a seemingly intractable physical constraint: buildings get proportionally heavier, weaker, and more expensive as they grow larger in scale. The problem inspired him to make a logical leap to a structure that becomes proportionally lighter, stronger, and less expensive as it grows larger in scale—the geodesic dome. The Revolt of the Analyticals: Obstacles to Change Leaders who undertake a thorough overhaul of their organizations’ structures, processes, and cultural norms should expect resistance.


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The Rich and the Rest of Us by Tavis Smiley

affirmative action, Affordable Care Act / Obamacare, back-to-the-land, Bernie Madoff, Bernie Sanders, Buckminster Fuller, Corrections Corporation of America, Credit Default Swap, death of newspapers, deindustrialization, ending welfare as we know it, F. W. de Klerk, fixed income, full employment, housing crisis, Howard Zinn, income inequality, job automation, liberation theology, Mahatma Gandhi, mass incarceration, mega-rich, Nelson Mandela, new economy, obamacare, Occupy movement, plutocrats, Plutocrats, profit motive, Ralph Waldo Emerson, Ronald Reagan, shareholder value, Silicon Valley, Steve Jobs, traffic fines, trickle-down economics, War on Poverty, We are the 99%, white flight, women in the workforce, working poor

As in desperate times of yesteryear, the dispossessed are coming up with imaginative ways—some legal, others not so much—to address the crisis of poverty while still attempting to hold the government accountable for the safety and well-being of its citizenry. Their voices, methods of survival and imaginations are crucial in shaping their—and our—destiny. REMAKING AMERICA “You never change things by fighting the existing reality. To change something, build a new model that makes the existing model obsolete.” —R. Buckminster Fuller Since business leaders have prioritized the path to profit at all costs and opted to transport American jobs overseas, we have no choice but to explore other ways to create jobs in our own communities and insist that the government create immediate job opportunities for all categories of the “poor.” MacArthur Genius Grant winner and host of the public radio program The Promised Land, Majora Carter, shared her unique perspective during our symposium: “We’re not going to abolish capitalism tomorrow.


White City, Black City: Architecture and War in Tel Aviv and Jaffa by Sharon Rotbard

British Empire, Buckminster Fuller, continuation of politics by other means, European colonialism, global village, housing crisis, illegal immigration, megastructure, New Urbanism, Pearl River Delta, Peter Eisenman, trade route, urban planning, urban renewal

Modern architecture also drew on an inherent violence, characterized by a principle of invasion, stemming from the scale of its economy and, occasionally, in light of the brute force used to make way for it. Illustrative examples include Le Corbusier forcibly plotting the Villa Savoye in the middle of a meadow in Poissy or Adolph Loos’ description of the modern villa by the lake in his essay, Architecture.225 Occasionally, this architectural invasion took a more explicit form – in the mobile homes of Voisin, in Buckminster Fuller’s Geodesic domes, in Israel’s very own ‘Wall and Tower’ settlements, in Jean Prouvé’s Tropical House and House of the Lone Settler in the Sahara. In certain instances, architects were utterly unambiguous about this kind of architectural violence and how they intended to make use of it – Marinetti’s Futurist manifestos carried the call for war, Albert Speer eagerly endorsed the ‘ruin value theory’, Claude Parent and Paul Virilio declared their intention to ‘take over the site’.226 These examples prove that the visual and stylized violence inherent in modern architecture, as much as the violence turned against it, did not just end with debate and academic commentary; it addressed something so fundamental that if pushed, people would willingly, literally, kill and be killed for it.227 White would play a unique role in all this: it had already seduced modern architecture and it would become the representative of both Mediterran-eanism (courtesy of Le Corbusier) and Easternism (as in the famous Nazi postcard showing the Weisenhof neighbourhood in Stuttgart as an Arab village).


pages: 301 words: 85,263

New Dark Age: Technology and the End of the Future by James Bridle

AI winter, Airbnb, Alfred Russel Wallace, Automated Insights, autonomous vehicles, back-to-the-land, Benoit Mandelbrot, Bernie Sanders, bitcoin, British Empire, Brownian motion, Buckminster Fuller, Capital in the Twenty-First Century by Thomas Piketty, carbon footprint, cognitive bias, cognitive dissonance, combinatorial explosion, computer vision, congestion charging, cryptocurrency, data is the new oil, Donald Trump, Douglas Engelbart, Douglas Engelbart, Douglas Hofstadter, drone strike, Edward Snowden, fear of failure, Flash crash, Google Earth, Haber-Bosch Process, hive mind, income inequality, informal economy, Internet of things, Isaac Newton, John von Neumann, Julian Assange, Kickstarter, late capitalism, lone genius, mandelbrot fractal, meta analysis, meta-analysis, Minecraft, mutually assured destruction, natural language processing, Network effects, oil shock, p-value, pattern recognition, peak oil, recommendation engine, road to serfdom, Robert Mercer, Ronald Reagan, self-driving car, Silicon Valley, Silicon Valley ideology, Skype, social graph, sorting algorithm, South China Sea, speech recognition, Spread Networks laid a new fibre optics cable between New York and Chicago, stem cell, Stuxnet, technoutopianism, the built environment, the scientific method, Uber for X, undersea cable, University of East Anglia, uranium enrichment, Vannevar Bush, WikiLeaks

There is little left of Concorde in contemporary aircraft: instead, the latest passenger aircraft are the result of incremental advances – better materials, more efficient engines, adjustments to wing design – rather than the radical advance that Concorde proposed. The last of these is my favourite addition: the ‘winglets’ that now adorn the wingtips of most aircraft. These are a recent invention, developed by NASA in response to the 1973 oil crisis and gradually retrofitted for commercial aircraft to increase fuel efficiency. They always bring to mind the epitaph of Buckminster Fuller, as written on his gravestone in Cambridge, Massachusetts: ‘Call me trimtab.’ Tiny in-flight adjustments, performed at scale. This is what we remain capable of. History – progress – does not always go up and to the right: it’s not all sunlit uplands. And this isn’t – cannot be – about nostalgia. Rather, it is about acknowledging a present that has come unhinged from linear temporality, that diverges in crucial yet confusing ways from the very idea of history itself.


pages: 245 words: 83,272

Artificial Unintelligence: How Computers Misunderstand the World by Meredith Broussard

1960s counterculture, A Declaration of the Independence of Cyberspace, Ada Lovelace, AI winter, Airbnb, Amazon Web Services, autonomous vehicles, availability heuristic, barriers to entry, Bernie Sanders, bitcoin, Buckminster Fuller, Chris Urmson, Clayton Christensen, cloud computing, cognitive bias, complexity theory, computer vision, crowdsourcing, Danny Hillis, DARPA: Urban Challenge, digital map, disruptive innovation, Donald Trump, Douglas Engelbart, easy for humans, difficult for computers, Electric Kool-Aid Acid Test, Elon Musk, Firefox, gig economy, global supply chain, Google Glasses, Google X / Alphabet X, Hacker Ethic, Jaron Lanier, Jeff Bezos, John von Neumann, Joi Ito, Joseph-Marie Jacquard, life extension, Lyft, Mark Zuckerberg, mass incarceration, Minecraft, minimum viable product, Mother of all demos, move fast and break things, move fast and break things, Nate Silver, natural language processing, PageRank, payday loans, paypal mafia, performance metric, Peter Thiel, price discrimination, Ray Kurzweil, ride hailing / ride sharing, Ross Ulbricht, Saturday Night Live, school choice, self-driving car, Silicon Valley, speech recognition, statistical model, Steve Jobs, Steven Levy, Stewart Brand, Tesla Model S, the High Line, The Signal and the Noise by Nate Silver, theory of mind, Travis Kalanick, Turing test, Uber for X, uber lyft, Watson beat the top human players on Jeopardy!, Whole Earth Catalog, women in the workforce

Lenses of that vintage were sometimes treated with radioactive elements to increase the index of refraction. “It was dangerously radioactive,” Hillis recalled. “I got it out of the house.”9 When it came to tinkering, many makers of Minsky’s generation felt that conventional rules didn’t apply to them. For example, Minsky liked to tell a story about some friends of his who built an intercontinental ballistic missile (ICBM) in the backyard of a house that once belonged to architect Buckminster Fuller. This attitude, that creating mattered more than convention (or laws), was what people of Minsky’s generation passed on to their students. It shows up later in the behavior of tech CEOs like Travis Kalanick, who in 2017 was ousted from his top position at Uber for (among other things) creating a culture of sexual harassment. Kalanick also had the attitude that laws didn’t matter. He launched Uber in cities worldwide in defiance of local taxi and limousine regulations, created a program called Greyball to help Uber computationally evade sting operations by law enforcement, was captured on camera verbally abusing an Uber driver, and looked the other way when Uber drivers raped passengers.10 According to a blog post by former Uber engineer Susan Fowler, Kalanick’s tech managers were almost cartoonishly incompetent at dealing with the harassment complaints Fowler lodged.


pages: 171 words: 54,334

Barefoot Into Cyberspace: Adventures in Search of Techno-Utopia by Becky Hogge, Damien Morris, Christopher Scally

A Declaration of the Independence of Cyberspace, back-to-the-land, Berlin Wall, Buckminster Fuller, Chelsea Manning, citizen journalism, cloud computing, corporate social responsibility, disintermediation, Douglas Engelbart, Douglas Engelbart, Electric Kool-Aid Acid Test, Fall of the Berlin Wall, game design, Hacker Ethic, informal economy, information asymmetry, Jacob Appelbaum, jimmy wales, John Markoff, Julian Assange, Kevin Kelly, mass immigration, Menlo Park, Mitch Kapor, MITM: man-in-the-middle, moral panic, Mother of all demos, Naomi Klein, Nelson Mandela, Network effects, New Journalism, Norbert Wiener, peer-to-peer, Richard Stallman, Silicon Valley, Skype, Socratic dialogue, Steve Jobs, Steve Wozniak, Steven Levy, Stewart Brand, technoutopianism, Telecommunications Act of 1996, The Hackers Conference, Vannevar Bush, Whole Earth Catalog, Whole Earth Review, WikiLeaks

The outsized volume was divided into several sections: “Whole Earth Systems” stood out at the front, followed by “Shelter and Land Use”, “Industry and Craft”, “Communications”, “Community”, “Nomadics” and “Learning”. Interspersed throughout the catalogue, but particularly in the front section, lie texts about computer science, informatics, brain research and cybernetics. A two-page spread is given over to the works of Buckminster Fuller. The September 1966 edition of Scientific American, subtitled simply “Information”, is touted as “the best introduction we’ve seen to computer science”. Opposite it sits a gushing review of the HP 9100A Calculator, “the best of the new tabletop number-crunchers”. On the previous page sits a review of The Human Biocomputer, an exploration into psychedelics and sensory deprivation by the neuroscientist John Lily, inventor of the flotation tank.


pages: 223 words: 52,808

Intertwingled: The Work and Influence of Ted Nelson (History of Computing) by Douglas R. Dechow

3D printing, Apple II, Bill Duvall, Brewster Kahle, Buckminster Fuller, Claude Shannon: information theory, cognitive dissonance, computer age, conceptual framework, Douglas Engelbart, Douglas Engelbart, Dynabook, Edward Snowden, game design, HyperCard, hypertext link, information retrieval, Internet Archive, Jaron Lanier, knowledge worker, linked data, Marc Andreessen, Marshall McLuhan, Menlo Park, Mother of all demos, pre–internet, RAND corporation, semantic web, Silicon Valley, software studies, Steve Jobs, Steve Wozniak, Stewart Brand, Ted Nelson, the medium is the message, Vannevar Bush, Wall-E, Whole Earth Catalog

(We lived in a very sophisticated part of Manhattan, so we saw more foreign movies than American.) I avidly studied the details of my comic books, from the language and visual angles to the dots of the color. And I listened to radio programs with every fiber of my brain. I had four main media heroes in my first 10 years, and they are my heroes now: Walt Disney, Leonardo da Vinci, Frank Lloyd Wright, and Buckminster Fuller. They worked in different media, but in much the same way. Each was independent, visionary and original. All these years I have tried to be like them: independent, able to see what others could not, and creating new designs others could not imagine. I also learned a lot about show business; I happened to have inside connections. I rarely saw my parents, who were divorced when I was born, but I learned a lot when I saw them.


pages: 696 words: 143,736

The Age of Spiritual Machines: When Computers Exceed Human Intelligence by Ray Kurzweil

Ada Lovelace, Alan Turing: On Computable Numbers, with an Application to the Entscheidungsproblem, Albert Einstein, Any sufficiently advanced technology is indistinguishable from magic, Buckminster Fuller, call centre, cellular automata, combinatorial explosion, complexity theory, computer age, computer vision, cosmological constant, cosmological principle, Danny Hillis, double helix, Douglas Hofstadter, Everything should be made as simple as possible, first square of the chessboard / second half of the chessboard, fudge factor, George Gilder, Gödel, Escher, Bach, I think there is a world market for maybe five computers, information retrieval, invention of movable type, Isaac Newton, iterative process, Jacquard loom, John Markoff, John von Neumann, Lao Tzu, Law of Accelerating Returns, mandelbrot fractal, Marshall McLuhan, Menlo Park, natural language processing, Norbert Wiener, optical character recognition, ought to be enough for anybody, pattern recognition, phenotype, Ralph Waldo Emerson, Ray Kurzweil, Richard Feynman, Robert Metcalfe, Schrödinger's Cat, Search for Extraterrestrial Intelligence, self-driving car, Silicon Valley, social intelligence, speech recognition, Steven Pinker, Stewart Brand, stochastic process, technological singularity, Ted Kaczynski, telepresence, the medium is the message, There's no reason for any individual to have a computer in his home - Ken Olsen, traveling salesman, Turing machine, Turing test, Whole Earth Review, Y2K

Other projects hope to harness the regular molecular structure of crystals as actual computing elements. The Nanotube: A Variation of Buckyballs Three professors—Richard Smalley and Robert Curl of Rice University, and Harold Kroto of the University of Sussex—shared the 1996 Nobel Prize in Chemistry for their 1985 discovery of soccer-ball-shaped molecules formed of a large number of carbon atoms. Organized in hexagonal and pentagonal patterns like R. Buckminster Fuller’s building designs, they were dubbed “buckyballs.” These unusual molecules, which form naturally in the hot fumes of a furnace, are extremely strong—ahundred times stronger than steel—a property they share with Fuller’s architectural innovations.12 More recently, Dr. Sumio lijima of Nippon Electric Company showed that in addition to the spherical buckyballs, the vapor from carbon arc lamps also contained elongated carbon molecules that looked like long tubes.13 Called nanotubes because of their extremely small size—fifty thousand of them side by side would equal the thickness of one human hair—they are formed of the same pentagonal patterns of carbon atoms as buckyballs and share the buckyball’s unusual strength.

BRUTUS.1 A computer program that creates fictional stories with a theme of betrayal; invented by Selmer Bringsjord, Dave Ferucci, and a team of software engineers at Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute in New York. Buckyball A soccer-ball-shaped molecule formed of a large number of carbon atoms. Because of their hexagonal and pentagonal shape, the molecules were dubbed “buckyballs” in reference to R. Buckminster Fuller’s building designs. Busy beaver One example of a class of noncomputational functions; an unsolvable problem in mathematics. Being a “Turing machine unsolvable problem,” the busy beaver function cannot be computed by a Turing machine. To compute busy beaver of n, one creates all the n-state Turing machines that do not write an infinite number of Is on their tape. The largest number of Is written by the Turing machine in this set that writes the largest number of Is is busy beaver of n.


How to Hide an Empire: A History of the Greater United States by Daniel Immerwahr

Albert Einstein, book scanning, British Empire, Buckminster Fuller, call centre, citizen journalism, City Beautiful movement, clean water, colonial rule, deindustrialization, Deng Xiaoping, desegregation, Donald Trump, drone strike, European colonialism, friendly fire, gravity well, Haber-Bosch Process, Howard Zinn, immigration reform, land reform, Mercator projection, offshore financial centre, oil shale / tar sands, oil shock, QWERTY keyboard, Ralph Waldo Emerson, Richard Feynman, the built environment, The Wealth of Nations by Adam Smith, Thomas L Friedman, Thomas Malthus, transcontinental railway, urban planning, wikimedia commons

The long-familiar Mercator map, which showed North America protected on both sides by enormous oceans, became an object of scorn. It had worked well enough in an age of east-and-west sail, but the editors of Life deemed it “a mental hazard” in an age of aviation, when planes could reach Eurasia from North America by flying north over the Arctic Sea. There were other options, and the public was oddly willing to learn about them. Life devoted a fifteen-page spread to the “Dymaxion map” by the inventor Buckminster Fuller: fourteen detachable segments that could be folded into a tetradecahedron or assembled into various flat maps, as the user chose. More popular was the “polar azimuthal projection” perfected by the dean of wartime cartography, Richard Edes Harrison. It showed the continents huddled around the North Pole, a jarring angle of view that highlighted aviation routes and showed how dangerously close North America was to Germany’s European empire.

The sudden onset of U.S. planetary interests is discussed helpfully in Andrew Preston, “Monsters Everywhere: A Genealogy of National Security,” DH 38 (2014): 477–500; John A. Thompson, A Sense of Power: The Roots of America’s Global Role (Ithaca, NY, 2014); and Stephen Wertheim, “Tomorrow the World: The Birth of U.S. Global Supremacy in World War II” (Ph.D. diss., Columbia University, 2015). “a mental hazard”: “Maps: Global War Teaches Global Cartography,” Life, August 3, 1942, 57–65. “Dymaxion map”: “R. Buckminster Fuller’s Dymaxion World,” Life, March 1, 1943, 41–55. Richard Edes Harrison: Alan K. Henrikson, “The Map as an ‘Idea’: The Role of Cartographic Imagery During the Second World War,” The American Cartographer 2 (1975): 19–53; Susan Schulten, “Richard Edes Harrison and the Challenge to American Cartography,” Imago Mundi: The International Journal for the History of Cartography 50 (1998): 174–88; Susan Schulten, The Geographical Imagination in America, 1880–1950 (Chicago, 2001), chap. 9; and William Rankin, After the Map: Cartography, Navigation, and the Transformation of Territory in the Twentieth Century (Chicago, 2016), chap. 2.


pages: 378 words: 94,468

Drugs 2.0: The Web Revolution That's Changing How the World Gets High by Mike Power

air freight, Alexander Shulgin, banking crisis, bitcoin, blockchain, Buckminster Fuller, Burning Man, cloud computing, credit crunch, crowdsourcing, death of newspapers, Donald Davies, double helix, Douglas Engelbart, Electric Kool-Aid Acid Test, fiat currency, Firefox, Fractional reserve banking, frictionless, Haight Ashbury, John Bercow, John Markoff, Kevin Kelly, Leonard Kleinrock, means of production, Menlo Park, moral panic, Mother of all demos, Network effects, nuclear paranoia, packet switching, pattern recognition, PIHKAL and TIHKAL, pre–internet, QR code, RAND corporation, Satoshi Nakamoto, selective serotonin reuptake inhibitor (SSRI), sexual politics, Skype, Stephen Hawking, Steve Jobs, Stewart Brand, trade route, Whole Earth Catalog, Zimmermann PGP

The Shulgins wrote the preface to Stolaroff’s book Thanatos to Eros (1994) detailing his experiences with LSD, MDMA, mescaline and a number of Shulgin’s creations.2 Author Stewart Brand, who coined the phrase ‘Information wants to be free’ in 1984, was responsible for filming the Mother of All Demos, and that same year he launched the Whole Earth Catalog, the ad-free samizdat techno-hippy bible. Its esoteric and wide-ranging content, from poetry to construction plans for geodesic domes by physicist Buckminster Fuller, from car repair tips to trout-fishing guides and the fundamentals of yoga and the I-ching, was hacked together using Polaroid cameras, Letraset and the highest of low-tech. It now reads much like a printed blog; it was a paper website, in the words of blogger and author Kevin Kelly, that was sprinting before the web even took its first shaky steps.3 Its statement of intent in its launch issue reads like a manifesto that has been realized by today’s web users: ‘A realm of intimate personal power is developing – the power of the individual to conduct his own education, find his own inspiration, shape his own environment, and share his adventure with whoever is interested.


pages: 313 words: 92,053

Places of the Heart: The Psychogeography of Everyday Life by Colin Ellard

augmented reality, Benoit Mandelbrot, Berlin Wall, Broken windows theory, Buckminster Fuller, carbon footprint, commoditize, crowdsourcing, Frank Gehry, Google Glasses, Guggenheim Bilbao, haute couture, Howard Rheingold, Internet of things, Jaron Lanier, mandelbrot fractal, Marshall McLuhan, Masdar, mass immigration, megastructure, more computing power than Apollo, Oculus Rift, Peter Eisenman, RFID, Richard Florida, risk tolerance, sentiment analysis, smart cities, starchitect, the built environment, theory of mind, urban decay, urban planning, urban sprawl, Victor Gruen

The Design Hub at Melbourne’s Royal Institute of Technology is composed of thousands of polished disks that rotate to follow the sun, lowering the energy costs of the building, and one day serving as a power plant using an array of photovoltaic cells. Similarly, Chicago architect Tristran D’Estree Sterk designs shape-shifting buildings whose organically curved and pleasing outer envelopes use the principles of what Buckminster Fuller called “tensegrity”’ to alter their very form in response to readouts from sensors. So far, these sensors are designed to measure things like air temperature and sunshine, with the main goal of producing a pleasant internal atmosphere with the minimum of energy expenditure. Although such structures certainly take advantage of modern sensing gear and materials to produce accommodations that make for greener buildings, they are really only a small step beyond the simple feedback mechanism of a thermostat on the furnace of a house.


Upstream: The Quest to Solve Problems Before They Happen by Dan Heath

Affordable Care Act / Obamacare, airport security, Albert Einstein, bank run, British Empire, Buckminster Fuller, call centre, cloud computing, cognitive dissonance, colonial rule, correlation does not imply causation, cuban missile crisis, en.wikipedia.org, epigenetics, illegal immigration, Internet of things, mandatory minimum, millennium bug, move fast and break things, move fast and break things, payday loans, Ralph Nader, RAND corporation, randomized controlled trial, self-driving car, Skype, Snapchat, subscription business, urban planning, Watson beat the top human players on Jeopardy!, Y2K

As a result, we must experiment. “Remember, always, that everything you know, and everything everyone knows, is only a model,” said Donella Meadows, the systems thinker. “Get your model out there where it can be shot at. Invite others to challenge your assumptions and add their own.… The thing to do, when you don’t know, is not to bluff and not to freeze, but to learn. The way you learn is by experiment—or, as Buckminster Fuller put it, by trial and error, error, error.” Looking back on the open-office miscue, Imber said she wishes she had tried some experiments with her staff in the State Library Victoria in Melbourne. The library has many different kinds of environments, ranging from open, collaborative spaces to more solitary ones. Had the team sampled some of those different areas, observing how they affected the group’s productivity and happiness, that experience might have helped them design an office that served them better.


pages: 181 words: 62,775

Half Empty by David Rakoff

airport security, Buckminster Fuller, dark matter, double helix, global pandemic, Google Earth, phenotype, RFID, twin studies, urban planning, urban renewal, wage slave, Wall-E, Y2K

The Dream Home follows in the steps of Tomorrowland’s original utopian domicile, the Monsanto House of the Future, sponsored by that corporation’s division of plastics, before the very word became an ironic joke. Opened in 1957, it was meant to represent a home in 1986. The Monsanto House featured such theretofore unheard-of marvels as a microwave, an ultrasonic dishwasher that rose from beneath the counter, closed-circuit-TV intercoms, and an electric razor. Old footage shows that it really was a wonder. A gorgeous building with walls of plastic windows, perched atop a central post, echoing Buckminster Fuller’s visionary Dymaxion House. The House of the Future was simultaneously sleek and voluptuous; imagine a gigantic futuristic cold-water faucet: a lovely white plus sign of a building with the mid-century grace of Eero Saarinen’s TWA terminal, gently inflated like a water wing. Contemporary accounts of the advent of electricity on the domestic front almost always make mention of a horrified realization of the kinds of filth people lived with before they could see it properly illuminated.


pages: 217 words: 63,287

The Participation Revolution: How to Ride the Waves of Change in a Terrifyingly Turbulent World by Neil Gibb

Airbnb, Albert Einstein, blockchain, Buckminster Fuller, call centre, carbon footprint, Clayton Christensen, collapse of Lehman Brothers, corporate social responsibility, creative destruction, crowdsourcing, disruptive innovation, Donald Trump, gig economy, iterative process, job automation, Joseph Schumpeter, Khan Academy, Kibera, Kodak vs Instagram, Mark Zuckerberg, Menlo Park, Minecraft, Network effects, new economy, performance metric, ride hailing / ride sharing, shareholder value, side project, Silicon Valley, Silicon Valley startup, Skype, Snapchat, Steve Jobs, the scientific method, Thomas Kuhn: the structure of scientific revolutions, trade route, urban renewal

There are certainly some dark and dystopian scenarios possible if we don’t collectively act. But I believe we also have at our fingertips the means to create a new golden age for humanity – a world that really does work for everyone. And that is what I am interested in. The game is on. Which is why this book is really an invitation. How to use this book “We are called to be architects of the future, not its victims” R Buckminster Fuller 1. A manifesto for those who are out to change the world 2. A framework for transformation in the new economy 3. How to be a billionaire – in three easy moves Books are pretty old tech. The basic structure of the modern book goes back to the invention of bookbinding and the printing press. Back then, things were developed in a linear fashion, with a beginning, a middle, and an end.


pages: 219 words: 63,495

50 Future Ideas You Really Need to Know by Richard Watson

23andMe, 3D printing, access to a mobile phone, Albert Einstein, artificial general intelligence, augmented reality, autonomous vehicles, BRICs, Buckminster Fuller, call centre, clean water, cloud computing, collaborative consumption, computer age, computer vision, crowdsourcing, dark matter, dematerialisation, digital Maoism, digital map, Elon Musk, energy security, failed state, future of work, Geoffrey West, Santa Fe Institute, germ theory of disease, global pandemic, happiness index / gross national happiness, hive mind, hydrogen economy, Internet of things, Jaron Lanier, life extension, Mark Shuttleworth, Marshall McLuhan, megacity, natural language processing, Network effects, new economy, oil shale / tar sands, pattern recognition, peak oil, personalized medicine, phenotype, precision agriculture, profit maximization, RAND corporation, Ray Kurzweil, RFID, Richard Florida, Search for Extraterrestrial Intelligence, self-driving car, semantic web, Skype, smart cities, smart meter, smart transportation, statistical model, stem cell, Stephen Hawking, Steve Jobs, Steven Pinker, Stewart Brand, strong AI, Stuxnet, supervolcano, telepresence, The Wisdom of Crowds, Thomas Malthus, Turing test, urban decay, Vernor Vinge, Watson beat the top human players on Jeopardy!, web application, women in the workforce, working-age population, young professional

The robot uses smart software to tell what’s edible and what’s not and uses a laser-guided robotic arm to grab the biomass and put it in a hopper that connects with an internal combustion engine, which in turn powers an onboard battery. Why do this? The answer is partly that wars depend on energy (soldiers increasingly rely on battery-powered devices) and partly that wars are often fought in remote regions where supply chains can be easily disrupted. “Either war is obsolete or men are.” Buckminster Fuller, author, inventor and futurist Friend or foe? When it comes to drones, or UAVs (unmanned aerial vehicles), these are principally surveillance tools not weapons at present. Payloads are generally small and they’re vulnerable to ground defense because of their slow speed. But give it a few decades and things will change. For example, how about networked drones small enough and responsive enough to enter a house through an open window and transmit information as they travel from room to room?


pages: 222 words: 70,559

The Oil Factor: Protect Yourself-and Profit-from the Coming Energy Crisis by Stephen Leeb, Donna Leeb

Buckminster Fuller, buy and hold, diversified portfolio, fixed income, hydrogen economy, income per capita, index fund, mortgage debt, North Sea oil, oil shale / tar sands, oil shock, peak oil, profit motive, reserve currency, rising living standards, Ronald Reagan, shareholder value, Silicon Valley, Vanguard fund, Yom Kippur War, zero-coupon bond

The sooner we make a real commitment, the better, because there will be no deus ex machina to bail us out. Token funding of alternative energies won’t be enough. Our whole national mindset has to change. It would have been nice, of course, if the big push to develop alternative energies had been made before we reached this pass. Even before the first Arab oil embargo it was clear to some people that it made no sense to rely so heavily on fossil fuels. Buckminster Fuller was an early visionary in this area, as in many others. In 1969 he wrote in his book Utopia or Oblivion: “There are gargantuan energy-income sources available which do not stay the processes of nature’s own conservation of energy within the earth crust ‘against a rainy day.’ These are in water, tidal, wind, and desert-impinging sun radiation power. The exploiters of fossil fuels, coal and oil, say it costs less to produce and burn the savings account.


pages: 208 words: 67,288

The Magic of Reality: How We Know What's Really True by Richard Dawkins

Any sufficiently advanced technology is indistinguishable from magic, Buckminster Fuller, double helix, Ernest Rutherford, false memory syndrome, Fellow of the Royal Society, gravity well, if you see hoof prints, think horses—not zebras, Isaac Newton, Johannes Kepler, phenotype, Richard Feynman, the scientific method

For example, molecules of naphthalene (the substance that mothballs are made of) are also made of carbon with hydrogen attached, this time in two loops. Carbon chemistry is rather like the toy construction kit called Tinkertoy. In the laboratory, chemists have succeeded in making carbon atoms join up with each other, not just in simple loops but in wonderfully shaped Tinkertoy-like molecules nicknamed Buckyballs and Buckytubes. ‘Bucky’ was the nickname of Buckminster Fuller, the great American architect who invented the geodesic dome. The Buckyballs and Buckytubes scientists have made are artificial molecules. But they show the Tinkertoyish way in which carbon atoms can be joined together into scaffolding-like structures that can be indefinitely large. (Just recently the exciting news was announced that Buckyballs have been detected in outer space, in the dust drifting near to a distant star.)


pages: 245 words: 64,288

Robots Will Steal Your Job, But That's OK: How to Survive the Economic Collapse and Be Happy by Pistono, Federico

3D printing, Albert Einstein, autonomous vehicles, bioinformatics, Buckminster Fuller, cloud computing, computer vision, correlation does not imply causation, en.wikipedia.org, epigenetics, Erik Brynjolfsson, Firefox, future of work, George Santayana, global village, Google Chrome, happiness index / gross national happiness, hedonic treadmill, illegal immigration, income inequality, information retrieval, Internet of things, invention of the printing press, jimmy wales, job automation, John Markoff, Kevin Kelly, Khan Academy, Kickstarter, knowledge worker, labor-force participation, Lao Tzu, Law of Accelerating Returns, life extension, Loebner Prize, longitudinal study, means of production, Narrative Science, natural language processing, new economy, Occupy movement, patent troll, pattern recognition, peak oil, post scarcity, QR code, race to the bottom, Ray Kurzweil, recommendation engine, RFID, Rodney Brooks, selection bias, self-driving car, slashdot, smart cities, software as a service, software is eating the world, speech recognition, Steven Pinker, strong AI, technological singularity, Turing test, Vernor Vinge, women in the workforce

The true business of people should be to go back to school and think about whatever it was they were thinking about before somebody came along and told them they had to earn a living. I know, these words are radical. And possibly naive. The result of a young mind, oblivious to the intricate fabric of society, who has nice dreams, but no real understanding of complex systems and economic behaviour. As it turns out, that is almost a word-by-word quote of the great genius futurist Buckminster Fuller, interviewed in 1970 by New York Magazine.170 The point is that “We prefer to invent new jobs rather than trying harder and inventing a new system that wouldn’t require everybody to have a job.”171 With this book, I have posited that robots will your job, but that’s OK. I will go one step further. I would argue that the purpose of life is to have robots steal your job. OK, let us be serious – that is not the purpose of life.


pages: 281 words: 72,885

Stuff Matters: Exploring the Marvelous Materials That Shape Our Man-Made World by Mark Miodownik

3D printing, active measures, British Empire, Buckminster Fuller, California gold rush, invention of the printing press, Isaac Newton, liquidity trap, New Urbanism, stem cell, trade route

A clue to how this might be done came with the discovery of a fourth carbon structure, one that was found in the most unlikely of places: the flame of a candle. In 1985 Professor Harry Kroto and his team discovered that inside a candle flame carbon atoms were miraculously self-assembling in groups of exactly sixty atoms to form super-molecules of carbon. The molecules looked like giant footballs and were nicknamed “buckyballs” after the architect Buckminster Fuller, who had designed geodesic domes with the same hexagonal structure. Kroto’s team received the 1996 Nobel Prize for chemistry for this discovery, and also woke everyone up to the fact that the microscopic world might contain a whole zoo of other carbon structures that had never been seen before. The molecular structure of “buckyballs.” Almost overnight carbon became one of the sexiest topics in materials science, and soon another type of carbon emerged, a carbon that could form tubes that are only a few nanometers wide.


pages: 200 words: 71,482

The Meaning of Everything: The Story of the Oxford English Dictionary by Simon Winchester

Buckminster Fuller, Ernest Rutherford, Khartoum Gordon, Murray Gell-Mann, stakhanovite, wage slave

Burchfield's four-volume Supplement, assembled from the vast hoard of words that scattered members of the Dictionary team had been gathering all the while 2 —and which tried to make sense of the vocabulary havoc that was being played by some authors, James Joyce most notable among them—came out at four-year intervals, the first in 1972, the last, dedicated to Queen Elizabeth II, in 1986. Charles Onions 3 was still alive, and helped Burchfield until the mid-1960s. In the end, 50,000 words were added— including (as Burchfield wrote in his final Preface to Volume IV) several which their creators helped to define: Anthony Powell, for example, helped with acceptance world, A. J. Ayer with drogulus, Buckminster Fuller with Dymaxion, J. R. R. Tolkien—a former assistant and walrus expert—with hobbit, and the cosmologist Murray Gell-Mann with quark. Psychedelic, coined in 1957, but popular at the time that Volume III was being printed, made it, just in time. Robert Burchfield, the New Zealand-born lexicographer who created the four-volume supplement to the completed OED, which appeared between 1972 and 1986.


pages: 222 words: 70,132

Move Fast and Break Things: How Facebook, Google, and Amazon Cornered Culture and Undermined Democracy by Jonathan Taplin

1960s counterculture, affirmative action, Affordable Care Act / Obamacare, Airbnb, Amazon Mechanical Turk, American Legislative Exchange Council, Apple's 1984 Super Bowl advert, back-to-the-land, barriers to entry, basic income, battle of ideas, big data - Walmart - Pop Tarts, bitcoin, Brewster Kahle, Buckminster Fuller, Burning Man, Clayton Christensen, commoditize, creative destruction, crony capitalism, crowdsourcing, data is the new oil, David Brooks, David Graeber, don't be evil, Donald Trump, Douglas Engelbart, Douglas Engelbart, Dynabook, Edward Snowden, Elon Musk, equal pay for equal work, Erik Brynjolfsson, future of journalism, future of work, George Akerlof, George Gilder, Google bus, Hacker Ethic, Howard Rheingold, income inequality, informal economy, information asymmetry, information retrieval, Internet Archive, Internet of things, invisible hand, Jaron Lanier, Jeff Bezos, job automation, John Markoff, John Maynard Keynes: technological unemployment, John von Neumann, Joseph Schumpeter, Kevin Kelly, Kickstarter, labor-force participation, life extension, Marc Andreessen, Mark Zuckerberg, Menlo Park, Metcalfe’s law, Mother of all demos, move fast and break things, move fast and break things, natural language processing, Network effects, new economy, Norbert Wiener, offshore financial centre, packet switching, Paul Graham, paypal mafia, Peter Thiel, plutocrats, Plutocrats, pre–internet, Ray Kurzweil, recommendation engine, rent-seeking, revision control, Robert Bork, Robert Gordon, Robert Metcalfe, Ronald Reagan, Ross Ulbricht, Sam Altman, Sand Hill Road, secular stagnation, self-driving car, sharing economy, Silicon Valley, Silicon Valley ideology, smart grid, Snapchat, software is eating the world, Steve Jobs, Stewart Brand, technoutopianism, The Chicago School, The Market for Lemons, The Rise and Fall of American Growth, Tim Cook: Apple, trade route, transfer pricing, Travis Kalanick, trickle-down economics, Tyler Cowen: Great Stagnation, universal basic income, unpaid internship, We wanted flying cars, instead we got 140 characters, web application, Whole Earth Catalog, winner-take-all economy, women in the workforce, Y Combinator

It was Stewart Brand who suggested that Lama might provide an atmosphere, as John Markoff wrote, “to create a meeting of the minds between the NLS researchers and the counterculture community animated by the Whole Earth Catalog.” The land outside Taos was full of alternative communities—Morningstar East, Reality Construction Company, the Hog Farm, New Buffalo, and the Family, to name a few. Steve Durkee and Steve Baer, both disciples of Buckminster Fuller and close friends of Stewart Brand, ran Lama, and the architecture of the buildings hewed closely to Bucky Fuller’s geodesic dome design. Fuller believed that what society needed was not more specialization but a new type of generalist, whom he called a comprehensive designer. For Bucky the problem of humanity’s survival was one of design, and he thought the “artist-scientist” could solve it: If man is to continue as a successful pattern-complex function in universal evolution, it will be because the next decades will have witnessed the artist-scientist’s seizure of the prime design responsibility and his successful conversion of tool-augmented man from killingry to advanced livingry—adequate for all humanity.


pages: 243 words: 66,908

Thinking in Systems: A Primer by Meadows. Donella, Diana Wright

affirmative action, agricultural Revolution, Albert Einstein, Buckminster Fuller, business cycle, clean water, Dissolution of the Soviet Union, game design, Gunnar Myrdal, illegal immigration, invisible hand, Just-in-time delivery, Kickstarter, means of production, Mikhail Gorbachev, Nelson Mandela, peak oil, race to the bottom, Ralph Waldo Emerson, Ronald Reagan, Stanford prison experiment, the scientific method, The Wealth of Nations by Adam Smith, Thomas Kuhn: the structure of scientific revolutions, Thomas L Friedman, Whole Earth Review

Stay Humble— Stay a Learner Systems thinking has taught me to trust my intuition more and my figuring- out rationality less, to lean on both as much as I can, but still to be prepared for surprises. Working with systems, on the computer, in nature, among people, in organizations, constantly reminds me of how incomplete my mental models are, how complex the world is, and how much I don’t know. The thing to do, when you don’t know, is not to bluff and not to freeze, but to learn. The way you learn is by experiment—or, as Buckminster Fuller put it, by trial and error, error, error. In a world of complex systems, it is not appropriate to charge forward with rigid, undeviating directives. “Stay the course” is only a good idea if you’re sure you’re on course. Pretending you’re in control even when you aren’t is a recipe not only for mistakes, but for not learning from mistakes. What’s appropriate when you’re learning is small steps, constant monitoring, and a willingness to change course as you find out more about where it’s leading.


pages: 281 words: 71,242

World Without Mind: The Existential Threat of Big Tech by Franklin Foer

artificial general intelligence, back-to-the-land, Berlin Wall, big data - Walmart - Pop Tarts, big-box store, Buckminster Fuller, citizen journalism, Colonization of Mars, computer age, creative destruction, crowdsourcing, data is the new oil, don't be evil, Donald Trump, Double Irish / Dutch Sandwich, Douglas Engelbart, Edward Snowden, Electric Kool-Aid Acid Test, Elon Musk, Fall of the Berlin Wall, Filter Bubble, global village, Google Glasses, Haight Ashbury, hive mind, income inequality, intangible asset, Jeff Bezos, job automation, John Markoff, Kevin Kelly, knowledge economy, Law of Accelerating Returns, Marc Andreessen, Mark Zuckerberg, Marshall McLuhan, means of production, move fast and break things, move fast and break things, new economy, New Journalism, Norbert Wiener, offshore financial centre, PageRank, Peace of Westphalia, Peter Thiel, planetary scale, Ray Kurzweil, self-driving car, Silicon Valley, Singularitarianism, software is eating the world, Steve Jobs, Steven Levy, Stewart Brand, strong AI, supply-chain management, the medium is the message, the scientific method, The Wealth of Nations by Adam Smith, The Wisdom of Crowds, Thomas L Friedman, Thorstein Veblen, Upton Sinclair, Vernor Vinge, Whole Earth Catalog, yellow journalism

Tools, liberated from the hands of the monopolists and militarists, could empower individuals to become more self-sufficient and more self-expressive. Power Tools to the People, you could say. If some of these sentiments sound familiar, it is because they have echoed in dozens of Apple commercials over the years. In a way, this was a theory of radical individualism and self-reliance—a forerunner of Silicon Valley libertarianism. But Brand had studied the works of such thinkers as Buckminster Fuller, Norbert Wiener, and Marshall McLuhan. All of his intellectual heroes wrote about the importance of looking at systems and networks. This was where the notion of the Whole Earth came in. Brand wanted his readers to think ecologically, to see how everything relates to everything else, to understand their place in the web of life. As the back cover of the catalog phrased it, “We can’t put it together.


pages: 391 words: 105,382

Utopia Is Creepy: And Other Provocations by Nicholas Carr

Air France Flight 447, Airbnb, Airbus A320, AltaVista, Amazon Mechanical Turk, augmented reality, autonomous vehicles, Bernie Sanders, book scanning, Brewster Kahle, Buckminster Fuller, Burning Man, Captain Sullenberger Hudson, centralized clearinghouse, Charles Lindbergh, cloud computing, cognitive bias, collaborative consumption, computer age, corporate governance, crowdsourcing, Danny Hillis, deskilling, digital map, disruptive innovation, Donald Trump, Electric Kool-Aid Acid Test, Elon Musk, factory automation, failed state, feminist movement, Frederick Winslow Taylor, friendly fire, game design, global village, Google bus, Google Glasses, Google X / Alphabet X, Googley, hive mind, impulse control, indoor plumbing, interchangeable parts, Internet Archive, invention of movable type, invention of the steam engine, invisible hand, Isaac Newton, Jeff Bezos, jimmy wales, Joan Didion, job automation, Kevin Kelly, lifelogging, low skilled workers, Marc Andreessen, Mark Zuckerberg, Marshall McLuhan, means of production, Menlo Park, mental accounting, natural language processing, Network effects, new economy, Nicholas Carr, Norman Mailer, off grid, oil shale / tar sands, Peter Thiel, plutocrats, Plutocrats, profit motive, Ralph Waldo Emerson, Ray Kurzweil, recommendation engine, Republic of Letters, robot derives from the Czech word robota Czech, meaning slave, Ronald Reagan, self-driving car, SETI@home, side project, Silicon Valley, Silicon Valley ideology, Singularitarianism, Snapchat, social graph, social web, speech recognition, Startup school, stem cell, Stephen Hawking, Steve Jobs, Steven Levy, technoutopianism, the medium is the message, theory of mind, Turing test, Whole Earth Catalog, Y Combinator

“Within ten years after initiating space migration,” Leary wrote, “a group of a thousand people will be able to get together cooperatively and build a new mini-world cheaper than they could buy individual homes down here. When you’ve got new ideas you can’t hang around the old hive.” During the seventies, Leary had plenty of company in calling for the establishment of elite experimental colonies beyond the bounds of established society. Buckminster Fuller, Gerard O’Neill, and Jerry Brown, among others, argued for the necessity of expanding the American frontier to create zones of technological and social experimentation where innovation could proceed unhampered by outdated laws and traditions. The migration of the self-selecting elite would eventually help the more timid who chose to stay behind, Leary argued, as it “allows for new experiments—technological, political, and social—in a new ecological niche far from the home hive.”


pages: 238 words: 73,824

Makers by Chris Anderson

3D printing, Airbnb, Any sufficiently advanced technology is indistinguishable from magic, Apple II, autonomous vehicles, barriers to entry, Buckminster Fuller, Build a better mousetrap, business process, commoditize, Computer Numeric Control, crowdsourcing, dark matter, David Ricardo: comparative advantage, death of newspapers, dematerialisation, Elon Musk, factory automation, Firefox, future of work, global supply chain, global village, IKEA effect, industrial robot, interchangeable parts, Internet of things, inventory management, James Hargreaves, James Watt: steam engine, Jeff Bezos, job automation, Joseph Schumpeter, Kickstarter, Lean Startup, manufacturing employment, Mark Zuckerberg, means of production, Menlo Park, Network effects, private space industry, profit maximization, QR code, race to the bottom, Richard Feynman, Ronald Coase, Rubik’s Cube, self-driving car, side project, Silicon Valley, Silicon Valley startup, Skype, slashdot, South of Market, San Francisco, spinning jenny, Startup school, stem cell, Steve Jobs, Steve Wozniak, Steven Levy, Stewart Brand, supply-chain management, The Nature of the Firm, The Wealth of Nations by Adam Smith, transaction costs, trickle-down economics, Whole Earth Catalog, X Prize, Y Combinator

The underlying philosophy was that technology could be our friend. Brand wrote on the first page of the first edition, “A realm of intimate, personal power is developing—power of the individual to conduct his own education, find his own inspiration, shape his own environment, and share his adventure with whoever is interested. Tools that aid this process are sought and promoted by The Whole Earth Catalog.” Buckminster Fuller followed with a poem that began, “I see God in the instruments and mechanisms that work reliably.”13 The Homebrew Computer Club, where Jobs and Wozniak brain-stormed the first Apple computer, was founded on these principles. Today it carries on in hundreds of makerspaces, each using twenty-first-century tools to try to effect the same sort of revolutionary social and economic change. Real countries make stuff Any country, if it wants to stay strong, must have a manufacturing base.


pages: 260 words: 77,007

Are You Smart Enough to Work at Google?: Trick Questions, Zen-Like Riddles, Insanely Difficult Puzzles, and Other Devious Interviewing Techniques You ... Know to Get a Job Anywhere in the New Economy by William Poundstone

affirmative action, Albert Einstein, big-box store, Buckminster Fuller, car-free, cloud computing, creative destruction, en.wikipedia.org, full text search, hiring and firing, index card, Isaac Newton, Johannes Kepler, John von Neumann, lateral thinking, loss aversion, mental accounting, new economy, Paul Erdős, RAND corporation, random walk, Richard Feynman, rolodex, Rubik’s Cube, Silicon Valley, Silicon Valley startup, sorting algorithm, Steve Ballmer, Steve Jobs, The Spirit Level, Tony Hsieh, why are manhole covers round?, William Shockley: the traitorous eight

That’s the space occupied by the cannonballs or oranges, as a fraction of total space. Kepler guessed this was the densest packing possible, but he was unable to supply a proof. Kepler’s conjecture, as it was called, remained a great unsolved problem for centuries. In 1900 it made David Hilbert’s famous list of twenty-three unsolved problems in mathematics. A number of people have claimed to prove it, including the architect Buckminster Fuller, of geodesic dome fame. All such resolutions were quickly rejected as wrong until 1998, when Thomas Hales offered a complicated, computer-assisted proof showing that Kepler was right. Most believe his result will stand up, though the construction of a formal proof is currently ongoing. Hales estimated it would take another twenty years. I assumed above that each golf ball effectively rests in an imaginary Lucite cube whose edges equal the ball’s diameter.


pages: 423 words: 118,002

The Boom: How Fracking Ignited the American Energy Revolution and Changed the World by Russell Gold

accounting loophole / creative accounting, activist fund / activist shareholder / activist investor, activist lawyer, addicted to oil, American energy revolution, Bakken shale, Bernie Sanders, Buckminster Fuller, clean water, corporate governance, corporate raider, energy security, energy transition, hydraulic fracturing, Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC), margin call, market fundamentalism, Mason jar, North Sea oil, oil shale / tar sands, oil shock, peak oil, Project Plowshare, risk tolerance, Ronald Reagan, shareholder value, Silicon Valley, Upton Sinclair

His days of deal making on the ground floor of the Esperson Building were over. Mitchell Energy was a substantial company—not a giant like Mobil or Amoco, but a respectably sized independent oil and gas explorer. Having pulled himself up from poverty to wealth, Mitchell’s focus began to meander. In the early 1970s, he attended a think-tank retreat in the Rocky Mountains, where he met and fell under the sway of Buckminster Fuller, the futurist and inventor. Fuller, an iconic figure at the time, popularized the term “Spaceship Earth.” The Earth’s resources, he argued, were limited and needed to be used wisely, not frittered away. Fuller first spurred Mitchell’s interest in growth and depletion. At the end of a few days spent with Fuller talking about global overpopulation and environmental catastrophes, the futurist asked the oilman, “What are you going to do about it?”


pages: 403 words: 111,119

Doughnut Economics: Seven Ways to Think Like a 21st-Century Economist by Kate Raworth

"Robert Solow", 3D printing, Asian financial crisis, bank run, basic income, battle of ideas, Berlin Wall, bitcoin, blockchain, Branko Milanovic, Bretton Woods, Buckminster Fuller, business cycle, call centre, Capital in the Twenty-First Century by Thomas Piketty, Cass Sunstein, choice architecture, clean water, cognitive bias, collapse of Lehman Brothers, complexity theory, creative destruction, crowdsourcing, cryptocurrency, Daniel Kahneman / Amos Tversky, David Ricardo: comparative advantage, dematerialisation, disruptive innovation, Douglas Engelbart, Douglas Engelbart, en.wikipedia.org, energy transition, Erik Brynjolfsson, Ethereum, ethereum blockchain, Eugene Fama: efficient market hypothesis, experimental economics, Exxon Valdez, Fall of the Berlin Wall, financial deregulation, Financial Instability Hypothesis, full employment, global supply chain, global village, Henri Poincaré, hiring and firing, Howard Zinn, Hyman Minsky, income inequality, Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC), invention of writing, invisible hand, Isaac Newton, John Maynard Keynes: Economic Possibilities for our Grandchildren, Joseph Schumpeter, Kenneth Arrow, Kenneth Rogoff, Kickstarter, land reform, land value tax, Landlord’s Game, loss aversion, low skilled workers, M-Pesa, Mahatma Gandhi, market fundamentalism, Martin Wolf, means of production, megacity, mobile money, Mont Pelerin Society, Myron Scholes, neoliberal agenda, Network effects, Occupy movement, off grid, offshore financial centre, oil shale / tar sands, out of africa, Paul Samuelson, peer-to-peer, planetary scale, price mechanism, quantitative easing, randomized controlled trial, Richard Thaler, Ronald Reagan, Second Machine Age, secular stagnation, shareholder value, sharing economy, Silicon Valley, Simon Kuznets, smart cities, smart meter, Social Responsibility of Business Is to Increase Its Profits, South Sea Bubble, statistical model, Steve Ballmer, The Chicago School, The Great Moderation, the map is not the territory, the market place, The Spirit Level, The Wealth of Nations by Adam Smith, Thomas Malthus, Thorstein Veblen, too big to fail, Torches of Freedom, trickle-down economics, ultimatum game, universal basic income, Upton Sinclair, Vilfredo Pareto, wikimedia commons

No other academic discipline has managed to provoke its own students – the very people who have chosen to dedicate years of their life to studying its theories – into worldwide revolt. Their rebellion has made one thing clear: the revolution in economics has indeed begun. Its success depends not only on debunking the old ideas but, more importantly, on bringing forth the new. As the ingenious twentieth-century inventor Buckminster Fuller once said, ‘You never change things by fighting the existing reality. To change something, build a new model that makes the existing model obsolete.’ This book takes up his challenge, setting out seven mind-shifting ways in which we can all learn to think like twenty-first-century economists. By revealing the old ideas that have entrapped us and replacing them with new ones to inspire us, it proposes a new economic story that is told in pictures as much as in words.


pages: 426 words: 115,150

Your Money or Your Life: 9 Steps to Transforming Your Relationship With Money and Achieving Financial Independence: Revised and Updated for the 21st Century by Vicki Robin, Joe Dominguez, Monique Tilford

asset allocation, Buckminster Fuller, buy low sell high, credit crunch, disintermediation, diversification, diversified portfolio, fiat currency, financial independence, fixed income, fudge factor, full employment, Gordon Gekko, high net worth, index card, index fund, job satisfaction, Menlo Park, money market fund, Parkinson's law, passive income, passive investing, profit motive, Ralph Waldo Emerson, Richard Bolles, risk tolerance, Ronald Reagan, Silicon Valley, software patent, strikebreaker, Thorstein Veblen, Vanguard fund, zero-coupon bond

The “nine to five till you’re sixty-five” pattern, so recent in human history but so pervasive today, seems like the only choice for someone who is neither a sports nor entertainment superstar nor an eccentric. After all, there are bills to pay and an identity to maintain, and besides, what would I do with my life if I didn’t have a job? Is More Better? And many of us are out there “making a dying” because we’ve bought the pervasive consumer myth that more is better. Even though Buck-minster Fuller likened the earth to a spaceship, we cling to the silver-screen images of the Frontier, where “there’s always more where that came from.” We build our working lives on this myth of more. Our expectation is to make more money as the years go on. We will get more responsibility and more perks as we move up in our field. Eventually, we hope, we will have more possessions, more prestige and more respect from our community.

Rather than climbing a career ladder, you will be following the promptings of your heart and mind—and may find yourself on some side roads that are more interesting and enjoyable than any “job” you could have ever imagined. Life After the Crossover Point The essence of FI is choice. Once you’ve passed the Crossover Point you have choice about how you fill the hours of your day and the days of your productive life. There is no formula for how you live after the Crossover Point. And that’s the point. You are free to invent your life. You are free to explore what Buck-minster Fuller meant when he said, “We are called to be architects of the future, not its victims.” You have a choice. SUMMARY OF STEP 8 Each month apply the following equation to your total accumulated capital and post the monthly investment income as a separate line on your Wall Chart: When you begin investing your money according to the guidelines offered in the next chapter, start entering your actual interest income for your monthly investment income on your Wall Chart (while still applying the formula to your further savings).


pages: 636 words: 202,284

Piracy : The Intellectual Property Wars from Gutenberg to Gates by Adrian Johns

active measures, banking crisis, Berlin Wall, British Empire, Buckminster Fuller, business intelligence, commoditize, Corn Laws, demand response, distributed generation, Douglas Engelbart, Douglas Engelbart, Edmond Halley, Ernest Rutherford, Fellow of the Royal Society, full employment, Hacker Ethic, Howard Rheingold, informal economy, invention of the printing press, Isaac Newton, James Watt: steam engine, John Harrison: Longitude, Marshall McLuhan, Mont Pelerin Society, new economy, New Journalism, Norbert Wiener, pirate software, Republic of Letters, Richard Stallman, road to serfdom, Ronald Coase, software patent, South Sea Bubble, Steven Levy, Stewart Brand, Ted Nelson, the scientific method, traveling salesman, Whole Earth Catalog

To make this pirate revolution work, experts (“technical freaks”) would be needed, and Hoffman recommended that readers find them in the world of amateur radio. He also directed them to Radical Software, a periodical emanating from a New York group of artists in the brandnew homeproduction medium of videotape. Operating oxymoronically as the Center for Decentralized Television, Radical Software was heavily influenced by Marshall McLuhan and Buckminster Fuller, and also by Norbert Wiener’s antiproprietorial vision of information. The magazine proclaimed in the first lines of its first issue the imperative to universalize access to information, not least by abjuring copyright. It included what it called a “pirated” interview with Fuller, and invented a symbol to represent the “antithesis” of ©. The symbol was a circle containing an X (for Xerox).

It occurred at a range of extramural and sometimes transient social settings, including various homes, Kepler’s bookstore (a place reminiscent of the bookshops and coffeehouses of Restoration London), and a Free University that offered courses on “How to End the IBM Monopoly.” In print, there was of course Stewart Brand’s Whole Earth Catalog, a guide to “tools” useful for readers impatient with the conformities of American consumerism. Launched in 1969, the catalogue touched on an extraordinary range of topics, from cybernetics and communication theories to agriculture and medicine, with an eclectic individualism purportedly inspired by Buckminster Fuller. It grew with successive editions until by 1971 it was almost 450 pages long. Its influence was demonstrated by the People’s Computer Company, a project overseen by Brand and Robert Albrecht (whom Ted Nelson hailed as the “caliph of counterculture computerdom”). The PCC was both a publication and an institution. As a publication, it was produced on the same printing equipment as the Whole Earth Catalog, using similar pagecraft to proselytize for a cognate message.


pages: 287 words: 81,970

The Dollar Meltdown: Surviving the Coming Currency Crisis With Gold, Oil, and Other Unconventional Investments by Charles Goyette

bank run, banking crisis, Ben Bernanke: helicopter money, Berlin Wall, Bernie Madoff, Bretton Woods, British Empire, Buckminster Fuller, business cycle, buy and hold, California gold rush, currency manipulation / currency intervention, Deng Xiaoping, diversified portfolio, Elliott wave, fiat currency, fixed income, Fractional reserve banking, housing crisis, If something cannot go on forever, it will stop - Herbert Stein's Law, index fund, Lao Tzu, margin call, market bubble, McMansion, money market fund, money: store of value / unit of account / medium of exchange, mortgage debt, oil shock, peak oil, pushing on a string, reserve currency, rising living standards, road to serfdom, Ronald Reagan, Saturday Night Live, short selling, Silicon Valley, transaction costs

Deserving Mention Canadian Royalty Trusts, oil and gas income trusts, can experience a major rally as energy prices recover. In the meantime the yields remain attractive for the time being. Baytex Energy Trust, BTE; Enerplus Resources Fund Trust, ERF; Penn West Energy Trust, PWE. CHAPTER FOURTEEN Real Things Can’t Live Without ’Em One generation passeth away, and another generation cometh; but the earth abideth forever. —Ecclesiastes 1:4 Wealth is the progressive mastery of matter by mind. —Buckminster Fuller Agriculture When investment legend and commodities bull Jim Rogers says that ten years from now instead of twenty-nine-year-old stockbrokers driving Maseratis, it will be twenty-nine-year-old farmers, he’s making an important point about the shifting economy. People’s spending hierarchies experience dynamic changes in lean economic times. People can live without the excesses of Wall Street.


Toast by Stross, Charles

anthropic principle, Buckminster Fuller, cosmological principle, dark matter, double helix, Ernest Rutherford, Extropian, Francis Fukuyama: the end of history, glass ceiling, gravity well, Khyber Pass, Mars Rover, Mikhail Gorbachev, NP-complete, oil shale / tar sands, peak oil, performance metric, phenotype, plutocrats, Plutocrats, Ronald Reagan, Silicon Valley, slashdot, speech recognition, strong AI, traveling salesman, Turing test, urban renewal, Vernor Vinge, Whole Earth Review, Y2K

We know the gateways link to at least three other planets. There may be many that we don’t know of. We don’t know how to create them or close them; all we can do is send people through, or pile bricks in the opening.” He nearly bites his tongue, because there are more than three worlds out there, and he’s been to at least one of them: the bolt-hole on XK-Masada, built by the NRO from their secret budget. He’s seen the mile-high dome Buckminster Fuller spent his last decade designing for them, the rings of Patriot air defense missiles. A squadron of black diamond-shaped fighters from the Skunk Works, said to be invisible to radar, patrols the empty skies of XK-Masada. Hydroponic farms and empty barracks and apartment blocks await the senators and congressmen and their families and thousands of support personnel. In event of war they’ll be evacuated through the small gate that has been moved to the Executive Office Building basement, in a room beneath the swimming pool where Jack used to go skinny-dipping with Marilyn.


pages: 309 words: 81,975

Brave New Work: Are You Ready to Reinvent Your Organization? by Aaron Dignan

"side hustle", activist fund / activist shareholder / activist investor, Airbnb, Albert Einstein, autonomous vehicles, basic income, Bertrand Russell: In Praise of Idleness, bitcoin, Black Swan, blockchain, Buckminster Fuller, Burning Man, butterfly effect, cashless society, Clayton Christensen, clean water, cognitive bias, cognitive dissonance, corporate governance, corporate social responsibility, correlation does not imply causation, creative destruction, crony capitalism, crowdsourcing, cryptocurrency, David Heinemeier Hansson, deliberate practice, DevOps, disruptive innovation, don't be evil, Elon Musk, endowment effect, Ethereum, ethereum blockchain, Frederick Winslow Taylor, future of work, gender pay gap, Geoffrey West, Santa Fe Institute, gig economy, Google X / Alphabet X, hiring and firing, hive mind, income inequality, information asymmetry, Internet of things, Jeff Bezos, job satisfaction, Kevin Kelly, Kickstarter, Lean Startup, loose coupling, loss aversion, Lyft, Marc Andreessen, Mark Zuckerberg, minimum viable product, new economy, Paul Graham, race to the bottom, remote working, Richard Thaler, shareholder value, Silicon Valley, six sigma, smart contracts, Social Responsibility of Business Is to Increase Its Profits, software is eating the world, source of truth, Stanford marshmallow experiment, Steve Jobs, TaskRabbit, the High Line, too big to fail, Toyota Production System, uber lyft, universal basic income, Y Combinator, zero-sum game

If growth creates pollution, don’t try to regulate, because more growth will clean things up again. Except, it turns out, it doesn’t, and it won’t.” Growth has delivered extraordinary benefits to humanity, but at a cost. The question is: Can we lift everyone up without destroying the planet? And even if we can, what then? GDP growth can’t continue forever with finite resources. Of course, this is not a new idea. In 1968 R. Buckminster Fuller warned us about this in his masterwork Operating Manual for Spaceship Earth. Decades earlier, philosopher Bertrand Russell offered a damning critique of our approach to abundance in his essay “In Praise of Idleness.” Suppose that, at a given moment, a certain number of people are engaged in the manufacture of pins. They make as many pins as the world needs, working (say) eight hours a day.


pages: 303 words: 81,071

Infinite Detail by Tim Maughan

3D printing, augmented reality, bitcoin, Buckminster Fuller, Burning Man, cognitive dissonance, friendly fire, global supply chain, Internet of things, Mason jar, off grid, Panamax, post-Panamax, ransomware, RFID, security theater, self-driving car, Skype, smart cities, South China Sea, the built environment, urban decay, urban planning

Just hold my hand. Walker looks up again, through the geodesic lattice of the dome. It seems alien to him, like this. He got so used to seeing it shattered for the last decade. Through the recording it looks like an ode to a forgotten, lost future—smeared with bird shit and graffiti, glass panels missing here and there, CCTV cameras retrofitted to its frame. For some reason his mind fills with Buckminster Fuller, that book he read about him, the way he was heralded by designers and architects as a neglected hero, the one that would have built us a utopia if he’d been given half a chance. And how someone had told him that was all bullshit, and people thought of him so well only because his plans never got built. If they had been, he would have made the same mistakes as Le Corbusier and Goldfinger and all the others—the mistake of believing the myth that architects can build futures full of people as simply as they make their little models, sketch their little plans.


pages: 247 words: 81,135

The Great Fragmentation: And Why the Future of All Business Is Small by Steve Sammartino

3D printing, additive manufacturing, Airbnb, augmented reality, barriers to entry, Bill Gates: Altair 8800, bitcoin, BRICs, Buckminster Fuller, citizen journalism, collaborative consumption, cryptocurrency, David Heinemeier Hansson, disruptive innovation, Elon Musk, fiat currency, Frederick Winslow Taylor, game design, Google X / Alphabet X, haute couture, helicopter parent, illegal immigration, index fund, Jeff Bezos, jimmy wales, Kickstarter, knowledge economy, Law of Accelerating Returns, lifelogging, market design, Metcalfe's law, Minecraft, minimum viable product, Network effects, new economy, peer-to-peer, post scarcity, prediction markets, pre–internet, profit motive, race to the bottom, random walk, Ray Kurzweil, recommendation engine, remote working, RFID, Rubik’s Cube, self-driving car, sharing economy, side project, Silicon Valley, Silicon Valley startup, skunkworks, Skype, social graph, social web, software is eating the world, Steve Jobs, survivorship bias, too big to fail, US Airways Flight 1549, web application, zero-sum game

In this sense our world becomes one, where everything is information, where knowledge is converted into actual objects and where the internet crosses the chasm from the virtual into the physical. A virtual physical reality While technology has already been used extensively in the fields of dentistry, medicine, automobiles and aviation, it’s now entering our homes for the first time. Famed designer, inventor and futurist R. Buckminster Fuller spoke of a future where technology would advance to a point where we could do ‘more with less and less until eventually you can do everything with nothing’. Fuller spoke of this phenomenon in 1938 and coined the term ‘ephermalization’ to describe it. Fuller’s vision was that ephermalization would result in ever-increasing standards of living for an ever-growing population despite finite resources.


The Golden Ratio: The Story of Phi, the World's Most Astonishing Number by Mario Livio

Albert Einstein, Albert Michelson, Alfred Russel Wallace, Benoit Mandelbrot, Brownian motion, Buckminster Fuller, cosmological constant, Elliott wave, Eratosthenes, Gödel, Escher, Bach, Isaac Newton, Johann Wolfgang von Goethe, Johannes Kepler, mandelbrot fractal, music of the spheres, Nash equilibrium, Ralph Nelson Elliott, Ralph Waldo Emerson, random walk, Richard Feynman, Ronald Reagan, Thales of Miletus, the scientific method

Second, given that we define “beauty,” as, for example, in Webster's Unabridged Dictionary, “the quality which makes an object seem pleasing or satisfying in a certain way,” this raises the question: Is there an aesthetic component to mathematics? And if so, what is the essence of this component? This is a serious question because, as the American architect, mathematician, and engineer Richard Buckminster Fuller (1895–1983) once put it: “When I am working on a problem, I never think about beauty. I think only of how to solve the problem. But when I have finished, if the solution is not beautiful, I know it is wrong.” Finally, the most intriguing question is: What is it that makes mathematics so powerful and ubiquitous? What is the reason that mathematics and numerical constants like the Golden Ratio play such a central role in topics ranging from fundamental theories of the universe to the stock market?


pages: 312 words: 84,421

This Chair Rocks: A Manifiesto Against Ageism by Ashton Applewhite

affirmative action, Affordable Care Act / Obamacare, Airbnb, Albert Einstein, Atul Gawande, Buckminster Fuller, clean water, cognitive dissonance, crowdsourcing, desegregation, Downton Abbey, fixed income, follow your passion, ghettoisation, Google Hangouts, hiring and firing, income inequality, informal economy, Internet of things, invention of the printing press, job satisfaction, labor-force participation, life extension, longitudinal study, Mark Zuckerberg, Naomi Klein, obamacare, old age dependency ratio, RAND corporation, Ronald Reagan, Rosa Parks, sensible shoes, Silicon Valley, Skype, smart cities, Snapchat, stem cell, the built environment, urban decay, urban planning, white picket fence, women in the workforce

Social networking sites like Meetup and Facebook help people find others who share an interest or activity. It’s not an either/or proposition; people who use social networking sites like Facebook also have more active social lives offline. Inexpensive video technology and storage sites like YouTube give people a new way to tell their story and get feedback, and not just from the grandchildren. My father worked with Buckminster Fuller and enjoyed tracking the work of his acolytes online. It deeply engaged him and ensured a steady trickle of geeky visitors dropping in to talk about the remarkable inventor. Ruth, my partner’s mom, and a bookseller, Skypes prospective customers on her iPad to show them her wares, making her unusually wired for a nonagenarian. I’ve resisted her entreaties to join Words With Friends, but she’s got six or eight games going at any time with no help from me.


pages: 669 words: 210,153

Tools of Titans: The Tactics, Routines, and Habits of Billionaires, Icons, and World-Class Performers by Timothy Ferriss

Airbnb, Alexander Shulgin, artificial general intelligence, asset allocation, Atul Gawande, augmented reality, back-to-the-land, Ben Horowitz, Bernie Madoff, Bertrand Russell: In Praise of Idleness, Black Swan, blue-collar work, Boris Johnson, Buckminster Fuller, business process, Cal Newport, call centre, Charles Lindbergh, Checklist Manifesto, cognitive bias, cognitive dissonance, Colonization of Mars, Columbine, commoditize, correlation does not imply causation, David Brooks, David Graeber, diversification, diversified portfolio, Donald Trump, effective altruism, Elon Musk, fault tolerance, fear of failure, Firefox, follow your passion, future of work, Google X / Alphabet X, Howard Zinn, Hugh Fearnley-Whittingstall, Jeff Bezos, job satisfaction, Johann Wolfgang von Goethe, John Markoff, Kevin Kelly, Kickstarter, Lao Tzu, lateral thinking, life extension, lifelogging, Mahatma Gandhi, Marc Andreessen, Mark Zuckerberg, Mason jar, Menlo Park, Mikhail Gorbachev, MITM: man-in-the-middle, Nelson Mandela, Nicholas Carr, optical character recognition, PageRank, passive income, pattern recognition, Paul Graham, peer-to-peer, Peter H. Diamandis: Planetary Resources, Peter Singer: altruism, Peter Thiel, phenotype, PIHKAL and TIHKAL, post scarcity, post-work, premature optimization, QWERTY keyboard, Ralph Waldo Emerson, Ray Kurzweil, recommendation engine, rent-seeking, Richard Feynman, risk tolerance, Ronald Reagan, selection bias, sharing economy, side project, Silicon Valley, skunkworks, Skype, Snapchat, social graph, software as a service, software is eating the world, stem cell, Stephen Hawking, Steve Jobs, Stewart Brand, superintelligent machines, Tesla Model S, The Wisdom of Crowds, Thomas L Friedman, Wall-E, Washington Consensus, Whole Earth Catalog, Y Combinator, zero-sum game

He introduced me to Total Immersion swimming by Terry Laughlin, and in less than 10 days of solo training, I went from a 2-length maximum (of a 25-yard pool) to swimming more than 40 lengths per workout in sets of 2 and 4. It blew my mind, and now I swim for fun. Chris is one of the people who generously mentored me in the startup investing game. The other majors include Naval Ravikant (page 546), Kevin Rose (page 340), and Mike Maples, who got me started (see the Real-World MBA on page 250). Chris mentioned several books when he appeared on my podcast, including I Seem to Be a Verb by Buckminster Fuller. 48 hours later, used copies were selling for $999 on Amazon. Are You Playing Offense or Defense? Despite the fact that people refer to Chris as a “Silicon Valley investor,” he hasn’t lived in San Francisco since 2007. Instead, he bought a cabin in rural Truckee, Tahoe’s less-expensive neighbor, and moved to prime skiing and hiking country. It is no tech hotbed. Back then, Chris hadn’t yet made real money in the investing game, but he had a rationale for buying the getaway: “I wanted to go on offense.

MacDonald), At Home: A Short History of Private Life; The Lost Continent: Travels in Small-Town America (Bill Bryson), A Curious Discovery: An Entrepreneur’s Story (John Hendricks) Rubin, Rick: Tao Te Ching (Lao Tzu, translation by Stephen Mitchell), Wherever You Go, There You Are (Jon Kabat-Zinn) Sacca, Chris: Not Fade Away: A Short Life Well Lived (Laurence Shames and Peter Barton), The Essential Scratch & Sniff Guide to Becoming a Whiskey Know-It-All; The Essential Scratch & Sniff Guide to Becoming a Wine Expert (Richard Betts), How to Get Filthy Rich in Rising Asia: A Novel (Mohsin Hamid), I Seem to Be a Verb (R. Buckminster Fuller) Schwarzenegger, Arnold: The Churchill Factor: How One Man Made History (Boris Johnson), Free to Choose (Milton Friedman), California (Kevin Starr) Sethi, Ramit: Age of Propaganda: The Everyday Use and Abuse of Persuasion (Anthony Pratkanis and Elliot Aronson), The Social Animal (Elliot Aronson), Getting Everything You Can Out of All You’ve Got (Jay Abraham), Mindless Eating (Brian Wansink), The Robert Collier Letter Book (Robert Collier), Never Eat Alone, Expanded and Updated: And Other Secrets to Success, One Relationship at a Time (Keith Ferrazzi), What They Don’t Teach You at Harvard Business School (Mark H.


pages: 538 words: 141,822

The Net Delusion: The Dark Side of Internet Freedom by Evgeny Morozov

"Robert Solow", A Declaration of the Independence of Cyberspace, Ayatollah Khomeini, Berlin Wall, borderless world, Buckminster Fuller, Cass Sunstein, citizen journalism, cloud computing, cognitive dissonance, Columbine, computer age, conceptual framework, crowdsourcing, Dissolution of the Soviet Union, don't be evil, failed state, Fall of the Berlin Wall, Francis Fukuyama: the end of history, global village, Google Earth, illegal immigration, invention of radio, invention of the printing press, invisible hand, John Markoff, John von Neumann, Marshall McLuhan, Mitch Kapor, Naomi Klein, Network effects, new economy, New Urbanism, Panopticon Jeremy Bentham, peer-to-peer, pirate software, pre–internet, Productivity paradox, RAND corporation, Ronald Reagan, Ronald Reagan: Tear down this wall, Silicon Valley, Silicon Valley startup, Sinatra Doctrine, Skype, Slavoj Žižek, social graph, Steve Jobs, technoutopianism, The Wisdom of Crowds, urban planning, Washington Consensus, WikiLeaks, women in the workforce

In 1978, Daniel Boorstin, one of the most famous American historians of the twentieth century, lauded television’s power to “disband armies, to cashier presidents, to create a whole new democratic world—democratic in ways never before imagined, even in America.” Boorstin wrote these words when many political scientists and policymakers were still awaiting the triumph of “teledemocracy,” in which citizens would use television to not only observe but also directly participate in politics. (The hope that new technology could enable more public participation in politics predates television; back in 1940 Buckminster Fuller, the controversial American inventor and architect, was already lauding the virtues of “telephone democracy,” which could enable “voting by telephone on all prominent questions before Congress.”) In hindsight, the science-fiction writer Ray Bradbury was closer to the truth in 1953 than Boorstin ever was in 1978. “The television,” wrote Bradbury, “is that insidious beast, that Medusa which freezes a billion people to stone every night, staring fixedly, that Siren which called and sang and promised so much and gave, after all, so little.”


pages: 509 words: 132,327

Rise of the Machines: A Cybernetic History by Thomas Rid

1960s counterculture, A Declaration of the Independence of Cyberspace, agricultural Revolution, Albert Einstein, Alistair Cooke, Apple II, Apple's 1984 Super Bowl advert, back-to-the-land, Berlin Wall, British Empire, Brownian motion, Buckminster Fuller, business intelligence, Charles Lindbergh, Claude Shannon: information theory, conceptual framework, connected car, domain-specific language, Douglas Engelbart, Douglas Engelbart, dumpster diving, Extropian, full employment, game design, global village, Haight Ashbury, Howard Rheingold, Jaron Lanier, job automation, John Markoff, John von Neumann, Kevin Kelly, Kubernetes, Marshall McLuhan, Menlo Park, Mitch Kapor, Mother of all demos, new economy, New Journalism, Norbert Wiener, offshore financial centre, oil shale / tar sands, pattern recognition, RAND corporation, Silicon Valley, Simon Singh, speech recognition, Steve Jobs, Steve Wozniak, Steven Levy, Stewart Brand, technoutopianism, Telecommunications Act of 1996, telepresence, The Hackers Conference, Vernor Vinge, Whole Earth Catalog, Whole Earth Review, Y2K, Yom Kippur War, Zimmermann PGP

Brand is best known for founding the famous Whole Earth Catalog, a publication that itself became an emblem and icon of California’s late 1960s counterculture and back-to-the-land movement. One afternoon, probably in March 1966 in the hills of San Francisco, Brand dropped a bit of LSD and went up on a roof overlooking the city. It was a form of escape. He sat in a blanket, shivering in the cold spring air, overlooking the hills, lost in enhanced thought: And so I’m watching the buildings, looking out at San Francisco, thinking of Buckminster Fuller’s notion that people think of the earth’s resources as unlimited because they think of the earth as flat. I’m looking at San Francisco from 300 feet and 200 micrograms up and thinking that I can see from here that the earth is curved. I had the idea that the higher you go the more you can see earth as round.29 Yet no photograph of the whole Earth was publicly available at the time, Brand thought, despite nearly ten years of US space exploration in a Cold War arms race that extended even beyond the planet.


pages: 384 words: 89,250

Made to Break: Technology and Obsolescence in America by Giles Slade

Albert Einstein, Alexey Pajitnov wrote Tetris, American ideology, Apple's 1984 Super Bowl advert, Buckminster Fuller, business cycle, Cass Sunstein, Charles Lindbergh, creative destruction, Douglas Engelbart, Douglas Engelbart, global village, housing crisis, indoor plumbing, invention of radio, Joseph Schumpeter, Marshall McLuhan, Mikhail Gorbachev, more computing power than Apollo, mutually assured destruction, Ralph Nader, rent control, Ronald Reagan, Silicon Valley, Steve Jobs, the market place, the medium is the message, Thorstein Veblen, unemployed young men, upwardly mobile, Vladimir Vetrov: Farewell Dossier, white picket fence, women in the workforce

In the span of a few years, his mad-hatter effusions drew followers to him from a wide array of disciplines and professions. As the recipient of a prestigious Albert Schweitzer fellowship at New York’s Fordham University, he entered the American mainstream, where he alienated, befriended, or otherwise unsettled an impressive assortment of American cultural leaders, from Woody Allen, John Cage, Joseph Campbell, Buckminster Fuller, Abbie Hoffman, and William Jovanovich to Alan Kay, Stanley Kubrick, Timothy Leary, Victor Papanek, Ezra Pound, Carl Sagan, Tom Wolfe, and Andy Warhol. By mid-century, McLuhan had become a recognized critic of advertising, like Vance Packard before him. McLuhan also had a ready explanation for Packard’s popularity in criticizing the excesses of advertising. He felt that Packard as a social phenomenon had been made possible by the leveling effect of television, which allowed Packard to “hoot at the old salesmen . . . just as MAD [magazine] does.”66 The lively prose of a passage that slams General Motors and its ad agencies because they did not “know, or even suspect, anything about the effect of the TV image on the users of motorcars” is probably the best clue we still have to McLuhan’s charismatic attraction.


pages: 313 words: 92,907

Green Metropolis: Why Living Smaller, Living Closer, and Driving Less Are Thekeys to Sustainability by David Owen

A Pattern Language, active transport: walking or cycling, big-box store, Buckminster Fuller, car-free, carbon footprint, clean water, congestion charging, delayed gratification, distributed generation, drive until you qualify, East Village, food miles, garden city movement, hydrogen economy, invisible hand, Jane Jacobs, linear programming, McMansion, Murano, Venice glass, Negawatt, New Urbanism, off grid, oil shale / tar sands, peak oil, placebo effect, Stewart Brand, The Death and Life of Great American Cities, Thomas L Friedman, unemployed young men, urban planning, urban sprawl, walkable city, zero-sum game

Residents desiring views of the surrounding countryside would be able to opt for (presumably costlier) dwellings situated along the perimeter, facing out. Stores, schools, factories, and other nonresidential uses would be concentrated, mall-style, in the central core. Individual heating and air-conditioning units would be unnecessary because the city itself would be climate-controlled. The domed roof would be made of triangular glass panels and would owe a design debt to R. Buckminster Fuller. “Most houses in Compact City would have two floors in order to conserve base area,” the authors wrote, with the self-assurance of professionally logical men who are certain they have thought of everything (Dantzig was an inventor of linear programming). “Design of both the interior and exterior of these houses would vary according to the preferences of the residents. The ringway would provide access to the rear of the upper floor of a house.


pages: 339 words: 94,769

Possible Minds: Twenty-Five Ways of Looking at AI by John Brockman

AI winter, airport security, Alan Turing: On Computable Numbers, with an Application to the Entscheidungsproblem, artificial general intelligence, Asilomar, autonomous vehicles, basic income, Benoit Mandelbrot, Bill Joy: nanobots, Buckminster Fuller, cellular automata, Claude Shannon: information theory, Daniel Kahneman / Amos Tversky, Danny Hillis, David Graeber, easy for humans, difficult for computers, Elon Musk, Eratosthenes, Ernest Rutherford, finite state, friendly AI, future of work, Geoffrey West, Santa Fe Institute, gig economy, income inequality, industrial robot, information retrieval, invention of writing, James Watt: steam engine, Johannes Kepler, John Maynard Keynes: Economic Possibilities for our Grandchildren, John Maynard Keynes: technological unemployment, John von Neumann, Kevin Kelly, Kickstarter, Laplace demon, Loebner Prize, market fundamentalism, Marshall McLuhan, Menlo Park, Norbert Wiener, optical character recognition, pattern recognition, personalized medicine, Picturephone, profit maximization, profit motive, RAND corporation, random walk, Ray Kurzweil, Richard Feynman, Rodney Brooks, self-driving car, sexual politics, Silicon Valley, Skype, social graph, speech recognition, statistical model, Stephen Hawking, Steven Pinker, Stewart Brand, strong AI, superintelligent machines, supervolcano, technological singularity, technoutopianism, telemarketer, telerobotics, the scientific method, theory of mind, Turing machine, Turing test, universal basic income, Upton Sinclair, Von Neumann architecture, Whole Earth Catalog, Y2K, zero-sum game

While Lois and the team did the heavy lifting on the final mechanicals for WEC, Stewart and I sat together in a corner for two days, reading, underlining, and annotating the same paperback copy of Cybernetics that Cage had handed to me the year before, and debating Wiener’s ideas. Inspired by this set of ideas, I began to develop a theme, a mantra of sorts, that has informed my endeavors since: “new technologies = new perceptions.” Inspired by communications theorist Marshall McLuhan, architect-designer Buckminster Fuller, futurist John McHale, and cultural anthropologists Edward T. “Ned” Hall and Edmund Carpenter, I started reading avidly in the fields of information theory, cybernetics, and systems theory. McLuhan suggested I read biologist J. Z. Young’s Doubt and Certainty in Science, in which he said that we create tools and we mold ourselves through our use of them. The other text he recommended was Warren Weaver and Claude Shannon’s 1949 paper “Recent Contributions to the Mathematical Theory of Communication,” which begins: “The word communication will be used here in a very broad sense to include all of the procedures by which one mind may affect another.


pages: 321 words: 89,109

The New Gold Rush: The Riches of Space Beckon! by Joseph N. Pelton

3D printing, Any sufficiently advanced technology is indistinguishable from magic, Buckminster Fuller, Carrington event, Colonization of Mars, disruptive innovation, Donald Trump, Elon Musk, en.wikipedia.org, full employment, global pandemic, Google Earth, gravity well, Iridium satellite, Jeff Bezos, job automation, Johannes Kepler, John von Neumann, life extension, low earth orbit, Lyft, Mark Shuttleworth, Mark Zuckerberg, megacity, megastructure, new economy, Peter H. Diamandis: Planetary Resources, post-industrial society, private space industry, Ray Kurzweil, Silicon Valley, skunkworks, Stephen Hawking, Steve Jobs, Thomas Malthus, Tim Cook: Apple, Tunguska event, uber lyft, urban planning, urban sprawl, wikimedia commons, X Prize

The terms “the Singularity ” and “Abundance” are used interchangeably throughout this book to refer to breakthrough technologies and the rise of super intelligence that are presumed to accelerate global innovation and the means to cope with problems of all types, from clean energy to climate change to overpopulation. It was Ray Kurzwiel, the Artificial Intelligence (AI) guru, who popularized the term Singularity. Dr. Peter Diamandis, who in cooperation with others founded the International Space University and then went on to found the Singularity University and also breathed life into the wonderful X-Prize initiative, simply calls it “abundance.” And before him R. Buckminster Fuller called it “transcendence.” No matter what you call it, the idea is to go ahead and think outside the box. Indeed the trick is to think outside the limits of the 6 sextillion-ton spaceship we call Planet Earth. Fuller, Kurzweil, Diamandis and other space enthusiasts, including the authors, are trying to convince our economic and political leaders that the trick is to think outside constraints of the current world economic systems and the resources we have trapped within the orb we call Earth.


pages: 294 words: 96,661

The Fourth Age: Smart Robots, Conscious Computers, and the Future of Humanity by Byron Reese

agricultural Revolution, AI winter, artificial general intelligence, basic income, Buckminster Fuller, business cycle, business process, Claude Shannon: information theory, clean water, cognitive bias, computer age, crowdsourcing, dark matter, Elon Musk, Eratosthenes, estate planning, financial independence, first square of the chessboard, first square of the chessboard / second half of the chessboard, full employment, Hans Rosling, income inequality, invention of agriculture, invention of movable type, invention of the printing press, invention of writing, Isaac Newton, Islamic Golden Age, James Hargreaves, job automation, Johannes Kepler, John Maynard Keynes: Economic Possibilities for our Grandchildren, John Maynard Keynes: technological unemployment, John von Neumann, Kevin Kelly, lateral thinking, life extension, Louis Pasteur, low skilled workers, manufacturing employment, Marc Andreessen, Mark Zuckerberg, Marshall McLuhan, Mary Lou Jepsen, Moravec's paradox, On the Revolutions of the Heavenly Spheres, pattern recognition, profit motive, Ray Kurzweil, recommendation engine, Rodney Brooks, Sam Altman, self-driving car, Silicon Valley, Skype, spinning jenny, Stephen Hawking, Steve Wozniak, Steven Pinker, strong AI, technological singularity, telepresence, telepresence robot, The Future of Employment, the scientific method, Turing machine, Turing test, universal basic income, Von Neumann architecture, Wall-E, Watson beat the top human players on Jeopardy!, women in the workforce, working poor, Works Progress Administration, Y Combinator

He did not reject property ownership itself; rather, he argued that we should create “a national fund, out of which there shall be paid to every person, when arrived at the age of twenty-one years, the sum of Fifteen Pounds sterling, as a compensation in part, for the loss of his or her natural inheritance, by the introduction of the system of landed property.” The idea of a UBI never fell entirely out of favor. Buckminster Fuller came out in favor of it quite forcefully: We must do away with the absolutely specious notion that everybody has to earn a living. . . . We keep inventing jobs because of this false idea that everybody has to be employed at some kind of drudgery because, according to Malthusian-Darwinism theory, he must justify his right to exist. So we have inspectors of inspectors and people making instruments for inspectors to inspect inspectors.


pages: 322 words: 88,197

Wonderland: How Play Made the Modern World by Steven Johnson

Ada Lovelace, Alfred Russel Wallace, Antoine Gombaud: Chevalier de Méré, Berlin Wall, bitcoin, Book of Ingenious Devices, Buckminster Fuller, Claude Shannon: information theory, Clayton Christensen, colonial exploitation, computer age, conceptual framework, crowdsourcing, cuban missile crisis, Drosophila, Edward Thorp, Fellow of the Royal Society, game design, global village, Hedy Lamarr / George Antheil, HyperCard, invention of air conditioning, invention of the printing press, invention of the telegraph, Islamic Golden Age, Jacquard loom, Jacques de Vaucanson, James Watt: steam engine, Jane Jacobs, John von Neumann, joint-stock company, Joseph-Marie Jacquard, land value tax, Landlord’s Game, lone genius, mass immigration, megacity, Minecraft, moral panic, Murano, Venice glass, music of the spheres, Necker cube, New Urbanism, Oculus Rift, On the Economy of Machinery and Manufactures, pattern recognition, peer-to-peer, pets.com, placebo effect, probability theory / Blaise Pascal / Pierre de Fermat, profit motive, QWERTY keyboard, Ray Oldenburg, spice trade, spinning jenny, statistical model, Steve Jobs, Steven Pinker, Stewart Brand, supply-chain management, talking drums, the built environment, The Great Good Place, the scientific method, The Structural Transformation of the Public Sphere, trade route, Turing machine, Turing test, Upton Sinclair, urban planning, Victor Gruen, Watson beat the top human players on Jeopardy!, white flight, white picket fence, Whole Earth Catalog, working poor, Wunderkammern

The tragic contradictions of Gruen’s life run through the plan for EPCOT as well: watching Disney’s film, you catch a fleeting glimpse of an alternate version of the recent past, where the pedestrian mall—“more like downtown than downtown itself”—inspires a new vision of urban life that rejects the tyranny of the automobile and ushers in a new era of mass-transit innovation. (Just imagine the impact on climate change if we’d had thirty years of using our automobiles only for weekend pleasure trips.) But, of course, that alternate past didn’t happen. Instead, the mall triggered decades of suburban ascendancy, and the Walt Disney Corporation turned EPCOT into yet another theme park, with its bizarre and sad hybrid of Buckminster Fuller futurism and It’s-a-Small-World globalism. Why weren’t progress cities built? The easiest way to dismiss the Gruen/EPCOT vision is to focus on the centrality of the mall itself. Now that mall culture is in decline—in the United States and Europe at least—we understand that the overly programmed nature of the mall environment ended up being its fatal flaw. As always, play is driven by surprise and novelty, just as it was when those London ladies first encountered the lavish shopfronts of Ludgate Hill, or when the Parisian kleptomaniacs first wandered into the wonderland of Le Bon Marché.


pages: 302 words: 95,965

How to Be the Startup Hero: A Guide and Textbook for Entrepreneurs and Aspiring Entrepreneurs by Tim Draper

3D printing, Airbnb, Apple's 1984 Super Bowl advert, augmented reality, autonomous vehicles, basic income, Berlin Wall, bitcoin, blockchain, Buckminster Fuller, business climate, carried interest, connected car, crowdsourcing, cryptocurrency, Deng Xiaoping, discounted cash flows, disintermediation, Donald Trump, Elon Musk, Ethereum, ethereum blockchain, family office, fiat currency, frictionless, frictionless market, high net worth, hiring and firing, Jeff Bezos, Kickstarter, low earth orbit, Lyft, Mahatma Gandhi, Mark Zuckerberg, Menlo Park, Metcalfe's law, Metcalfe’s law, Mikhail Gorbachev, Minecraft, Moneyball by Michael Lewis explains big data, Nelson Mandela, Network effects, peer-to-peer, Peter Thiel, pez dispenser, Ralph Waldo Emerson, risk tolerance, Robert Metcalfe, Ronald Reagan, Rosa Parks, Sand Hill Road, school choice, school vouchers, self-driving car, sharing economy, short selling, Silicon Valley, Skype, smart contracts, Snapchat, sovereign wealth fund, stealth mode startup, stem cell, Steve Jobs, Tesla Model S, Uber for X, uber lyft, universal basic income, women in the workforce, Y Combinator, zero-sum game

Without it, no real success is possible, no matter whether it is on a section gang, a football field, in an army, or in an office. Dwight D. Eisenhower Real integrity is doing the right thing, knowing that nobody's going to know whether you did it or not. Oprah Winfrey Have the courage to say no. Have the courage to face the truth. Do the right thing because it is right. These are the magic keys to living your life with integrity. W. Clement Stone Integrity is the essence of everything successful. R. Buckminster Fuller The impossible often has a kind of integrity which the merely improbable lacks. Douglas Adams Nothing more completely baffles one who is full of trick and duplicity, than straightforward and simple integrity in another. Charles Caleb Colton Keeping your word can be extraordinarily painful, especially when people's interests and motivations change. The Defy Prison Story Defy is a non-profit organization that encourages prisoners and ex-prisoners to learn to become entrepreneurs.


pages: 307 words: 97,677

The Evolution of Useful Things by Henry Petroski

Buckminster Fuller, card file, industrial robot, Menlo Park, Ralph Waldo Emerson, The Wealth of Nations by Adam Smith, traveling salesman

While the wheelbarrow clearly had an advantage over the hod in requiring only one person to transport it, the hod retained an advantage over the wheelbarrow when it came to being emptied onto an elevated work space. Such relative advantages and disadvantages among artifacts lead to diversity rather than extinction. (photo credit 13.4) Streamlining American automobiles began with some subtle changes introduced in the 1920s, but the solidly established squarish Fords set the aesthetic standard. Radical streamlining, such as introduced by Buckminster Fuller in his Dymaxion car exhibited in 1935 at the Chicago World’s Fair, was clearly “futuristic,” and hence not taken as seriously as cars of the present. The sensibly streamlined 1934 Chrysler Airflow rounded and tapered the boxy profile, fenders, and windows of contemporary designs, but it was not a commercial success. The immediate postwar period, which the atomic bomb, if nothing else, defined as the future realized, saw the arrival of truly streamlined cars in the 1947 Studebaker.


pages: 309 words: 101,190

Climbing Mount Improbable by Richard Dawkins, Lalla Ward

Buckminster Fuller, computer age, Drosophila, Fellow of the Royal Society, industrial robot, invention of radio, John von Neumann, Menlo Park, phenotype, Robert X Cringely, stem cell, trade route

For me, the champions of all microscopic kaleidoscopes are the Radiolaria, another planktonic group to which Haeckel paid special attention (Figure 7.5). They too illustrate beautiful symmetries of various orders, equivalent to kaleidoscopes with two, three, four, five, six and more mirrors. They have tiny skeletons made of chalk with a beauty and elegance that has kaleidoscopic embryology written all over it. The kaleidoscopic masterpiece in Figure 7.6 might have been designed by the visionary architect Buckminster Fuller (whom I was once privileged to hear, in his nineties, lecturing for a mesmerizing three hours without respite). Like his geodesic domes it relies for its strength on the structurally robust geometric form of the triangle. It is clearly the product of a kaleidoscopic embryology of a high order. Any given mutation will be reflected a very large number of times. The exact number cannot be determined from this picture.


pages: 469 words: 97,582

QI: The Second Book of General Ignorance by Lloyd, John, Mitchinson, John

Ada Lovelace, Boris Johnson, British Empire, Buckminster Fuller, Captain Sullenberger Hudson, Charles Lindbergh, clean water, double helix, Etonian, George Santayana, ghettoisation, Isaac Newton, Lao Tzu, Louis Pasteur, Mikhail Gorbachev, Murano, Venice glass, out of africa, the built environment, trade route, transatlantic slave trade, traveling salesman, US Airways Flight 1549

It’s long been known that one form of pure carbon (graphite) can be turned into another (diamond) by heat and pressure. But the Bayreuth team used neither. They used a third form of pure carbon, fullerite, also known as buckminsterfullerene or ‘buckyballs’. Its sixty carbon atoms form a molecule shaped like a soccer ball, or like one of the geodesic domes invented by the American architect Richard Buckminster Fuller (1895–1983). The carbon atoms in diamond are arranged in cubes stacked in pyramids; the new substance is made of tiny, interlocking rods. These are called ‘nanorods’ because they are so small – nanos is Greek for ‘dwarf’. Each is 1 micron (one millionth of a metre) long and 20 nanometres (20 billionths of a metre) wide – about 1/50,000th of the width of a human hair. Subjecting fullerite to extremes of heat (2,220 °C) and compression (200,000 times normal atmospheric pressure) created not only the hardest, but also the stiffest and densest substance known to science.


pages: 334 words: 103,508

Icehenge by Kim Stanley Robinson

Buckminster Fuller, colonial rule, Colonization of Mars, double helix, gravity well

In the tapestry gallery, among the complicated wall hangings, there was a bulletin screen filled with messages and games and jokes. I stopped before it, and a sentence struck my eye. “Only under the stresses of total social emergencies do the effectively adequate alternative technical strategies synergetically emerge.” Jeez, I thought, what prose artist penned that? I looked down — the ascription was to one Buckminster Fuller. The quote continued: “Here we witness mind over matter and humanity’s escape from the limitations of his identity with some circumscribed geographical locality.” That was for sure. Part of the bulletin screen was reserved for suggestions for the name of the starship. Anyone could pick his color and typeface, and tap a name onto the space on the screen. It was getting crowded. Most of them were dull: First, One, The Starship.


pages: 360 words: 100,991

Heart of the Machine: Our Future in a World of Artificial Emotional Intelligence by Richard Yonck

3D printing, AI winter, artificial general intelligence, Asperger Syndrome, augmented reality, Berlin Wall, brain emulation, Buckminster Fuller, call centre, cognitive bias, cognitive dissonance, computer age, computer vision, crowdsourcing, Elon Musk, en.wikipedia.org, epigenetics, friendly AI, ghettoisation, industrial robot, Internet of things, invention of writing, Jacques de Vaucanson, job automation, John von Neumann, Kevin Kelly, Law of Accelerating Returns, Loebner Prize, Menlo Park, meta analysis, meta-analysis, Metcalfe’s law, neurotypical, Oculus Rift, old age dependency ratio, pattern recognition, RAND corporation, Ray Kurzweil, Rodney Brooks, self-driving car, Skype, social intelligence, software as a service, Stephen Hawking, Steven Pinker, superintelligent machines, technological singularity, telepresence, telepresence robot, The Future of Employment, the scientific method, theory of mind, Turing test, twin studies, undersea cable, Vernor Vinge, Watson beat the top human players on Jeopardy!, Whole Earth Review, working-age population, zero day

Certain events, such as the development of sexual reproduction, may lead to an overall increase in the rate of evolution, but in general, recombination, mutation, and other factors leading to genetic change follow a reasonably linear rate of progression. In contrast, technological evolution follows a much more exponential pattern of growth, due at least in part to the positive feedback loops generated by prior advances. 3. A considerable volume of writing and research supports the concept of accelerating technological change, including the works of technologists Stanislaw Ulam, R. Buckminster Fuller, Ray Kurzweil, Vernor Vinge, and Kevin Kelly. 4. The Art of Human-Computer Interface Design. Laurel, B., Editor. Addison-Wesley. 1990. Chapter 1 1. “Emergence of Individuality in Genetically Identical Mice.” Julia Freund, Andreas M. Brandmaier, Lars Lewejohann, et al. Science, Vol. 340, No. 6133 (May 10, 2013), pp. 756–759, doi:10.1126/science.1235294. 2. “Sources of human psychological differences: the Minnesota study of twins reared apart.”


Personal Development for Smart People: The Conscious Pursuit of Personal Growth by Steve Pavlina

Buckminster Fuller, fear of failure, financial independence, placebo effect, side project, unbiased observer

Contents Introduction "When I'm working on a problem, about beauty. I never think I think only how to solve the problem. But when I have finished, if the solution is not beautiful, I know it is wrong." — R. BUCKMINSTER FULLER 1 • Do y o u remember the exact m o m e n t you first became interested in personal development? I certainly do. It happened in January 1991 while I was sitting in a jail cell. I'd just been arrested for felony grand theft. This wasn't my first run-in with the law, so I knew was in trouble. I was 19 years old. I began stealing shortly after moving to Berkeley, California, during my first semester at UC Berkeley. I didn't steal for money or to build a reputation—I stole for the thrill. I was addicted to the surge of adrenaline. The compulsion to steal was so strong that shoplifting was part of my routine, nothing more than my daily espresso.


pages: 460 words: 107,712

A Devil's Chaplain: Selected Writings by Richard Dawkins

Albert Einstein, Alfred Russel Wallace, Buckminster Fuller, butterfly effect, Claude Shannon: information theory, complexity theory, Desert Island Discs, double helix, Douglas Hofstadter, epigenetics, experimental subject, Fellow of the Royal Society, gravity well, Necker cube, out of africa, phenotype, placebo effect, random walk, Richard Feynman, Silicon Valley, stem cell, Stephen Hawking, the scientific method

The football is, therefore, theoretically a pattern into which carbon atoms might spontaneously fall. Mirabile dictu, exactly this pattern has been discovered among carbon atoms. The team responsible, including Sir Harry Kroto of Sussex University, won the 1996 Nobel Prize for Chemistry. Called Buckminsterfullerene, it is an elegant sphere of 60 carbon atoms, linked up as 20 hexagons interspersed with 12 pentagons. The name honours the visionary American architect Buckminster Fuller (whom I was privileged to meet when he was a very old man2) and the spheres are affectionately known as buckyballs. They can combine together to make larger crystals. Like graphite sheets, buckyballs make good lubricants, probably because of their spherical shape: they presumably work like tiny ball bearings. Since the buckyball’s discovery, chemists have realized that it is just a special case of a large family of ‘buckytubes’ and other ‘fullerenes’.


pages: 465 words: 109,653

Free Ride by Robert Levine

A Declaration of the Independence of Cyberspace, Anne Wojcicki, book scanning, borderless world, Buckminster Fuller, citizen journalism, commoditize, correlation does not imply causation, creative destruction, crowdsourcing, death of newspapers, Edward Lloyd's coffeehouse, Electric Kool-Aid Acid Test, Firefox, future of journalism, Googley, Hacker Ethic, informal economy, Jaron Lanier, Joi Ito, Julian Assange, Justin.tv, Kevin Kelly, linear programming, Marc Andreessen, Mitch Kapor, moral panic, offshore financial centre, pets.com, publish or perish, race to the bottom, Saturday Night Live, Silicon Valley, Silicon Valley startup, Skype, spectrum auction, Steve Jobs, Steven Levy, Stewart Brand, subscription business, Telecommunications Act of 1996, Whole Earth Catalog, WikiLeaks

The right information in the right place just changes your life. On the other hand, information wants to be free, because the cost of getting it out is getting lower and lower all the time. So you have these two fighting against each other. Brand’s own information wanted to be expensive, and he made a small fortune in the publishing business. A bohemian intellectual who befriended both Buckminster Fuller and Ken Kesey, Brand appeared as a character in Tom Wolfe’s Electric Kool-Aid Acid Test and campaigned for NASA to release a picture of Earth from space. As living off the land became part of the post-hippie zeitgeist, he created the Whole Earth Catalog, an influential compendium of advice that Steve Jobs once referred to as “sort of like Google in paperback form.”19 He started out peddling an early version from the back of his truck and went on to sell more than a million copies of a later edition.


pages: 341 words: 116,854

The Devil's Playground: A Century of Pleasure and Profit in Times Square by James Traub

Anton Chekhov, Broken windows theory, Buckminster Fuller, Charles Lindbergh, delayed gratification, Donald Trump, fear of failure, intangible asset, Jane Jacobs, jitney, light touch regulation, megastructure, New Urbanism, Peter Eisenman, plutocrats, Plutocrats, price mechanism, rent control, Ronald Reagan, upwardly mobile, urban planning, urban renewal

Unlike Alexander Parker’s pastoralized plaza, Cityscape offered an extremely inventive and even playful rendition of 42nd Street’s character, adapting its identity as a rialto of popular entertainment to a new culture and new technology. Weinstein hired the artists and designers who had created the celebrated Czech pavilion at Expo 67 in Montreal, including Milos For-man, as well as the design firm of Chermayeff & Geismar, which was responsible for the American pavilion—the one with Buckminster Fuller’s geodesic dome—and the accompanying exhibit at Osaka in 1970. Cityscape was not a preservation project: its premise was that 42nd Street needed to be projected forward rather than backward. The design firm produced a cutaway aerial view of the project which today has about it a Flash Gordon sense of the fantastical. A monorail runs all around the perimeter on an upper floor—the orientation ride.


pages: 422 words: 113,525

Whole Earth Discipline: An Ecopragmatist Manifesto by Stewart Brand

agricultural Revolution, Asilomar, Asilomar Conference on Recombinant DNA, back-to-the-land, biofilm, borderless world, Buckminster Fuller, business process, Cass Sunstein, clean water, Community Supported Agriculture, conceptual framework, Danny Hillis, dark matter, decarbonisation, demographic dividend, demographic transition, Elon Musk, Exxon Valdez, failed state, Geoffrey West, Santa Fe Institute, glass ceiling, Google Earth, Hans Rosling, Hernando de Soto, informal economy, interchangeable parts, Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC), invention of agriculture, invention of the steam engine, Jane Jacobs, jimmy wales, Kevin Kelly, Kibera, land tenure, lateral thinking, low earth orbit, M-Pesa, Marshall McLuhan, megacity, microbiome, New Urbanism, orbital mechanics / astrodynamics, out of africa, Paul Graham, peak oil, Peter Calthorpe, Richard Florida, Ronald Reagan, Silicon Valley, smart grid, stem cell, Stewart Brand, The Fortune at the Bottom of the Pyramid, Thomas Malthus, University of East Anglia, uranium enrichment, urban renewal, wealth creators, Whole Earth Catalog, Whole Earth Review, William Langewiesche, working-age population, Y2K

Another comes from the French fox Voltaire: “Doubt is not a pleasant condition, but certainty is absurd.” Every interview with a public figure should include the question “What have you been wrong about, and how did that change your views?” The answer will tell us if the person is intellectually honest or a tale spinner with delusions of infallibility. Let me quickly furnish a partial list of things I’ve been wrong about in public. In the 1960s, I pushed communes as a path to the future, Buckminster Fuller domes as habitable, and cocaine as harmless. In the 1970s, I was sure the 1973 oil crisis would lead to police in the streets of the United States, that nuclear power was bad, and that small was always beautiful, villages especially. I was totally wrong about the Y2K bug in 2000. In 2003 I was so sure that a Democrat would win the 2004 presidential election that I made a public bet about it.


pages: 404 words: 113,514

Atrocity Archives by Stross, Charles

airport security, anthropic principle, Berlin Wall, brain emulation, British Empire, Buckminster Fuller, defense in depth, disintermediation, experimental subject, glass ceiling, haute cuisine, hypertext link, Khyber Pass, mandelbrot fractal, Menlo Park, MITM: man-in-the-middle, NP-complete, the medium is the message, Y2K, yield curve

I can just peep over the ridge, which falls away abruptly in front of me. More dead tree stumps; the ground beneath me, the crunching--now I can see that it's grass, freeze-dried and mummified beneath a layer of carbon dioxide frost. Hills or low mounds of some kind rise in the near distance, and then- "Disneyland?" I hear myself saying. Alan laughs quietly. "Not Disneyland. Think Mad King Ludwig's last commission, as executed by Buckminster Fuller." Cheesecake crenellations, battlements with machicolations, moat and drawbridge and turrets. Spiky pointed roofs on the towers--like the police stations in West Belfast, designed to deflect incoming mortar fire. Arrow slots filled with mirror glass half a metre thick. Radomes and antenna masts in the courtyard where you'd expect armoured knights to mount up. "I didn't know the RUC were Cthulhu-worshippers."


Wireless by Charles Stross

anthropic principle, back-to-the-land, Benoit Mandelbrot, Buckminster Fuller, Cepheid variable, cognitive dissonance, colonial exploitation, cosmic microwave background, epigenetics, finite state, Georg Cantor, gravity well, hive mind, jitney, Khyber Pass, lifelogging, Magellanic Cloud, mandelbrot fractal, MITM: man-in-the-middle, peak oil, phenotype, Pluto: dwarf planet, security theater, sensible shoes, Turing machine, undersea cable

We know the gateways link to at least three other planets. There may be many that we don’t know of. We don’t know how to create them or close them; all we can do is send people through, or pile bricks in the opening.” He nearly bites his tongue, because there are more than three worlds out there, and he’s been to at least one of them: the bolt-hole on XK-Masada, built by the NRO from their secret budget. He’s seen the mile-high dome Buckminster Fuller spent his last decade designing for them, the rings of Patriot air-defense missiles. A squadron of black diamond-shaped fighters from the Skunk Works, said to be invisible to radar, patrols the empty skies of XK-Masada. Hydroponic farms and empty barracks and apartment blocks await the senators and congressmen and their families and thousands of support personnel. In event of war they’ll be evacuated through the small gate that has been moved to the Executive Office Building basement, in a room beneath the swimming pool where Jack used to go skinny-dipping with Marilyn.


pages: 385 words: 118,314

Cities Are Good for You: The Genius of the Metropolis by Leo Hollis

Airbnb, banking crisis, Berlin Wall, Boris Johnson, Broken windows theory, Buckminster Fuller, call centre, car-free, carbon footprint, cellular automata, clean water, cloud computing, complexity theory, congestion charging, creative destruction, credit crunch, Credit Default Swap, crowdsourcing, Deng Xiaoping, digital map, East Village, Edward Glaeser, Enrique Peñalosa, Firefox, Frank Gehry, Geoffrey West, Santa Fe Institute, Gini coefficient, Google Earth, Guggenheim Bilbao, haute couture, Hernando de Soto, housing crisis, illegal immigration, income inequality, informal economy, Internet of things, invisible hand, Jane Jacobs, Kickstarter, knowledge economy, knowledge worker, Long Term Capital Management, M-Pesa, Mahatma Gandhi, Mark Zuckerberg, Masdar, mass immigration, megacity, negative equity, new economy, New Urbanism, Occupy movement, openstreetmap, packet switching, Panopticon Jeremy Bentham, place-making, Ray Oldenburg, Richard Florida, sharing economy, Silicon Valley, Skype, smart cities, smart grid, spice trade, Steve Jobs, technoutopianism, the built environment, The Chicago School, The Death and Life of Great American Cities, The Great Good Place, the High Line, The Spirit Level, The Wisdom of Crowds, Thomas Malthus, trade route, traveling salesman, urban planning, urban renewal, urban sprawl, walkable city, white flight, Y2K, Yom Kippur War

We are going to have to make rather more concrete plans for the future. Perhaps we should start again and build our cities from scratch? Masdar City is currently being built by the Abu Dhabi Future Energy Company, designed by the leading architect Norman Foster, in the desert. Foster’s career has always been about pushing the boundaries of architecture, having as a young man been deeply influenced by the American designer Buckminster Fuller, whose geodesic dome (famously designed on a massive scale as a protection for the city) was a shining example of ‘doing more with less’. With iconic commissions such as the HSBC Bank in Hong Kong, the Gherkin (30 St Mary Axe) in London, and the truly impressive Beijing Airport, Foster has been at the forefront of finding a technical solution to questions of sustainability, investing in new materials, working on designs that reduce energy use, and always remaining visually innovative.


pages: 436 words: 124,373

Galactic North by Alastair Reynolds

back-to-the-land, Buckminster Fuller, hive mind, information retrieval, Kickstarter, risk/return, stem cell, trade route

He knew what hyperdiamond was: a topologically complex interweave of tubular fullerene; structurally similar to cellulose or bulk chitin but thousands of times stronger; its rigidity artificially maintained by some piezo-electric trick which Gilgamesh lacked. "Interesting," Vargovic said. "But unfortunately not interesting enough." She ordered another mocha and downed it replying. "Use your imagination. Only the Demarchy knows how to synthesise it." "It's also useless as a weapon." "Depends. There's an application you should know about." "What?" "Keeping this city afloat - and I'm not talking about economic solvency. Do you know about Buckminster Fuller? He lived about four hundred years ago; believed absolute democracy could be achieved through technological means." "The fool." "Maybe. But Fuller also invented the geodesic lattice which determines the structure of the buckyball; the closed allotrope of tubular fullerene. The city owes him on two counts." "Save the lecture. How does the hyperdiamond come into it?" "Flotation bubbles," she said.


pages: 385 words: 123,168

Bullshit Jobs: A Theory by David Graeber

1960s counterculture, active measures, basic income, Berlin Wall, Bernie Sanders, Bertrand Russell: In Praise of Idleness, Bretton Woods, Buckminster Fuller, call centre, cognitive dissonance, collateralized debt obligation, David Graeber, Donald Trump, equal pay for equal work, full employment, global supply chain, High speed trading, hiring and firing, informal economy, Jarndyce and Jarndyce, Jarndyce and Jarndyce, job automation, John Maynard Keynes: technological unemployment, knowledge worker, moral panic, post-work, precariat, Silicon Valley, Silicon Valley startup, single-payer health, software as a service, telemarketer, The Future of Employment, Thorstein Veblen, too big to fail, Travis Kalanick, universal basic income, unpaid internship, wage slave, wages for housework, women in the workforce, working poor, Works Progress Administration, young professional, éminence grise

And that, in turn, means that love for others—people, animals, landscapes—regularly requires the maintenance of institutional structures one might otherwise despise. how, over the course of the twentieth century, work came to be increasingly valued primarily as a form of discipline and self-sacrifice We keep inventing jobs because of this false idea that everyone has to be employed at some sort of drudgery because, according to Malthusian Darwinian theory, he must justify his right to exist. —Buckminster Fuller However this may be, the “Gospel of Wealth” counteroffensive has been successful, and the captains of industry, first in America, then increasingly everywhere, have been able to convince the public that they, and not those they employ, are the real creators of prosperity. Their very success, however, created an inevitable problem. How are workers supposed to find meaning and purpose in jobs where they are effectively being turned into robots?


pages: 402 words: 126,835

The Job: The Future of Work in the Modern Era by Ellen Ruppel Shell

3D printing, affirmative action, Affordable Care Act / Obamacare, Airbnb, airport security, Albert Einstein, Amazon Mechanical Turk, basic income, Baxter: Rethink Robotics, big-box store, blue-collar work, Buckminster Fuller, call centre, Capital in the Twenty-First Century by Thomas Piketty, Clayton Christensen, cloud computing, collective bargaining, computer vision, corporate governance, corporate social responsibility, creative destruction, crowdsourcing, deskilling, disruptive innovation, Donald Trump, Downton Abbey, Elon Musk, Erik Brynjolfsson, factory automation, follow your passion, Frederick Winslow Taylor, future of work, game design, glass ceiling, hiring and firing, immigration reform, income inequality, industrial robot, invisible hand, Jeff Bezos, job automation, job satisfaction, John Markoff, John Maynard Keynes: Economic Possibilities for our Grandchildren, Joseph Schumpeter, Kickstarter, knowledge economy, knowledge worker, Kodak vs Instagram, labor-force participation, low skilled workers, Lyft, manufacturing employment, Marc Andreessen, Mark Zuckerberg, means of production, move fast and break things, move fast and break things, new economy, Norbert Wiener, obamacare, offshore financial centre, Paul Samuelson, precariat, Ralph Waldo Emerson, risk tolerance, Robert Gordon, Robert Shiller, Robert Shiller, Rodney Brooks, Ronald Reagan, Second Machine Age, self-driving car, shareholder value, sharing economy, Silicon Valley, Snapchat, Steve Jobs, The Chicago School, Thomas L Friedman, Thorstein Veblen, Tim Cook: Apple, Uber and Lyft, uber lyft, universal basic income, urban renewal, white picket fence, working poor, Y Combinator, young professional, zero-sum game

Indeed, despite their staggering market caps, no American Internet information provider has come close to providing the 443,000 American jobs (many of them union jobs) directly supported by Kroger, the nation’s largest supermarket chain. In 2017 Apple, the nation’s most profitable company, had only 77,000 direct US employees. There’s a fancy word for this phenomenon: ephemeralization, coined by Buckminster Fuller in the 1930s to describe the concept of “doing more with less.” Throughout human history, doing more with less resulted in efficiencies that helped make our world a better place. But arguably, we have reached a limit. By building more human-like capabilities into our machines, we seem to have reduced the need for humans in most positions along the value chain in a growing number of industries.


Building and Dwelling: Ethics for the City by Richard Sennett

Buckminster Fuller, car-free, clean water, cognitive dissonance, complexity theory, creative destruction, dematerialisation, Deng Xiaoping, double helix, Downton Abbey, East Village, en.wikipedia.org, Frank Gehry, ghettoisation, housing crisis, illegal immigration, informal economy, interchangeable parts, Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC), Jane Jacobs, Joseph Schumpeter, Kickstarter, Mark Zuckerberg, Masdar, mass immigration, means of production, megacity, new economy, Nicholas Carr, Norbert Wiener, open borders, place-making, plutocrats, Plutocrats, Richard Florida, Shoshana Zuboff, Silicon Valley, Silicon Valley startup, smart cities, Smart Cities: Big Data, Civic Hackers, and the Quest for a New Utopia, the built environment, The Chicago School, The Death and Life of Great American Cities, the High Line, The Wealth of Nations by Adam Smith, urban planning, urban renewal, Victor Gruen

More artfully, thin shell structures can float now above the ground. The structural principles for floating shells came from the Russian engineer Vladimir Shukhov, who made a huge, self-supporting curved-roof shed in Vyksa in 1897; freed of any interior supports, it could be put to any use. The geodesic dome is Vyksa’s heir, the domes being constructed by a lattice of interlocking triangles covered by a protective skin. Buckminster Fuller thought such a dome, both super-light and super-strong, could be magnified almost to infinity; in his zanier moments he hoped to cover entire cities with geodesic domes. More modest in size, but still huge, geodesic domes like the Fukuoka Dome in Japan permit a variety of uses – as does the Millennium Dome (though not strictly geodesic) which Richard Rogers created in London in 1999. Shells create forms whose possibilities are not exhausted in any particular configuration imposed at the start.


pages: 224 words: 91,918

The Electric Kool-Aid Acid Test by Tom Wolfe

Asilomar, Bonfire of the Vanities, Buckminster Fuller, edge city, Electric Kool-Aid Acid Test, Golden Gate Park, Haight Ashbury, haute couture, Menlo Park, Ronald Reagan, stakhanovite, Stewart Brand, strikebreaker, the scientific method, Thorstein Veblen

Lights, movies, video tapes, video tapes of themselves, flashing and swirling over the dome from the beams of searchlights rising from the floor from between their bodies. The sounds roiling around in the globe like a typhoon. Movies and tapes of the past, tapes and video tapes, broadcasts and pictures of the present, tapes and humanoid sounds of the future—but all brought together now—here and now— Kairos—into the dilated cerebral cortex ... The geodesic dome, of course, was Buckminster Fuller's inspiration. The light projections were chiefly Gerd Stern's, Gerd Stern of the USCO group, although Roy Seburn had already done a lot with them and Page Browning showed a talent that surprised everybody. But the magic dome, the new planet, was Kesey and the Pranksters. The idea went beyond what would later be known as mixed-media entertainment, now a standard practice in "psychedelic discotheques" and so forth.


City: A Guidebook for the Urban Age by P. D. Smith

active transport: walking or cycling, Albert Einstein, Andrew Keen, augmented reality, banking crisis, Berlin Wall, British Empire, Broken windows theory, Buckminster Fuller, Burning Man, business cycle, car-free, carbon footprint, clean water, colonial rule, congestion charging, cosmological principle, crack epidemic, double entry bookkeeping, edge city, Edward Lloyd's coffeehouse, en.wikipedia.org, Enrique Peñalosa, Fall of the Berlin Wall, Frank Gehry, garden city movement, global village, haute cuisine, income inequality, Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC), invention of gunpowder, Jane Jacobs, John Snow's cholera map, Kevin Kelly, Kibera, Kickstarter, Kowloon Walled City, Masdar, megacity, megastructure, multicultural london english, mutually assured destruction, New Urbanism, Norman Mailer, peak oil, RFID, smart cities, starchitect, telepresence, the built environment, The Death and Life of Great American Cities, the High Line, Thomas Malthus, trade route, urban planning, urban renewal, urban sprawl, Victor Gruen, walkable city, white flight, white picket fence, young professional

If, as scientists predict, the glaciers melt and sea levels rise dramatically, then ship-cities such as Armada in China Miéville’s The Scar, or cities built out across water, as in architect Kenzo Tange’s elegant ‘Plan for Tokyo’ (1960) which extended the Japanese capital out into the bay, might become reality. Transparent domes protecting cities are another idea popular with science fiction authors. In 1968, American futurist Buckminster Fuller actually proposed covering part of New York City in a vast air-conditioned geodesic dome. And who knows – in an age of climate change, such a scheme might indeed be necessary to protect downtowns from violent storms or stifling heat. Other urban futures include walking cities and plug-in cities, such as those proposed in the 1960s by the wonderfully inventive British architectural group Archigram, mobile or nomadic cities as described in Christopher Priest’s novel Inverted World, underwater cities, inflatable cities, cities on stilts (for example, architect Arata Isozaki’s ‘City in the Air’, from 1960), and temporary cities such as Black Rock City.


pages: 483 words: 143,123

The Frackers: The Outrageous Inside Story of the New Billionaire Wildcatters by Gregory Zuckerman

activist fund / activist shareholder / activist investor, addicted to oil, American energy revolution, Asian financial crisis, Bakken shale, Bernie Sanders, Buckminster Fuller, corporate governance, corporate raider, credit crunch, energy security, Exxon Valdez, housing crisis, hydraulic fracturing, Kickstarter, LNG terminal, margin call, Maui Hawaii, North Sea oil, oil rush, oil shale / tar sands, oil shock, peak oil, Peter Thiel, reshoring, self-driving car, Silicon Valley, sovereign wealth fund, Steve Jobs, urban decay

Mitchell favored checkered pants and jackets that reminded some of the attire of a used-car salesman. He managed his company with an informality and dedication that inspired employees. “George avoided all publicity,” says Clark, the senior executive. “He was just work, tennis, work, tennis, work, tennis.”7 Mitchell evolved into an unusual energy baron. A few years earlier, he had met R. Buckminster Fuller, a futurist and an early environmental activist. Fuller believed human sustainability was in jeopardy and that societies needed to turn to renewable energy sources, including solar and wind power. Mitchell became convinced of the need to pursue alternative energy options in addition to fossil fuels. “It took me three or four days to understand what he was talking about,” recalls Mitchell, who hosted Fuller at various conferences.


pages: 436 words: 141,321

Reinventing Organizations: A Guide to Creating Organizations Inspired by the Next Stage of Human Consciousness by Frederic Laloux, Ken Wilber

Albert Einstein, augmented reality, blue-collar work, Buckminster Fuller, call centre, carbon footprint, conceptual framework, corporate social responsibility, crowdsourcing, different worldview, failed state, future of work, hiring and firing, index card, interchangeable parts, invisible hand, job satisfaction, Johann Wolfgang von Goethe, Kenneth Rogoff, meta analysis, meta-analysis, pattern recognition, post-industrial society, quantitative trading / quantitative finance, randomized controlled trial, selection bias, shareholder value, Silicon Valley, the market place, the scientific method, Tony Hsieh, zero-sum game

May it help many readers gather inspiration to create businesses, schools, hospitals, or nonprofits inspired by this emerging new wave of consciousness that is starting to transform the world. Ken Wilber Denver, Colorado Fall 2013 Introduction THE EMERGENCE OF A NEW ORGANIZATIONAL MODEL You never change things by fighting the existing reality. To change something, build a new model that makes the existing model obsolete. Richard Buckminster Fuller Aristotle, the great Greek philosopher and scientist, proclaimed in a treatise written in 350 BC that women have fewer teeth than men.1 Today we know this is nonsense. But for almost 2,000 years, it was accepted wisdom in the Western World. Then one day, someone had the most revolutionary of ideas: let’s count! The scientific method—formulating a hypothesis and then testing it—is so deeply ingrained in our thinking that we find it hard to conceive that intelligent people would blindly trust authority and not put assumptions to the test.


pages: 409 words: 138,088

Moondust: In Search of the Men Who Fell to Earth by Andrew Smith

British Empire, Buckminster Fuller, Charles Lindbergh, cuban missile crisis, full employment, game design, Haight Ashbury, Jeff Bezos, low earth orbit, Mark Shuttleworth, Mars Rover, Marshall McLuhan, Mikhail Gorbachev, Naomi Klein, Norman Mailer, nuclear winter, orbital mechanics / astrodynamics, pensions crisis, Ronald Reagan

And as abruptly as Young started, he stops. He’s done. I realize that I’ve been holding my breath for some time: we both exhale and sit in silence for a moment, like a pair of strangers who’ve just had reckless sex and now don’t know what to say to each other. Later research reveals “buckyballs” to be a recently discovered form of molecule, named after the brilliant thinker/ inventor/engineer/cosmologist Buckminster Fuller. And if I can’t quite remember what the question was by this point, I have managed to grasp that I’m being asked to contemplate the near-certain extinction of my species through something other than boredom or stupidity, possibly in my own lifetime, or even next Tuesday. And now my mind reels back to the previous evening and a fund-raising dinner for Buzz Aldrin’s National Space Society.


pages: 509 words: 137,315

Islands in the Net by Bruce Sterling

back-to-the-land, Berlin Wall, British Empire, Buckminster Fuller, industrial robot, Malacca Straits, Nelson Mandela, offshore financial centre, South China Sea, wage slave

“Rita made planter’s punch.” “Well, pour me some.” He vanished with the baby and brought her back freshly changed, with her bottle. Laura sighed. “You had a good time, David, didn’t you?” “You wouldn’t believe what they have out there,” David said, sprawling onto the couch with the baby in his lap. “I met another one of the Andreis. I mean his name’s not Andrei, but he acted just like him. Korean guy. Big Buckminster Fuller fan. They’re making massive arcologies out of nothing! For nothing! Concretized sand and seastone. They sink these iron grates into the ocean, run some voltage through, and get this: solids begin to accrete … calcium carbonate, right? Like seashells! They’re growing buildings offshore. Out of this ‘seastone.’ And no building permits … no impact statements … nothing.” He gulped three inches of cloudy rum and lime, then shuddered.


pages: 469 words: 142,230

The Planet Remade: How Geoengineering Could Change the World by Oliver Morton

Albert Einstein, Asilomar, British Empire, Buckminster Fuller, Cesare Marchetti: Marchetti’s constant, colonial rule, Colonization of Mars, Columbian Exchange, decarbonisation, demographic transition, Elon Musk, energy transition, Ernest Rutherford, germ theory of disease, Haber-Bosch Process, Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC), James Watt: steam engine, Jeff Bezos, John Harrison: Longitude, John von Neumann, late capitalism, Louis Pasteur, moral hazard, Naomi Klein, nuclear winter, oil shale / tar sands, orbital mechanics / astrodynamics, Philip Mirowski, planetary scale, plutocrats, Plutocrats, renewable energy transition, Scramble for Africa, Search for Extraterrestrial Intelligence, Silicon Valley, smart grid, South China Sea, Stewart Brand, Thomas Malthus

The increase he found over the years and decades that followed became perhaps the single most important piece of evidence for anthropogenic global warming. Others made the systems-thinking link from capsule to planet through imagination, rather than hardware. They pictured their homeworld as a sealed ‘Spaceship Earth’ equivalent to the capsules from which it was seen. The visionary thinker R. Buckminster Fuller probably invented the idea and certainly promulgated it. ‘Spaceship Earth’ became a rallying call, a way of expressing humanity’s common interest, a way of understanding the global environment as a system of sustenance. Computer models of natural and industrial flows of energy and material were employed to take inventory on its cargo and determine its ‘carrying capacity’ – a term originally used for the number of people who could be put on to a steamship, but since given new meaning as the amount of life an ecosystem could support.


pages: 433 words: 127,171

The Grid: The Fraying Wires Between Americans and Our Energy Future by Gretchen Bakke

addicted to oil, Any sufficiently advanced technology is indistinguishable from magic, autonomous vehicles, back-to-the-land, big-box store, Buckminster Fuller, demand response, dematerialisation, distributed generation, energy security, energy transition, full employment, illegal immigration, indoor plumbing, Internet of things, Kickstarter, laissez-faire capitalism, Menlo Park, Negawatt, new economy, off grid, post-oil, profit motive, Ronald Reagan, self-driving car, Silicon Valley, smart grid, smart meter, the built environment, too big to fail, washing machines reduced drudgery, Whole Earth Catalog

Senate Foreign Relations Committee,” Carter Center, May 12, 2009, http://www.cartercenter.org/news/editorials_speeches/BostonGlobe-energy-security-hearings.html. decentralized power options: Carter also did a great deal to strengthen America’s reliance on fossil fuels, by encouraging more coal use and the exploitation of domestic oil. His problem was energy security and he was very catholic in his approach to solving it. Williams (1997), 325. commitment to fundamental change: This process might have been inevitable, for as Buckminster Fuller famously pointed out, “All the technical curves rise in tonnage and volumetric size to reach a giant peak after which miniaturization sets in. After that a more economic art takes over which also goes through the same cycle of doing progressively more with less.” Critical Path (1981). the project and opted out: Hirsh (1999), 82. any given billing cycle: The most standard “promotional rate” structure was to charge less the more electricity was used.


pages: 789 words: 207,744

The Patterning Instinct: A Cultural History of Humanity's Search for Meaning by Jeremy Lent

"Robert Solow", Admiral Zheng, agricultural Revolution, Albert Einstein, Alfred Russel Wallace, Atahualpa, Benoit Mandelbrot, Bretton Woods, British Empire, Buckminster Fuller, Capital in the Twenty-First Century by Thomas Piketty, cognitive dissonance, commoditize, complexity theory, conceptual framework, dematerialisation, demographic transition, different worldview, Doomsday Book, en.wikipedia.org, European colonialism, failed state, Firefox, Francisco Pizarro, Georg Cantor, happiness index / gross national happiness, hedonic treadmill, income inequality, Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC), Internet of things, invention of gunpowder, invention of writing, Isaac Newton, Johann Wolfgang von Goethe, Johannes Kepler, Lao Tzu, Law of Accelerating Returns, mandelbrot fractal, mass immigration, megacity, Metcalfe's law, Mikhail Gorbachev, Nicholas Carr, Norbert Wiener, oil shale / tar sands, out of africa, peak oil, Pierre-Simon Laplace, QWERTY keyboard, Ray Kurzweil, Sapir-Whorf hypothesis, Scientific racism, scientific worldview, shareholder value, sharing economy, Silicon Valley, Simon Kuznets, social intelligence, South China Sea, Stephen Hawking, Steven Pinker, technological singularity, the scientific method, theory of mind, Thomas Kuhn: the structure of scientific revolutions, Thomas Malthus, Thorstein Veblen, Turing test, ultimatum game, urban sprawl, Vernor Vinge, wikimedia commons

At our current rate of energy usage, it has been calculated that our world is going through about fourteen thousand years’ worth of that fossilized sunshine from the Carboniferous age every day.38 We are so used to enjoying the benefits of oil's stored energy that it is difficult to comprehend precisely how much it is doing for us. A single barrel of oil holds as much energy as one man could produce in heavy manual labor over roughly ten years. Buckminster Fuller proposed a brilliant way to visualize the power of oil with the notion of “energy slaves”—the human equivalent of oil's energy. It would take one energy slave pedaling hard on a bicycle to keep a hundred-watt light bulb going. An average American, who consumes about twenty-four barrels of oil per year, would require about two hundred energy slaves to sustain her lifestyle, while the entire world population, using far less energy on average than Americans, would require a mind-boggling sixty-six billion energy slaves to produce the work currently provided by oil.


pages: 391 words: 22,799

To Serve God and Wal-Mart: The Making of Christian Free Enterprise by Bethany Moreton

affirmative action, American Legislative Exchange Council, anti-communist, Berlin Wall, big-box store, Bretton Woods, Buckminster Fuller, collective bargaining, corporate personhood, creative destruction, deindustrialization, desegregation, Donald Trump, estate planning, Fall of the Berlin Wall, Frederick Winslow Taylor, George Gilder, global village, informal economy, invisible hand, liberation theology, longitudinal study, market fundamentalism, Mont Pelerin Society, mortgage tax deduction, Naomi Klein, new economy, post-industrial society, postindustrial economy, prediction markets, price anchoring, Ralph Nader, RFID, road to serfdom, Ronald Reagan, Silicon Valley, Stewart Brand, strikebreaker, The Wealth of Nations by Adam Smith, union organizing, walkable city, Washington Consensus, white flight, Whole Earth Catalog, Works Progress Administration

President Jack Shewmaker, a major force in pushing the digital revolution in Bentonville, even attended the same church as Holder.33 These creative collusions between business, technology, and belief shed new light on the supposed “paradox” of Wal-Mart: how the hightech rednecks mastered cybernetics and corporate culture without losing Christ or country music. Despite its gleam of pure sciÂ�enÂ�tific rationality, developing and deploying high technology has been in part a 132 MAKING CHRISTIAN BUSIN E S S M EN spiritual exercise from the beginning, no matter the political context. The countercultural devotees of Buckminster Fuller, Ken Kesey, and the Whole Earth Catalog brought their dreams of antiauthoritarian, transcendent elitism into the cyber revolution in California. Blending their privileged vision as “comprehensive designers” with the decentralized technologies they developed, this loose fraternity marked an entire wing of the postindustrial economy with their conviction that their new tools made them “as gods.”


pages: 497 words: 146,551

Lila: An Inquiry Into Morals by Robert M. Pirsig

Albert Einstein, Buckminster Fuller, feminist movement, index card, John von Neumann, luminiferous ether, Thorstein Veblen, trade route

In one dusty attic, he found a bulky manuscript called The Tribes and the States in which Sidis argues persuasively that the New England political system was profoundly influenced by the democratic federation of the Penacook Indians. At this sentence, a kind of shock passed through Phædrus, but the article went on. When Mahony sent Sidis’s book The Animate and Inanimate to another eccentric genius, Buckminster Fuller, Fuller found it a fine cosmological piece that astoundingly predicted the existence of black holes — in 1925! Mahony has unearthed a science fiction novel, economic and political writings, and eighty-nine weekly newspaper columns about Boston that Sidis wrote under a pen name. The amazing thing is that we may only have tapped the surface of what Sidis produced, says Mahony. For instance, we’ve found just one page of a manuscript called The Peace Paths, and people who knew Sidis have said they saw many more manuscripts.


pages: 519 words: 142,646

Track Changes by Matthew G. Kirschenbaum

active measures, Apple II, Apple's 1984 Super Bowl advert, Bill Gates: Altair 8800, Buckminster Fuller, commoditize, computer age, corporate governance, David Brooks, dematerialisation, Donald Knuth, Douglas Hofstadter, Dynabook, East Village, en.wikipedia.org, feminist movement, forensic accounting, future of work, Google Earth, Gödel, Escher, Bach, Haight Ashbury, HyperCard, Jason Scott: textfiles.com, Joan Didion, John Markoff, John von Neumann, Kickstarter, low earth orbit, mail merge, Marshall McLuhan, Mother of all demos, New Journalism, Norman Mailer, pattern recognition, pink-collar, popular electronics, RAND corporation, rolodex, Ronald Reagan, self-driving car, Shoshana Zuboff, Silicon Valley, social web, Stephen Hawking, Steve Jobs, Steve Wozniak, Steven Levy, Stewart Brand, technoutopianism, Ted Nelson, text mining, thinkpad, Turing complete, Vannevar Bush, Whole Earth Catalog, Y2K, Year of Magical Thinking

Alan even coined the term “personal computer.” So this visit was really to the mother lode. And way ahead of the curve. People had not even heard of this stuff yet. It was a big deal for all of us. Alan talked for close to four hours about computers, education, music, early childhood, theatre, storytelling, science, psychology, learning, artificial intelligence, programming, science fiction, biology, humanism, evolution, Bach, Buckminster Fuller, philosophy, neurology, aesthetics, and the future, the future, and the future. Steven and I had our minds blown.38 MacBird had already been thinking that the film would hinge upon the contrast between the world inside and outside of the computer; the three developed a rapport, and she and Lisberger hired Kay as their technical consultant. MacBird also decided that the film needed an Alan Kay–like character, and wrote him into the script as a master programmer named Alan Bradley, or “Alan-1.”


pages: 528 words: 146,459

Computer: A History of the Information Machine by Martin Campbell-Kelly, William Aspray, Nathan L. Ensmenger, Jeffrey R. Yost

Ada Lovelace, air freight, Alan Turing: On Computable Numbers, with an Application to the Entscheidungsproblem, Apple's 1984 Super Bowl advert, barriers to entry, Bill Gates: Altair 8800, borderless world, Buckminster Fuller, Build a better mousetrap, Byte Shop, card file, cashless society, cloud computing, combinatorial explosion, computer age, deskilling, don't be evil, Donald Davies, Douglas Engelbart, Douglas Engelbart, Dynabook, fault tolerance, Fellow of the Royal Society, financial independence, Frederick Winslow Taylor, game design, garden city movement, Grace Hopper, informal economy, interchangeable parts, invention of the wheel, Jacquard loom, Jeff Bezos, jimmy wales, John Markoff, John von Neumann, Kickstarter, light touch regulation, linked data, Marc Andreessen, Mark Zuckerberg, Marshall McLuhan, Menlo Park, Mitch Kapor, natural language processing, Network effects, New Journalism, Norbert Wiener, Occupy movement, optical character recognition, packet switching, PageRank, pattern recognition, Pierre-Simon Laplace, pirate software, popular electronics, prediction markets, pre–internet, QWERTY keyboard, RAND corporation, Robert X Cringely, Silicon Valley, Silicon Valley startup, Steve Jobs, Steven Levy, Stewart Brand, Ted Nelson, the market place, Turing machine, Vannevar Bush, Von Neumann architecture, Whole Earth Catalog, William Shockley: the traitorous eight, women in the workforce, young professional

Instead, most individuals who viewed computers as tools for liberation were politically agnostic, more focused on forming alternative communities, and inclined to embrace new technology as a means to better achieve personal liberty and human happiness—what one scholar has labeled as the “New Communalists.” Stewart Brand, Stanford University biology graduate turned publishing entrepreneur, became a leading voice for the New Communalists through creating The Whole Earth Catalog. Deeply influenced by cybernetics visionary Norbert Wiener, electronics media theorist Marshall McLuhan, and architect and designer Buckminster Fuller, Brand pressed NASA to publicly release a satellite photo of the Earth in 1966. Two years later the photo adorned the cover of the first edition of The Whole Earth Catalog. Publishing regularly between 1968 and 1971, Brand’s catalog identified and promoted key products or tools for communal living and, in doing so, sought to help “transform the individual into a capable, creative person.” The only “catalog” to ever win a National Book Award, the publication was inspirational to many personal-computer pioneers including Apple Computer co-founder Steve Jobs, who later reminisced: “The Whole Earth Catalog . . . was one the bibles of my generation. . . .


pages: 915 words: 232,883

Steve Jobs by Walter Isaacson

air freight, Albert Einstein, Apple II, Apple's 1984 Super Bowl advert, big-box store, Bob Noyce, Buckminster Fuller, Byte Shop, centre right, Clayton Christensen, cloud computing, commoditize, computer age, computer vision, corporate governance, death of newspapers, don't be evil, Douglas Engelbart, Dynabook, El Camino Real, Electric Kool-Aid Acid Test, fixed income, game design, Golden Gate Park, Hacker Ethic, hiring and firing, Jeff Bezos, Johannes Kepler, John Markoff, Jony Ive, lateral thinking, Mark Zuckerberg, Menlo Park, Mitch Kapor, Mother of all demos, Paul Terrell, profit maximization, publish or perish, Richard Feynman, Robert Metcalfe, Robert X Cringely, Ronald Reagan, Silicon Valley, skunkworks, Steve Ballmer, Steve Jobs, Steve Wozniak, Steven Levy, Stewart Brand, supply-chain management, thinkpad, Tim Cook: Apple, Wall-E, Whole Earth Catalog

The underlying philosophy was that technology could be our friend. Brand wrote on the first page of the first edition, “A realm of intimate, personal power is developing—power of the individual to conduct his own education, find his own inspiration, shape his own environment, and share his adventure with whoever is interested. Tools that aid this process are sought and promoted by the Whole Earth Catalog.” Buckminster Fuller followed with a poem that began: “I see God in the instruments and mechanisms that work reliably.” Jobs became a Whole Earth fan. He was particularly taken by the final issue, which came out in 1971, when he was still in high school, and he brought it with him to college and then to the All One Farm. “On the back cover of their final issue” Jobs recalled, “was a photograph of an early morning country road, the kind you might find yourself hitchhiking on if you were so adventurous.


pages: 606 words: 157,120

To Save Everything, Click Here: The Folly of Technological Solutionism by Evgeny Morozov

3D printing, algorithmic trading, Amazon Mechanical Turk, Andrew Keen, augmented reality, Automated Insights, Berlin Wall, big data - Walmart - Pop Tarts, Buckminster Fuller, call centre, carbon footprint, Cass Sunstein, choice architecture, citizen journalism, cloud computing, cognitive bias, creative destruction, crowdsourcing, data acquisition, Dava Sobel, disintermediation, East Village, en.wikipedia.org, Fall of the Berlin Wall, Filter Bubble, Firefox, Francis Fukuyama: the end of history, frictionless, future of journalism, game design, Gary Taubes, Google Glasses, illegal immigration, income inequality, invention of the printing press, Jane Jacobs, Jean Tirole, Jeff Bezos, jimmy wales, Julian Assange, Kevin Kelly, Kickstarter, license plate recognition, lifelogging, lone genius, Louis Pasteur, Mark Zuckerberg, market fundamentalism, Marshall McLuhan, moral panic, Narrative Science, Nelson Mandela, Nicholas Carr, packet switching, PageRank, Parag Khanna, Paul Graham, peer-to-peer, Peter Singer: altruism, Peter Thiel, pets.com, placebo effect, pre–internet, Ray Kurzweil, recommendation engine, Richard Thaler, Ronald Coase, Rosa Parks, self-driving car, Silicon Valley, Silicon Valley ideology, Silicon Valley startup, Skype, Slavoj Žižek, smart meter, social graph, social web, stakhanovite, Steve Jobs, Steven Levy, Stuxnet, technoutopianism, the built environment, The Chicago School, The Death and Life of Great American Cities, the medium is the message, The Nature of the Firm, the scientific method, The Wisdom of Crowds, Thomas Kuhn: the structure of scientific revolutions, Thomas L Friedman, transaction costs, urban decay, urban planning, urban sprawl, Vannevar Bush, WikiLeaks

For Oakeshott, the cookbook was the end (or an output), not the start (or an input), of that tradition. An argument against rationalists who refused to acknowledge the importance of practices and traditions, rather than a celebration of cookery books, it’s a surprisingly upbeat moment in Oakeshott’s thought. However, one can only wonder if Oakeshott would need to revise his judgment today, now that cooking books have been replaced with the kinds of sophisticated gadgetry that would have Buckminster Fuller, the archsolutionist who never stopped fantasizing about the perfect kitchen, brimming with envy. Paradoxically, as technologies get smarter, the maneuvering space for interpretation—what Oakeshott thought would bring cooks in touch with the world of practices and traditions—begins to shrink and potentially disappear entirely. New, smarter technologies make it possible to finally position, as it were, the cookery book’s instructions outside the tradition; almost no knowledge is required to cook with their help.


pages: 836 words: 158,284

The 4-Hour Body: An Uncommon Guide to Rapid Fat-Loss, Incredible Sex, and Becoming Superhuman by Timothy Ferriss

23andMe, airport security, Albert Einstein, Black Swan, Buckminster Fuller, carbon footprint, cognitive dissonance, Columbine, correlation does not imply causation, Dean Kamen, game design, Gary Taubes, index card, Kevin Kelly, knowledge economy, life extension, lifelogging, Mahatma Gandhi, microbiome, p-value, Parkinson's law, Paul Buchheit, placebo effect, Productivity paradox, publish or perish, Ralph Waldo Emerson, Ray Kurzweil, Richard Feynman, selective serotonin reuptake inhibitor (SSRI), Silicon Valley, Silicon Valley startup, Skype, stem cell, Steve Jobs, survivorship bias, Thorstein Veblen, Vilfredo Pareto, wage slave, William of Occam

Snyder (www.fourhourbody.com/surgery) The pre-surgery shoulder dislocation while I’m sedated is disgusting. Fun watching if you enjoy YouTube videos of folks face-planting off of Swiss balls, etc. Biopuncture: Common Questions and Answers (www.chiromedicalgroup.com/biopuncture) Overview of Biotensegrity (www.fourhourbody.com/biotensegrity) This explains the fascinating functions of fascia. Steven Levin, an orthopedic surgeon, explains how the principles of tensegrity seen in R. Buckminster Fuller’s geodesic domes apply in the human body, with bones acting as the compressive elements and the soft tissues as the tension elements. If you are at all geek-inclined, read “The Importance of Soft Tissues for Structural Support of the Body.” It’s outstanding. Egoscue (www.egoscue.com) Egoscue is a postural therapy program with 24 clinic locations worldwide. The program is designed to treat musculoskeletal pain without drugs, surgery, or manipulation.


pages: 1,007 words: 181,911

The 4-Hour Chef: The Simple Path to Cooking Like a Pro, Learning Anything, and Living the Good Life by Timothy Ferriss

Airbnb, Atul Gawande, Buckminster Fuller, Burning Man, correlation does not imply causation, crowdsourcing, deliberate practice, en.wikipedia.org, Golden Gate Park, happiness index / gross national happiness, haute cuisine, Hugh Fearnley-Whittingstall, Isaac Newton, Johann Wolfgang von Goethe, Kevin Kelly, Kickstarter, Loma Prieta earthquake, loss aversion, Louis Pasteur, Mahatma Gandhi, Marc Andreessen, Mark Zuckerberg, Mason jar, microbiome, Parkinson's law, Paul Buchheit, Paul Graham, Pepto Bismol, Ponzi scheme, Ralph Waldo Emerson, Silicon Valley, Skype, spaced repetition, Stephen Hawking, Steve Jobs, the High Line, Y Combinator

At 20 minutes, start checking every 5 minutes. 09 Once the brûlées have set (gently shake them to ensure the base with which you began is no longer liquid), remove and cool. 10 Sprinkle coarse sugar evenly atop the cooled brûlées. 11 Using a camping torch or brûlée torch (25 Lusk uses a BernzOmatic), burn the sugar until it’s dark brown. Serve. Suggested Garnishes Sweet tomatoes and arugula Sautéed mushrooms Truffles/truffle oil (as always) Grant’s Principles #3 TECHNOLOGY “ANTI-GRIDDLE” PEPPERMINT CHOCOLATE POPS - * * * “I just invent, then wait until man comes around to needing what I’ve invented.” —R. BUCKMINSTER FULLER, ARCHITECT AND INVENTOR * * * These simple pops are a classic dark chocolate ganache,11 flash-frozen using dry ice. Imagine an elegant version of Girl Scout Thin Mint cookies, the crack cocaine of sweets. SHORTHAND Mix ½c simmered cream, 4oz chopped dark chocolate, pinch salt, ½t peppermint extract till melted ganache. Cool 30min. Chill baking sheet over dry ice. Freeze 1T ganache 1–2min, flip 30sec.


pages: 593 words: 189,857

Stress Test: Reflections on Financial Crises by Timothy F. Geithner

Affordable Care Act / Obamacare, asset-backed security, Atul Gawande, bank run, banking crisis, Basel III, Bernie Madoff, Bernie Sanders, break the buck, Buckminster Fuller, Carmen Reinhart, central bank independence, collateralized debt obligation, correlation does not imply causation, creative destruction, credit crunch, Credit Default Swap, credit default swaps / collateralized debt obligations, currency manipulation / currency intervention, David Brooks, Doomsday Book, eurozone crisis, financial innovation, Flash crash, Goldman Sachs: Vampire Squid, housing crisis, Hyman Minsky, illegal immigration, implied volatility, Kickstarter, London Interbank Offered Rate, Long Term Capital Management, margin call, market fundamentalism, Martin Wolf, McMansion, Mexican peso crisis / tequila crisis, money market fund, moral hazard, mortgage debt, Nate Silver, negative equity, Northern Rock, obamacare, paradox of thrift, pets.com, price stability, profit maximization, pushing on a string, quantitative easing, race to the bottom, RAND corporation, regulatory arbitrage, reserve currency, Saturday Night Live, savings glut, selection bias, short selling, sovereign wealth fund, The Great Moderation, The Signal and the Noise by Nate Silver, Tobin tax, too big to fail, working poor

He’s also a lifelong Republican, although he came of age in the Eisenhower era, before much of his party veered to the far right. He devoted his professional life to global development, not a typically conservative cause, and he voted for President Obama in 2008. But he supported Mitt Romney in 2012, even though I was still working for the President. My mother is from a New England family dating back to the Mayflower, with relatives including the architect Buckminster Fuller, the journalist Margaret Fuller, and the novelist John Marquand. Her father, Charles F. Moore, Jr., was, among other things, a newspaperman, vice president of Ford Motor Company, and an adviser to President Eisenhower. Later in life, he served as a town selectman in Orleans, the small town on the Cape where my parents now live. My mother’s older brother, Jonathan, spent his whole career in public service, helping to preserve the Cape Cod National Seashore as a Republican congressional aide, holding influential jobs at the U.S.


pages: 611 words: 188,732

Valley of Genius: The Uncensored History of Silicon Valley (As Told by the Hackers, Founders, and Freaks Who Made It Boom) by Adam Fisher

Airbnb, Albert Einstein, AltaVista, Apple II, Apple's 1984 Super Bowl advert, augmented reality, autonomous vehicles, Bob Noyce, Brownian motion, Buckminster Fuller, Burning Man, Byte Shop, cognitive dissonance, disintermediation, don't be evil, Donald Trump, Douglas Engelbart, Dynabook, Elon Musk, frictionless, glass ceiling, Hacker Ethic, Howard Rheingold, HyperCard, hypertext link, index card, informal economy, information retrieval, Jaron Lanier, Jeff Bezos, Jeff Rulifson, John Markoff, Jony Ive, Kevin Kelly, Kickstarter, knowledge worker, life extension, Marc Andreessen, Mark Zuckerberg, Marshall McLuhan, Maui Hawaii, Menlo Park, Metcalfe’s law, Mother of all demos, move fast and break things, move fast and break things, Network effects, new economy, nuclear winter, PageRank, Paul Buchheit, paypal mafia, peer-to-peer, Peter Thiel, pets.com, pez dispenser, popular electronics, random walk, risk tolerance, Robert Metcalfe, rolodex, self-driving car, side project, Silicon Valley, Silicon Valley startup, skunkworks, Skype, social graph, social web, South of Market, San Francisco, Startup school, Steve Jobs, Steve Wozniak, Steven Levy, Stewart Brand, Ted Nelson, telerobotics, The Hackers Conference, the new new thing, Tim Cook: Apple, tulip mania, V2 rocket, Whole Earth Catalog, Whole Earth Review, Y Combinator

By 1997 Macintosh had sunk to a pathetic 2 percent share of the market—and Microsoft had the rest. That was the year Jobs finagled a return to the company which he had founded two decades before but had never actually controlled. This time he would be firmly in charge. The first thing that the older and wiser Jobs did was launch an advertising campaign, “Think Different,” which flattered the Apple faithful with comparisons to Albert Einstein, Buckminster Fuller, Pablo Picasso, and the like. Then he launched a new computer, the iMac, which piggybacked on the vogue for all things internet. The third launch was a clever new product aimed at the Napster generation. The iPod was a way to put an MP3 in your pocket. Apple’s update of Sony’s venerable Walkman idea proved to be a game changer, a completely new direction for the company. Last in the computer marketplace, Jobs was the first to realize that the whole of the consumer electronics industry was ripe for plunder.


pages: 1,048 words: 187,324

Atlas Obscura: An Explorer's Guide to the World's Hidden Wonders by Joshua Foer, Dylan Thuras, Ella Morton

anti-communist, Berlin Wall, British Empire, Buckminster Fuller, centre right, Charles Lindbergh, colonial rule, Colonization of Mars, cosmic microwave background, cuban missile crisis, dark matter, double helix, East Village, Exxon Valdez, Fall of the Berlin Wall, Frank Gehry, germ theory of disease, Golden Gate Park, Google Earth, Haight Ashbury, horn antenna, Ignaz Semmelweis: hand washing, index card, Jacques de Vaucanson, Kowloon Walled City, Louis Pasteur, low cost airline, Mahatma Gandhi, mass immigration, mutually assured destruction, Panopticon Jeremy Bentham, phenotype, Pluto: dwarf planet, Ronald Reagan, Rubik’s Cube, Sapir-Whorf hypothesis, Search for Extraterrestrial Intelligence, trade route, transatlantic slave trade, transcontinental railway, Tunguska event, urban sprawl, Vesna Vulović, white picket fence, wikimedia commons, working poor

The spillway is best seen during the rainy season when the lake is full. 38.512201 122.104748 Lake Berryessa’s massive overflow drain is known affectionately as the “glory hole.” Also in California Winchester Mystery House San Jose · The former home of Sarah Winchester, heir to the Winchester gun fortune, contains doors to nowhere, stairs that stop suddenly, and secret passages. Dymaxion Chronofile Stanford · From journals to blueprints to dry-cleaning bills, Buckminster Fuller documented his life in staggering detail. The full archive is stored at Stanford University Library. Methuselah Tree White Mountains · Germinated circa 2833 BCE, this gnarled bristlecone pine is one of the oldest trees in the world. OREGON Arborsmith Studios WILLIAMS Arborsculpture is the craft of shaping living trees into works of art and architecture. The term was coined by Richard Reames, one of its pioneering practitioners and the owner of Arborsmith Studios—a combination nursery, design studio, and al fresco art gallery.


pages: 579 words: 183,063

Tribe of Mentors: Short Life Advice From the Best in the World by Timothy Ferriss

23andMe, A Pattern Language, agricultural Revolution, Airbnb, Albert Einstein, Bayesian statistics, bitcoin, Black Swan, blockchain, Brownian motion, Buckminster Fuller, Clayton Christensen, cloud computing, cognitive dissonance, Colonization of Mars, corporate social responsibility, cryptocurrency, David Heinemeier Hansson, dematerialisation, don't be evil, double helix, effective altruism, Elon Musk, Ethereum, ethereum blockchain, family office, fear of failure, Gary Taubes, Geoffrey West, Santa Fe Institute, Google Hangouts, Gödel, Escher, Bach, haute couture, helicopter parent, high net worth, In Cold Blood by Truman Capote, income inequality, index fund, Jeff Bezos, job satisfaction, Johann Wolfgang von Goethe, Kevin Kelly, Lao Tzu, Law of Accelerating Returns, Lyft, Mahatma Gandhi, Marc Andreessen, Marshall McLuhan, Mikhail Gorbachev, minimum viable product, move fast and break things, move fast and break things, Naomi Klein, non-fiction novel, Peter Thiel, profit motive, Ralph Waldo Emerson, Ray Kurzweil, Saturday Night Live, side project, Silicon Valley, Skype, smart cities, smart contracts, Snapchat, Steve Jobs, Steven Pinker, Stewart Brand, TaskRabbit, Tesla Model S, too big to fail, Turing machine, uber lyft, web application, Whole Earth Catalog, Y Combinator

If you were to Google who the top stars are, undoubtedly most stars, particularly the male actors, would have been born into the movie business. It takes time, but if you are consistently good at what you do, at least you get to call your success your own. What is one of the best or most worthwhile investments you’ve ever made? My father encouraged me to take a course called “Money and You,” devised around the ideas of Buckminster Fuller. I attended the four-day course in Kuala Lumpur. The first two days focused on money and the next two on “you.” It was very balanced, taught me to look at money differently, and imbued me with a sense of enterprise at a young age. It cost me $500. What is an unusual habit or an absurd thing that you love? I use a different perfume for every film. Of the five senses, I figured the only sense I could play with was the sense of smell.


pages: 913 words: 265,787

How the Mind Works by Steven Pinker

affirmative action, agricultural Revolution, Alfred Russel Wallace, Buckminster Fuller, cognitive dissonance, Columbine, combinatorial explosion, complexity theory, computer age, computer vision, Daniel Kahneman / Amos Tversky, delayed gratification, double helix, experimental subject, feminist movement, four colour theorem, Gordon Gekko, greed is good, hedonic treadmill, Henri Poincaré, income per capita, information retrieval, invention of agriculture, invention of the wheel, Johannes Kepler, John von Neumann, lake wobegon effect, lateral thinking, Machine translation of "The spirit is willing, but the flesh is weak." to Russian and back, Mikhail Gorbachev, Murray Gell-Mann, mutually assured destruction, Necker cube, out of africa, pattern recognition, phenotype, plutocrats, Plutocrats, random walk, Richard Feynman, Ronald Reagan, Rubik’s Cube, Saturday Night Live, scientific worldview, Search for Extraterrestrial Intelligence, sexual politics, social intelligence, Steven Pinker, theory of mind, Thorstein Veblen, Turing machine, urban decay, Yogi Berra

In a sense, autistic children are right: the universe is nothing but matter in motion. My “normal” mental equipment leaves me chronically dumbfounded at the fact that a microdot and a spoonful of semen can bring about a site of thinking and feeling and that a blood clot or a metal slug can end it. It gives me the delusion that London and chairs and vegetables are on the inventory of the world’s objects. Even the objects themselves are a kind of delusion. Buckminster Fuller once wrote: “Everything you’ve learned … as ‘obvious’ becomes less and less obvious as you begin to study the universe. For example, there are no solids in the universe. There’s not even a suggestion of a solid. There are no absolute continuums. There are no surfaces. There are no straight lines.” In another sense, of course, the world does have surfaces and chairs and rabbits and minds.


The Code: Silicon Valley and the Remaking of America by Margaret O'Mara

"side hustle", A Declaration of the Independence of Cyberspace, accounting loophole / creative accounting, affirmative action, Airbnb, AltaVista, Amazon Web Services, Apple II, Apple's 1984 Super Bowl advert, autonomous vehicles, back-to-the-land, barriers to entry, Ben Horowitz, Berlin Wall, Bob Noyce, Buckminster Fuller, Burning Man, business climate, Byte Shop, California gold rush, carried interest, clean water, cleantech, cloud computing, cognitive dissonance, commoditize, computer age, continuous integration, cuban missile crisis, Danny Hillis, DARPA: Urban Challenge, deindustrialization, different worldview, don't be evil, Donald Trump, Doomsday Clock, Douglas Engelbart, Dynabook, Edward Snowden, El Camino Real, Elon Musk, en.wikipedia.org, Erik Brynjolfsson, Frank Gehry, George Gilder, gig economy, Googley, Hacker Ethic, high net worth, Hush-A-Phone, immigration reform, income inequality, informal economy, information retrieval, invention of movable type, invisible hand, Isaac Newton, Jeff Bezos, Joan Didion, job automation, job-hopping, John Markoff, Julian Assange, Kitchen Debate, knowledge economy, knowledge worker, Lyft, Marc Andreessen, Mark Zuckerberg, market bubble, mass immigration, means of production, mega-rich, Menlo Park, Mikhail Gorbachev, millennium bug, Mitch Kapor, Mother of all demos, move fast and break things, move fast and break things, mutually assured destruction, new economy, Norbert Wiener, old-boy network, pattern recognition, Paul Graham, Paul Terrell, paypal mafia, Peter Thiel, pets.com, pirate software, popular electronics, pre–internet, Ralph Nader, RAND corporation, Richard Florida, ride hailing / ride sharing, risk tolerance, Robert Metcalfe, Ronald Reagan, Sand Hill Road, Second Machine Age, self-driving car, shareholder value, side project, Silicon Valley, Silicon Valley ideology, Silicon Valley startup, skunkworks, Snapchat, social graph, software is eating the world, speech recognition, Steve Ballmer, Steve Jobs, Steve Wozniak, Steven Levy, Stewart Brand, supercomputer in your pocket, technoutopianism, Ted Nelson, the market place, the new new thing, There's no reason for any individual to have a computer in his home - Ken Olsen, Thomas L Friedman, Tim Cook: Apple, transcontinental railway, Uber and Lyft, uber lyft, Unsafe at Any Speed, upwardly mobile, Vannevar Bush, War on Poverty, We wanted flying cars, instead we got 140 characters, Whole Earth Catalog, WikiLeaks, William Shockley: the traitorous eight, Y Combinator, Y2K

“When you enter our buildings, we want you to feel how much left there is to be done in our mission to connect the world.”7 Even stripped-down Amazon couldn’t resist adding a grand architectural flourish to the generally undistinguished set of buildings that made up its headquarters in central Seattle, building a striking pair of “biospheres” housing indoor gardens for Amazonians to enjoy. On the other side of Lake Washington, Microsoft tried to keep up with its crosstown rival’s riff on Buckminster Fuller by building treehouses for employees’ midday retreats. But the most stunning monument of them all was Apple’s massive new Cupertino headquarters, a sleek ring of glass and steel housing twelve thousand employees. “Apple Park” had been one of Steve Jobs’s last ideas before he died. In homage to their founder and the Valley that once was, Apple planted an apricot orchard in the building’s shadow.8 THE NEW MONEY MEN The Silicon Valley money machine seemed unstoppable.


pages: 669 words: 195,743

Spillover: Animal Infections and the Next Human Pandemic by David Quammen

Alfred Russel Wallace, British Empire, Buckminster Fuller, conceptual framework, coronavirus, dark matter, digital map, double helix, experimental subject, facts on the ground, Fellow of the Royal Society, germ theory of disease, global pandemic, Google Earth, invention of agriculture, Isaac Newton, John Snow's cholera map, Louis Pasteur, out of africa, Pearl River Delta, South China Sea, urban sprawl

The individual viral unit, one particle, standing intact outside a cell, is called a virion. The capsid also defines the exterior shape of a virus. Virions of Ebola and Marburg, for instance, are long filaments, which is why they’ve been placed in a group known as filoviruses. Other viruses have particles that are spherical, or ovoid, or helical, or icosahedral (twenty-sided, like a soccer ball designed by Buckminster Fuller). HIV-1 particles are globular. Rabies virions are shaped like bullets. A plate of Ebola virions mixed with Hendra virions would resemble capellini in a light sauce of capers. Many viruses are wrapped with an additional layer, known as an envelope, comprising not only protein but also lipid molecules drawn from the host cell—in some cases, pulled from the wall of the cell when the virion made its exit.


Saving America's Cities: Ed Logue and the Struggle to Renew Urban America in the Suburban Age by Lizabeth Cohen

activist lawyer, affirmative action, Albert Einstein, anti-communist, British Empire, Buckminster Fuller, car-free, charter city, deindustrialization, desegregation, Edward Glaeser, garden city movement, ghettoisation, Henry Ford's grandson gave labor union leader Walter Reuther a tour of the company’s new, automated factory…, hiring and firing, housing crisis, income inequality, indoor plumbing, Jane Jacobs, land reform, megastructure, new economy, New Urbanism, Peter Eisenman, postindustrial economy, race to the bottom, rent control, Robert Gordon, rolodex, Ronald Reagan, the built environment, The Death and Life of Great American Cities, union organizing, upwardly mobile, urban decay, urban planning, urban renewal, Victor Gruen, Vilfredo Pareto, walkable city, War on Poverty, white flight, white picket fence, young professional

Complaints remained, but the UDC tried to balance the often-competing demands of architects, tenants, budget watchers, and the Feds. The UDC’s prototypes frequently used new technology to make housing construction easier, quicker, and cheaper. Applying the methods of mass production to creating “industrial housing” had long been a dream of prominent modernists including Le Corbusier, Walter Gropius, Jean Prouvé, R. Buckminster Fuller, Charles and Ray Eames, Moshe Safdie, and Paul Rudolph. But supply and demand for the concept had been weak in the United States, except for occasional bursts like the short-lived Lustron homes experiment immediately after World War II.170 Logue nonetheless remained intrigued, particularly in efforts to shift prefab production from single-family houses to multi-family dwellings. In Boston, he had worked with Carl Koch, a pioneer anointed by Progressive Architecture as “the Grandfather of Prefab,” to utilize precast wall panels and long-span, prestressed floor planks in Roxbury’s Academy Homes.171 In New York State, technological innovation became fundamental to the UDC’s agenda.


The Rough Guide to New York City by Martin Dunford

Anton Chekhov, Berlin Wall, Bonfire of the Vanities, Buckminster Fuller, buttonwood tree, car-free, Charles Lindbergh, Chuck Templeton: OpenTable:, clean water, colonial exploitation, colonial rule, desegregation, Donald Trump, East Village, Edward Thorp, Exxon Valdez, Frank Gehry, glass ceiling, haute cuisine, illegal immigration, Jane Jacobs, market bubble, Norman Mailer, paper trading, post-work, Saturday Night Live, sustainable-tourism, The Death and Life of Great American Cities, the High Line, transcontinental railway, Triangle Shirtwaist Factory, upwardly mobile, urban decay, urban planning, urban renewal, white flight, Yogi Berra, young professional

A concrete and stained-glass structure retained from the 1964 World’s Fair, the New York Hall of Science, 111th St at 46th Ave, dazzles imaginative kids with interactive science exhibits (July & Aug Mon–Fri 9.30am–5pm, Sat & Sun 10am–6pm; Sept–June Tues–Thurs 9.30am–2pm, Fri 9.30am–5pm, Sat & Sun 10am–5pm; $11, students and children $8, free Sept–June Fri 2–5pm & Sun 10–11am; T 718/699-0005, W www.nyhallsci.org). Parking ($10) is not available during the US Open. The adjacent Queens Zoo, 53-51 111th St (April–Oct Mon–Fri 10am– 5pm, Sat & Sun 10am–5.30pm; Nov–March daily 10am–4.30pm; $6, ages 3–12 $2, seniors $2.25; T 718/271-1500, W www.queenszoo.org), is not nearly as spectacular as those in Central Park and the Bronx, although it has transformed Buckminster Fuller’s 1964 geodesic dome into a dizzying aviary, and some beautiful big animals, including bison, Shetland cattle, and elk, roam the grounds. East of the zoo, the Unisphere is a 140-foot-high, stainless-steel globe that weighs 380 tons – probably the main reason why it was never moved after the 1964 fair. Robert Moses intended this park to be the “Versailles of America,” but the severe, perfectly symmetrical pathways radiating out from the sphere, The world comes to Queens In late April 1939, as the US emerged from the Great Depression and war loomed, 1200 acres of the new Flushing Meadows–Corona Park became the stage for America’s love affair with modernity.


pages: 1,758 words: 342,766

Code Complete (Developer Best Practices) by Steve McConnell

Ada Lovelace, Albert Einstein, Buckminster Fuller, call centre, continuous integration, data acquisition, database schema, don't repeat yourself, Donald Knuth, fault tolerance, Grace Hopper, haute cuisine, if you see hoof prints, think horses—not zebras, index card, inventory management, iterative process, Larry Wall, loose coupling, Menlo Park, Perl 6, place-making, premature optimization, revision control, Sapir-Whorf hypothesis, slashdot, sorting algorithm, statistical model, Tacoma Narrows Bridge, the scientific method, Thomas Kuhn: the structure of scientific revolutions, Turing machine, web application

Some goals contradict other goals, but that's the challenge of design—creating a good set of tradeoffs from competing objectives. Some characteristics of design quality are also characteristics of a good program: reliability, performance, and so on. Others are internal characteristics of the design. When I am working on a problem I never think about beauty. I think only how to solve the problem. But when I have finished, if the solution is not beautiful, I know it is wrong. — R. Buckminster Fuller Here's a list of internal design characteristics: Cross-Reference These characteristics are related to general software-quality attributes. For details on general attributes, see Characteristics of Software Quality. Minimal complexity. The primary goal of design should be to minimize complexity for all the reasons just described. Avoid making "clever" designs. Clever designs are usually hard to understand.


pages: 1,280 words: 384,105

The Best of Best New SF by Gardner R. Dozois

back-to-the-land, Buckminster Fuller, Burning Man, call centre, Columbine, congestion charging, dark matter, Doomsday Book, double helix, Extropian, gravity well, lateral thinking, Mason jar, offshore financial centre, out of africa, pattern recognition, phenotype, Silicon Valley, slashdot, Stephen Hawking, telepresence, Turing machine, Turing test, Winter of Discontent, Y2K, zero-sum game

“I haven’t been in an accident,” he said. “It was deliberate.” “Jesus, they beat you to keep secrets?” “You don’t understand me, Edward. Look at the images again. I’m not damaged.” “Look, there’s thickening here” – I indicated the ankles – “and your ribs – that crazy zigzag pattern of interlocks. Broken sometime, obviously. And – ” “Look at my spine,” he said. I rotated the image in the video frame. Buckminster Fuller, I thought. It was fantastic. A cage of triangular projections, all interlocking in ways I couldn’t begin to follow, much less understand. I reached around and tried to feel his spine with my fingers. He lifted his arms and looked off at the ceiling. “I can’t find it,” I said. “It’s all smooth back there.” I let go of him and looked at his chest, then prodded his ribs. They were sheathed in something tough and flexible.


pages: 1,293 words: 357,735

The Coming Plague: Newly Emerging Diseases in a World Out of Balance by Laurie Garrett

Albert Einstein, Berlin Wall, biofilm, British Empire, Buckminster Fuller, clean water, correlation does not imply causation, discovery of penicillin, double helix, European colonialism, Fall of the Berlin Wall, germ theory of disease, global pandemic, global village, indoor plumbing, invention of air conditioning, John Snow's cholera map, land reform, Live Aid, Louis Pasteur, Marshall McLuhan, mass incarceration, megacity, Menlo Park, Mikhail Gorbachev, Nelson Mandela, New Urbanism, phenotype, price mechanism, Ralph Nader, Ronald Reagan, Rosa Parks, South China Sea, the scientific method, trade route, transfer pricing, upwardly mobile, urban renewal, urban sprawl, Zimmermann PGP

This information, in conjunction with that obtained by electron microscope examination of … particles, might be enough for us to make a preliminary identification.12 Scientists could “see” viruses with the aid of microscopes powerful enough to magnify up to visual level objects that were nearly a million times smaller than a dime. With that power of magnification they could detect clear differences in the appearance of various species of viruses, from the chaotic-looking mumps virus that visually resembles a bowl full of spaghetti to the absolutely symmetrical polio virus that looked as if it were a Buckminster Fuller-designed sphere composed of alternating triangles. Researchers also understood that viruses had a variety of different types of proteins protruding from their capsules, most of which were used by the tiny microbes to lock on to cells and gain entry for invasion. Some of the most sophisticated viruses, such as influenza, sugarcoated those proteins so that the human immune system might fail to notice the disguised invaders.


pages: 500 words: 156,079