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Blog Archive for the ‘Civilization’ Category

The Artangel Longplayer Letters: Stewart Brand writes to Esther Dyson

by Austin Brown on November 29th, 02013

In July, Nassim Nicholas Taleb wrote a letter to Long Now co-founder Stewart Brand as part of the Artangel Longplayer Letters series. The series is a relay-style correspondence: The first letter was written by Brian Eno to Taleb. Taleb then wrote to Stewart Brand. Brand’s response is now addressed to Esther Dyson. . .   Read More

Paul Sabin on the Gamble over Earth’s Future

by Charlotte Hajer on October 9th, 02013

In 1980, a bet was made between a Malthusian ecologist and a Cornucopian economist – between optimism and pessimism – about the fate of humanity and planet Earth. The wager concerned fluctuations in the market prices for several crude metals. If prices rose over the next decade, civilization must be facing scarcity and thus inevitable doom; falling. . .   Read More

Alexander Rose Visits Ise Shrine Reconstruction Ceremony

by Austin Brown on October 3rd, 02013

Long Now Executive Director Alexander Rose, also the Project Manager for the 10,000-Year Clock, collects inspiring examples (or in some cases, failures) of long-term thinking, architecture and design. In a talk called Millennial Precedent, he discussed some of these examples and the lessons he draws from them. Among them is a Japanese. . .   Read More

Population, growth and decline

by Austin Brown on September 30th, 02013

In a New York Times op-ed piece recently, geographer Erle C. Ellis argues “Overpopulation is Not the Problem,” dismissing fears that humanity might exceed the Earth’s carrying capacity and bring global calamity upon ourselves.

Malthusian fears swing in and out of fashion, and the pendulum can often go too far the other way. . .   Read More

Toward a Manual for Civilization

by Austin Brown on August 14th, 02013

“We are as gods” because of our ancestors’ diligence. The promise of a technologically advancing future is predicated on millennia of accumulated knowledge. Civilization has taken a lot of work to build and it demands a great deal of know-how to sustain. And as modern life increasingly encourages specialization, familiarity across that accumulated knowledge. . .   Read More

Leap Seconds and the Nature of Civil Time

by Charlotte Hajer on July 31st, 02013

The U.S. Naval Observatory Alternate Master Clock, located on the 2nd Space Operations Squadron’s operations center, is accurate to within one second every 20 million years. The clock showed 23:59:60 Saturday as 2nd SOPS and USNO professionals added the first leap second in seven years.
About two months ago, a group. . .   Read More

Chris Anderson Seminar Media

by Austin Brown on March 1st, 02013

This lecture was presented as part of The Long Now Foundation’s monthly Seminars About Long-term Thinking.

The Makers Revolution
Tuesday February 19, 02013 – San Francisco
Video is up on the Anderson Seminar page for Members.
Audio is up on the Anderson Seminar page, or you can subscribe to our podcast.

Desktop manufacturing. . .   Read More

Time and the End of History Illusion

by Charlotte Hajer on January 23rd, 02013

According to a team of psychologists at Harvard, we’re poor predictors of our own future.

In a paper published last week in Science, these researchers report on a study that asked participants to estimate how much their personality, tastes, and values had changed over the last decade, and how much they expected they would. . .   Read More

Terry Hunt & Carl Lipo Seminar Primer

by Charlotte Hajer on January 8th, 02013

“The Statues Walked — What Really Happened on Easter Island”
Thursday January 17, 02013 at the Cowell Theater, San Francisco

Archaeologists Terry Hunt and Carl Lipo study cultural evolution and diversity. Their research tries to answer questions about how small communities develop into complex societies, and how cultures change and spread over time. They’ve focused. . .   Read More

Lazar Kunstmann and Jon Lackman Seminar Media

by Austin Brown on November 27th, 02012

This lecture was presented as part of The Long Now Foundation’s monthly Seminars About Long-term Thinking.

Preservation without Permission: the Paris Urban eXperiment
Tuesday November 13, 02012 – San Francisco

Video is up on the Kunstmann and Lackman Seminar page for Members.

Audio is up on the Kunstmann and Lackman Seminar page, or you. . .   Read More