Tuesday, May 20, 2008

Deep Water City States

An artist's conception of what a large seastead based on the spur design could look like.
The Seasteading Institute envisions vast clumps of these structures
forming city-states in the open ocean.
Illustration: Valdemar Duran

So maybe you've had it with the nation / state idea of human organization---too flawed, open to corruption, rife with bad design ethos. Eh? Well there are others who can't get enough of the idea of forming nations. They think we should be building them out in the ocean where residents would be considered "Seasteaders."

Wired magazine has the story on "deep water city/states." It's fascinating, and look who's putting it together.

With a $500,000 donation from PayPal founder Peter Thiel, a Google engineer and a former Sun Microsystems programmer have launched The Seasteading Institute, an organization dedicated to creating experimental ocean communities "with diverse social, political, and legal systems."

"Decades from now, those looking back at the start of the century will understand that Seasteading was an obvious step towards encouraging the development of more efficient, practical public-sector models around the world," Thiel said in a statement.

Illustration of the engineering design for the sea towers.

Build enough of these spar platforms and you've got yourself a "deep-water city-state."

[Images: The Maunsell Towers (above), unmentioned by the
libertarian seasteaders, and the Texas Tower (below)].

Rather than architecture simply improving on the natural landscape, it would actually be giving shape to a new kind of community that will encompass intricate constitutional and political needs. In this case architecture becomes, more accurately, political space. Who's been thinking about THAT?

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