An Odyssey

Having attended an ETHLDN meetup back on the 9th Jan, we started a snowball that unexpedly started to roll down hill and over all sorts of emergent cats. Let me explain.

Previous to this meetup – back at the Web3 conference – I happened to attend a few talks at a node that was called Nature 2.0. Essentially the question posed was “how do we create abundance?”

Hell of a question isn’t it. We’ll theres a few philosophers thinking that one over for sure, as with many crypto entrepreneurs but to what degree? The story of possibility inferred by the folks at Ocean protocol is that Ubers business model evolves to using autonomous vehicles and then either becomes–or gets dis-intermediated by–a network of self owning vehicles. We then extrapolate that general idea through to other self-owning things such as rivers and forests which become digitally twinned with AI agents on the blockchain. Now the forests think for themselves as well as acting (drones) and transacting (selling trees to buy land) in their own interest… kinda like a benevolent terminator. So the vision was about biomimicary and building the kind of skynet (based on the “wood wide web”) we wish to to see as we proceed into the future. Cool thought experiment, or so I thought at the time as I posted notes to a Loomio channel and github repo I maintain.

So, what happened at the meetup?

Well not a too much really, at least directly.

The night before I checked the Odyssey website to make sure the event would be worth attending and the copy was largely commons oriented. Given that, I decided to say hello to their community and see what the people were like… though I received no responses given that it was 1am.

The next day things came full circle from Web3 because there was a presentation about Nature 2.ooo given by a guy called Jan-Peter Doomernik. This time however the vision was about vehicle to grid (V2G), where autonomous electric vehicles act as batteries and function as capacitors for our solar powered electric grid. Good stuff, loops worthy of closing.

Following this there was a presentation from some of last years winners called Nest egg. They are trying to realign incentives so that people saving for later, now. Pensions with a twist. The general idea being that pensions are investment pools used to generate return and as a public investment vehicle they should usually be of ethical variety; roads, wind farms and the like. As such tokenisation of ‘common’ utilities could bring added benefits in the short term such as discounting toll roads or energy costs.

At the end of the event I asked JP how I could help, to which he responded by suggesting the community. I’d already spammed their forums the night before so I said I’d figure something out i.e. I’d to my peers at Giveth. At some point after that I was asked to say hello to a camera before we all departed to meet up again in the pub.

Closing that loop I followed the “bun protocol” and brought up the hack in one of Giveths communication meetings. This is where the boulder started rolling. Given aligned interest in “the commons” we decided to form a team… we just needed coders. To remedy this I went to the deep dives with a peer and we started searching and while at the Inclusive Banking deep dive I met a few aligned developers. Since we now had an alliance we decided to expanded the narrative and go for a “meta hack” with multiple teams because if we failed we could still huddle back into a single team.

This was pretty suitable because the registration was still open for another while and in the meantime we could advertise our cause of building circular economies for the commons with a bonus meta game! That larger story being a run of hackathons iterating towards our larger goal of the Giveth/Ethereum commons, while team members hot swap around in practice swarms before assembling as a group murmuring together at Odyssey.

The first swarm was a group called Pactful that assembled for ETH Denver, which they then won–W00t! They built an interface for Token Bonding Curves on the Giveth platform.

ETH Paris and Odysseys Ethical deep dive occurred in unison and as such I have no idea what happened at the former. I know that another swarm formed but am uncertain of the events and outcomes because I was at the latter; the Ethcial deep dive.

Upon arriving in Holland on the 7th of March, I landed and headed straight for an organised talk which was held by a TedX pitch coach and the next day I got off to the Haage to visit the Senate to discuss what tech is, and ethics… (other than an anagram!). Wanna know what I think? Watch the video below.

Other than being generally present you can find my contribution at the following times:

0:50:07 My question on equivalence.
1:07:44 Kris’s question on diversity.
2:17:29 My question on the asymmetric risk of decision making applied from the top down.
2:40:26 My question on the staff/contractor regulatory divide
2:57:23 My recommendation of Alan Watts to those interested in digital identity.

Upon return I learnt what Kay and friends were up to in Paris which was momentum voting. Following on from this were a number of team meetings and all hands syncs. Direction also began to emerge slowly from these meetings, but admittedly slowly, and not before we confused the hell out of JP by discussing the whole stack rather than the Nature 2.0 slice/narrative in particular. Our language also betrayed our collective frame, which defaulted to an economic frame rather than discussing bonding curves as mappings or transfer functions. The result of that meeting was the usual uncertainty, but with more directional properties:

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