Why did the initial visions for the world wide web not work out quite as their inventors intended? It seems that it boils down to the incentives for building it. In some ways, you can consider the last 3 weeks to have been an extended consideration of how we might alter the incentive structures on which our society runs using global, borderless, ownerless protocols for money.
You've been led through how to think about a vastly interconnected world, and can reason coherently about critical concepts like trust, value , meaning, money and speech. It's time to apply these ideas to the ultimate problem: how to free the shared record of human knowledge from closed, rent-seeking corporations and extricate ourselves from an extractive attention economy.Week 3¶
Now that we understand the foundational concepts mentioned above, it's time to look a little deeper into the human stack. We cannot hope to succeed where the giants on whose shoulders we stand failed, if we do not understand our own intentions and what freedom really means to each one of us.
Incentives are a technical problem which can be consciously engineered and secured with deterministic, auditable, and shared code. However, we still have to know why we encode certain incentives and not others. This goes to the heart of what kind of reality you want to participate in, and what kinds of freedom you genuinely feel are worth speaking into being.
While the crafted reading explores these abstract concepts, the curated material this week grounds itself in a mix of history and the most cutting-edge thought to make a simple argument about what "taking back the web" means in a practical sense. We'll develop three core pillars, and then bring it back to Week 0, and our original emphasis on humility. Please enjoy.Week 3 Firesides¶
Sam Williams - June 10, 2021
Juan Benet - July 30, 2020
David Vorick and Manasi Vora - Feb 4, 2021