Curating Content To Support Learning About Humanity's Transition

Posts tagged with:  Essays

By: The Posts Author | Posted on: 23 Mar 21

Horologist Brittany Nicole Cox giving a talk at The Interval at Long Now on horological heritage (02019). Photo by Anthony Thornton. How do you measure a year? As straightforward as this seems, it is a truly personal question to each of us. What comes to mind? Life, weather or seismic events, loss or gains, political enterprises, a global pandemic? Or terms such as calendars, months, or dates? As a horologist, someone who studies time, I’ve realized there is no concrete way to answer that question. Yet, my job lies in the calculation, measurement, and the sure prediction of time passing …

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Horologist Brittany Nicole Cox giving a talk at The Interval at Long Now on horological heritage (02019). Photo by Anthony Thornton. How do you measure a year? As straightforward as this seems, it is a truly personal question to each of us. What comes to mind? Life, weather or seismic events, loss or gains, political enterprises, a global pandemic? Or …

In Real Time Read More »


By: The Posts Author | Posted on: 23 Mar 21

Horologist Brittany Nicole Cox giving a talk at The Interval at Long Now on horological heritage (02019). Photo by Anthony Thornton. How do you measure a year? As straightforward as this seems, it is a truly personal question to each of us. What comes to mind? Life, weather or seismic events, loss or gains, political enterprises, a global pandemic? Or terms such as calendars, months, or dates? As a horologist, someone who studies time, I’ve realized there is no concrete way to answer that question. Yet, my job lies in the calculation, measurement, and the sure prediction of time passing …

In Real Time Read More »

Horologist Brittany Nicole Cox giving a talk at The Interval at Long Now on horological heritage (02019). Photo by Anthony Thornton. How do you measure a year? As straightforward as this seems, it is a truly personal question to each of us. What comes to mind? Life, weather or seismic events, loss or gains, political enterprises, a global pandemic? Or …

In Real Time Read More »


By: The Posts Author | Posted on: 10 Nov 20

The following transcript has been edited for length and clarity.  The Role of Mental Maps This is a map of North America. It was made by a Dutch map maker by the name of Herman Moll, working in London in 01701. I bought it on Portobello Road for about 60 pounds back in 01981. Which is to say, it’s not a particularly valuable map. But there is something unusual about it: California is depicted as an island.  What’s interesting to me as a scenario planner is how the map came to be, how it was used, and how it was …

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The following transcript has been edited for length and clarity.  The Role of Mental Maps This is a map of North America. It was made by a Dutch map maker by the name of Herman Moll, working in London in 01701. I bought it on Portobello Road for about 60 pounds back in 01981. Which is to say, it’s not …

Scenario Planning for the Long-term Read More »


By: The Posts Author | Posted on: 21 Oct 20

The following transcript has been edited for length and clarity.  I want to lead you through some of the research that I’ve been doing on a meta-level around long-lived institutions, as well as some observations of the ways various systems have lasted for hundreds of thousands of years.  Long Now as a Long-lived Institution This is one of the early projects I worked with Stewart Brand on at Long Now. We were trying to define our problem space and explore the ways we think on different timescales. Generally, companies are working in the “nowadays,” although that’s been shortening to some …

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The following transcript has been edited for length and clarity.  I want to lead you through some of the research that I’ve been doing on a meta-level around long-lived institutions, as well as some observations of the ways various systems have lasted for hundreds of thousands of years.  Long Now as a Long-lived Institution This is one of the early …

The Data of Long-lived Institutions Read More »


By: The Posts Author | Posted on: 22 Sep 20

Changmiania liaoningensis, buried while sleeping by a prehistoric volcano. Image Source. Although the sensitive can feel it in all seasons, Autumn seems to thin the veil between the living and the dead. Writing from the dying cusp of summer and the longer bardo marking humankind’s uneasy passage into a new world age (a transit paradoxically defined by floating signifiers and eroded, fluid categories), the time seems right to survey five new discoveries from paleontology, zoology, and neuroscience that offer up an opportunity to contemplate the difference between the dead, and merely dormant. We start 125 million years ago in the unbelievably …

Five New Discoveries Offer an Opportunity to Contemplate the Difference Between the Dead and Merely Dormant Read More »

Changmiania liaoningensis, buried while sleeping by a prehistoric volcano. Image Source. Although the sensitive can feel it in all seasons, Autumn seems to thin the veil between the living and the dead. Writing from the dying cusp of summer and the longer bardo marking humankind’s uneasy passage into a new world age (a transit paradoxically defined by floating signifiers and eroded, …

Five New Discoveries Offer an Opportunity to Contemplate the Difference Between the Dead and Merely Dormant Read More »


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