[ExI] Fwd: Sharing/engineering proposal

Bryan Bishop kanzure at gmail.com
Sat Dec 20 18:21:29 UTC 2008

Per my promise to forward.

---------- Forwarded message ----------
From: Bryan Bishop <kanzure at gmail.com>
Date: Sat, Dec 20, 2008 at 12:18 PM
Subject: Sharing/engineering proposal
To: cosmic-engineers <cosmic-engineers at googlegroups.com>, kanzure at gmail.com

Hey all,

Guilio has been mentioning that he wants to do yet another
announcement soon, with OCE as some sort of actual radical
transhumanism that actually wants to get something done. Of the many,
many complaints that I have of other, institutionalized transhuman
groups, the commonality is that the groups don't support (much less
work on) any of the transhuman engineering projects that already
exist. This, I think, is useless, self-sacrifical behavior.

As a brief selection of transhuman-related engineering projects,
there's open-eeg, open-rtms, medical health systems, ERPs, genetics
systems, an explosion of synthetic biology software, manufacturing &
colonization simulations, neurocommons [let's not forget the cultural
freevolution with the Creative Commons folk], and even projects like
osaerospace and Team FREDNET for open source space initiatives, also
the p2p space agency proposals that were floating around on and off of
this list earlier this year.

However, I think more like an engineer. I don't know about everyone
else here, but the many projects quickly become somewhat
'unmanageable' in the sense that they aren't systematicized. The same
work that is being done on projects like BRLCAD and Team FREDNET could
be applicable to other open source hardware initiatives, but since
there's no common hardware packaging format, the efforts are kind of
lost and scattered all over the web and hard to pick up. People have
done really great things -- I like to point to Dave Gingery as an
example, where all of his information is now stuck in books instead of
in CAD formats plus metadata and recipes on how to bootstrap your own
industrial ecology. It's just that their effort is kind of vaporware,
and it's the same vaporware that the transhumans (supposedly) wanted
in the first place.

When you start to do formal engineering and packaging schematics and
other specialty information into a computational format, it means that
you get to transfer this information around to anybody who needs it.
How much more radical than sharing and building the future can you
get? But on the other hand, it does take some effort to understand, so
it's not the easiest choice to make, but who said any of this
transcendentalism stuff was going to be easy anyway.

So, specifically, I'm proposing that members of the OCE look more into
the open source hardware projects :-) and also into the hardware
packaging formats that I and an increasing number of others in the
tech community have been working on. I feel that if Guilio is going to
go write another announcement to represent 'radical' transhumanism, it
should really have an outline for continued involvement in technical
projects. I was hoping to see what interest there is in the community
to explore this topic some more. :-)

Some links.

A partial list of open source hardware projects:
- includes cell phones, cars, space tech, microprocessors,
brain-computer interfaces, bioneurofeedback, etc. etc.

Individuals generally interested in all of these topics from a
do-it-yourself biology P.O.V:
"DIYbio is an organization for the ever expanding community of citizen
scientists and DIY biological engineers that value openness &
responsibility.  DIYbio aims to be an "Institution for the Amateur" --
an umbrella organization that provides some of the same resources
afforded by more traditional institutions like academia and industry,
such as access to a community of experts, to technical literature and
other resources, to responsible oversight for health and safety, and
an interface between the community and the public at large."

And then the open manufacturing guys :-)

"""Open manufacturing is about bringing free and open source software
development methodology and philosophy to the design and construction
of the physical world. The "open" in open manufacturing can be
interpreted in a few different ways:

open source designs under free licenses
open to do-it-yourself
open to end-user dialogue
open to peer-review
open to collaboration
open to cradle-to-cradle analysis
open to viewing as an ecosystem of processes
open to democratic participation
open to new design ideas
open to new economics
open to the future

And perhaps even more. These possibilities all flow out of "free and
open source licensing" of designs (or in other words, they are less
likely to happen with proprietary designs).

Technical specs and todo list on the packaging format that has been
proposed on the openmanufacturing list:

OSCOMAK supports playful learning communities of individuals and groups
chaordically building free and open source knowledge, tools, and simulations
which lay the groundwork for humanity's sustainable development on
Spaceship Earth and
eventual joyful, compassionate, and diverse expansion into space
(including Mars, the Moon, the Asteroids, or elsewhere in the Universe).

The OSCOMAK project will foster a community in which many interested
individuals will contribute to the creation of a distributed global
repository of manufacturing knowledge about past, present and future
processes, materials, and products. OSCOMAK stands for "OSCOMAK
Semantic Community On Manufactured Artifacts and Know-how".

((Also, there's been talk among the diybio and openmanufacturing
community to do a 'debian social contract' equivalent in the near

Okay. Let's see how far this gets us. Comments?

- Bryan
1 512 203 0507

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