Last week, I transferred $1000 worth of magical Internet money (Ethereum) to an Internet stranger (@Yishan), so he can award it to artists inspiring a sustainable future (aka Solarpunk Art contest). How was your week?
I have written about Solarpunk in a previous issue of this newsletter – it’s a trend focusing on inspiring a sustainable future through art, and finding a way for modern technology to coexist with lush nature.
Solarpunk focuses on tales to inspire, not tales to condemn. Unlike the current debate about climate, it’s not anti-anything. It’s not shaming you for using your car, nor scaring masses with the warnings of the terrible outcomes of our habits. This is not the way out of this mess.
Chill with the dystopias
The original points of Cyberpunk, Mad Max, Black Mirror, and other dystopian stories were to warn us about the slippery slopes, so we can avoid dire consequences. It all backfired, inspiring creators and technologists to make that vision a reality because the aesthetics accompanying the message were compelling.
Technologists live to create things that they fell in love with as children. Star Trek should be credited for the invention of the iPhone more than Steve Jobs because it sent millions of engineers onto the paths that resulted in technology combined in the slick monolith you hold in your hand today.
Art inspires, and technology follows.
I want the future to be hopeful
I believe the future is good and humanity’s best days are yet ahead of us. Technology has the potential to not only help the climate (which it did harm before), but continue providing improvements to longevity, health, and education.
We need to point technologists towards respecting nature, and all species on planet earth, creating sustainable habitats, walkable cities, and clean energy sources. We need artists to lead us, so technologists can follow. So lead us somewhere nice.
This is where you come in.
The Solarpunk contest I helped fund is running until November 1st, 2021. The format can be any visual medium (digital, ink, paint, 3D, animated, etc). It should be original art, not published elsewhere. Winners will be chosen by the CEO of Terraformation (@Yishan).
- First Place: $2,740 + $100 reprint purchase offer to publish the winning entry as cover art on one of the six first year issues of Solarpunk Magazine+ $1,000 payable in SOL (Ryan will help you claim).
- Second Place: $2,140
- Third Place: $1,740
- 7 other winners: $1,540
Show us a nice future so we can build it. My future grandchildren are counting on you.
In other news, to match the growing nature-inspired focus of this newsletter and the blog, I redesigned piszek.com to match. Tell me what you think!
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I write about the psychological and technical aspects of the Internet, focusing on remote work, online economy, and cognitive load. Every monday.