Radically new ways of living and working are for the first time available (again) to us

Sun Jan 10 2021

tags: draft public

  • https://levels.io/coworking-space-economics/
  • https://levels.io/the-greatest-migration/

Joe Rogan moved from Los Angeles to Austin, Texas this year. And as an influential person in his community, he was able to bring a big share of his friends of comedians and other celebrities over to Austin too.

Kanye West bought a $14 million dollar, 6,000-acre ranch in Wyoming and is building an eco-village with a farm, houses and schools where his kids will go. And there's more famous people who are planning the same.

The founder of Bali's most popular coworking space Dojo bought land north from Canggu near the beach and is building his own village. It will focus on creative, entrepreneurial, maker-type people and will feature tens of bungalow-style apartments, coworking spaces, a maker space and since it's in Bali: probably lots of swimming pools.

The idea with all of these is the same: get out of cities that feel isolating (think of Los Angeles' giant sprawl) and move to a place where you can be physically closer to your community of people: being able to walk to each other, instead of an hour car ride away.

It's decoupling, right? Key SWE principle. The best place to work is not always the best place to live (the tails come apart). And for the first time we can decouple these two things where previously you had to live where you worked.

We probably shouldn't start a cult of our own:

And if the communes of the 1960s taught us anything: it's that trying to re-invent society by building a new mini society in a village usually doesn't work out and sometimes even ends bad:

The 1960s teaches us we maybe the point isn't to try build entirely new artificially designed communities from the ground up, but instead iterate on the places that organically rise up for remote workers, improve them and solve the problems remote workers there have.

but I can see things like again trying to disconnect a little (but not completely!!) from the rest of society. There are two key takeaways:

  1. In some sense I think we lose a lot when we scale up —> food/agriculture, schooling, etc. I learned so much from my tutors in Oxford because I had concentrated 1 to 1 time with them: qualitatively different from what a lecture or tutorial can give. In that vein i believe it's better to teach our children ourselves (or in a small collaborative team) rather than ship them over to school with 25 other children. Ditto with food: Big Ag optimises for shelf stability, size, aesthetics, but not for nutrition, taste, or healthfulness. The trade-off here is time/efficiency, but since we as a society are wealthier than ever before, it might be a good idea to make this tradeoff.

  2. I think it's important to live in a community where you live near (walking distance to) all your friends. I think that was why I was so happy in Oxford. As I've mentioned before, I think the nuclear family + single-family home is a Bad Idea, not just because no man (or family) is an island, but also because it really prevents people from living walking distance from one another.