eleanor saitta

eleanor shai

[nyc, london, stockholm, berlin, .. nomadic]

intro’d to Eleanor here with Michiel de Jong (from reading about open tabs in Kevin Carson‘s desktop regulatory state):

16 min – Graebers debt – shopkeeper manners.. pass the salt – that kind of sharing is convivial.. not about how much you owe – it’s an informal social system. across the board with reputation like structures.. anyone who has a reputation doesn’t have time to manage it… as soon as you formalize a system like that you take away a lot of the flexibility and that kind of structure

18 min – problem with capitalism is the nature of money – money is abstraction we use to share agency. that abstraction has a set of rules. complicated rules… carefully tuned over time to have  a certain set of political structures.

if you want to deal with a lot of the problems in society that banks seem to be causing – you want a non-accumulative money. starting at the level of debt is far far too coarse because you’re not actually changing the structural rules. you’re not actually changing the nature by which we interact and create those obligations between each other

as long as your money still accumulates… as long as you still have an incentive to say – i have a pile of agency.. and i’m going to use this pile of agency to go get more agency… you have the emergence of a structure.

you can change this.

one of other problems right now – agency and anonymity – because we use money to organize our agency in the world.. any system that wants to undo the negative affects – anonymity is a requirement.. can’t have affinity in a place where you’re not free

21 min – trust scales really badly – that’s why we ended up with money in the first place.. well – one of the reasons.. you can get away from tat but you still need to replace with a trust anchor..

this is doable – but complicated – and you have a lot of money already very connected to how we do money now..

i like roads.. i like having a way to socially pay for them.. if you have a decentralized system.. that doesn’t accumulate – you need to figure out a way to do that – ie: pay for roads..

don’t see anything wrong with bitcoin as an experiment – but it’s just another experiment (like opentabs)


tweets (part of stream of thought – just taking out these two):

At some point we’re going to have to admit to ourselves that existing power structures are suicidal and then we’re gonna have hard choices.

And yes, managing a transition to any just and sustainable infrastructure is going to be the hardest thing our species has ever done.

The last thing we need is a revolution here – the chaos would literally doom our species. But smooth change of that magnitude will be HARD.

unless – chaos is the only way – and tech can ground that chaos (lag time ness)..


2013 – Eleanor Saitta & Smári McCarthy: Long Live the Protocoletariat! (29c3)

2 min – we’re living in dangerous moment.. existing structures we’ve been depending on… are failing at an increasing rate.. we don’t want to live in a future where all infra is broken… we need a diff way of organizing.. a diff structure

3 min – liquid democracy (delegated voting system.. instead of in rep.. everyone votes on every issue… you can delegate someone if you want – pirates using it) – few trade offs – one required – all votes have to be public.. doesn’t allow minorities to express opinions..

why voting ness.. magnets and puck why puck

5 min – reason for public votes… in electronic voting system… no other way to verify.. so looking for system that supports unlinkability or that doesn’t allow for corruption.. so death to minority or corruption to majority.. unlinkability or verfiability.. that’s where we are now

w anonymity .. can’t tell if voted only once.. or that the vote was even counted..

6 min – there might be a solution –

9 min – liq demo a system that favors people who can show up and write well

we confuse written fluency with having new/good ideas…

turns out there’s very little relationship no relation between the two… when you have a system .. ok you show up and write something and can you persuade people… doesn’t turn out to be that good for the people you are persuading..

10 min – generally try to solve process problem.. w/o understanding process… ie: if someone could figure out how democracy could work.. then add people and it breaks down…. ie: meetings goes by robert rules.. but i haven’t seen any that really understand robert’s rules… if we manage to capture these processes as they are in the software.. going in right direction

11 min – politics is not about getting people together to identify/debate problems.. it’s about getting people to make decisions.. most of software so far .. doesn’t capture decisions.. and how carried forward into future..

puck and magnets.. decisions ok.. but no need to all use same puck

decision making ness

12 min – geeks love math problems.. this is not where we need to be going.. don’t confuse human problems with math problems

14 min – need to look at principals… start from -0 and work on world we want to live.. let’s not start with what we have today..

ie: leap frog – to a nother wayfor (blank)’s sake

15 min – we have agency… we get to actually go out there and do things/change things.. we don’t have to wait for permission from existing structures in order to act..

21 min – on watching the wire – because it’s basically about agency.. what you can do… on a daily basis.. how to figure out what you can do and do it..  you all do this.. but somehow we haven’t captured any method for tweaking/expanding agency yet..

22 min – protocolization – every machine is a language… figure out what language they’re speaking and replace w/p2p

or make them irrelevant… no?

23 min – thing with protocolization – moves us from explicit to implicit control structures.. but it misses institutional memory.. continuity of actors involved… ie: how do we keep things moving.. ie: vaccinations.. people w/o that history are deciding against them..

perhaps we need to move in a diff way.. one that depends more on uncertainty of actors.. ie: antifragile et al

perhaps then … less disease in first place..?

28 min – on tax office as example.. if don’t have some reflective.. memory function.. you break large chunks of things…

how does democracy decide to not do something,… ie: anonymous deciding not to kill someone.. if any one person can pull trigger.. how do they all collectively decide not to do this… you need a function/institution that says.. hey guys.. remember we weren’t going to do this.. institution is just something that reminds people… what if we get rid of all process and focus on long term memory

indeed.. how about.. self-talk as data – where each alive person reminds themself daily.. and.. not even bent toward ie: killing.. because has something else to do

31 min – on enforcement mech’s..

do we need those..?

mapping complexity – tax office, school, health, insurance, bank, …

what if all of these are irrelevant when people truly have agency.. everyday. as the day.

33 min – how to build a taxation system.. to get us all to participate..


34 min – until we get institutions to understand what networks are saying.. we need to figure out that translation… how do we enforce/not enforce laws in network environment… or do we figure out how to do things if people violate our protocols and our social contracts..

perhaps.. what if our thinking about security, voting, measuring exchanges, contracts, property…is what’s getting in the way. what if they are (could/should be) irrelevant (gupta roadblock law). we have the means now – so why don’t we use tech to coordinate/regroup/re self organize us.. rather than making b more efficient…

we don’t have the luxury of solving philosophical problems… if they don’t relate to the real world..

exactly – we’re not living in the real world right now.. it is so manufactured.. perpetuate\ing not us ness

36 min – on people not wanting us to win.. if we don’t figure things out soon

major figuring.. is how to make it be about all of us.. no winning.. or all winning..

on occupy and general assembly not (our goal).. but we can learn something from them..

43 min – best way … traditional answer.. revolution and purge anyone w/ money.. maybe instead.. built alt structures…infect years.. infect world.. then in 10-20 yrs everyone says.. we still have nation states.. that’s so cute.

45 min – on bucky – build something else..

46 min – individual actors have memories.. not same as institution as whole having memory – ie: culture indoctrination processes.. we need to impart the institutional memory to you… ie: internal knowledge base…  so you don’t lose any tacit knowledge… where node in network.. quits and no exchange…


if it becomes an institution it loses everything that’s good about it in a network..

47 min – the thing that makes things an institution is its tacicity.. ability to maintain tacit knowledge..


48 min – how to org files… basically individual should hold all that on own.. so how to do that is an unsolved problem.. virtual file cabinet on back.. would love to have answer to that..

self-talk as data … output ness…  – much diff data than we’re dealing w/now

50 min – liquid demo is good.. but how to figure out unlinkability… also need to map out what to do together…

rev of everyday life.. a nother way – self-organizing ness..

52 min – politics is war by other means.. a system like this is designed to ensure no one wins.. and keep fighting low enough to get something done.. let’s now encourage fighting.. rather cooperation..

gershenfeld something else law

54 min – ideas of endless competition – not true.. societies are massive collabs..

55 min – q: all this is based on trust..  a: crypto is managing trust to a degree.. trust is one of our shortcoming to date… we’re good at understanding trust when close enough to see.. and under 200ish people… but not hooked up to anything..

trust.. never tried as 100% – perhaps only way it works

1:02 – somebody invented ballot box et al – we forgot that someon had to sharpen the first stick.. we don’t realize that’s not built into human nature.. quinn



IOW, if, in 10 years we haven’t completely restructured global transit, energy, and manufacturing infrastructure, we get billions of deaths.

I’ve been operating on a 20-40 year changeover timescale until now. In that timeframe, redecentralizing agency is a core project.

It seemed unlikely we could manage a long-term infrastructural change project implying a massive global downshift without shifting power.

for (blank)’s sake… ness


find/follow Eleanor:

link twitter

her site:



money ness


Eleanor Saitta (@Dymaxion) tweeted at 5:20 AM – 22 Sep 2016 :

To be quite fair, they would have been happy to have me stay on if I was willing to promise not to speak publicly if something else happened (http://twitter.com/Dymaxion/status/778916897484075013?s=17)



Eleanor Saitta (@Dymaxion) tweeted at 6:15 AM – 1 Mar 2017 :

It’s like there’s some kind of impedance mismatch where the Valley just can’t see the concrete reality its embedded in. https://t.co/2c9oery8rL (http://twitter.com/Dymaxion/status/836927807825592325?s=17)

Douglas Frank (@dpfrank07) tweeted at 6:21 AM – 1 Mar 2017 :

@Dymaxion “Mild incremental improvement” isn’t a pitchable narrative. (http://twitter.com/dpfrank07/status/836929496171229184?s=17)

not incrementalness that’s not pitch able.. is that pitching ness is killing us..pitching for made up money…

Eleanor Saitta (@Dymaxion) tweeted at 6:35 AM – 1 Mar 2017 :

.@dpfrank07 And this is why the entire VC investment model is an active threat to the future of human civilization and must be stopped. (http://twitter.com/Dymaxion/status/836932816592068610?s=17)

perhaps.. the made-up money model.. must be stopped
more specific… why made up money is killing us
graeber min max law


Eleanor Saitta (@Dymaxion) tweeted at 5:26 AM – 5 Apr 2017 :

It’s increasingly clear that borders only serve the rich. Then again, given that the nation state was their project… https://t.co/CY7J7Bz5Ji (http://twitter.com/Dymaxion/status/849584141024632836?s=17)

Eleanor Saitta (@Dymaxion) tweeted at 5:40 AM – 5 Apr 2017 :

@HerraBRE Disease outbreak is basically the only situation where quarantine makes sense, but we don’t need nations for that. (http://twitter.com/Dymaxion/status/849587563237081088?s=17)

Eleanor Saitta (@Dymaxion) tweeted at 5:41 AM – 5 Apr 2017 :

@HerraBRE And there’s no way to have the stability function of a border as currently understood without it also being a weapon against the poor. (http://twitter.com/Dymaxion/status/849587800513138689?s=17)


Eleanor Saitta (@Dymaxion) tweeted at 6:49 AM – 26 Jan 2018 :

What a shitshow.

TBF, Google is just visible, not uniquely bad; I think the entire industry is a trashfire around diversity support, and while I’ve met HR folks who appeared to care as humans, I’ve never met one willing or allowed to do the real work. https://t.co/aQSj7GgXyX (http://twitter.com/Dymaxion/status/956886857492713472?s=17)


Eleanor Saitta (@Dymaxion) tweeted at 6:56 AM – 17 May 2018 :
About to go onstage at #nsec18, to give 14 Easy Lessons for Thinking about Complex Adversarial Systems. Delighted to see so many folks up before 09.00! (http://twitter.com/Dymaxion/status/997098552319979523?s=17)

(No live stream, but there will be video online later, and I’ll send it a slide link once I’m done)

Original Tweet: https://twitter.com/Dymaxion/status/997099572819300354

“Trust is not a binary structure.” – @Dymaxion #nsec18

Original Tweet: https://twitter.com/_jpdm_/status/997107597315538946


larp ness

Eleanor Saitta (@Dymaxion) tweeted at 4:26 AM – 27 Jul 2018 :
Really useful talk at the RopeCon academic track today, looking at larp-centric evaluation of simulation efficacy in civilian crisis management training. Looking forward to digging in more there. (http://twitter.com/Dymaxion/status/1022790280280502272?s=17)


Eleanor Saitta (@Dymaxion) tweeted at 5:31 AM – 26 Aug 2018 :
Forgot to tweet this when the videos went up — my talk from the Transnationalisms event in Ljubljana in May. https://t.co/OP61wzYutD(http://twitter.com/Dymaxion/status/1033678436655620096?s=17)

9 min – looking at it from (quinn norton) the invisible city


10 min – we had to learn to ignore convos that are boring

11 min – 2 bn live in one city and we keep walking out into the street and getting hit by trams.. we don’t get how to live together online.. we don’t even see this

12 min – how to not get hit by trams on internet.. is.. how to be human.. how to perform human in a city.. interaction w each other.. really interesting when we start talking about borders

siddiqi border law

13 min – that ability to at least pretend/perform privilege at a border..

17 min – where larp went in the nordics

larp ing

20 min – you have these people and you want to change their idea of the world.. you shake their behavior

23 min – what a border is is changing rapidly..

27 min  – why do we actually need a physical border..?

29 min – we can look at shared cultural id’s..

marsh label law

30 min – what they actually are is geographically bounded coercive infrastructural collectives..  it’s not possible to build industrial scale infra unless it is a coercive collective project

the art of not being governed – the politics of zonia (too far above sea level to grow rice)

31 min – sweet potatoes

32 min – if we want to survive climate change.. we need to see not just production.. not just the supply chain side.. but all of the infra’s have to be conceived of in terms of global scope.. because they have global impact

33 min – we need to teraform if we want to have our future back.. we have lost the ability to be local..

34 min – we also need to flatten wealth ineq

35 min – the thing we built the nation to do.. we don’t need anymore.. we live in a transient moment of total nation.. we need to figure out how to prehearse an understanding of what it means to exist beyond the total nation.. and by prehearse i mean play.. t

a nother way..  2 convers.. as infra


during urkraine ness

I think our challenge now is to try to imagine what that transition could look like — both in concrete, specific terms, and as a lived impression of that new world. We have spent decades without a future, and we can no longer afford to.
Original Tweet: https://twitter.com/Dymaxion/status/1496855327274414092

org around legit needs.. that deep.. ie: a nother way