nomad ness



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A nomad (Greek: νομάς, nomas, plural νομάδες, nomades; meaning one roaming about for pasture, pastoral tribe) is a member of a community of people who live in different locations, moving from one place to another. Among the various ways nomads relate to their environment, one can distinguish the hunter-gatherer, the pastoral nomadowning livestock, or the “modern” peripatetic nomad. As of 1995, there were an estimated 30–40 million nomads in the world.

hunger gatherer ness

Nomadic hunting and gathering, following seasonally available wild plants and game, is by far the oldest human subsistence method. Pastoralists raise herds, driving them, or moving with them, in patterns that normally avoid depleting pastures beyond their ability to recover.

Nomadism is also a lifestyle adapted to infertile regions such as steppe, tundra, or ice and sand, where mobility is the most efficient strategy for exploiting scarce resources. For example, many groups in the tundra are reindeer herders and are semi-nomadic, following forage for their animals. These nomads sometimes adapt the use of high technology such as solar photovoltaics to reduce their dependence on diesel fuel.

Sometimes also described as “nomadic” are the various itinerant populations who move about in densely populated areas living not on natural resources, but by offering services (craft or trade) to the resident population. These groups are known as “peripatetic nomads

A nomad is a person with no settled home, moving from place to place as a way of obtaining food, finding pasture for livestock, or otherwise making a living. The word Nomad comes from a Greek word that means one who wanders for pasture. Most nomadic groups follow a fixed annual or seasonal pattern of movements and settlements. Nomadic peoples traditionally travel by animal or canoe or on foot. Today, some nomads travel by motor vehicle. Most nomads live in tents or other portable shelters.

Nomads keep moving for different reasons. Nomadic foragers move in search of game, edible plants, and water. The Australian Aborigines, Negritos of Southeast Asia, and San of Africa, for example, traditionally move from camp to camp to hunt and to gather wild plants. Some tribes of the Americas followed this way of life. Pastoral nomads make their living raising livestock, such as camels, cattle, goats, horses, sheep, or yaks. These nomads travel to find more camels, goats, and sheep through the deserts of Arabia and northern Africa. The Fulani and their cattle travel through the grasslands of Niger in western Africa. Some nomadic peoples, especially herders, may also move to raid settled communities or avoid enemies. Nomadic craftworkers and merchants travel to find and serve customers. They include the Lohar blacksmiths of India, the Romani (Gypsy) traders, and the Irish Travellers.

Most nomads travel in groups of families called bands or tribes.

find your tribe


These groups are based on kinship and marriage ties or on formal agreements of cooperation. A council of adult males makes most of the decisions, though some tribes have chiefs.

In the case of Mongolian nomads, a family moves twice a year. These two movements would generally occur during the summer and winter. The winter location is usually located near mountains in a valley and most families already have their fixed winter locations. The winter locations have shelter for the animals and are not used by other families while they are out. In the summer they move to a more open area that the animals can graze. Most nomads usually move in the same region and don’t travel very far to a totally different region. Because they usually circle around a large area, a community gets formed and the other families generally know where the other ones are. Most often, a family would not have the resources to move from one province to another unless they are moving out of the area permanently. A family can move on its own or with others and if it moves alone, they are usually no more than a couple of kilometers from each other. In the modern day there are no tribes and the people make decisions among their family members, although they consult with the elders on usual matters. The geographical closeness of families are usually for mutual support. Pastoral nomad societies usually do not have large population. One such society, the Mongols, gave rise to the largest land empire in history. The Mongols originally consisted of loosely organized nomadic tribes in Mongolia, Manchuria, and Siberia. In the late 12th century, Genghis Khan united them and other nomadic tribes to found the Mongol Empire, which eventually stretched the length of Asia.

The nomadic way of life has become increasingly rare.

Many governments dislike nomads because it is difficult to control their movement and to obtain taxes from them.

Many countries have converted pastures into cropland and forced nomadic peoples into permanent settlements.

inigenous people


Starting fire by hand. San people in Botswana.

‘Nomadic’ hunter-gatherers (also known as foragers) move from campsite to campsite, following game and wild fruits and vegetables. Hunting and gathering was the ancestral subsistence mode of Homo, and all modern humans were hunter-gatherers until around 10,000 years ago.

Following the development of agriculture, most hunter-gatherers were eventually either displaced or converted to farming or pastoralist groups. Only a few contemporary societies are classified as hunter-gatherers, and some supplement, sometimes extensively, their foraging activity with farming or keeping animals.

hunger gatherer ness



Cuman nomads, Radziwiłł Chronicle, 13th century.


An 1848 Lithograph showing nomads in Afghanistan.


A yurt in front of the Gurvan Saikhan Mountains. Approximately 30% of the Mongolia’s 3 million people are nomadic or semi-nomadic.


In 1920, nomadic pastoral tribes represented over a quarter of Iran’s population. Tribal pastures were nationalized during the 1960s. The National Commission of UNESCO registered the population of Iran at 21 million in 1963, of whom two million (9.5%) were nomads. Although the nomadic population of Iran has dramatically decreased in the 20th century, Iran still has one of the largest nomadic populations in the world, an estimated 1.5 million in a country of about 70 million.

In Kazakhstan where the major agricultural activity was nomadic herding, forced collectivization under Joseph Stalin’s rule met with massive resistance and major losses and confiscation of livestock. Livestock in Kazakhstan fell from 7 million cattle to 1.6 million and from 22 million sheep to 1.7 million. The resulting famine of 1931–1934 caused some 1.5 million deaths: this represents more than 40% of the total Kazakh population at that time.

In the 1950s as well as the 1960s, large numbers of Bedouin throughout the Middle East started to leave the traditional, nomadic life to settle in the cities of the Middle East, especially as home ranges have shrunk and population levels have grown. *Government policies in Egypt and Israel, oil production in Libya and the Persian Gulf, as well as a desire for improved standards of living, effectively led most Bedouin to become settled citizens of various nations, rather than stateless nomadic herders. A century ago nomadic Bedouin still made up some 10% of the total Arab population. Today they account for some 1% of the total.

*improved..? sounds like schooling the world ness

At independence in 1960, Mauritania was essentially a nomadic society. The great Sahel droughts of the early 1970s caused massive problems in a country where 85% of its inhabitants were nomadic herders. Today only 15% remain nomads.

As many as 2 million nomadic Kuchis wandered over Afghanistan in the years before the Soviet invasion, and most experts agreed that by 2000 the number had fallen dramatically, perhaps by half. The severe drought had destroyed 80% of the livestock in some areas.

Niger experienced a serious food crisis in 2005 following erratic rainfall and desert locust invasions. Nomads such as the Tuareg and Fulani, who make up about 20% of Niger’s 12.9 million population, had been so badly hit by the Niger food crisis that their already fragile way of life is at risk. Nomads in Mali were also affected.

seems we’re causing the move from nomad ness.. via destroying natural resources, oppression/violence from people seeking/assuming power/control, ongoing intoxification (dna compromise) of human nature/indigenous ness..


adding page because of Dante.. in particular Michel‘s share:

dear friends,

some people are looking for info about the type of neonomadism that involves living in boats and vans; all resources welcome

cc Dante-Gabryell Monson

to describe and further conceptualise neo nomadic lifestyles taking into account modular “Internet of Things” – Parametric – Housing as Logistical Solution approaches.

For example, as Eric coins it, “furnitecture” that can be assembled in different frameworks. Potentially standardised and low cost, which can be assembled on a standard barge, or assembled in(to) a tiny house format, or to generate functional spaces within underused buildings.

With components themselves ( open hardware , à la wikihouse and opendesk ) , but also distributed semantic databases ( with existing potential prototypes ) to describe overlap between narratives in which these logistical convergences are developed.


1 Nomad Spimed Settlements


Alastair Parvin

Iwan Baan ness

when i think of self-organizing i can’t help but think of self-directing. and my mind often goes to the visuals/work/art that Iwaan Baan shares – like the ones above – and the ones on the self-directed page. both being/becoming/emerging the same dance/fractal. it’s like the element of unique (thumbprint) from self-directed ness keeps the self-organizing from slipping to the center of sameness/status-quo/invented vs invited. and the bumping up against, the rubbing shoulders with, the colliding, of the self-organizing, keeps the self-directed ness awake/alive to its authenticity/possibility/curiosity.]

living spaces


bravery to change mind – place


koda – moveable (walking) concrete house – put together in 7 hrs

Houses and apartments can’t be moved? You can move an entire village.
KODA is free-standing, not fixed to the ground, and its design and structure allow it to be assembled and disassembled many times over.
All a KODA needs is a ground with sufficient weight-bearing capacity, levelled footing (assuming you want a level floor), and connection points for water, sewerage, and electricity. A single lorry to carry it in one piece and a crane to nest it in.

Smart heating, cooling and power systems, are neatly concealed within the flooring, ceiling, and inner walls of the unit, so it’s lift and go!

We believe the idea that once a house is built, it is forever, is antiquated. As people’s needs change in time – yes, the house will last forever, but you can relocate and re-purpose it infinite times.

too expensive to move et al – via Eric and Dante – can’t pack it or bike it

instant housing for urban nomads via Dante

thinking.. hexayurt that turns into back pack – weaving a home: –fb via alexander and leigh

on other end.. thinking 3d printed houses


black wild ness law

science of people in schools