The Map of the Future is a decentralized global collaborative research project that brings together people from diverse industries, cultures, and backgrounds to create a functional and collective map of the future. This initiative aims to harness the power of collective intelligence, transcending geographical and cultural boundaries, to provide a comprehensive and inclusive vision of our shared future.
To create, a functional, dynamic and interactive map, as a representation humanity's collective intelligence, imagination, hopes, and concerns for the future in the age of AI. This map will serve as a comprehensive foundation for a decentralized global collaboration ecosystem.
To engage and unite individuals, communities, and organizations from diverse backgrounds and disciplines in the co-creation, exploration, and utilization of this living map. By fostering open communication, innovation, and knowledge-sharing, we aim to empower stakeholders to address global challenges, seize opportunities, and shape a sustainable, inclusive future for all in the age of AI.
The vision of the project is that we can, need and should at this time in future create a map - a map of the future. This map is intended to be a functional map, that millions of young people, institutions, governments, and companies are able to use to identify interesting, valuable, and important risks, dangers and inspiring opportunities for our individual and collective future. Humanity has been travelling for too long blind, it is time to give it a map.
The map is intended to have the following affordances. It should be:
Dreams are important, but they only become real when you can envision, and then realise a path to their realisation. The Map of the Future is buildable. The timing is right, the technology is readily available (for the first time), and we have the ability to finance its construction. In this section we look at the basic steps:
The Map of the Future is a simple sounding concept - it is just a map (digitally created and vast in size and detail) of the future - that is more precisely what we as a species think, imagine and predict the future to be. It is the second collective intelligence document to be produced after Wikipedia.
Visually we start with the idea of a familiar map. Technically it is a (directed acyclic) graph, which we visualise initially using the GMap algorithm to produce a vector image much like the one below.
This image consist of nodes (as books bought on Amazon), and links or arcs that connect these books based on books bought by people who also bought the first book. In this image books look like cities, and the arcs like roads between the cities. The GMap algorithm clusters this data and lays them out in a meaningful way, that too our eye resembles countries, continents and islands of knowledge. It encourages us to name these emergent “countries” as in the example above - Shakespeare’s, Feministan, Russiania… However our map will be grander, based on more interesting and useful data, and more nuanced.
The Map of Future will be layered. We will encourage a number of separate mapping efforts, and use these to generate different layers, that can be overlayed, visualised and combined in different ways. We will interview young people (and in particular University students), through structured workshops to generate a map of the future as they fear, hope and predict. We will also collect and utilise existing data projects like the Map of Science (see below). The project will be a collective art work (or myth), that will be built with the participation of a number of our friends, aritists and their mapping communities. Together we will approach project partners and run the first “mapathons” or mapping creatathons with students starting September 2023 (the beginning of term). That will require engagement of key individuals and institutions this spring, and the building of the mapping infrastructure over the summer months together with a number of pilot projects as part of the Moti creative industry market segmentation analysis initiative.
The artwork will be elaborated over the coming months. We start with the idea of the personal, and the collective. The Map of the Futire will be both an intimate and private experience, in which you can create a map of your own future. This map will have the feel of an astrological prediction, and it will have the awe, mystique and feeling of disturbing reverence that any such encounter with an oracle engenders.
Students will be onboarded into a collective universe, through an intimate and confidential interview in which they are encouraged to map their beliefs, aspirations, hopes and fears. Each student will be assigned a star, taken from the open scientific database of know stars. This star will be unique to them, and will be associated with a blockchain (self-sovereign id) which they use to encrypt and store their dreams - as a personal value map. This map is able to attract and be attracted too other similar maps through a mechanism we call “karmic physics”.
Karmic physics uses a variety of graphing and clustering algorithms to align smaller maps on top of larger maps. This enables us to align private, personal individual of organisational (group) maps on top of a collective or larger scale “map of the future”. The exact mechanism we use will be a secret, but you can imagine it as a “spring algorithm” in which the larger map of the future has fixed elements and greater weight (or karmic gravity), while your personal or small organisational graph is attracted or repelled from these bigger masses or starts until it finds its place.
This place will be meaningful as the forces concerned are based on keywords and dimensions of values that you care about. Your neighbours, are individuals, projects and ideas that you care or are concerned about. You can use these forces to navigate your way through this world.
It is possible to provide access to this data, and to process the individual interactions on mobile phones. Abstractions, simplifications, and personalised maps can be streamed to individual phones, which in turn have the processing power to calculate the geometry and interactions between your personal (map) data and thousands of map data points.
The artwork will visualise these interactions collectively and individually in a beautiful and meaningful way. That is our challenge.
t will take time to produce this graph, to collect the data, to experiment and practice with the visualisation. While we can release simplified graphs, early and often as part of an agile cycle - these will not be the final result - they will be “blue prints” or sketches of the final graph functionality. Initially we collect the data “in the dark”, the blue prints emerge first. Artists and contributors get access to the process and are able to shape the way the project is formed and visualised. These early contributors are coders, scientists, artists and story tellers. They will work with and help produce the first blue prints.
The Map of the Future will be rendered in audio. We will collect interviews in audio, and use open generative AI (such as Whisper) to transcribe these interviews. We will use AI to extract keywords and concepts from these interviews - and use these transcripts to segment and highlight key audio clips that will form the basis of the ideas, concepts and arguments that constitute the Map of the Future.
These audio interviews with students, academics, artists and creative industry professionals will be conducted, and collected in the guise of a podcast production pipeline - but one with a difference. These interviews and the traditional media production pipeline of sourcing the best and most interesting stories and visions of the future, will be augmented by a self-organising methodology of workshops that are able to be run asynchronously, by individuals or through small group work.
We will devise an audio experience, and workshop format which produces a continuously steamed sound work, which features overlayed snippets of interviews, found sounds and material collected through the workshops, and woven creatively by musicians and artists into the work. In this sound work adverts are replaced by viral sound pieces, and with a simple tap of the finger on the mobile or your earbuds, the listener will be able to bookmark these clips for later and more in depth exploration. Each viral sound clip is structured as an atom, cell or foundational element of the map. Each sound clip is linked meaningfully to other clips through the map. Each clip is owned governed and tended by an artist, or group of individuals. Each clip is a concept, DAO or LAO in the Sound Garden and archived forever on the Anarchive - a federated database of such clips.
Sound artists, will be empowered to mix, compose and remix works based on this material. The work is a collaboration between Moti, and Matt Kuderski. The concept was originated and then further elaborated by Matt Kuderski and David Bovill. We intend to launch this work as the first public manifestation of the Map of the Future.
From the perspective of the sound artist, the Map of the Future is a musical instrument - a massive sampler linked to an ever growing sound library of poetic and sonically rich content. Artificial intelligence, and a growing range of digital and analogue sound tools, are made available to the artists for them to compose, and perform live compositions. Running your finger over the map of the future generates a play list, and ambient musical mix reminiscent of the audio track for Wim Wenders Wings of Desire - where we can overhear the thoughts fears and dreams of individuals, or groups of individuals as we journey across space, where the space is the space of the future as envisaged by a particular community.
The project will start simple, with a media collection pipeline that results in a tagged and organised cloud based archive (probably Dropbox Initially). Audio will be uploaded to the archive, and embedded in structured wiki pages (such as Notion, Dropbox Paper or Federated Wiki). Each wiki page will be named with a title of the concept-from-the-future, and the transcript stored as part of the text.
This audio archive, while it starts simply, will evolve into an advanced federated archive of audio, indexed in a number of creative ways (see below). The Map of the Future is the interface to this archive that we call The Anarchive. The structure of this archive will be federated - that is there will be many interconnected archives, and many copies of the archived material held by artist and organisations at different locations. Each federated archive will be able to use its own database, search and archive and retrieval technology, and we will explore cooperations with a number of open source technology partners that are able to support this architecture.
We aim to standardise of a minimal and flexible schema, that can be represented in json or markdown and is directly viewable and editable by a wide range of simple text editors and web browsers. Our aim is to be able to work with a wide range of active federated writing communities (such as federated wiki, TiddlyWiki wiki, Obsidian, massive wiki etc) as well as a number of cloud based platforms such as Notion, Coda, HackMD, Dropbox Paper etc such that outputs from workshops can be used as inputs to deliberations and workshops at a later time and location. Each file is able to flexibly represent a node in a distributed, federated or decentralised (cultural) knowledge graph, and has embedded within it a representation of its context structured as an embedded context graph. The Anarchive will experiment with a range of flexible, shifting and emergent ontologies expressed as a dialogue between context graphs whose high level expression is the Map of the Future.
Initially, as the software and workflows of this archive are perfected (by the Code Collective), we intend to progress with the data collection and sound work using simple and professional cloud based tools. Moti, and Matt Kuderski will begin to work with a set of integrated workflow tools that achieve the following production pipeline:
Generative AI will be used to summarise, and extract keywords and concepts form the text. Images, further audio files, videos, and other media will be attached to this wiki page. All this material will be used to create a local context-graph of the salient links relevant to the viral sound clip. Each wiki page can be forked, and rewritten from a different perspective. Perspectives are stored in their own domain. Multiple domains (or perspectives) surround the same concept, and the totality of these perspectives, together with the content constitutes the ever evolving content of each node of the Map of the Future.
These sound seeds when properly tended (that is all the metadata / forms filled in) will become a concept on Moti, and be added to the map. This entails associating them with an NFT and DAO based governance, in which their IP is recognised, and the artists contributing the work acknowledged and appropriately rewarded. This DAO enhanced, concept exploration platform is the proof-of-concept (PoC) for the Moti platform. Other works, in other media can use the same tools and pipelines to create, incentivise and protect their projects.
The Map of the Future will be presented when it is complete. How this is achieved is not fixed. Much will depend on collaborators and partners. At this stage we imagine the following:
The following dates are relevant milestones for the project: