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Edge City

There's no guest talk this week, but tune in on June 12th at 6PM Pacific Time for a talk with science fiction author Chen Qiufan.

Protocol Week

Edge Esmeralda came to life a couple days ago in Healdsburg, California. We'll be hosting a Protocol Week in collaboration with 0xParc there from June 23 to June 28, with a public kickoff session on the first day. There will be a good mix of past and present researchers, external participants, and some drop-in attendees as capacity allows.

The week's overall objective is to facilitate creative worldbuilding in order to imagine what a more protocolized future looks like and/or predict its traffic jams. There will be freewheeling worlding workshops during the days and informal salons in the evenings, wrapping up with a casual presentation roundtable on Friday night. See a rough agenda here.


P.I.G. Highlight: Fire Protocols – Attention as Autopoietic Space

Prescribed fire is a key practice for reducing the probability of catastrophic wildfires in populated areas. The State of California has a quota of ~2 million acres that it's supposed to proactively burn each year, but doesn't come close to this goal.

Over a century of fire suppression has changed California from a fire-ecology to a fire-climate; meaning its continued suppression and the fear it generates makes up the atmosphere we live in, the air and smoke we breathe.

Jiordi and Nathalia's project aims to enhance how stakeholders, including the public, can "conduct themselves in the social environment of fire with more clarity and better effect".

Nathalia Scherer

Nathalia is a researcher, artist, and engineer based in São Paulo and Northern California. Her work spans disciplines including public health, governance systems, ethics, and the metabolic interactions between humans, emergent technologies, and culture.

Jiordi Rosales

Jiordi inhabits Jewish and Mexican lineages of the Northern Sonoran desert and Eastern Europe. Attentive to birds, patterns and forms of learning that most permit laughter, mystery, and contradiction, his practice orbits crafting pedagogies for crumbling futures. He is a CARX Trainee, Fire Forward Fellow, and a Steering Committee member of the Good Fire Alliance in Sonoma County.

Like seeds that lay dormant in a forest until fire sweeps through and activates them, we want protocols that crack open and allow for autopoietic growth.


Content Catch-up

Last week, Daniel Bashir, AWS machine learning engineer and host of The Gradient Podcast, gave a guest talk about protocols in the AI landscape.

He covered topics including the state of play of benchmarking, regulation, protocols for safety, and why a standard definition of AI is difficult.

Highlights from the forum this past week:

  • The relationship between law, enforcement, and protocol (Link).

  • How dysfunctional organizations use certainty theater (Link).

  • A quixotic attempt to make a metric time system (Link).

  • An example of a standard operating procedure for underground service in the United States (Link).

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