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Paypal Founder Puts a Half Million Dollars Into Seasteading 275

eldavojohn writes "Wired is running an informative article on Paypal Founder Peter Thiel's investment in seasteading. There's a great graphic indicating how the spar design helps platforms weather rough seas with a ballast. There's a lot more than just Thiel throwing the half million towards this and they hope to pitch this to San Fransisco for a bay pilot. Ocean colonies can be both liberating and also downright human-rights-lacking scary."
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Paypal Founder Puts a Half Million Dollars Into Seasteading

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  • Re:heh (Score:3, Informative)

    by Da Fokka ( 94074 ) on Wednesday May 21, 2008 @02:09PM (#23495378) Homepage
    Seasteading would be a very complex endeavour but the bases you are referring to are more or less covered. A pretty detailed description can be found at the SeaSteading book [].

    Seasteading could be a very interesting social experiment, especially to anyone with libertarian leanings.
  • by iminplaya ( 723125 ) on Wednesday May 21, 2008 @02:19PM (#23495492) Journal
    About the only thing you'd have to worry about would be a tsunami.

    Not at all. It would pass under you virtually unnoticed. Tsunamis aren't a problem until the water gets shallow. As for general stability, you just need to have enough mass well below the surface.
  • by nuzak ( 959558 ) on Wednesday May 21, 2008 @02:27PM (#23495622) Journal
    > Utopia doesn't exist, will not exist ... ever.

    You are aware that the word "Utopia" means "Nowhere", right?
  • Re:get real (Score:4, Informative)

    by grassy_knoll ( 412409 ) on Wednesday May 21, 2008 @02:30PM (#23495656) Homepage
    Even if they're unable to create their own nation, they might be able to operate under a flag of convenience [] to achieve the same or similar effect.

  • by countSudoku() ( 1047544 ) on Wednesday May 21, 2008 @02:45PM (#23495854) Homepage
    Insightful, yet incorrect. The 'tologists at the helm of El Ron had a similar idea about having a colony at sea; named Sea Org, or some such nonsense, follow the wiki-link if you really care to. The tie in is appropriate as the summarizer decided to mention both types of motives for moving to a sea colony; for freedom from oppressive governments, or to further your power over stupid people who follow convincing, well spoken lunatics. Fair is fair, I think Peter is quite a lunatic too. Pay "Pal" blows!
  • by fastest fascist ( 1086001 ) on Wednesday May 21, 2008 @03:02PM (#23496072)
    There's something to the idea of increasing choice, but I don't think the biggest barrier to free mobility for most people is finding a better place to live - it's having to uproot your entire life to move elsewhere. The older you get, the harder it gets to just take off and leave.

    Then again, maybe societies designed to be in constant flux would be easier to leave. It depends on how much your life is attached to the physical location of where you live, and the people who share it with you. The latter is where it gets sticky.
  • by Chris Acheson ( 263308 ) on Wednesday May 21, 2008 @03:03PM (#23496088) Homepage
    I read it too. The book was called "The Millennial Project: Colonizing the Galaxy in Eight Easy Steps". At the end of the book, the author called for the formation of "The First Millennial Foundation" in order to advance the project that he had outlined. The FMF later changed their name to "The Living Universe Foundation".
  • Buckminster Fuller (Score:1, Informative)

    by Anonymous Coward on Wednesday May 21, 2008 @03:09PM (#23496174)
    Similar idea by Buckminster Fuller.
    link []

    ``There are three types of floating cities: There is one for protected harbor waters, one for semiprotected waters, and one for unprotected deep-sea installations. The deep-sea type is supported by submarine pontoons positioned under the turbulence, with their centers of buoyancy 100 feet below the ocean's surface. Structural columns rise from the submarine pontoons outwardly through the water to support the floating city high above the crests of the greatest waves, which thus pass innocuously below the city's lowest flooring, as rivers flow under great bridges. The deap-sea, deeply pontooned floating cities will be as motionless in respect to our planet as are islanded or land-based cities.
  • by djdavetrouble ( 442175 ) on Wednesday May 21, 2008 @03:13PM (#23496230) Homepage
    Only if they could build a big plastic island like this guy [],
    and somehow make it out of all this crap. [] Now that would be
  • by sxltrex ( 198448 ) on Wednesday May 21, 2008 @03:56PM (#23496802)
    From the Wiki article:

    For several years ocean researcher Charles Moore has been investigating a concentration of floating plastic debris in the North Pacific Gyre. He has reported concentrations of plastics on the order of 3,340,000 pieces/sq km with a mean mass of 5.1kg/sq km collected using a manta trawl with a rectangular opening of 0.9m x 0.15m at the surface.

    5.1kg/km is not much. You'd have to scoop a hell of a big area just to get as much mass as the boat you're scooping with. I think you're overestimating the amount of debris and the size of the pieces.

1 Mole = 007 Secret Agents