The Next Step

Can you imagine living without the concepts of rich and poor? A world without advertising, poverty, crime, war, politics and the general misery wrought by socio-economic inequality? A world with clean air, clean water and abundant resources and facilities for every person? This is all possible today through the direct application of the most advanced technical and scientific means to the problem of resource distribution, in the absence of market logic and profit maximization.

The five pillars of a radically different economy

1. Open Source

Transparent and Collaborative

With the internet, the ability for anyone, anywhere to collaborate on the design and production of goods is now possible.

Collaboration achieves far more than competition. The more that ideas and designs are open and accessible to the public, the more minds can contribute and refine them.
Open Source also means 100% transparency as project designs are completely visible to anyone.

While still in its infancy, open source collaboration on projects has already shown its potential. The Linux operating system is one example of a widely successful open source project, on almost every server and smart phone in the world.

At present, open source collaboration is being severely held back by our market economy which demands that secrets are kept and products are proprietary in order to turn a profit.

With the means of production in public ownership, open and collaborative contribution to all goods and services will be possible.

Imagine having the world's best engineers and designers contribute to local infrastructure projects like a train station or city centre.
Anyone could optimise the design of appliances, electronics, tools, plumbing, wiring, their local playground…..anything!
Designs of products would quickly become standardised world wide as open source products are seen to be far superior than proprietary ones.

When open-source design becomes the standard for innovation the possibilities will be endless.


2. Automated

The machines can do it

We have already entered the age of automation, Since the industrial revolution two centuries ago, machine automation has liberated humanity from many repetitive and laborious tasks.

Not only is robotic production many times faster, it is also safer and much more efficient than manual labour. Nearly all the goods we take for granted today are the product to some degree of automation.

Now with the advancement of computer technology, it is already possible for 99% of production and distribution to be automated, with only relatively minute human input with regard to updates and maintenance. From driverless cars, trains and planes to 3D printing and robotic horticulture, we are now able to make it completely optional for human labour in nearly all fields of essential work.

The transition to full automation of production is inevitable but in today's labour-for- money economy the need to keep people employed is drastically slowing this transformation down.

We need to recognize automation as something positive because it frees people from having to conduct repetitive and sometimes dangerous work and actively encourages the process of job replacement by automation.

In the short term a universal basic income (UBI) will be necessary to ensure those without jobs still have access to the amenities of life, but in the long term there won't be any need for money at all since all of the means of production and distribution of goods will be in public ownership.

inequality inequality

3. Localized

Simple and Efficient

With the complementary effects of automation and standardized open source design, local production becomes possible for nearly all goods.

Today’s practice of shipping goods all over the world makes no sense from an efficiency standpoint. With technology and New Zealand’s abundance of natural resources, we can produce everything we require from food to electronics locally.

This will not only save huge quantities of waste but will also allow much greater controls over quality and customization of goods.

Additionally local production would shield us from the negative effect of a global crisis such as the one we have recently experienced.

As technologies like 3D printing become more capable, it won't be long before printing items at home such as a replacement part for a dishwasher or computer, becomes commonplace.


4. Connected

Internet of Things

Smart, networked goods are now a reality. The so-called Internet of things is a recent trend in technology, consisting of smart appliances and devices which connect to each other and to the internet, that can be remotely controlled and managed. This has broad implications for the way in which goods are distributed, utilised, maintained and updated.

Devices will have a kind of nervous system with sensors inbuilt. This will allow for goods and appliances to be updated over the air or request for repairs and maintenance when a sensor detects that there is a fault.

Things could also detect when they are not in use, so as to make themselves available to anyone who needs them. Imagine being able to request a bicycle, or a camera, or a pair of skis, and the nearest one which is available is brought to you by drone, or it's location revealed for pickup. This would save tremendous amounts of waste because far fewer things would need to be produced in order to satisfy the needs of everyone.

Solar panels on houses could automatically direct their surplus energy to where it is needed, or in the case of say a light bulb, switch off to save energy.

Other examples that already exist include Tesla vehicles, which are able to be controlled, updated and optimised remotely, as can lights and central heating in homes using an app and which are already available.

We are only seeing the beginning of this transformation but it will greatly compliment the other key shifts of automation, open source, localization and accessibility. This emerging capability allows for a dramatic change in the way things are utilised. The sharing and distribution of goods can now be highly optimised.

inequality inequality

5. Accessible

Sharing, efficiently

Is it logical and sustainable for every person to have one of everything made, regardless of their usage?

No, that would simply be wasteful and inefficient. If a person has a need for a good but that need is only for say 45 minutes a day on average, it would be much more efficient if that good was made available to them and to others, when needed.

Many forget that isn’t the good that they want, it is the purpose of that good. When we realize that the good itself is only as important as it’s utility, we see that external restriction or what we might call today “ownership” is extremely wasteful and environmentally illogical in a fundamental economic sense.

So we need to devise a strategy called “strategic access” that will be the foundation of our demand / distribution tracking system; which makes sure we can meet the demand of the population’s needs for access to whatever they need, when they need it.

As far as obtaining the goods goes, centralized and regional access centers all make sense for the most part, placed in close proximity to the population and a person could simply come in, take the item, use it and when finished, return it when it is no longer needed, much how a library works today.

In fact these centers could not only exist in the community in the way we see local shops today but specialized access centers would exist in specific areas where often certain goods are utilized (eg skis near ski slopes or paddle boards near beaches), saving more energy with less repeat transport.


Scientific, Efficient and Free

With the recognition that quality of life, rather than the accumulation of fictional value (money) is most important, the focus of our activities then becomes what does a person need in order to live a happy and fulfilled life?

Essentially it is a matter of intelligent and creative design, utilizing the efficiency optimisation tools of science and technology as the best ways to guide us, without the abstraction of money.

Human needs are both physical (shelter, food, clothing) and non-physical (social, creative, spiritual) both are reconciled through holistic design of basic physical structures (housing, workspaces, education facilities) and the ability to produce and distribute goods (food, tools, furniture etc), in the most economic and aesthetic way.

The basis of this design/production must always be the total available resources (wood, metal, land, water etc) and the best scientific and technological means to utilise them im a way that maximises quality of life and minimises the unsustainable consumption of these resources, so as to have as little impact on the wider earthly systems as possible, ensuring the sustainability of human activities.

Simplicity of design, production and distribution is crucial, with the latest technological and scientific understandings utilized to maximise efficiency.

Back to it's roots

The word “economy” derives from ancient Greek, where “eco” is a derivation of “oikos”, meaning a family unit that consists of a house and the people living in it. The suffix “nomy” is derived from “nomos”, meaning management, law, or principle, --- namely household management

Money used to represent the time and effort that people put into making goods and providing services. Today nearly all goods are produced by automation this means that money no longer truly represents human work.

Most automated production and services are owned by very few people globally, if we look at it companies like Facebook or Google we can see that these companies provide most people with services yet they do not have many employees working for them, the work is done by machines. The same is true of cars, clothing and any other goods that we utilise today. Robotic production lines are standard as the means of producing goods.

How will it work? - Overview