Starting with the most urgent of many urgent problems which, individually and collectively, threaten our very survival:
Global warming, a proper subset of the broader topic of “climate change”.
(At this point, let me interrupt myself, and interject that one could argue that our biggest problem is the root problem of humanity fundamentally being “on the wrong track”, in a paradigm characterized by separation, hoarding, and the destruction of the biosphere, reducing the biosphere to the zero-dimensional measure of money . . . where hoarding is not only applied to the realm of the material, but also to the hoarding of power, ego, credit, and sexual reproduction).
The above parenthesis notwithstanding, global warming is about to kill us all off, in a very very short period of time (two to ten years, at the most), IF we do not do something totally radical to stop it.
The good news is that we have THE solution to global warming at hand, ready to implement at planetary scale (“shovel-ready”, as President Barak Obama would have said).
In the short term, this solution has nothing to do with decarbonization or drawdown (whether emission reduction or sequestration). What am I talking about?
Solar Radiation Management (SRM).
Two forms of SRM lead the pack, and both are urgent:
(more on these in the section on SRM below)
At this point, the vast majority of humanity has two reactions to the preceding:
- “I have never heard of this SRM thing before . . . and I wonder why that is.”
- “If indeed SRM is the solution to global warming, then, great, let the governments of the world get together, whether at the UN or elsewhere, and get it done.” (i.e., “por mi te lo puedes arrancar”, as we say in Mexico – “what does any of this have to do with me?”)
Regarding point #1, the reason almost no one is talking about SRM is because humanity, in its collective stupidity, is behaving like a herd of sheep following each other over the edge of a cliff, in blindly trusting that “the opinion of the majority must be correct”. In this case, said opinion is that decarbonization – drawdown (as covered extensively by Paul Hawken’s classic book by the same title) – is “the answer to global warming”.
Regarding point #2: The greatest threat to life on Earth is the belief that someone else will fix it. Specifically, believing the governments of the world will fix it, is a subset of the aforementioned greatest threat.
OK, if the solution will not be implemented by “someone else” – governments, private sector, non-profit sector, religions, etc. – then WHO? The answer is “us”. Who is “us”? You, me, and everyone else who joins together to collectively see to it that SRM is fully implemented, at planetary scale, in time.
OK, the next is question is: HOW? Suppose there are a bunch of us who are willing to take this on. How do we do it? And how do we do it in time? The answer:
Radical Collective Intelligence (RCI).
We hereby call upon all pioneers, creative thinkers, and responsible human beings for whom the preceding resonates, even a little bit, to read on, and to join us. Learn about the power and the ways of “the force” of RCI in the sections below, and how we can use RCI to cool the planet through SRM, and to solve the rest of our mega-problems (and all other problems for that matter) holistically and simultaneously. Once you have gotten your “feet wet” with the basics of RCI and SRM, I then invite you to join us in making it all happen, by joining Radish, and joining the conversation.
SRM: Introduction, and Details of Planetary-scale Implementation
A good starting point to understand SRM as a topic is the Wikipedia page on SRM:
As mentioned above, there are two forms of SRM which lead the pack, and both are extremely urgent (urgent beyond any words we can type here):
Ice911 – Protecting and Preserving the World’s Ice
Ice911’s solution is covered extensively on their website, Ice911.org
Their website is so complete, and gets right to the point so quickly and concisely, that no further words are required here, other than these:
Ice911’s solution is all about protecting the reflective ice we already have. Ice911 was founded by a Stanford Lecturer Dr. Leslie Field, and is a non-profit organization based in the Silicon Valley.
MEER:Reflection – Planetary-scale Supplemental SRM
MEER:Reflection is led by a team of Harvard scientists, and by contrast with Ice911 is about deploying new SRM capacity in the form of vast arrays of floating mirrors, strategically and optimally placed throughout the world’s oceans, covering on the order of 2% of the world’s total surface area with highly reflective mirrors (we can increase or decrease that number, depending upon the optimal trajectory we collectively determine as to how quickly we wish to cool our planet).
For ease of reference, here is an introduction to Harvard’s MEER:Reflection project:
In the following video – the first recorded meeting of a team Dr. Tao and I put together to make planetary-scale SRM a reality – Jamen Shively gives a brief 1.5 minute overview of himself starting at minute 3:38. Dr. Tao presents a concise overview of his MEER:Reflection concept at 45:32:
Welcome to Radish: Radical Collective Intelligence
Welcome to Radish! You have come to the right place. We are very happy you are here.
We know you are working on important things. Billions of people are working on important things, and yet it is not enough: our planet is overheating on an omnicidal trajectory, and the sixth mass extinction is accelerating. What is missing? What do we need to do right now that we are not doing? That is what we get to the heart of on Radish: what is missing, and how do we create and implement it as quickly as possible.
Here is the gist of it:
- As a species, humanity does not share an empowering story which unites us to face our existential crises in a holistically healing way, much less anything approaching an effective. Our stories are all over the map, ranging from “there is not problem”, to “we are doomed.” We urgently need a unifying story along the lines of “We can, must and will fix this. Here is what we need to do . . .”
- Empowered by this new story for humanity, we must do two things asap, which depend upon each other for the success of each:
- First, we need to come together as a planetary collective intelligence, which will rapidly evolve into an exponentially growing superintelligence – this is the bread and butter of Radish.org
- Second, we need to apply this superintelligence to the massive task of rapidly cooling our planet to a temperature which will sustain life for the long term. This will be accomplished by a small number of completely benign, zero-emission forms of SRM – solar radiation management – applied at the surface of the Earth (no chem trails; in fact nothing sprayed into the atmosphere). These will be led by Ice911.org’s ice-based solution, and Harvard’s ocean-based MEER:Reflection solution.
- As we cool Mother Earth, we will use our new-found collective superintelligence to simultaneously and holistically solve all of the rest of our most daunting problems, from human problems (e.g., hunger and war) to planetary problems (e.g., the destruction of the biosphere, led in turn by destructive forms of animal agriculture).
That is the gist of it; now for the details:
We begin with story. As a species, we humans run on stories. To paraphrase the leading brand of gasoline, let us put a tiger in our tank. Before we can do that, let us first figure out what is in our tanks. What is the story that is currently driving us? We first explore the spectrum of stories that is driving and guiding the 7.7 billion people on our planet, in desperate, discordant, and in aggregate, destructive, even omnicidal directions.
From there, we will introduce our story, which we invite you to participate in, make your own and join us in perfecting and sharing with the rest of the world. So that together we can finally get on the same page and solve our myriad planetary crises holistically, simultaneously, and in intelligent cooperation as a species.
What is your Story?
What is your story as regards the exponentially growing planetary emergency?
Here is a short list of some of the most popular stories regarding our planetary crisis:
- “There is no problem.” All these climatic variations are cyclical, today we are warming, tomorrow we will be cooling, so everyone chill out. Stop “global whining”.
- “We got this.” Between the 100 Drawdown solutions underway, exponentially growing solar technologies, and imminent carbon tax… We totally got this!
- “Someone else will fix it.” This is perhaps the most common story. Consider Extinction Rebellion: their demands are directed at all of the governments of the world, and basically boil down to this: “governments of the world, fix this! Here are some ideas as to how, including how you governments need to transform; but the bottom line is that it is up to you to fix this: you, the governments of the world.” Here is a short list of the people/groups/entities expected to “fix it”, by the folks who embrace this general story that “someone else will fix it”:
- Science and technology
- The marketplace (that’s what the carbon tax proponents believe: that if we just put the right tax incentives in place, the marketplace will fix it)
- Reduction in human population (whether dictated by policies such as China’s “one child per family” policy, or driven by starvation, disease and other drivers of mass die-offs, etc.)
- God will fix it (if He wills to fix it; and if He wills that we all die, then that will fix it as well). In any case, it is in God’s hands, not ours.
- Future generations will fix it. The problem(s) will land sometime in the distant future, whether 2050, 2100, or whenever. In any case, let the people alive and in power at that time deal with it.
- “There is no solution.” We are done for, finished. (This is basically Guy McPherson’s story)
- “We will fix this.” Who is we? You, us, everyone reading this, every single human being on the planet, regardless of their position in society, whether a government worker, a homemaker, a laborer, a sociopath, etc. We can, must and therefore will fix this, to the extent it physically can be fixed.
- “Other story”. If different from the preceding stories, please tell us your story! We will add your story to the preceding list. Please apply to Radish.org
The preceding are really categories of stories. Our story – the Radish story – is a member of the second to last category above: “We will fix it.”
But before we unveil our story, please consider the arena in which all of these stories play and what is at stake therein: whenever a population of humans with the requisite degree of cohesion (be it tribalism, nationalism, race, religion, language, or combinations of these and other elements) is faced with a crisis – for example an existential crisis such as the present one), various members come up with different stories about a) the nature of the crisis, b) the nature of the solution(s) required, and c) a plan for getting us out of the crisis, and to some better place.
A certain amount of consolidation happens (“Hey, our two stories are not that different; let’s build toward a consensus…”). In the end, there are two or more competing stories that emerge. And, similar to how honeybees collectively figure out where to move their hive next, we humans engage in our own version of “the honeybee dance” each dancing in favor of whatever story we support. And in the end, consensus emerges, and we move forward with that “winning story”.
The Radish Story
In our past, Radish has focused on developing myriad topics and foundational solutions, including but not limited to:
- All previous versions of the platform for Radical Collective Intelligence (RCI), including the present version
- The Hungerless Games
- CCC – a new standard for a Compassionate Economy
- Community Cafes
- Eradicating all forms of organized crime, starting with the eradication of all criminal drug cartels in the State of Washington
- SRM – Solar Radiation Management
- The eradication of prohibition, on a planetary scale, and the development and promotion of its replacement: responsible, regulated legalization of all ingestible vegan substances.
For more on our past, please explore the following:
At present, we at Radish are focused on:
- The development of RCI as a medium, as we explore extensively below.
- Development of the community of early pioneers of RCI, including notably: VeganWorld 2026, the Sierra Club, Sato Hemp, CCC, Prof. Guy McPherson and community, Dr. Ye Tao and the myriad scientists working on SRM at Harvard, ETH, Stanford, Berkeley, and myriad other institutions, the myriad organizations, individuals, and projects working on myriad aspects of collective intelligence, notably including Tom Atlee and colleagues, the various leaders of Radish listed in the About Us page and our respective networks, and the various individuals and communities with whom we collaborate, as covered in conversations.radish.org
- Outreach to myriad organizations who we wish to invite to participate in the leadership community and myriad conversations organized by Radish, notably including Rebel Wisdom, the Center for Collective Intelligence at M.I.T., and the Human Computer Interaction group at Cornell University.
- The development of the conversation space, to include all aspects of RCI, the RCI platform under development, and all important related topics.
Future: Superintelligence through RCI
Where are we going with all this?
“If you want to make God laugh, tell him your plans.” – Woody Allen
Here is how we at Radish see this all playing out going forward:
I. Humanity as a whole can, must and therefore will come together at a whole new level of group cohesion… Essentially as a whole new tribe… Which basically had to almost destroy itself and much of the living world (including most complex life) in order to really know itself for the first time: To know our power, whether destructive or constructive. Our destructive power is now painfully obvious. We believe we can parlay this consciousness of our power into the collective possibility of turning our power into something amazingly positive, constructive and healing.
II. This coming together of humanity will be gradual, and at some point in the near future will grow exponentially.
FOOTNOTE: Regarding membership: it is impossible to predict, but it could turn out the total membership in this new story and movement we are creating will be far less than 50%, when we have stopped the six mass extinction, cooled the planet down to the point that it is fully supportive of life, planetary biosphere restoration is well underway, and healthy planetary boundaries for both extent and impacts of humanity’s footprint are both well-established and well defended.
The extent of membership as a percentage of the total human population, while interesting as a statistic, is far less important than the total impact this body of members can orchestrate. Orchestration is the key. For example, even if membership is say, 5%, those 5% can orchestrate the other 95%, through mass media messaging, education, governance, etc.
III. This coming together of humanity will be spurred on by three critical factors:
The urgency of our planetary predicament has now reached the point of near-unimaginable scale. What is unique at the dawn of 2020 is the fact that there is near-universal acceptance of this urgency.
Thus, the first two of the above three points – urgency and universality – prime humanity to search for solutions together. This sets the stage for open-mindedness relative to new forms of collaboration and co-creation of solutions. The ultimate expression of this body of new forms is superintelligence.
Humanity crossed with technology is on the verge of spawning an indescribably powerful form of superintelligence.
Introduction to Superintelligence
In his book Superintelligence by Nick Bostrom, several different pathways to superintelligence are described and developed. The one most consistent with our Radish Story is the one described on page 60:
“But what of the seemingly more fanciful idea that the Internet might one day “wake up”? Could the Internet become something more than just the backbone of a loosely integrated collective superintelligence – something more like a virtual skull housing an emerging unified superintellect? (This was one of the ways that superintelligence could arise according to Vernor Vinge’s influential 1993 essay, which coined the term “technological singularity”). Against this one could object that machine intelligence is hard enough to achieve through arduous engineering, and that it is incredible to suppose that it will arise spontaneously. However, the story need not be that some future version of the Internet suddenly becomes superintelligent by mere happenstance. A more plausible version of the scenario would be that the Internet accumulates improvements through the work of many people over many years – work to engineer better search and information filtering algorithms, more powerful data representation formats, more capable autonomous software agents, and more efficient protocols governing the interactions between such bots – and that myriad incremental improvements eventually create the basis for some more unified form of web intelligence. It seems at least conceivable that such a web-based cognitive system, supersaturated with computer power and all other resources needed for explosive growth save for one crucial ingredient, could, when the final missing constituent is dropped into the cauldron, blaze up with superintelligence.”
We will unveil what we believe to be the missing “one crucial ingredient” referenced above, in the section “The Missing Crucial Ingredient” below.
Bostrom makes two other complementary points, one on page 66:
“Some improvements in communications technologies – especially spoken language, but perhaps also cities, writing, and printing – could also be argued to have, individually or in combination, provided super-sized boosts, in the sense that if another innovation of comparable impact to our collective intellectual problem-solving capacity were to happen, it would result in collective superintelligence.”
The key missing ingredient below can be viewed as such an improvement in communications technologies.
And another on page 68:
“If we gradually increase the level of integration of a collective intelligence, it may eventually become a unified intellect – a single large “mind” as opposed to a mere assemblage of loosely interacting smaller human minds. The inhabitants of MegaEarth could take steps in that direction by improving communications and coordination technologies and by developing better ways for many individuals to work on any hard intellectual problem together. A collected superintelligence could thus, after gaining sufficiently in integration, become a “quality superintelligence.”
The missing ingredient we unveil below is fundamentally a massive increase in the level of integration of our (currently loosely) integrated collective intelligence, as humanity.
The Missing Crucial Ingredient for Superintelligence: RCI
Having set the stage for this missing crucial ingredient, let us first list the current ingredients in the cauldron, which, when complemented by this missing ingredient, will, to quote Nick Bostrom, “blaze up with superintelligence.”
- Videoconferencing (e.g., Zoom)
- Transcription of videoconferences (e.g., Siri, Otter AI, etc.)
- Indexing of transcripts (e.g. Google)
- Search (e.g. Google)
- Communication of individual intent to the entire Internet (e.g., social media such as Twitter, Facebook, Reddit, hash-tags, and various subscription technologies such as GooglePlus)
We have all of these technologies in our collective stable right now. These are the existing ingredients in the cauldron. We are now ready to imagine the key missing ingredient which we are now adding to the cauldron right here on Radish.org.
This key missing ingredient is Radical Collective Intelligence – RCI.
The essence of RCI can be explained in simple terms. In order to get a really solid initial grasp of RCI, please set aside 30 minutes to watch the portions of the following video indexed below:
From minute 3:48 through 8:08, please watch and listen to the introductory framing of the topic, which starts with the first of the above quotes from the book Superintelligence by Nick Bostrom.
From there, please jump ahead to the portion from minute 20:20 thru 30:32, in which I present a visual framework within which Superintelligence plays the central role in orchestrating the simultaneous (and in many cases sequential) development and implementation of ALL of the solutions needed to save as much of life on Earth as possible. This 10 minute portion covers everything except the key missing piece: RCI.
From there, please skip ahead to the portion from 1:20:00 through 1:36:35, during which I unveil the key missing piece. And if you want to go deeper still, starting at 1:42:30 I present some more “big picture” stuff.
The balance of the entire multi-hour video includes some rich discussion among the various participants – itself a really great example of radical collective intelligence in action.
The Heart of Radical Collective Intelligence
At the heart of Radical Collective Intelligence are two major pieces:
- A totally integrated Conversational Domain (discussed extensively in the above 30 minutes of video segments), which is the key “missing ingredient” for superintelligence, discussed above.
- Holistic integration between this Conversational Domain and the rest of the Internet, academia, government, industry, religion, the non-profit sector, and any and all other organizations of people, information, property, intellectual property, political movements, etc. Notably included are:
- Holistic computer modeling of all of Mother Earth
- Google Search
- Etc., etc.
Conclusion, Invitation, and Next Steps
In conclusion (loud cheering!): here at Radish we are building a planetary community to perfect the design of, and to complete the building of, the key missing piece of a vast, exponentially growing planetary superintelligence. This key missing piece is called Radical Collective Intelligence, or RCI.
Once this missing piece is complete, we will drop it into the cauldron of the other existing pieces, and boom!, welcome to exponentially growing planetary superintelligence!
Will superintelligence have risks and unintended consequences? Absolutely. How will we address these? The answer may seem recursive, because it is: the answer is, using our exponentially growing planetary Superintelligence itself! (what else would we use? Some vastly dumber form of intelligence? “yeah, let’s use stupidity to address the risks and unintended consequences of superintelligence”)
Yes, this is risky business. But it is also intelligent business. What business would you rather be in? Business as usual is going to kill us all, in a couple-few years, if we do not combat it head on with something as powerful as this.
Just one example of the myriad urgent solutions which need to be developed extremely quickly, like in a matter of months, is SRM: Solar Radiation Management. We delve into this in its own section above.
Our point is that we do not have much time to figure out how we are going to get all this done. Frankly, collective superintelligence is the only meta-solution on the table with any kind of credibility (and by meta-solution, I mean that which will generate all of the specific solutions we need, spanning the realms of science, engineering, politics, governance, culture, media, PR, spirituality, etc.)
So where do we go from here? Where we are going from here, as we discuss further in the section Present linked to above, is we are gathering together as many pioneering, awake and creative minds, such as yours, to join us in collectively and co-creatively designing and building the key missing piece for planetary superintelligence: Radical Collective Intelligence.
Please join us! You are very much needed here, with great urgency.
You probably have many questions, comments, ideas, better ideas of how all this can be done, etc. Please bring all of these to the conversation! Join the conversation. That is the singular action item for humanity to take right now, right here.
See you in the conversation! Please sign up to be a member of Radish by clicking here.
With much love and respect,
Jamen Shively and the entire Radish team
January 11, 2020