Note — Jul 28, 2019

Past Futures / Participatory Panopticon Revisited

Paul Graham Raven thinking about his practice and quoting Jamais Cascio’s work. A very interesting take on “black-sky thinking,” tactical foresight, and generally a more critical version of futurism. Also including it as a counterpoint to some of the rosier visions I’ve linked to before, and because his “scout” angle at the end is adjacent to my view of Thought Partnership.

Cascio was one of the first people I can recall reading who was doing what I think of as “black-sky thinking” – contemplating the darker possibilities of sociotechnical change, in a way that seemed to me to combine the best and most interesting aspects of sf worldbuilding along with the real-world critique that I was slowly coming to see as an urgent political project in reality. […]

“Foresight (forecasts, scenarios, futurism, etc.) is the most useful when it alerts us to emerging possible developments that we had not otherwise imagined. Not just as a ‘distant early warning,’ but as a vaccination. A way to become sensitive to changes that we may have missed.