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The Next Big Thing – Don’t Lust After The Glory, Lust After the Story

I have a writer friend.  This guy really has the chops to write a bestseller.  There is only one thing holding him back though: Himself.  Every time I talk to him I can see the bestseller just sitting there waiting for him to turn to it so that it can download itself.  

But he ain’t listening.  He’s caught up in that most peculiar problem of most smart people – falling in love with the sound of their own voice.  Which in turn sets up a self referential mind fuck that keeps him trapped in his auditorium of narcissistic mirrors.  The proverbial devil stroking his ego and telling him what a great writer he is and keeping him from actually writing the story.  

The most visible symptom of this are some of his FB updates.  He copies quotes from everywhere and updates his status without attributing the source.  Irritating.  As hell.  All the more because he is a writer and he knows the so called ‘ethical’ dimension behind source attribution.  In effect, he is trying to pass it off as an original thought of his.  When I pointed it out to him, he laughed it off and said – ‘we don’t live in a perfect world’.  

Meanwhile, his story wanders about in the forest hungry and cold and starving for its owner…

Moral of the story: Don’t fucking lust after the glory.  

In a similar vein Tanutejas asked Why the next big idea can’t come from India.  It can, but focusing on the next big thing is wrong on so many levels…  I’ll tackle two:

First. India has already done 2 next big things: Enlightenment & the invention (discovery) of  Zero.  All of modern science and philosophy once you do a back trace has its origins in India.  It does, seriously.  You need to trace it back long enough beyond the period of written history that we know of… which of course earns the label wishful thinking… I’ll try to explain the tea leaves behind this bit of deduction some time but for now just take it from me that we are the origin point of modern philosophy and science….  So we really don’t need to do any next big thing.

Someone will say: This is precisely the problem with Indians.  They want to sit on their fat self complacent asses and claim pre-eminence because of their history while the country goes to shit.

Yeah.  If we would all sit on our asses cross legged in the padmaasana with our spines erect and with absolute concentration we’ll change the planet…  

Anyway..,

Second. The desire for the next big thing because you want to do the next thing will paradoxically take you away from it.  Because your entire focus is aligned to “we are going to do the next big thing” and not on the stuff you are actually doing.

A good example is Samuel Pierpont Langley.  Heard of him?  No?  Heard of the Wright Brothers?

Right.  

They both worked on inventing the airplane at about the same time.  Langley is the classic Big Idea, Big Funding, Big Glory man.  And he did manage to find investors.  But he made a fundamental error in his approach to the problem of flight which in hind sight could have only been caused by his ‘Big Glory’ motivation…

The Wright brothers meanwhile used baling wire, chewing gum, and spit (metaphorically) to glue together a crazy contraption that just, well, flew.  They were only interested in one thing.  Getting their machine off the ground.  Glory be damned.  And the universe conspired to lend them a helping hand…

Oh you think it was just their pluck, and grit, and brains that did it? Lol….ok, lets right that superstition.  Law of Nature: If you are on the trail of the truth the universe will help you succeed… 

Moral of the story? Don’t fucking lust after the glory and become a Langley.  

If you want to do the next big thing, don’t even think about it.  Just get totally absorbed in that which you love.  And the next big thing will come and find you.  

*******************

Ok. Enough with the moral science….  

General formula for next big thing:

– find an idea that you fall in love with,  this idea should have a solid grounding in reality (aka truth)

– hook together the theoretical model that will bring it to fruition, the theory needn’t be perfect, it just needs to barely work and hangs togehter with baling wire, chewing gum, and spit

– once your are convinced that it will work just sink your teeth into it like a bull dog and work at it till you see it come to life…

– also run away from committees.  ‘next big thing’ are usually cruelly lonely endeavors.  which brings with it its own danger – you can delude yourself into going down a blind alley that leads to nowhere…. if that happens dont be upset, just have the grace to kick yourself in the nuts for failing and start over…

Some ideas for the next big thing.  

Nothing original BTW.  This line of future visioneering has been beaten to death in fiction and religion but the tech pieces are finally falling in place to make it possible.

Do you know why the Internet succeeded while other proprietary networks failed?

Someone will say open source.  Yes that too but fundamentally it was something else.  In the early days of the Internet routers were set up in a state known as promiscuous mode*, ie to accept a connection from any other router without any kind of authentication (questioning).  

This parallels the trajectory of human consciousness and our search for our highest potential (aka enlightenment/nirvana/salvation/utopia/etc) when we connect with all of existence in absolute trust accepting and giving without any sort of friction.  

Next big thing: decreases the friction of connection.

Do you know why Facebook succeeded while the other social networks failed?  

The insistence on real names.  Sheltered incubation in colleges and universities helped, but the primary reason why it thrived in that petri-dish of student activity is that identities were authentic and a person posting to the network had to stand behind what they said offline.  This killed the trolls and spammers.

Next big thing: has authenticity of identity at its core (and will involve IPv6 mentioned below in some form).

Do you know we are transitioning to a new IP address system called IPv6 or IP version 6?  

The current version, IPv4, has a limitation.  The number of available IPv4 addresses are limited to 2.3 billion addresses and with some grandstanding can be doubled but ultimately the address pool is too small. We maxed out the IPv4 address pool sometime in Feb 2011.  

IPv6, on the other hand, has 340 trillion trillion trillion unique addresses.  This means every person and every device will have a unique IP address under IPv6.

In IPv6 everything and anything that you do with a device can be tracked.  Most likely all of us will also  get a NFC chip implant that will give us instant access to everything without needing any other kind of identity marker.

Some examples:

– No more SIM cards in mobile phones.  The phone will do an NFC pairing with our chip implant and authenticate us as the owner of the phone

– Forensic investigators will be able to trace your interaction with every device and NFC enabled container, say like a milk carton, a continuous life stream that can be queried when needed: Subject got out of bed at 7:23:34 am, entered kitchen at 7:24:08 am, opened fridge at 7:24:12 am, switched on coffee maker at 7:26:23 am, triggered low milk alert to kirana shop at 7:28:41 am….

– No more passports, no more credit cards, etc.

This runs smack dab into the Number of the Beast problem that the Bible predicted: You cannot buy or sell without a number, which in the case of IPv6 is a hexadecimal number.  

At a practical level what could be more simple than a chip implant that authenticates us for everything and makes life simple?  So why the bad rap for a piece of tech that is potentially useful?

My theory is that its because it has the potential to freeze human identity and prevent growth of the human spirit. If you don’t ass kiss the system you are going to be excluded.  

So probably we are going to have a bad ass World Gov that defines what you can and cannot think, speak, and do…embellished with some claptrap moral code…a total karmic bitch house with clearly defined contours that will allow the machine to profile you into behavioral patterns and keep you suckling at the teat of consumerism running a morality spin around the logic: “unless you consume and produce tangible value you do not ‘deserve’ to be part of the system”.  Again, will need to do a separate post on why such a moral code is death to the human spirit…

On another tack, the Upanishads and Vedas have been warning about this identity prison for 10,000+ years… but that’s just more tea leaves reading since I can’t put my finger on any direct evidence of this… but every instruction directs us to escape the illusion of identity…. 

Next big thing: protects transaction anonymity without breaking identity authenticity…. a grown up version of Bitcoin… will most probably have: very low friction, verified identity, unbreakable encryption, and zero transactional footprint.  Governments will hate it. 🙂

Enough food for thought? Forget about funding, forget about the fucking glory, just take all the tech that’s currently available and the ones that are appearing on the horizon and juggle it around till you see the thing that you need to build and then go and build it.  And once you get it to the right level then the funding and everything will find you….  

And in all likelihood it is nothing that we are even dreaming of…. and what I’ve said above is just as likely to fall flat on its face….

And lastly of course my favorite next big thing: teleportation!! Can’t do a next big thing post without discussing that!!! 😀

You’d think that Star Trek was the first to come up with the idea.  No suck luck.  We (India) have been doing it for thousands of years.  Sure, its right now in the land of myth and legend and they did it without any kind of recognizable tech though it is a technology.  

Assuming we continue our love affair with machines and want to use machines to move us instantaneously from point a to b, the first step we need is a working theory.  

The current theory of destroying and recreating the molecular structure by transmitting the information of the molecular structure won’t work, since it breaks the law of entropy.  We’ll need to move matter through some kind of near instantaneous flux that passes through all points in time-space simultaneously…

We do know that ancient sadhus and even Jesus managed to do this teleportation trick.  So most likely they are using some kind of existential backdoor – like subspace – to move particles around directly controlled by will and thought. 

First we need to get that existential backdoor working. Then we need to create the matter transporter.  

Drool, drool, drool…. 😀

*Technically, promiscuous mode is not really as I describe it.

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4 Comments

  1. Hi Abey,

    Amazing writing Sir. I am clearly less evolved to fully comprehend the second part of your magnum opus, but most of it sounded resonance with my thoughts.
    I too clearly believe that last catch should not be the target, instead making the chase worthy is more important.
    As you said it is important to fall in love with your idea, without that trying to make it big is like building castles in the air!

    Great Sunday Read!
    Completely thought-provoking and insightful…

  2. Great thoughts!

  3. Absolutely LOVED this post, and on so many many levels, Abey!

    Of course, as any writer / painter / singer / businessman knows – wanting to do glorious work is not what gets you there,  just doing it might. And immersion, belief, obsession, drive, dreams – with lots and lots of elbow grease and spit – all helps.

    What I tend to disagree with is the automatic assumption that human beings will agree to be herded, numbered, tracked and observed without a good, long fight. Yes, some of that Big Brother watching is already happening without telling the general public, but by the time super-tracked, Big-brother’s-got-his-eyes-on-me-all-the-time comes around, super-rebellious, super-independent people like me would have also found a Matrix-style backdoor to escape the system. I loved the movie, and not just because of drool-worthy Keanu Reeves. Somehow it seems most natural to me, at least at the emotional-karmic level, that some of us will value our spirit’s inherently free nature far too much to toe the line without a fight.

    To my mind the next big thing, after the techies have made transparent transcripts out of human brains, will not be driven by the desire for money or glory – but something far dearer to all of us, our free spirits. If somehow, we can keep that spirit intact while pandering to governments’ technology agendas – that would be the Next Big Thing indeed.

  4. Glad you liked it Neerja.  🙂

    Oh we’re going to fight alright.  That’s us: I am not a NUMBER you fuck! 🙂

    But our kids, and their kids?  They’ll be totally mystified why they shouldn’t be plugged into the system when it makes everyone’s life “simple” and “easy”.  

    Spot on.  The next big thing is the fight for the freedom of our spirits.  We can already see the first rumbles with the Arab Spring and we’ll see a more fuller version of it with the soon to come Indian Summer.  🙂 

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