In 2000, I wrote some blogging software from scratch, and wrote that WhatIsProgress.com was about:
The accelerating speed and complexity of human life makes the control of change very difficult.
The last 100 years has seen many difficulties in harnessing the energy of change. In the World Wars we realized a level of technological power where winning and losing were becoming similar. By the 1960s, the nations in a nuclear arms race began to realize that winning and losing military war were the same. Many people then considered that to be in war at all was losing.
If humankind is fundamentally aggressive, and seeks conflict – like generations past – the conflict between forces of stability and change is unavoidable. People will fight to protect the stability of their interests and people will fight for change that is in their interest.
Therefore, large scale human conflict is unavoidable because:
1. Seeking and appreciating conflict to create change is a key part of human nature.
2. Our total population is large and not isolated.
3. We seek technology and knowledge that creates change.
The need for change and the need for stability is a conflict faced every day.
In the last 100 years, we have also learned that the great problem of chaos is married to the the great problem of fascism and totalitarianism – which is the attempt to control all chaos and eliminate all conflict in order to make the perfect world, a crystal palace. But in that world all instruments of change that threaten the order are crushed. As bleak a future as any anarchy.
The struggle between totalitarianism and anarchy are part of the same problem. Both anarchy and totalitarianism are painful, imbalanced, and energy draining ways to deal with the imbalances of the other. A cycle, or loop.
Nature, our foundation, is filled with cycles of energy. We have tried to separate from Nature as part of progress. As progress itself changes, we recognize more cycles of energy in Nature. Instead of exploiting and escaping – which leads to failure because we are part of Nature – we find a way to cooperate and belong in the “big picture”.
Progress is a way out of the knot, outside the loop. The loops are complicated and multidimensional. For people, outside the loop can be a lonely place. We need to know that others share our thoughts.
The internet can not exist as only a way to strengthen old values. The internet is about more than creating intellectual property, and it is more than a place for new crime. Manifest within the internet is a common interest.
To share and learn about progress is mission of Whatisprogress.com. To deal with the complexity of progress we need each other. This is an international website to organize the great debates that lead to change. Organize so that patterns emerge, so that we may recognize a way forward and a way out of the cycles of violence.