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Ahoy friends. This museletter comes to you a little late, as I found myself effectively ‘nerdsniped’—or rather, philosophysniped (? – doesn’t quite have the same euphony)—by an intriguing set of questions nestled within a 1,209 word comment to my previous museletter on subversive leadership. Such questions are a honeypot trap to this wizard; I can’t resist.
And so what was meant to be a 5-10 minute video response turned into a full 59 minute soliloquy, replete with an abundance of links and references. I’m actually a little embarrassed as to the depth of my response—it’s all rather personal and somewhat haphazard and pell-mell. But at the same time: it was immensely fun to partake in such a solipsistic indulgence of one’s own bricolage.
If you have ever wondered as to the inner workings of the mercurial mind that is the foxwizard’s—this post ought provide some elucidation and plenty of befuddlement. I’ve called the post “The Labyrinths of Reason: finding your way to—and through—The Abyss.”
Meanwhile: hello and welcome to new subscribers! I met many of you at the Institute of Directors Leadership Conference a week or so ago. What an event!
Event organisers, take heed. Here we witnessed an example of what courage looks like in the event space. This wasn’t your usual roster of predictable pundits—rather, it was an example of subversive leadership in motion.
In addition to the meaningful integration of topics pertaining to climate change in an incredibly practical and considered way (thanks Chapter Zero)—the event did not shy away from vital topics that ought be on the minds of directors and leaders. Topics like disinformation—a notion that all other enterprise event contexts (in my experience) effectively either don’t see or choose to ignore because of the ensuing discomfort.
It was arresting even for a wizard like me. I’ve long been acquainted with The Corruption eating its way through our noösphere—I just hadn’t realised it had reached the mythical realm of Aotearoa. Research Fellow Sanjana Hattotuwa of The Disinformation Project had me really consider just how precarious our situation is. In my last museletter (before I attended the event) I mentioned the media concentration in Australia (only Egypt and China have a greater concentration)—but I had not also factored in the very real potential of other influences that lead to polarisation—and I dare not even write of them now, lest I come off half-cocked and evoke Moloch.
Anyways, hat tips to KP and the team. All of this points to the need for greater civic discourse, company director leadership, and environments wherein we can come together—in good faith and cheer—to converse and make sense of the world we find ourselves in.
The Rekindling is back!
And our (very accessible) tickets are already selling fast.
The Rekindling is a series of warm gatherings for the curious, courageous and kind. Together we foray heartily into the uncharted and emergent—so as to obtain the freshest and most dubious fruits of ‘wisdom’ (for our combined edification and delight).
This is a gathering of bright-minded and warm-hearted folk keen to explore that which is emerging, with a bias towards wholesome and regenerative futures. Hosted in partnership with Kearney Group, each gathering begins with thoughtful provocations, and concludes with a shared sense of speakeasy ‘scenius’ at a local brewery.
* Followed by another couple of hours of fellowship together at the local brewery, wherein we cultivate scenius.
Come join! I would love to see you. Details and tickets available at foxwizard.com/rekindling
Speaking of wholesome and regenerative futures, a couple of days ago there was a special session within the ‘summer of protocols’ research group that had Cory Levinson (a chap who works with Regen Network) provide an apt topology of Regenerative Finance and web3 as it currently stands. If you have been seeking a rather grounded perspective, this could be it.
Also, Gregory Landua—the ceo of Regen Network Development and the author of Regenerative Enterprise: Optimizing for Multi-capital Abundance—is quite an inspiring mind in this space. He has a podcast, and I have enjoyed listening to him constructively spar with other perspectives (like in this episode of ‘doomer optimism’; which gets particularly apt from about 38 minutes in). I also generally appreciate the notion of ‘regenpunk’ (as a kind of more bottom-up distributed/localised aspect of solarpunk).
Of course, none of this ought detract from decarbonisation, which remains the key driver. This remains a mostly political issue to surmount; we have the capability—just not yet the coordination. Alongside this, the unfurling conversation in global coordination technologies to verify and codify the myriad qualities that nature-based preservation and regeneration brings is worth paying attention to.
Are you worried your strategic offsites are more likely to generate work than facilitate progress? Do you suspect that your ‘leadership programs’ are merely status-quo incrementalism and productivity virtue-signalling masquerading as something ‘transformative’, novel and new? Are your people ‘too busy’ for meaningful progress? Have your recent pandemic-inspired innovations reverted back to the defaults of 2019? Have your recent mergers resulted in harmonious multidisciplinary teams—or are there issues that ought be addressed? Are your teams teaming, or are they [some word that sounds not good and rhymes with teaming]? Is ‘hybrid work’ secretly code for the worst of both worlds? Are you living and leading within a rich delusion of progress, to which you may one day awaken to realise your efforts are no longer relevant?
If any of these questions make you squirm, consider hiring Dr Jason Fox, Archwizard of Ambiguity (most fantastic). Jason is an award winning global keynote speaker, bestselling author and leadership advisor who has worked with some of the worlds most pioneering leaders and teams. Whilst not ‘the hero’ come to save the day, he is the wizard that can ally with you and your teams to evoke new and meaningful progress (beyond the default). ✨
- Seeing Like a Protocol—where does protocol credibility come from? I share this as yet another glimpse into what the brights minds working in web3 are thinking about.
- The 14 year old boy alignment problem, future shock, and AI microscopes
“AI alignment (Wikipedia) is the term of art for how to get AI not to assist in awful things, i.e. how to steer AI systems towards humans’ intended goals, preferences, or ethical principles. But the genie is out of the bottle, isn’t it? You can download an LLM and run it on your laptop, and those won’t go away. So the challenge is not in aligning AI, but either (a) aligning 14 year old boys to not do idiotic things (impossible), or (b) adapting (necessary).”
- The LinkedIn masses still appear abundantly optimistic about AI, and whilst I oscillate between sceptically optimistic (thanks to reading too many books from The Culture Series) to sceptically tentative—I am impatient for the conversation to be further progressed. Some of the brightest minds I know find themselves, at times, at the precipice of despair on the matter.
- My friend Joe has written a compelling framework on the Structures Of Feeling: Mapping The Five Foundational Worldviews. I appreciate any attempt to encapsulate non-hierarchical frameworks into a form that is useful and light. And whilst an old part of scoffs at diagnostics and frameworks, I find myself gleefully self-identifying to categories I feel at home within.
- “Some interesting issues with Nick's coat.”
- Now this is the way to address investor expectations in a complex creative endeavour. Bravo.
I’ve been a fan of William Mapan’s work since I first discovered generative art. Here is the one piece I have the joy of ‘owning’ (to refer to the social consensus-construct)—Dragons #342.
Most of Mapan’s pieces are out of my price range now, but there’s a textual acuity and a kind of intricate organic ‘feel’ to these works (all entirely generated with code). Take Anticyclone #522, for example:
I was going to write more for you—but this thread provides a comprehensive overview. The world of generative art remains as captivating as ever! Next week ‘Quadrature’ by Darien Brito will be released with gmStudio. Never a dull moment.
And that’s all from me this time. My next museletter will turn a little more ‘practical’, as it were. Well, that’s the intent anyhoo. We’ll see.
Thank you for reading. Please feel free to reply or leave a comment; it is always lovely to hear from you. And, if a friend forwarded this to you, you can join the many thousands who subscribe to The Museletter. Much warmth—fw.