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Vinay Gupta's Work

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Welcome to an overview of my work. Not all of these links are 100% up-to-date, you're looking at a range of work across about five years, The "Dark Mountain Poverty & Justice" talk is ten minutes long and a very good Start Here, as is the Hexayurt Project Images page.


Vinay Gupta. New Politics #TheBigDeal. TOOLS & LANGUAGE - PIXELACHE KEYNOTE. Degovernancing. The Free City State. Infrastructure for Anarchists. Talk Outline. Foreign Policy by Internet Protocol. WINNING THE LONG PEACE. The future of the nation state in the age of disaggregationor, why "be nice to people" is always a good idea.


This is version 2, 2007. A lot has changed since then. Version one is also available. Introduction Individual and small group destructive power will continue to increase for the foreseeable future, with novel and potentially dangerous social organizations springing up as modern technology evolves and collides with conventional "underground" cultures, like mafias and terrorist groups.

A future that attempts to deny small nations, potential terrorists or non-state actors of other kinds access to common-but-dangerous tools is likely to be a profoundly fascist future. CheapID Identity. CheapID is a digital identity standard designed for use in conflicted environment like those many refugees or disaster victims may find themselves in.

CheapID Identity

Watch a 35 minute technical introduction here. About the CheapID Card The CheapID card on the left is sterile. Without the appropriate barcode reading system, no identification information can be recovered from the card. Even with the tools to read the card, all personal information (including a person's name) is encrypted. Military & Humanitarian. Van Barker is an intern for the STAR-TIDES (Sharing to Accelerate Research-Transformative Innovation for Development and Emergency Support) research project at the National Defense University.

Military & Humanitarian

Van is sophomore at Georgetown University in the School of Foreign Service. Vinay Gupta probably did not expect to serve as an inspiration for a DoD research project. Deep Urban Resilience. UCL Institute for Security and Resilience Studies. Associate Fellow Weaving together threads from a variety of fields, Vinay has made substantial contributions to disaster relief, contingency management and environmentalism.

UCL Institute for Security and Resilience Studies

While at the Rocky Mountain Institute, he worked on Small is Profitable (The Economist's Book of the Year, 2003) on renewable energy economics; and Winning the Oil Endgame, a Pentagon-funded study on US energy independence. His core approach is to design public domain technological solutions which render hard problems soluble. Most notable is the hexayurt, a disaster relief shelter designed to be made using standard building industry components and skills; and CheapID, a genocide-resistant biometrics architecture designed for the Office of the Secretary of Defense. Vinay was instrumental in the creation of STAR-TIDES, a US National Defense University disaster management program, focused on open source and open collaboration. Inspired US NDU STAR-TIDES. Networks Paper with DOD-CIO. Whole City Evacuation. Soft Development Paths (Poverty) A tangible solution to global poverty and environmental degradation Sustainable development means different things to different people.

Soft Development Paths (Poverty)

This is a plan for making sustainable development completely tangible and real for the poorest half of the human race by creating a "soft development path" akin to the "soft energy path" presented by Amory Lovins et al. in the 1970s. The soft development path starts by facing real, tangible limits to growth. Ending Poverty w Open Hardware.

Simple Infrastructure. Local Infrastructure. Dark Mountain Poverty & Justice. Global Swadeshi Social Network. HEXAYURT EMERGENCY SHELTER. Burning Man Plans. 750+ built in 2012. Firstly a huge massive thank you to GeoEye for being super cool and providing me with the full high-res image to do the count this year.

750+ built in 2012

I believe the image below isn’t currently available anywhere else (full size/original image is scaled to 55% as to accommodate flickr’s 50mb image upload cap – if anyone wants the full 150mb image drop me a message via here) :: click the image to embiggen :: Image GeoEye‘s annual high resolution picture of Burning Man from the sky, taken on Friday 31st August 2012. Image: © GeoEye – GeoEye Satellite Image. 500+ built in 2011.

Haiti Plans. Pic of our prototype in Haiti. National Plan for Haiti. We can finance stable housing for Haiti for the same money that would otherwise be wasted on disposable relief tents.

National Plan for Haiti

Here's how. 22 Jan 2010 Every year 60 million human beings die. Lots of hexayurt images. State Failure. On the stability doctrine side, my proposal is a system called State In A Box (SIAB.)

State Failure

SIAB revolves around an analysis of what the essential functions of the State are, and a systematic approach to migrate power to the best level for each essential function. Basically, in practice, this means three things. SIMPLE Critical Infrastructure Maps. Urban Infrastructure Model. Complexity Kills - fun video on home prep. State Failure Management Archive. I’ve just released 4.3gb of files on State Failure and contingency management into the public domain at

State Failure Management Archive

You can browse, watch and download individual files there. There is the start of a collaborative “reader’s guide” on Appropedia. You can also download the entire set as a TAR file from or try bit Bittorrent version here. At 4.3gb it’s ideal for burning on DVD. Just download the file, decompress (unzip etc. will do it), burn them on to a DVD and pass them out. The files are all Public Domain, with one exception as noted below. Bittorrent (4.3gb) See/get the archive. Collapsonomics. Civil society & fading states Ireland. Framing The Collapsonomics Practice. There is a summary of this post here.

Framing The Collapsonomics Practice

Most of the people working on collapse scenarios are working from the current state and trying to maintain essential services at about the current level. On noting that this is impossible, in most cases a sort of Mad Max / Former Soviet Union model takes over. Dimitri Orlov and the American Survivalists are pretty much the epitome of this way of framing the problem.

If you are not familiar with Orlov’s work, this ten minute video is a very fair overview of his perspective, or check this long transcript of a talk on social collapse. I’m going to suggest there are three reasons why we do not need to go down the FSU “it’s all gone horribly wrong” path. The first is simply that in living memory we’ve seen a full-on five stage collapse. The second is that at least in America, the war for control of society between the people and the government was not won by the government until relatively recently. Summary. #TRUTH and BEAUTY series. Video and Audio Archive. Tuesday Performances. "The" Lloyd Davis is well-known in London circles for creating, with his 200 best friends, the Tuttle Club which was pretty much the closest thing London has ever seen to Silicon Valley tech culture. But it’s only one of about fifty three fascinating facets of this mercurial master of mysteries.

Lloyd will tell us stories. The Future We Deserve Book. Read the Book. Buy “The Future We Deserve”