From Seasteading
Jump to: navigation, search

Weekly Research Program



  • We want community members to be able to contribute research and ideas in a way that is structured enough to be useful.
  • Whenever possible, we wish to use existing systems and products. Minimal innovation - this is going to be hard enough w/o trying to do everything ourselves.
  • There is lots of work to be done identifying the best existing systems for our needs.
  • Forums are great for discussion, and wikis are great for summaries. Let's use them that way.


  • Topic Proposal
    • Every 1-2 weeks, we will post a research topic on the distributed research project forum, such as how to get internet on seasteads, cheap desalination, how to grow the most food in the smallest space with the least water, etc.
    • Each topic will have a moderator who helps define it and facilitate discussion.
    • The topic should also include some thoughts on criteria (what are our main constraints and goals?), although that can be part of the discussion as well.
  • Discussion
    • We'll spend the 1-2 weeks discussing how to solve the problem.
    • Things we'd like to see include: brainstorming, papers/studies, actual products, crazy breakthrough ideas, rough cost estimates, names of suppliers, pros & cons, how solutions fit various seastead scenarios (size, location), etc.
  • Summary
    • When the topic is closed, the moderator will create a wiki page summarizing the results of the discussion, with alternative solutions, pros, cons, links to suppliers, cost estimates, etc. (Cut & paste from the forum threads is highly encouraged!)
    • Please tag the page with appropriate categories, and link to it from related things, so it can be found.
    • The moderator will also look for aspects of the problem that might make good hands-on research projects or competitions, to encourage original research, and suggest them in the write-up. We want to do some of this, but very sparingly, and in the areas where we are most likely to be able to do useful work: not capital intensive, stuff that no one else has researched because it's only useful for us, that sort of thing. We are not likely to revolutionize cement composites, or the production of biodiesel from algae - but maybe we can make the world's best inflatable floating evaporative desalination units). We aren't sure exactly what we will do with these ideas right now, but they will be useful to guide in-depth research later, for potential prizes or competitions, and so forth.
  • One way to think of this is as a community-generated update & expansion of the infrastructure / additional infrastructure sections in the seasteading book. You can refer to those sections as a guideline for the approach to take to a topic - balancing tried & true solutions with new contenders.
  • Anyone is free to suggest topics. Those willing to moderate a topic will get priority on having their topic be selected.

Status Updates

1/28/2009: The results have the program have been somewhat mixed. Y'all have done great - there has been a lot of good discussion on the topics. But we have not done well at writing up the topics, and there have not been a lot of offers of moderation, or topic suggestions. We are going to put the program on hold and see if we can get the existing threads written up, and if so we will resume it.


You can get an RSS feed of the research projects forum:


  1. Watermakers. Forum thread. Moderator: wayne-gramlich
  2. Propulsion Forum thread. Moderator: wayne-gramlich
  3. Surface area trade-offs Forum thread. Moderator: wayne-gramlich
  4. Breakwaters: Forum Thread, Moderator Patri


(add your username after a topic if you are willing to moderate, using {{U|username}})

  • Low-water, low-space gardening - mike
  • Internet


  • On the wiki. See the categories on the Main Page.
  •  ? Should we start a TSI Research blog, to post new topics & results? Or just use the forums / monthly snippets