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Waterborne Communities | Open_Sailing Project

February 23, 2010

With rising sea levels a growing threat to humanity, you’ve gotta wonder whether we may as well start seriously thinking about colonizing the sea. And we’re not talking the ordinary floating home, but actual water-based communities that live in symbiosis with the ocean. We’ve seen experimental projects like Waterpod, and more recently Cesar Harada‘s proposal called Open Sailing.

From Open Sailing’s opening statement:

“Life started in water, the majority of humans live at less than 150 km from the coast. We urgently need a new generation of semi-permanent affordable and sustainable architecture to explore and study the oceans, understand biodiversity, monitor climate change, address marine pollution, invent new modes of sustainable aquaculture, create data mesh networks, produce renewable energies, for navigation safety purposes and much more.”

The open-source project of international scope, which aims to develop an International_Ocean_Station, is   divided into several labs (see below) investigating novel technologies, including from swarm technology to an “Ocean Cookbook“, all so that the system behaves like an integrated, intelligent, interconnected, off-grid organism that serves up an” experience at sea not of a survival quality but a truly yummy experience.”

Although the artists affirms “it is not a utopian project”, its still seems like a daunting task and not clearly the most plausible. As PSFK points out, perhaps the more interesting question raised is when reflecting on the project’s open-source character: “Could the borders of companies and who they collaborate with move into blurrier zones, where proprietary laws and ownership take a backseat to a common goal?”

Partners of the project include Pachube, the realtime sensor and data collection platform. The project was recently featured at Now solar in Barcelona’s CCCB, an event focused on sustainable energy and technology.

All images from Open_Sailing on flickr

More info en español

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